Where the hell is my Lumia Denim update for Windows Phone?

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Lumia Denim to roll out for existing handsets very soon, and it takes a long time for Windows Phone updates to roll out

It’s been a few months since Microsoft revealed its latest Lumia Denim update, which made its first appearance with the Lumia 730, 735 and 830. The update is expected to roll out for existing handsets in the fourth quarter of 2014, as per Microsoft.

Recently, the official Microsoft Lumia account confirmed on Twitter that Lumia Denim will “roll out soon following testing and carrier approval.” Well, they failed to mention exactly when, but it’s not Microsoft who is to blame here — the update process for Windows Phone works in a different way. 

Once the update is ready, it is sent to carrier partners who test the update on different smartphones, add their own logos and apps (bloatware), and make sure they work properly on the devices. Once the update is approved, it is rolled out to handset by carriers, not Microsoft — at least for the carrier-branded handsets. Basically, it’s your carrier who has control over your phone when it comes to updates. This is one of the reason why some carriers take a few weeks to roll out the update, while it takes months on some carriers like Verizon to push the update to its handsets. 

Lumia Denim to roll out for existing handsets very soon, and it takes a long time for Windows Phone updates to roll out

The case is the same for Android, but the update situation is even worse for it as there are literally hundreds of thousands of devices from each brand, and testing it on each device can take considerable amount of resources. The case for Apple is totally different — the iPhone is just one device, and the update process is controlled by Apple itself. The carriers do lock the iPhones to their networks, but they cannot alter the software, and it is Apple who rolls out the update to iOS devices. This is one of the reasons why iPhones and iPads across the globe receive updates at the same time no matter which carrier you’re tied to, or which country you reside in. 

The Windows Phone Developer Preview program got rid of the update issue as it gets rolled out from Microsoft itself, but carriers don’t want that to happen. For them, updating a year old handset doesn’t make too much sense since it will offer the user a similar experience as a new device which launched with a newer operating system. Updating existing handsets requires too much resources, and this would mean that users will try to stick to their old handsets rather than renewing their contracts with new devices.

As far as the new features are concerned, Windows Phone 8.1 Update 1 with Denim features plethora of new features on board. Windows Phone 8.1 Update 1 brings Cortana to UK and China as beta, and India, Australia and Canada as an alpha. The update also give users the ability to organize apps and games in a folder, which the company calls Live Folders.

As for the Lumia Denim, it is exclusive to Lumia devices, and brings improved photographic capabilities, improved glance screen which shows more information on the screen with Bing Weather, or Bing Health & Fitness data, in addition to time and date, notifications and application data. You can check out the complete list of features for Lumia Denim here.

So for those of you who are still eagerly waiting for Lumia Denim to arrive on your handset, you’re just going to have to sit tight and continue being patient, unfortunately.

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