If the following report is true, then Microsoft is really trying to match Android features one by one in the next major Windows Phone update.
In fact, Windows Phone 8.1 shapes to be a completely new operating system rather than a major update. Not to mention that all Windows Phone 8 handsets will be eligible for upgrade to the new version, hopefully with all features included.
More good news has just arrived today via ex-Microsoft employee Nawzil Najeeb, who claims that Windows Phone 8.1 will include USB On-the-Go (OTG) support.
This is really big for Windows Phone users who will finally be able to attach external storage devices with USB support to their smartphones.
According to Nawzil, once you attach a storage device, the phone will automatically detect it and will switch to some kind of USB Storage mode.
You will be able to tap to view files in the File Manager where you can see all the stuff stored on the external device. Besides mass storage device, Windows Phone users will be pleased to know that they will be able to attach keyboards and/or mice to any Windows Phone 8.1 device.
The addition of USB On-the-Go (OTG) support for Windows Phone 8.1 opens up huge opportunities for Microsoft. Apart from being able to attach external storage devices to Windows Phone handsets, it won't come as a surprise if Microsoft also adds Xbox controller support.
Adding a keyboard to a Windows Phone smartphone will further blur the lines between phone and tablet. And with Microsoft Office package being pre-installed on these handsets, it will be much easier to edit/create documents while on the go.
Keep in mind that some of the features mentioned earlier have already been included in the preview build of Windows Phone 8.1, which has been delivered to lots of developers in the last couple of weeks.
Unfortunately, there's no telling if these new features included in the developer preview build will be transferred to the final version when it goes official next month, but hopefully they will.
Microsoft is expected to officially launch Windows Phone 8.1 in early April at BUILD developer conference. There are rumors that the Redmond-based company may release the OS under a different name, Windows Phone 9.
However, for the time being, these are just speculations that may or may not prove to be accurate. We will keep an eye out for more info on Windows Phone 8.1's new features and tweaks, so stay tuned.