Microsoft has announced that Windows Phone 8 Update 3 will begin rolling out in the coming months, bringing new features and support for phones with larger, higher-resolution displays.

Among other things, Windows Phone now supports devices with screen resolutions up to 1920 x 1080 pixels, features an updated Start Screen which makes room for more Live Tiles, and Microsoft says devices with 5 and 6 inch touchscreens are now supported.

Windows Phone 8 Update 3

The update also adds support for the Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 quad-core processor, one of the fastest ARM-based chips on the market.

In other words, we could start to see high-end Windows Phone devices with the same kind of premium specs available from a top-of-the-line Android phone.

Other changes in Windows Phone 8 Update 3 include:

  • Driving Mode which limits notifications while you’re driving
  • Accessibility software including a screen reader for visually impaired users
  • Simpler internet sharing over Bluetooth with Windows 8.1 devices
  • User custom ring tones for instant messages, emails, and more
  • Lock the screen orientation to keep the display from rotating
  • Close apps from the app switcher
  • Connect to WiFi while setting up your phone so you don’t have to use cellular data to complete the process

The first phones with the new software are expected to ship within weeks, while existing customers should get the latest Windows Phone software as a free over-the-air-update soon.

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