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Microsoft to preview Windows Phone 8 on June 20, making it an exciting, all mobile OS month

Windows Phone Summit 2012June is all set to be packed full of mobile operating system goodness. In less than a week’s time, Apple will hold its Worldwide Developer Conference, where it will almost certainly reveal iOS 6, then at the end of the month during Google I/O, the next version of Android will likely be one of the stars.

Microsoft announced it would hold a Windows Phone Summit in-between a few months ago, but it wasn’t clear exactly what the June 20 event would be about. Invitations have now begun to circulate, and happily it’s going to give us “a sneak peek of the future of Windows Phone.”

At the moment, the future of Windows Phone as we know it is Windows Phone 8, or Apollo as it’s also known.

Leaked details on Apollo indicate the OS has been completely rewritten, improving on many of the strict hardware restrictions Microsoft imposed on early Windows Phones.

This could include support for higher screen resolutions, dual-core and possibly quad-core processors, user-expandable memory and NFC. Additionally, Skype may be integrated into the OS, and Windows Phone 8 could bring about the demise of Microsoft’s Zune software.

As well as introducing the OS, Microsoft could also put existing Windows Phone owners out of their misery, by telling them whether Apollo will be compatible with devices running Mango or not. Reports have varied so far, with some saying yes, and others saying a very emphatic no.

A bold move for Microsoft

With the mobile industry emphasizing software enhancements as much — if not more — than hardware innovation recently, the opportunity to see the three major players’ future plans in the same month is excellent news for consumers.

By the end of this month, anyone planning on purchasing a new phone later this year, or switching to a new ecosystem, could potentially make an informed choice on the spot. It’s a bold move on Microsoft’s part to park itself right in the middle of its competitors big events, and shows how serious it is about turning its low market share around. It’s a completely different approach to Samsung, who avoided the press blitz associated with Mobile World Congress, and instead launched the Galaxy S3 at a solo event several months after.

Chances are it’s not just going to be the schedules of these preview events that coincide either. A new iPhone could arrive around September or October, Google has been rumored to open its new online store around October or November, and when’s the expected release of both Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8? Yep, September or October. The latter half of 2012 is looking very exciting indeed.

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