Leak: Alcatel’s first Windows Phone handset, allegedly runs WP 7.8

Windows Phone 8 is set to officially launch on October 29th. Every Windows Phone that’s currently on the market will sadly not be able to upgrade to the new version of the OS, but Microsoft doesn’t want to alienate those people, so they’re going to launch Windows Phone 7.8. Don’t be fooled though, it’s basically Windows Phone 7.5, but with the new ability to have small, medium, and large tiles. In other words, it’s the old version of the OS, but with a slightly new theme.

Because Windows Phone 7.8 runs on cheaper components, Microsoft isn’t going to kill the OS. Instead, they’re going to let companies build ultra cheap smartphones that use it. Take the recently leaked Lumia 510 for example. That thing is rumored to cost just $150. If true, it’s going to be the bargin of the century.

Today, thanks to Eldar Murtazin, Editor in Chief of Mobile-Review, we have an image of another Windows Phone 7.8 device that’s due to launch. It’s from Alcatel. We don’t have a spec sheet, we don’t have a price tag, we don’t even have a launch date. All we know is that Alcatel makes budget smartphones, so we’re assuming that their WP 7.8 device will retail for well under $200.

Should you buy a low end Windows Phone? That’s hard to say. There’s obviously going to be more apps on Android, but then again Android struggles to run smoothly on budget devices. Windows Phone, because it’s so heavily controlled by Microsoft, runs beautifully, even on chips that are several years old.

At the end of the day, you have to ask yourself which ecosystem you plan on investing in. Do you use Hotmail, Messanger, and have a thing for Bing? Then get a Windows Phone. But if you’re a Google person, then why would you buy anything other than an Android handset?

Author: Stefan

Stefan has been writing about the mobile phone industry since November 2006. He also spent 14 months at Nokia between 2008 and 2009, but has since purchased a Nexus One and an Apple iPhone. He's watching Windows Phone like a hawk, hoping it'll get better with time.