Microsoft Lumia 850 release date: handset reportedly changed to Lumia 650 XL

Wikimedia Commons, Microsoft

The highly anticipated Microsoft Lumia 850 may have been officially cancelled. According to a report from WMPowerUser, the developers may have opted to replace the Lumia 850 with the smaller but similar Lumia 650 XL. 

Several photos coming directly from China have been posted and the images clearly showcase not only the exterior build of the phone but also a snapshot of the specs running the device. It is also pointed out that while the phone looks very impressive and beautiful externally, its unimpressive specs may end up pulling the Lumia 650 XL down.

The phone will be 5.4 inches tall and will feature 720p screen resolutions, similar to the regular Lumia 650. The overall design, from the location of the rockers to the front menu, all seem similar to the Lumia 650.

However, the report points out that the Lummia 650 XL does not have a iris scanner as the small sensor has been revealed to be a front-flashing flash instead. It was previously believed that if the phone had an iris scanner, this could introduce a higher structure of security for the Lumia phones.

Several months back, fans speculated that the new phone will sport the new Qualcomm Snapdragon 617 processor, but as the new images reveal, this is not the case. Instead, the Lumia 650 XL will use the less powerful Snapdragon 8909 aka the Snapdragon 210, the same processor used by the regular Lumia 650.

The report also points out that the phone is still running the standard Windows 10 Mobile OS, which means the Lumia 650 XL may not run as smoothly or as fast as desired. This is the biggest dissapointment to fans, who have been hoping the Lumia 850 aka 650 XL will be powerful enough to compete with other high-end smart phones.

Fans won't have to wait too long, however, as the report from BreatheCast states that the phone is likely to release this coming Feb. 15, although there are no guarantees coming from Microsoft.