Windows Phone 8 is Microsoft's first mobile operating system based on the Windows NT kernel. In addition to the ability to run multi-core processors and take advantage of higher-quality graphics, the upgrade from the legacy CE kernel means that Windows users could have the same fluid experience across their PCs, tablets and smartphones.
The move may have also caused some collateral damage. Unlike Apple's iOS, Windows Phone 8 will not be available as an upgrade for older smartphones running Windows Phone 7; anyone who wants the OS will need to purchase an entirely new device running it.
"Nokia is already having a tough time building market momentum behind their Lumia line, and now to basically have Microsoft signal to the market that they might as well stop thinking about purchasing Lumia because they're going to have something new in October, it sets up for a difficult sales cycle for Nokia moving on," Lam says.