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 Nokia Windows Phone 8 devices on Sept 5th

The crafty cats over at WPDang are hearing rumours that Nokia could be set to announce their first Windows Phone 8 devices on September 5th. They are suggesting that the new devices may be called the "Lumia 910" and "Lumia 920". As ever, we suggest filing this under *rumour* but WPDang have a good track record on these things.

At the site, they are also hinting that September 5th could be when Microsoft reveal more details about Windows Phone 8. It’s good to keep in mind that the dev event where Windows Phone 8 was initially launched did not go into specifics of end user features or UX changes. There is still much to come.

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Microsoft Surface Price - Priced to compete?

Swedish website Webhallen.com is listing Microsoft Surface tablet pricing on its site. If these details are correct then pricing would be substantially higher than previously thought. Of particular interest here is the cheapest Arm based WinRT device, a 32GB model, showing up costing around £648.00 or $1000.

It had previously been suggested that WinRT tablets would be priced relatively in line with current ARM based tablets. If we were to rule out Android tablets and aim at the higher end iPads for a price guide then comparatively, the Surface is going to be much more expensive. Currently you can pick up a 32GB Wi-Fi only iPad for about £479.00 or £579.00 for the 3g variant. In either case, that puts the Surface well above the current market leader. Even if the Surface device is to be 3g enabled it would still be £70 more expensive in comparison. It has been rumoured that the Surface is not 3g capable, if that’s the case then the price gap leaps to £169.

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Windows Phone Olympic app, Ripple, now available

Ripple for Windows Phone

Just in the nick of time for the Summer Olympics, Ripple has been released over at the Windows Phone Marketplace. Ripple is a map based companion app for the 2012 Olympic Games in London (that start Friday).

The app offers two views, a map view and an augmented reality view. Information tabs line the sides of the screens and an image/attraction filter can be pulled up from the bottom of the screen.

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Infinite Flight for Windows Phone

Infinite Flight is one of the most comprehensive flight simulators you will find for Windows Phone and possibly any other mobile platform. Since it's release, the app has been updated several times adding new features and planes to the mix. With Infinite Flight you can fly everything from a bi-plane to the Space Shuttle.

...or in my case, barely get the aircraft off the ground only to stall out and crash into the countryside.

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From the Forums

Welcome to the first From the Forums for this current week. In this series, we bring you the latest and greatest threads from the Windows Phone Central community forums. If you've been hiding under a rock for the past couple of days then this is the perfect opportunity to get back up-to-date with everything that's being discussed.

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Turbo Camera for Windows Phone

Turbo Camera is a neat camera app for your Windows Phone that delivers high speed shutter performance and allows you to convert your images into an animated .gif file.  The burst mode reaches as high as 30 frames per second on some Windows Phones. The app recently passed the 250,000 download mark and in celebration, the developer has lowered the price to $.99.

Turbo Camera normally runs $1.99 and the sale price will stay in place until the version 2.0 update hits the Marketplace. According to the developer, the update is scheduled in the next few weeks.

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Windows Phone users now 18% more satisfied!

Windows Phone users now 18% more satisfied!

As well as Nokia shifting almost 4m Lumia handsets in Q2, it would seem there is yet more good news for our Windows Phone. If true, as a recent survey by Amplified Analytics is showing, and there is a 18% rise in customer satisfaction then things are looking rosy indeed. The survey carried out by aggregating over 104,691 customer reviews suggests that the Windows Phone users are almost 20% more chuffed with their recent purchase than in the previous quarter.

Drilling into the details it seems that the current Windows Phone darling, the Lumia 900 seems to be wiping the floor with the other OS satisfaction results in some areas. Depending on how you read into these bar graphs, the Lumia owners are more than happy with the OS. The same seems to be echoed in the results for the design also.

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Microsoft Sweepstakes

Want school supplies with a cool surprise? Of course you do. Microsoft has kicked off the "Cool is in Session" sweepstake on its Facebook page, which sports some interesting prizes. Like all sweepstakes on Facebook, you'll need an account and be able to "like" Microsoft's page (if not done so already) to access the entry form with more details. 

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WP Central

Box is available for Windows Phone

The team at Box, a cloud-based storage and sharing service, have published a blog article detailing the release of their Windows Phone app, which has been published since June. The app joins their catalogue of mobile apps for iOS, BlackBerry and Android.

The Windows Phone app is a native client so you're getting all the goodies offered from Box. So what's the service all about? Box enables users to upload, store and share files from computers to the cloud. Much like DropBox, SkyDrive and similar services, Box provides a limited amount of space (5GB) for free.

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Windows RT tablets coming from four big OEMs later this year

In addition to Microsoft's Surface line of tablets, which were announced back in June with great fanfare, four other major device manufacturers will be releasing their own Windows RT tablets later this year. Asus, Samsung, Lenovo and Toshiba have all signed on to produce Windows RT tablets.

Microsoft took a very measured approach to selecting what OEMs would be allowed to produce the first generation of Windows tablets, according to the Chinese Economic Times. The three Windows RT ARM chipset manufacturers, Qualcomm, NVIDIA and Texas Instruments, were limited to partnering with up to two manufacturers.

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Oppo WP

According to WPDang sources, Chinese handset maker Oppo is set to build Windows Phone 8 hardware. Founded in 2004, Oppo is a relatively new player to the mobile phone industry with a history of different electronic products, including media players. WPDang reports that the Chinese manufacturer could begin releasing new Windows Phones in 2013. Being less internationally known than both Huawei and ZTE, Oppo certainly can produce aesthetically pleasing hardware.

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WP Central

We'll be honest, we get a lot of email here at Windows Phone Central. And we love it. We seriously try to read every singe one.

One area though that has been tough for us to triage is the Windows Phone "Tango" update aka build 8773 (or 8779) which features some minor fixes and enhancements for some phones, or big changes for others (like the Nokia Lumia range).

Every day we're tipped on such and such carrier now delivering an update and to be honest, it's overwhelming. To the point that we'll need to start an Excel sheet to just keep track of it all. Seriously. And we hate using Excel.

Anyway, we figured we would just post a list of the "tips" we've had on what carriers and phones have been getting Tango in the last few days. We don't doubt we've probably even covered some of these before, regardless we don't want to ignore your news either. So head past the break to see what we have from the last 5 days! 

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WP Central

Weezer, an American alternative rock band that was popular in the 1990s, is set to play at a follow-up ceremony at Microsoft's opening of the company's Pentagon City Mall in Arlington, VA store on August 11th, according to a report at ARL. The software giant plans to expand it's brick and mortar empire by opening a number of stores across the US - see previous unofficial list. Inviting Weezer along is adding a cherry to this beautiful ice-cream Sundae.

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WP Central

We last looked at PhoneGap, the Adobe-owned open source mobile development platform, when version 1.3 arrived which included support for Windows Phone. Adobe has now released 2.0 and further expands on the feature set provided to developers who wish to build apps that can easily be submitted to multiple platform app stores.

Using HTML5, CSS and Javascript, PhoneGap allows those who do not possess the knowledge of mobile platform native code to create and release apps for all the supported operating systems. So what's new in version two-point-oh? The team have implemented a new command line interface for building iOS apps, which removes issues surrounding Apple's Xcode tools, adds more support for enterprise app development, includes enhanced user guides and documentation, as well as security and stability improvements.

Cordova WebView is also present, which allows for the integration of PhoneGap as a larger native application. Listed with the new features is "Windows Phone support", which we're slightly confused at since it was added in version 1.3. We've reached out to the PhoneGap team for clarification just in case there are some incredibly useful features added. We'll update the article once we've received a reply.

Source: CMSWire

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Although many people are using Ask Ziggy on Windows Phone these days, the search for a viable alternative to the iPhone’s Siri continues. While we’re unsure of what Microsoft has planned in this arena for Windows Phone 8, WP7 users certainly want options.

A new alternative is on the Marketplace now called simply enough ‘Assistant’. It’s made by Speak To It and while it normally costs $0.99 it’s going for free now for the first 10,000 downloads.

It uses the same Nuance voice engine as Ask Ziggy, so in that regards it’s not necessarily any better nor worse. But the UI design and layout are quite nice. You get a custom Avatar to interact with and a choice of 4 different voices (UK and US English). The app can learn your name and you can name it too (we called ours Siri of course).

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WP Central

It is Monday so what better way to start the week off than with a roundup of some of the more interesting Microsoft news? We have three more stories for you that might strike your fancy:

  • Microsoft gets caught with juvenile coding prank in Linux
  • AT&T and Microsoft differ on counting online gaming for broadband
  • Microsoft’s Live services (Hotmail, Skydrive) are set to go Metro in the coming weeks

So head on past the break for some roundups!

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Deal of the DayThis week: Save $15.00 on the Seidio ACTIVE Case (with metal kickstand) for Nokia Lumia 900!

This two-layer case features a compact and lightweight rubber polymer with a precisely positioned hard skeleton for added protection. The arachnid design of the skeleton extends out to protect vulnerable parts of your Lumia 900 and the back of the case features a retractable metal kickstand for viewing your favorite media in landscape mode. Comes in black, blue, red, purple and white.

Backed by our 60-day return policy, fast shipping and friendly support! See case review here.

List Price: $34.95         This Week: $19.95

Learn more and Buy Now!

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Nokia sponsored the recent Tramlines music event, which was held in Sheffield on the weekend just passed. The free-to-attend event saw performances by the likes of Reverend And The Makers, We Are Scientists, Ms. Dynamite, and many more. Nokia kicked everything off with a Lumia Live light show with music from True Tiger on the Tram Lines stage.

The video above shows the display in action with activated rave wristbands.

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Nokia discussing Windows Phone 8 plans with carriers

WP Central

Nokia is set to market their first Windows Phone 8 hardware differently, according to a report by the Financial Times. The manufacturer will be entering into partnerships with a handful of EU carriers to exclusively launch their next generation Windows Phone. The newspaper states the company has already entered into talks with a number of operators including France Telecom.

Nokia has traditionally relied on flooding the market with a number of mobile devices in the hope of getting them in the hands of as many consumers as possible. This may well be scrapped for a more exclusive release-based strategy with handpicked partners, much like the deal established with AT&T in the US, or perhaps we could be seeing devices specifically tailored for different carriers with differentiating features and branding?

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Retail Report WPCentral

A few days ago, we visited London’s newest shopping mecca, Westfield to get a quick take on how much coverage Windows Phone is getting in the retail space. Much has been made about Windows Phone not having good retail exposure. We wanted to see if this was true and get a feel for how things look for Windows Phone in the UK's largest shopping centre.

Almost as soon as we entered the main concourse, we were surprised to find a full-blown ZTE promotional stand. Currently ZTE produce one Windows Phone, the Tango spec Tania, a device that’s somewhat hampered by having only 4GB memory it does make up for it with a generous 4.3" screen size. The stand was there primarily to promote a new Android phone but the Tania was along for the ride and being displayed right up alongside it.

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WP Central

Our audience is smart enough to know that no electronic system of communication is impervious to eavesdropping and there’s very little out there that’s near 100% secure. So it should come as no surprise that Skype is getting some publicity of its internal network restructuring that started occurring once Microsoft acquired the company last year.

The charge: Microsoft is reconfiguring the Skype network so that it Law Enforcement Agencies (LEA) can have access to intercept calls over the network to aid in investigations.

The reality is of course convoluted with no concrete evidence but it’s worth mentioning what exactly is going on here. So head past the break to get the scoop.

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WP Central

Although it’s been a slow news weekend there have been a few bits worth mentioning but not necessarily getting a full on post—mostly because they’re somewhat interesting but not necessarily important. This weekend's stories are:

  • Does Nokia have an exclusive early release for Windows Phone 8? We call shenanigans.
  • Nokia's stock - now with even more junk!
  • Nokia Music gets amped to version 3.1

Head past the break for the weekend’s collection of too small to pass but too big to print...

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