Information about Windows Phone 8 leaked out on Thursday that also confirmed some of the details for the successor to the Xbox 360 and Windows 8.
Pocketnow was the first to leak details on the next Windows Phone based on a video from Windows Phone manager Joe Belfiore intended for Microsoft partners at Nokia. Microsoft insider Paul Thurrott, who’s had many a Windows scoop, confirmed many of the details from Pocketnow and added a little more information to the well.
In the video, Belfore discusses many of the hardware and application features coming to Microsoft’s smartphones but, more interestingly for the gaming community, he also talked a little about the next Xbox and Windows 8 as well. Windows 8 will get an app similar to the Xbox Companion App currently on the Windows Phone. The app lets you browse for movies, TV shows, music, games and apps for your Xbox 360.
A new cloud service (or possibly an expanded Skydrive service) will allow content such as movies, music and phots to be shared across the next Xbox, Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8. Supposedly, this will be done through new client software and not Zune. Xbox LIVE games across all three platforms will be there as well but not much information was provided on the level of compatibility or integration that is planned. Phone information such as missed calls and data usage can be shared with a synched PC but it is unknown if that type of information would be shared with the Xbox as well.
The Xbox 360 now shares the same Metro user interface as Windows 8 and Windows Phone 7.5 with the dashboard update this past December. Microsoft is clearly looking meld three of it top consumer products together for a unified experience (and more sales).
One of the other interesting bits of news about Windows Phone 8 is that it will add NFC (Near Field Communications) to allowers to securely pay for apps and games with by placing a credit card on the phone instead of storing the credit card number on an online account that can be hacked. Nintendo recently announced that NFC would be integrated with the Wii U controller for much the same purpose. Is it possible we would see this with the next Xbox as well?