Windows Phone 8 updates coming over the air, early access to 'registered enthusiasts,' 18 month support program announced

Tired of plugging your Lumia 900 into your PC or Mac in order to apply software updates? Tough luck -- you'll still be doing it while future buyers snack on Windows Phone 8. Harshness aside, Microsoft made clear at today's Windows Phone Summit that all WP8 updates will be delivered over the air, with an available program to give "registered enthusiasts" early access prior to broad consumer pushes. The real kicker, however, is this line: "Devices are supported with updates for at least 18 months." For those keeping count, the Lumia 900 shipped here in the US on April 8th. Two months later, it's already confirmed that the flagship WP7 handset in America won't get Windows Phone 8. We'd also like to take this opportunity to remind you just how poorly an identical promise from Google went over in May of 2011. You may remember Andy Rubin confessing that an 18 month Android update program was being put into place at Google I/O 2011, and here we are -- halfway through 2012 -- and we've still heard zero details on how that's being policed. Pardon our skepticism, but we'll need to see it to believe it.

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Windows Phone 8 updates coming over the air, early access to 'registered enthusiasts,' 18 month support program announced