Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 build indicates what's coming for the platform

Several developers across the web have posted their findings from the Windows Phone 8.1 software development kit that was just seeded to them for testing. 

Reddit user and developer "wpthroaway" has been the source of many of the leaks, sharing what Microsoft is currently testing within the software expected in early spring. 

Most notably, the Windows Phone 8.1 software once again highlights Microsoft is working to converge Windows Phone 8.1 and Windows RT closer together. The developer on Reddit wrote that “Universal Apps” will be a “template to build both WinStore and WinPhone apps from the same solution sharing code more easily". Essentially like what Apple has done with iPhone and iPad apps. Code also shows that Microsoft may allow Windows Phone and Windows Store applications to run side by side on any device.

Microsoft's device executive Julie Larson-Green has previously shared word that Windows Phone and Windows RT will be getting closer together over time. “We have the phone OS, we have Windows RT, and we have full Windows," she said. "We are not going to have three.” The new Windows Phone 8.1 software shows early signs. 

Furthermore, Windows Phone 8.1 is heavy on several front-end additions, including the ability to change the default messaging application, replace which camera app is set by default, rebranding of SkyDrive to OneDrive, separate Video and Music applications, more efficient multitasking, change the navigation bar colour, and the addition of iCloud account support. 

The Verge notes that neither the voice-activated Cortana personal assistant nor Microsoft's Action Center notification hub are present within the software as of yet. 

Windows Phone 8.1 is expected to be announced to users at Microsoft's Build developer conference in early April. The software seeded to developers on Monday isn't believed to include every feature coming to the update, but gives a good first glimpse.