The Developer Preview of Windows Phone 8.1 is now available for download. Registered developers should now be seeing the update rolling out to their devices, but as it turns out, normal Windows Phone users can get the update to their devices pretty easily too.
Announced just two weeks ago at Microsoft’s Build developer conference, Windows Phone 8.1 is more than just a mere point update. It brings about several features previously only seen in other platforms. Among the notable additions include the digital personal assistant, Cortana, and Action Centre, Windows Phone 8.1’s own take on the drop-down notification bar.
While this update is merely meant to be a preview for developers, those adventurous enough can actually download the Windows Phone 8.1 update even if you’re not a registered developer. To download Windows Phone 8.1, users simply need to log in with their Microsoft accounts at the Windows Phone App Studio, create a project and then download the “Preview for Developers” app on the Windows Phone Store. Once installed, you will then be able to see the larger Windows Phone 8.1 Developer Preview available for download.
Be warned, however, that installing the developer preview has its risks. For one thing, installing the Developer Preview will void the device’s warranty until the official update has been rolled out. You also can’t roll back to Windows Phone 8, so any bugs you encounter (especially those tied to device makers) will only be fixed when the companies roll out their own Windows Phone 8.1 updates. The fancy lockscreen customisation support like the one shown in the featured image above is also not available for now.
Oh, one final thing. Cortana is not available for use here, as it is a US-only feature for now. Of course, there are ways to go about it – setting your device region to the US will unlock it.