Windows Phone Support
As previously mentioned, the Windows 8 user interface can trace its roots to Windows Phone 7. Windows Phone 7's Metro interface consists of a series of live tiles that are designed to display information to the desktop. For example, live tiles can tell you how many calls you have missed or how many e-mail messages you have waiting. You can see what the Windows Phone 7 interface looks like in Figure 1.
Figure 1 This is the Windows Phone 7 interface.
Windows 8's Metro interface isn't identical to the interface used on Windows Phone 7 devices, but there are a lot of similarities.
In the current build, live tiles convey information such as the weather report and the latest stock market information, as shown in Figure 2. In many ways, Windows Phone 7 seems as though it might have been a usability experiment in preparation for Windows 8.
Figure 2 The Windows 8 Metro Interface also uses live tiles.
In case you are wondering, Microsoft is already working on Windows Phone 8 (code-named Apollo). Although Microsoft has not yet released a lot of information about Windows Phone 8, a few things are clear. Microsoft has confirmed that Windows Phone 8 devices will support more powerful hardware than what is available for Windows Phone 7. There have been discussions of multicore processors, removable SD cards, and higher-resolution displays.
Microsoft has also confirmed that Windows Phone 8 will be based on the Windows 8 operating system and that the phones will be able to run Metro apps. It seems very unlikely however, that the devices will be able to run legacy Windows applications.