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Windows Phone Collections: For The Kids

Windows Phone Central Game Roundup: For The Kids Collection

One of the nice features of the Windows Phone Store is the Collections. The Store Collections are a wide range of popular apps and games, sorted by subject matter. If you aren't sure what you need, these collections can help get you pointed in the right direction.

The Collections include golfing apps, running apps, indie game spotlight, bicycling apps, apps for Saturday Night, Disney games and more. For this week's roundup we're going to turn our sights towards our younger Windows Phone users and highlight a few titles from the For The Kids Collection.

This Collection has a series of apps and games designed to entertain kids while subtly teaching them a thing or two. All these titles would be nice additions to your Windows Phone Kid's Corner and well suited for those times you need a little help in keeping your child occupied (e.g. waiting for the table at the restaurant, in the doctor's waiting room, on road trips, etc.). Heck, some of these games will appeal to the older crowd as well.

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For today only, purchase the Amzer Pudding TPU Case for Nokia Lumia 1520 and save 50%

Made from multiple thermoacrylics, this Nokia Lumia 1520 skin case is highly elastic and resistant to oils. Say goodbye to annoying fingerprints! The back features a matte finish with a glossy edging that enhances the grip around your device. Colors include black and/or white.

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Flipkart.com is one of the leading online retailers in India, and offers a broad selection of products across diverse categories.

The company launched their official app for Windows Phone in April this year, and the app has already received a couple of updates since then, adding new features and fixing bugs along the way. The last update was v1.2.0.0, and I've learnt that another update has already been submitted to the Store, and is waiting for certification.

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Yesterday your friendly neighborhood gaming editor travelled through the rain to Dallas, TX for QuakeCon. It was a totally uneventful trip and nothing dangerous or life shattering happened long the way, no sir. QuakeCon is Bethesda's annual fan convention, where visitors can compete in gaming tournaments, show off their PC case mods, and get some playtime with Bethesda games like The Evil Within and The Elder Scrolls Online.

The largest draw for visitors of this year's QuakeCon was easily the chance to see id's new Doom game (also known as Doom 4) before anyone else! Bethesda showed the game in action during yesterday's welcome ceremony. That gameplay footage is not available online, so most gamers will have to wait until a later date to see Doom in action. Don't worry; Doom looks amazing.

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Microsoft's Cortana is currently limited to only those in the United States, but the team behind the personal assistant are working hard to quickly bring it to other regions. Top on that list is the UK and China, two regions that are officially getting Cortana soon. Cortana was originally teased as coming in July, but Microsoft later backtracked on that as the date was pushed back.

Now, Marcus Ash, Group Program Manager of Cortana, has responded to a user's question about the UK, noting "Barring an unforeseen issue, down to less than 2 weeks for the developer preview." This is certainly good news, as many in the UK can finally take advantage of a proper regionalized Cortana, including metric and Celsius data. As to the reason for the delay, Ash explains that he and his team have "…learned a lot about scaling. Now we need to finish" observing that it has been a "tough project".

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Updates are coming and improving the Xbox One at a breakneck pace. Just this morning we learned that update 1408 was rolling out to consoles over the new few days for those in the preview program. It will then come to others sometime in the month of August. But we didn't know exactly what was new in this update. At least we didn't have the full changelog. Now we do thanks to Xbox Live's Major Nelson, who has just shared all the new features in this update. Video and details below.

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Xbox is bringing games, panels and more to Comic-Con

Are you lucky enough to be at Comic-Con this year in San Diego? Then you're about to get even more stoked now that Xbox will be there. Microsoft is sending team Xbox down to San Diego to set up an Xbox lounge and booth. Games will be playable, you'll get your first look at the television series Halo: Nightfall and celebrities will be around all weekend.

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During the Microsoft Build 2014 conference in May, one of the hidden features of Windows Phone 8.1 announced is the Lock screen app, made in partnership with developer Rudy Huyn. The secret project was kept at the highest levels as many on the Windows Phone team were even unaware of its existence. The question though for many is When can we have it?

Microsoft's Joe Belfiore took to Twitter today to alleviate concerns. The Lock screen app (yes, it is a separate download, not built into the OS) is evidently nearing completion, at least far enough along to earn beta status.

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Microsoft layoffs slash into European Xbox division

The massive Microsoft layoffs announced yesterday are cutting deep across the company, with the latest word of hits coming at Xbox EMEA (Europe, Middle East, and Asia). While 2/3 of the cuts are hitting job redundancies with Microsoft Mobile division (formerly Nokia), substantial layoffs are expected across the organization. According to MCV, Xbox EMEA could see up to 75% of its staff cut, and the staff will have to duke it out for the remaining 25%.

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Fitness Log updated with fix for calendar bug

Fitness Log, a very handy app for tracking your exercise progress, has been updated to version 2.0.0.3. The update is a small one, but fixes a bug in the calendar function. This is the latest in a series of recent updates, which range from bug fixes to adding new features.

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Finland's Minister of Finance Antti Rinne has said Microsoft has "betrayed" his country. Rinne is angry with the layoffs announced yesterday, 12,500 of are due to Nokia's Devices and Services division, which Microsoft acquired in April. Rinne feels that Microsoft hasn't lived up to the commitment it made when the acquisition was originally announced, according to Finnish business paper Kauppalehti:

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True to their word, Microsoft has pushed out two new updates for their Xbox Music and Xbox Video apps for Windows Phone 8.1. Microsoft is on a tight schedule, delivering updates to those apps every two weeks in an effort to bring them to par.

Heading to the Store and version 2.6.155.0 for Xbox Music and 2.6.154.0 for Xbox Video are now live for downloading and updating.

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For today only, buy the Incipio Feather Hard Case for Nokia Lumia 920 and save 40% off the list price!

Measuring less than 1mm thin, the Feather Case is ideal for the Nokia Lumia 920 user seeking inconspicuous, first-class protection. It's made of an ultra light, ultra strong polymer that's form-fitting and doesn't add any unnecessary bulk. Colors include black, pink and gray.

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The Nokia Lumia 930 by Microsoft (the naming for these Windows Phones will become simpler, we promise) is now available in Ireland through Meteor. The carrier has the new Windows Phone flagship listed for €429.99 on prepay or for free on contracted plans (depending on how much you wish to save on monthly costs).

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The Xbox One 1408 (08 meaning the month of August) update preview is set to roll out in the coming days, but it's not known what this next release will bring to those rocking the preview app. According to an image sent in by a reader, it appears as though the update is actually rolling out early, or at least the first stage has kicked off. As one can see from the above photo, it's update 1408 on the Xbox One.

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Starting this fall, Microsoft was poised to release a new high-end Windows Phone featuring their new gesture technology dubbed 3D Touch. The project originally went by the name 'Goldfinger' but later moved to the prototype device stage under the moniker 'McLaren'. It was to be released on at least three US carriers simultaneously in addition to wider availability.

Windows Phone Central has confirmed with multiple sources familiar with the matter that Microsoft is completely canceling McLaren. In effect, this leaves Microsoft in a potentially vulnerable position this fall as the hardware and services company does not have any flagship Windows Phones, to our knowledge, in the pipeline.

Although the timing of this report coincides with the recent layoffs and reorganization plans at Microsoft, the decision to cancel McLaren was made within the last few weeks, prior to yesterday's news. The reasons for canceling McLaren range from cost to Microsoft being unable to move beyond the proposal stage for interactive usages with the technology. The news of the cancellation is so recent that current GDR2 roadmaps still show McLaren and 3D Touch slated for later this year.

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Google has announced that a serious flaw in the web browser, reportedly affecting Windows machines since 2010, will finally be addressed. The issue is Chrome fails to return to an idle state when not being used, requiring more juice from the power supply, a serious problem for laptop and tablet owners. The company has pushed the flaw to the top of the to-do list for the Chrome team so we're hoping it won't be too long before a fix is released to allow the viewing of more cat GIFs between charges.

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