Microsoft Confirms End of Windows Phone

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Microsoft OS designer Joe Belfiore takes to Twitter to confirm what many already suspected-- work on Windows Mobile is officially over, bringing an end to the Microsoft-powered smartphone.

Windows PhoneBelfiore does say existing support phones will continue to receive bug fixes and security updates, but Microsoft is not working on new software features or hardware. This was to be expected, considering how new development builds of the mobile OS stopped appearing earlier this year.

One also has to keep in mind Windows Phone user volumes remained all too low, leading to developers dropping support for the platform even as Microsoft offered financial incentives.

The sad news comes as Windows Central obtained an interesting piece of cancelled Microsoft hardware-- a prototype Lumia handset with an all-screen design. Codenamed "Vela," it was a predecessor to what eventually became the Lumia 435, and has very thin display bezels apart from the bottom, which houses the front-facing camera.

Interestingly, despite such a clean design the Vela device was meant as a low-cost device. As such it carries modest specs for the time, with a 1280 x 720 display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 CPU, 1GB RAM and 4GB storage.

Why did Microsoft cancel such a impressive looking smartphone? No one can actually tell. Maybe production of the display proved too expensive for the $200 price point, or Micrsoft simply decided there was no market for a low-cost Windows phone. Either way it was definitely a missed opportunity, even more so now that Windows Phone is officially dead.

Go Joe Belfiore on Twitter

Go A Look at Microsoft's Unreleased "All Screen" Lumia Windows Phone (Windows Central)