On June 20 Microsoft officially unveiled its Windows Phone 8, which will be closely tied to its upcoming Windows 8 operating system. The new mobile device is expected to launch this fall along with the new Windows software for tablets and PCs.

Various smartphone manufacturers will be offering the Windows Phone 8, such as Nokia, Huawei, Samsung and HTC according to PC World. It will feature Qualcomm built chips, as Microsoft recently rolled out the device's new features in a Windows Phone platform preview. This conference was intended for developers at the Windows Phone Developer Summit in San Francisco on June 20.

At the convention, Microsoft made eight new platform announcements for Windows 8. However, the company did say that there are still user features that haven't been announced, and it is likely that fans will hear about this in the fall. The eight features that have been revealed include new hardware specs for the next-generation of devices, Internet Explorer 10, NFC support, Nokia map technology and more.

The future of Windows 8 is a 'shared core' between Windows 8 Phone and Windows 8, Windows Phone 8 product manager Joe Belfiore said according to PC World. This means that both the mobile and PC operating systems will share the same kernel, files system, multimedia apps and graphics support.

Analysts have predicted that this common code would exist between mobile and desktop operating systems, according to Computer World.

From the user perspective, this means that apps will work on all platforms: PCs, phones, and tablets. This will also make it easier to share content between a Windows Phone and other devices such as PCs.

The universal operating system is not only tailored for user convenience; it makes life easier for developers as well. Developers will be able to create content and apps that run on both phones and PCs, making the actual development process even shorter.

However, there is no upgrade available for current Windows Phone 7 users, although apps built for the current Windows Phone and 7.5 will run on the upgraded version. With a slew of new features, it's clear that the Redmond-based company will be offering a solid update in the line of Microsoft operating systems.

Apple is still keeping quiet about its next-generation smartphone, rumored to be called the iPhone 5. Although the Cupertino-based company has yet to officially announce features, the tech world has kept a close watch on Apple's moves. The latest rumor to surface is that the next iPhone will feature a mini dock connector, and other unconfirmed speculations include LTE connectivity, Near-Field Communication, the iWallet and Crack-Proof Glass among others.