Universal Apps and More Confirmed in Windows Phone 8.1

One of the programmers with access to the Windows Phone 8.1 Software Development Kit (SDK) has compiled a laundry list of changes that are coming in Microsoft’s next major Windows Phone update. Key among these changes is the hint that Microsoft may be merging Windows Phone 8.1 and Windows RT, their tablet operating system.

This is good news for Windows Phone and Surface users. It means that both platforms will be able to run universal apps, allowing for a much more uniformed experience when on a Windows mobile device. How is Microsoft making this change? The answers are simple: JavaScript and HTML. That’s right; JavaScript is finally coming to Windows Phone devices. Developers will be able to design their applications in a way that will yield almost identical results on any device running Windows Phone 8.1 or Windows RT.

Another welcomed change is the ability to install apps to SD cards. The advantage of this is obvious; more space to install apps on lower storage phones. The feature is currently called “Storage Sense.”

One of the negative alterations is that it seems Microsoft has removed the native Facebook integration. The most recent build still includes native Twitter functionality so it’s unclear if the change to Facebook is intentional or merely the result of a bug. This build also splits the video and music playback apps, which could be an area of discomfort for some users.

Since posting, the source has since scrubbed the information from his post on Reddit. But if you’re interested in learning more, some save-happy members have all of the information still available in the thread.

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