Microsoft has announced that it will end support for Windows Phone 8 devices in 2014 - just six months after the mobile OS was launched.
The first Windows 8 phones went on sale at the end of 2012, but Microsoft has already placed owners on notice that they won't be current forever.
In a note on its website the company said support for Windows Phone 7.8 and 8 will end on September 9 2014, and July 9 2014 respectively - 18 months after they were introduced.
Microsoft said the 'end of lifecycle' date was just a fact of life:
"Microsoft will make updates available for the Operating System on your phone, including security updates, for a period of 18 months after the lifecycle start date.
Distribution of the updates may be controlled by the mobile operator or the phone manufacturer from which you purchased your phone. Update availability will also vary by country, region, and hardware capabilities."
But the implications for customers were unclear.
If Microsoft makes a future OS update - say, Windows Phone 9 - available to current-gen owners, this is just a formality. As Venture Beat put it - the "death sentence" isn't "the biggest deal".
But if owners of devices like the Nokia 920 or HTC 8X aren't able to upgrade - or their manufacturers don't support the new OS version - it could be a problem.
Until any new OS is released, we won't know for sure. Either way, it's unlikely Microsoft is changing strategies with regard to mobile any time soon - but what that means if you've already taken the plunge is yet to be seen.
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