Leaks say 'McLaren' is the next flagship Windows Phone
What's next from Microsoft's new Nokia acqusition? If noted leaker Evleaks has accurate information, its next flagship could be a phone code-named "McLaren".
For now, Windows Phones are in somewhat of a holding pattern. Although Microsoft is busy finalizing Windows Phone 8.1 for its carrier partners, the only flagship Nokia phone available in the U.S. is the excellent Nokia Icon, an exclusive Verizon phone. The Lumia 930, its international variant, will debut overseas first and then eventually return to U.S. shores next month, for AT&T, Cricket, andT-Mobile, Evleaks reported.
But the Evleaks roadmap continues from there, and on through 2014. Nokia will sell Lumia 530 "Rock" handset to compete on the low end.
In the fall, however, things begin to get interesting. Reports from Windows Phone Central and others have said that the so-called GDR1 update to Windows Phone 8.1 (possibly the Windows Phone version of the recent spring update to Windows 8.1) will lean more toward a gesture-driven interface, rather than traditional hardware buttons. Evleaks said that phones subbed "Tesla" and "Superman" would take advantage of them.
"McLaren," however, appears to be what shoppers seeking the next Windows superphone will be waiting for, with AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile all reportedly signed up to offer it sometime before the holidays. Unfortunately, why we'll want it is an unanswered question at the moment, as we don't know any details about its specifications or features.
In 2014, four new code names surfaced: Makepeace, Dempsey, plus the flagship Cityman phone and Talkman phablet.
What the roadmap Evleaks obtained hasn't clarified, however, is the whereabouts of the Nokia X, the Android phone that uses a Windows Phone-like interface. Since this appears to be a U.S.-centric roadmap, it's entirely likely that the Nokia X will be sold overseas, to its existing Asha customer base. And as for the "Goldfinger" and "Moneypenny" phones that Evleaks tipped earlier? Not a word. (As of late Thursday, Windows Phone Central is now reporting that the McLaren phone is a redesigned version of Goldfinger.)
The bottom line, however, is this: if you liked our review of the Nokia Icon, then there's good news: the Lumia 930 is apparently around the corner. And if you didn't, well, you'd better sit tight until the fall, when the next generation of Windows Phones is due.
Updated at 4:32 PM with additional details.