Samsung’s Italian branch has confirmed that the smartphone manufacturer will roll out the currently delayed and long-expected Windows Phone 7.8 update across its Windows Phone 7 slate of smartphones running 7.5, following initial speculation that select Windows Phone 7 smartphones, such as the Omnia W would not be updated.
We can confirm that Samsung products running Windows Phone 7.5 will be updated to Windows Phone 7.8 under terms dictated by Microsoft.
With the remaining lineup of Samsung Windows Phone 7.5 devices being less than a year old, the confirmation that every device running 7.5 will be updated is welcome news, as other manufacturers such as HTC have yet to confirm any update plans for their now EOL’ed devices. This makes Samsung the only current Windows Phone OEM outside of Nokia to detail update plans for older Windows Phone devices, as Dell have also given up on their Windows Phone 7 devices in terms of updates and have pulled out of smartphones altogether.
While Windows Phone 7.8 is also seen by many as merely a token update to make up for the fact that Windows Phone 7 devices would not and could not be updated to Windows Phone 8 due to extensive hardware and software changes, the fact that Samsung is choosing to commit to updating the Windows Phone 7.5 lineup may indicate Samsung’s new outlook on device updates in general, following years of dropping devices from updates for sometimes arbitrary reasons unrelated to hardware limitations.
This means that the three Samsung Windows Phone 7.5 devices available in the US as AT&T exclusives in the Focus Flash i677, Focus S i937, and Focus 2 i667 are sure to be included in the update rollout, but AT&T also has to be willing to make the update available for owners, owing to their status as a preferred carrier partner for Windows Phone, as the confirmation does not ensure that the devices will indeed be updated, just that Samsung has decided to develop and provide the update if necessary.