If you’ve noticed that your Lumia phone is discharging very quickly after upgrading to Windows Phone 7.8, you’re not the only one. Nokia and Microsoft seem to have noticed as well. Nokia recently confirmed via its Russian Twitter account that it will stop rolling out the update.
The tweet was in response to a Lumia user asking Nokia about the battery issue. Roughly translated, it means, “Microsoft decided to temporarily suspend distribution updates WP7.8 for finalization. ^ MB.”
Many users have been reporting heavy battery drain after they updated their Lumia devices to Windows Phone 7.8. According to Microsoft, the new live tiles the update update adds seem to use heavy amounts of data, which in turn causes the battery to die faster. The company will presumably resume the rollout for the update once the issues have been resolved.
Nokia originally started rolling out the update to devices back in January. The devices that got the update included the Lumia 510, 610, 710, 800, and 900.
Windows Phone 7.8 has the same homescreen as Windows Phone 8 and allows you to choose from three different tile sizes. There are also new options for the lock screen, such as a daily background image from Bing. Other features in the update include Internet Sharing, Bluetooth Sharing, imaging enhancements like Camera Extras, and apps such as Contact share, Play To and Nokia City Lens. Language support has also been expanded.
Microsoft stated last year that none of the existing WP7 devices, including the Nokia 900, would be updated to Windows Phone 8. In order to avoid a riot outside their stores after it announced that, Microsoft promptly stated that Windows Phone 7.8—a sort of ‘value pack’, if you will—would be rolled out for WP7 smartphones.
In an interview with The Verge at the time, Greg Sullivan, Senior Marketing Manager at Microsoft, stated, “The nature of the investment [in Windows Phone 8] is primarily in areas that are not exploitable by existing hardware. To do the work to bring all of those elements to a platform that can’t exploit them wasn’t necessarily the most efficient use of resource.”
While we understand that WP8 is a completely different beast altogether, it’s surprising that Microsoft couldn’t optimise it for single-core handsets. Perhaps the reason was the lower amount of RAM and not the CPU on the WP7 Lumia phones. However, not everyone cares about a dual-core CPU, NFC and all that jazz, so for them, the WP 7.8 update is more than enough.
“When you pull that Lumia out of your pocket after you’ve received that 7.8 update, it will look and feel the same as a Windows Phone 8 device,” said Sullivan. This should keep many WP 7 users happy for the time being, until they decide whether to take the WP 8 plunge or not.