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Windows Phone update detailed in leaked screenshots, includes multitasking changes

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Windows Phone 8 GDR3
Windows Phone 8 GDR3

Microsoft is currently preparing a new update for Windows Phone 8, known as General Distribution Release 3. The update is primarily designed for upcoming hardware, like Nokia's upcoming Lumia 1520, but it will also add features for new and existing devices. A WP Central forum poster claims to have purchased a device from Craigslist that includes the new update.

Screenshots show the new Driving Mode feature, designed to mute calls and texts automatically when paired by Bluetooth to a car or manually via options. One of the more significant changes is the ability to close apps in the multitasking view, an often requested feature. The screen rotation option is also included in the screenshots. Microsoft is also building in support for custom sounds on text, voice mail, email, and reminders, a particular feature that has been missing in Windows Phone until now.The next update will also allow Windows Phone 8 users to restore from backup using Wi-Fi during initial setup.

Update arriving on the Lumia 1520 and HTC Harmony

The Verge can confirm that all the screenshots and features are genuine. Microsoft is currently testing the update, which will debut first on the Nokia Lumia 1520 and a HTC Harmony device, and is expected to start rolling it out to existing devices later this year.

Update: A video has now been posted of the update in action. The new multitasking is shown clearly.