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First Windows Phone 8 update hitting select devices now, brings key bug fixes

Reports are spreading that the first official Windows Phone 8 update has started to appear on devices around the world. It’s not for all handsets though, as the vast majority of Windows Phone 8 devices being updated are the HTC 8X and HTC 8S, and so far only international models are seeing an over-the-air update notification.

According to WPCentral.com, the update is codename Portico and judging by the video the site produced of the process, it takes some considerable time to download and install. For this reason, make sure you’re near a charger if your phone’s battery is low.

The HTC 8X was one of the handsets worst affected by the Windows Phone 8 restart bug, where the phone would randomly reboot to the PIN lock screen, and by problems with the Wi-Fi, which would disconnect a short time after the screen went to sleep. Microsoft admitted it knew about the restart issue, and pledged to provide a fix during December.

With the update installed, it’ll only become clear over time if the problem has been solved, however it’s more obvious that the persistent Wi-Fi connection bug has been fixed. Digging into Windows Phone 8’s Settings and Wi-Fi menu reveals a new check box has been added, saying, “Keep Wi-Fi on when screen times out.” Tick this and the phone should remain connected to its Wi-Fi network at all times.

These aren’t the only changes either, as Microsoft has slightly altered its SMS setup too, now providing the option to create drafts for your messages, as well as the chance to select existing messages in bulk, which is handy when you want to delete more than a few old texts in one go. Also, the option to dismiss an incoming phone call with a text message has been added too, much like the option seen in iOS 6.

Microsoft hasn’t mentioned the Portico update on its Windows Phone blog, so there’s no official schedule to give us a clue when it’ll reach our phones, leaving us with no choice but to keep watch.

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