Expected Windows Phone 8 features justify Samsung’s decision to hold out

Just as Nokia grabs the spotlight, Samsung reportedly steps back, waiting for a major OS upgrade.

A report on a Taiwanese tech site indicates Samsung may be holding off on any more major Windows Phone devices while it waits for Windows Phone 8, a.k.a. "Apollo," because it feels that WP7 isn't up to snuff.

For once, it wasn't DigiTimes with the news, but ePrice, which is focused on mobile phone news. Assuming the Google Translation is accurate, Samsung feels that even Windows Phone 7.5 isn't powerful enough and the phone maker wants to wait for Windows Phone 8.

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There's been a lot of rumor around Apollo, which may be the sleeper release of the year for Microsoft, because it may very well be unified with Windows 8 for PCs and tablets. A leaked roadmap in February, courtesy of a video hosted by Microsoft senior vice president and Windows Phone manager Joe Belfiore and intended for partners at Nokia, listed a bunch of Windows 8 features.

Chief among them: Windows Phone 8 will have a common UI and plumbing with Windows 8, allowing developers to reuse "by far - most of their code" when porting an app from desktop to phone. Windows 8 features being ported to Apollo include the kernel, network stack, security components, and media playback.

Other rumored features: multi-core support, different resolutions, near-field communication, Zune desktop integration scrapped in favor of new, unknown syncing app, deeper Skydrive integration, app-to-app communication and integration, and deep Skype integration.

So it's not hard to see why Samsung would say we'll wait. The ePrice story claims new Samsung phones running Apollo would hit the market in October, which is on schedule with Apollo's release schedule and Windows 8's rumored release date as well.

Samsung already has several Windows Phone devices on the market and is reportedly planning on three more this year. One is definitely a "Tango" phone, the update to Windows Phone 7.5 that will run on lower-end devices. So at this point, it seems Samsung is planning on two Apollo-powered devices.

Keep in mind, this is all predicated on conjecture, rumor and Google Translate. It will be interesting to see how this all comes together.

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