App builders get early access to the operating system updates so they can verify that their apps work okay.
To participate and download Windows Phone 8 Update 3, you need to meet one of three conditions: your phone is “developer-unlocked,” you’re a registered Windows Phone Store developer, or you’re a registered Windows Phone App Studio developer.
Microsoft’s Windows Phone developer program, is just $19, which is a bargain. But you don’t actually need a full $19 dev program membership. To qualify for the Windows Phone Preview Program for Developers, you can also use an App Studio account—which is free
The first smartphones that can take full advantage of the update are likely to be announced next week at the Nokia World conference. Microsoft is in the process of acquiring Nokia’s phone division, a deal which was first announced at the beginning of September.
The addition of 1080p screens and support for Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 800 quad-core processor should help close the hardware gap between the latest line of Android phones and high-end products based on Microsoft’s OS.