Articles

10

WhatsApp teasing for Mango release [Updated x2]

Lets face it: there's no real reason why WhatsApp, the super popular proprietary, multii-platform IM system can't come to Windows Phone 7.5 Mango. None. They get their database/contact access, runs in the background, push notifications, fast-app resume--everything they need. And with Microsoft going out of their way to woo developers and services, it's not exactly a stretch to think a WhatsApp client is coming this fall.

So when the official WhatsApp Twitter account tweeted "Did you know that mangoes account for approximately half of all tropical fruits produced worldwide?", it's not hard to read between the lines.

Sure, it could be a coincidence. Perhaps they were feeling irreverent today or their Tweet manager has a thing for mangoes, but c'mon, this was a wink and a nod, especially that BUILD is happening right now.

Update: We should note that Bill Cox (Sr. Director of Communications at Microsoft for the Windows Phone Division) and Joe Belfiore have re-Tweeted the @WhatsApp tweet. So there you go.

3
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...

Comscore has released its latest search share data reports and while Google is still tops, they lost a little ground while Bing experienced slight gains.

For the calendar year, Google's market share has hovered around 66% but from July 2011 to August 2011, the share fell 3%. Bing on the other hand peaked in February at 16.1% and experienced a 3% bump between July and August.

Other key points from the Comscore report includes:

1
loading...
1
loading...
16
loading...
0
loading...

Stephen Chapman over at ZDnet did some investigating into some Microsoft job postings and employee résumés. What he found was evidence pointing to the possibility of both Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 being built on the same kernal. 

Résumé of a former Program Manager:

The responsibilities included program managing software update features to provide device update technology that enables end-users to update Windows Phone OS with a new set of phone features including bug fixes. In this role, I delivered a set of functional requirements specifications for the major update components to enable image updates for the next generation Windows Phone OS (aka Apollo). They are Packaging System, Imaging System, Flashing System, Update OS, Update Validator and Update Application. Also drove and tracked early investigations for the Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 OS convergence to create Mobile SKUs.

Résumé from a HTC Senior Product Planner:

Owned the advanced planning relationship with Microsoft; drove Microsoft “Apollo” product planning discussion and led HTC cross-division feedback. Identified high potential partners and technologies; initiated/participated in new partnership discussions; ensured the relevant technology integrations and strategic alignment.Restructured communication channel between the planning and field communication team; greatly increased the sell-in material accuracy and increased the overall update rate by 50+% Spearheaded the 2012 Windows mobile phone product roadmap.

3
loading...
16
loading...
59
loading...
0
loading...
29

HTC: iPhones are for old people

Now this is pretty interesting, acting president of HTC America, Martin Fichter, said that the Apple iPhone is for old folk at the Mobile Future Forward conference in Seattle. Fichter took an informal survey at his daughter's domitory to see what her friends thought of the iPhone:

"None of them has an iPhone. 'My dad has an iPhone.' There’s an interesting thing that’s going on in the market. The iPhone becomes a little less cool than it was. They were carrying HTCs. They were carrying Samsungs. They were even carrying some Chinese manufacturer’s devices."

While many will dispute this with the iPhone being cool and trendy, I must say that it can be accurate, depending as to where you live. I remember commuting to work daily; bankers and businessmen on the train had iPhones, young women had Blackberries and everyone else had Android handsets. A large proportion of school girls use Blackberry devices, for BBM more than anything else.

What do you think? Are iPhones loosing its 'cool' for the young market?

Source: Mashable

18
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...

Users of Windows Mobile will be glad to know that the developers of Palringo have finally acknowledged that they indeed have a Windows Phone app in development.

In a tweet from @sedl23 (who tipped us, thanks!) asking them directly, they responded with an affirmative "Hi, yes we do have a windows phone 7 Palringo app in the works" which is nice and clear, just the way we like it. Of course, there's no mention of a release time frame though maybe we can pry it from them...even if just a guesstimate.

For those wondering what the heck is Palringo, it's a very popular IM service that is both proprietary but also connects up to Google Talk, AIM, Yahoo! Messenger, Live Messenger, Jabber, ICQ, iChat and Facebook IM. It even has a "local" feature, allowing you find other Palringo users and since the app is available on Windows Mobile, OSX, iPhone, Android and even Blackberry, it shouldn't be too hard to find peeps.

We're psyched but we'll be even more excited when we hear more--after all, the last time we heard from these guys they said a WP7 port was "likely". But that was in November, 2010.

1
loading...
1
loading...
20
loading...
0
loading...

Although we know a lot of the big Twitter clients out there will be going "Mango" soon, Mehdoh is a completely new Twitter client from developer Chris Field that is Mango-ready out the gate. The app is in the final approval stages for the Marketplace now, meaning it should be showing up any day now.

Mehdoh is a fairly impressive v1.0 client. Featuring background checks for mentions (every 30 minutes), Toast Notifications, flipping live tile (shows your profile pic, along with number of mentions) and adherence to the Metro design, we're quite impressed with this minimalist, yet highly functional app.

In addition to the above, it features a "report spam" selection, conversation view, super smooth scrolling, fast app resume, reTweet with comment and the ability to view web links and images inline with the Tweet--something that is highly useful.

The app does take a little while to update, mostly because it pre-downloads a lot of data, however Chris is looking to tweak this and we can expect it to change upon final release or soon thereafter. Mehdoh will fetch for $0.99 upon release with a free trial. A free,  ad-supported version is planned, but not until a decent ad-service for Mango apps can be had in the UK. We recommend for the Mango users out there to give Mehdoh a look, as it's pretty sharp for a v1.0 release from an indy developer. Check out our video preview to get an idea of well it works.

5
loading...
0
loading...
1
loading...
0
loading...
4

WPCentral Podcast 125


Dan and Jay are back to discuss AT&T's new lineup, Mango madness, new apps, AVG and more. Join us for another exciting podcast.

Full show notes after the break...

2
loading...
0
loading...
12
loading...
0
loading...

We're pretty stoked about Mango for many reasons, but a big one is the ability to use augmented reality. LG has already done a great job of doing this last year but their apps are only for their phones. Now with Mango and the upcoming AR Starter Kit, third party developers will get access to all the tools to enable them to create some killer apps.

The best part about these tools, once again, is Microsoft's emphasis on simplicity. With as little as six-lines of code, developers can begin to make their own AR layers to existing apps. All the sensors are handled for them and there's a "drag and drop" design. What this means for consumers is obvious: more apps of higher quality. Devs won't have to spend hours thinking of how to implement AR but rather can focus on other things, like design, utility and execution. We can't wait.

The kit will be put up on Codeplex as soon as some internal review process is complete.

Source: YouTube (jbienzms); via @mckhendry

1
loading...
0
loading...
44
loading...
0
loading...

While release dates for the Nokia Windows Phone have never been set in stone, the strong school of thought has been to look at early 2012 for the Sea Ray to hit the market. This line of thought was confirmed recently. In an interview with the Australian website WP7R, when questioned about the release of the Sea Ray Nokia in Australia replied,

"We won't be releasing a Nokia on Windows Phone until Q1 of next year. Can't be more specific than that sorry!"

This joins the long line of indicators pointing to 2012 that include Nokia CEO Stephen Elop stating, "We'll be shipping in volume in 2012" and Nokia tweeting similar.  We still have the where and with whom that has to be answered.  Plus it would be nice if eventually the Q1 2012 time frame could be narrowed down a bit.

Regardless, this latest blip seems to confirm that Sea Ray fans still a have a bit of a wait to endure.

source: Wp7r  Thanks xlri for the tip!

3
loading...
4
loading...
37
loading...
0
loading...
6

Timer - Mango App Spotlight

Here's a handy utility for your Windows Phone. Timer is a Mango App over at the Marketplace that allows you to create and set countdown timers that will run in the background on your phone.

The interface is straight forward with two preset, customizable timers already present. You can modify each timer by tapping on the display and edit the time duration and/or description. To add more timers, tap the "+" button at the bottom and create away. Once your ready to use a particular timer, just tap the toggle switch and go about your business. The alarm will ring, regardless of your phone's volume settings, and give you the option of snoozing or dismissing the alarm.

Timer is a simple app that can be used in a bunch of ways. Need an exercise timer? In the kitchen, would multiple timers help keep track of everything on the stove? Trying to limit the kids video game time? Need to time yourself during practice exams?

0
loading...
0
loading...
16
loading...
0
loading...
21

HTC considering buying OS of its own

HTC Chairwoman Cher Wang told the China's Economic Observer that the device manufacturer is considering purchasing a mobile phone operating system that it can use as its own.  The possibility is there, but it is nowhere near becoming a reality.  “We have given it thought and we have discussed it internally, but we will not do it on impulse,” Wang said in an interview. 

It may come as a surprise that a company which has seen so much success building devices with third-party operation systems (Android and Windows Phone) would be possibly seeking to obtain one of their own.  However, if you follow recent trends of Nokia pairing off with Microsoft and Google buying Motorola Mobility, HTC might be looking for a little insurance that they won't be left out in the cold as a manufacturer with no OS.  Even Samsung, whose bread and butter is Android and Windows devices has their own proprietary operating system, bada.

If HTC does decide to go the route of their own OS, it's still unlikely that they will completely drop the third-party ones that have rocketed them to the heights of the mobile phone market.  Still, it might be cool to see a "HTC Sense" phone, or the acquisition of webOS by a company that could actually make it successful.

Source: Focus Taiwan; Via: Mashable

0
loading...
2
loading...
30
loading...
0
loading...
6

HTC Radar shows up on Orange UK

The HTC Radar has made its way onto UK mobile site Orange UK in the "Coming Soon" section.  While no timeline is given for availability, it is a good sign that release is imminent.  With a 3.8" screen, 1GHz processor, and 5MP camera, it is meant to be a lower-price point to its overgrown counterpart, the Titan, and was shown to be a little behind it when the two were put through their paces recently.  That being said, the Radar still proved to be a pretty nice addition to the HTC WP7 lineup when we took a look at it hands-on.

Source: OrangeUK (Thanks for the tip, Alex!)

1
loading...
1
loading...
15
loading...
0
loading...

Oh, so now we know Brandon Watson is using the just announced Samsung Focus S, sporting an 8MP camera, 4.3" Super AMOLED Plus screen and rocking 4G connectivity. He mentioned the phone, indirectly, before but now we have evidence.

In a photo just uploaded to TwitPic, the EXIF info reveals all, as can be seen above. The SGH-i937 aka "Kapua" aka Samsung Focus S shows up in the EXIF data along with it weighing in at 8MP. (Note: we busted Bill Gates before using this method)

Congrats, Mr. Watson. Clearly your job has perks.

Thanks, @Nin_jy, for the tip!

1
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...

Today, AT&T has announced its Windows Phone 7.5 plans, including new phones and updates (see earlier AT&T roadmap leak). The three new devices, the HTC Titan, Samsung's Focus S and Focus Flash will all be available in Q4, though no specific date has been specified. Most impressive is the announcement of the first 4G Windows Phone, coming from Samsung.

We've all seen (and drooled over) the HTC Titan, with its gigantic 4.7-inch screen, 1.5GHz processor, 8MP camera with dual LED flash in addition it's front-facing 1.3MP camera. No doubt that the Titan will be highly anticipated and a weclome addition to AT&T's offerings.

As for the Focus S (SGH-i937 aka Kapua) it will "build on the success of the award-winning and highest selling Windows Phone in the U.S., the Samsung Focus." and will sport a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED Plus display, 1.4GHz processor, 8MP rear camera and a 1.3MP front-facing camera, all snuggly tucked into a svelte a 8.55 millimeter profile (the current Focus is 9.9mm thick, for reference)

Finally, the Samsung Focus Flash will be geared for the more price-conscious consumer.  While it, too, will have a 1.4GHz processor, the screen measures in a tad smaller than the Focus S, at 3.7 inches, and will only have a 5MP camera.  All three will have front-facing cameras, which seems to be a standard for any new, Mango-native devices.

3
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0

From the WPCentral forums...

We have been spending a lot of time fooling around in the forums and you’re not going to believe this. Sure you can't say he’s serious, or is he? I’m not really sure either. What am I talking about? You’ll just have to read the thread: "Do you ever just..."  Then there is this: "New owners: How do you manage expectation of failure?" Now that doesn’t make any sense does it? You be the judge. If you want to know what it all about you will have to read the threads.

We are also talking about Samsung and the future of Windows Phone. "Sprint and/or Verizon getting some Samsung love" we sure hope so. But wait this just in: "Samsung ditiching WP7...", hopefully this is just a bad rumor.

"Apps missing from WP7". What are your favorite apps that haven’t made it to Windows Phone yet? We are making a list come tell us what apps you want to see on Windows Phone.

Don’t forget to stop in and check out this week’s developer apps in our Applications and Games Spotlight forums. Here are a few highlights

Applications Spotlight:

0
loading...
0
loading...
11
loading...
0
loading...

Register or Login to add comments

3

Live Tile Now - Mango App Spotlight

Here's a Mango App that will let you pin your favorite photos on the Windows Phone Start Screen. As with other Mango Live Tile apps, such as Sticky Tiles and NFL Live Tile, the interface is short and simple.

You have one page to select the image from (one for either side of the tile) and one page to enter optional text. From there you pin the app to your Start Screen and the tile is generated. There's also a tile count area where you can enter a reminder such as a date or number of days until an event.

The only downside to the app is that your only limited to one tile. Still, it's a nice way to pin a photo of your pets, kids, girlfriend or wife (but not both) on your Start Screen. If you're running Mango, Live Tile Now is a free, ad-supported app and you can download it here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace.

0
loading...
1
loading...
19
loading...
0
loading...

For some reason, everyone is planning for 2013. Guess we should start picking out our clothes now as Nvidia evidently has plans for Windows Phone, three years after knocking it and the same year that Samsung is reportedly dropping the OS.

Nividia's Tegra chipsets have been around for awhile now, heck they even powered the ZuneHD. But besides some Android handsets, they have been absent from the Windows Phone side, leaving plenty of room for mega SoC maker Qualcomm to ride high.

In a leaked roadmap from Heise.de, we can see that in 2013 Nvidia is looking to power Windows Phone handsets using their Tegra/Icera combo "Grey" chipset. Reportedly featuring a 28mm manufacturing process and 2G/3G/4G communication capabilities (something Nvidia is missing now), the chipset looks to be as powerful as Qulcomm's offering but with some Nvidia GPU oomph.

We're still trying to make sense of the layout of this slide, but it is interesting to see Windows and Windows Phone lumped next to each other--reaffirming the notion that both OSs will become closer together, especially as Windows 8 moves to ARM processors.

1
loading...
0
loading...
5
loading...
0
loading...

This seems to be completely out of the blue, so take it lightly if you will. SamFirmware, the guys that continuously publish leaked ROMs and whatnot have tweeted that Samsung will be looking at leaving Windows Phone and will cease innovating for the platform from 2013 onwards. It seems odd due to the success of Samsung handsets on Microsoft's OS, but let us take a look at the larger picture here.

Could Samsung be focusing on Android? Not sure, they already have solid devices like the Galaxy S II so it could be that they have decided to take bada seriously, especially since with Android they are experiencing legal issues and have to pay Microsoft royalty.

Google will now play a role in hardware as well as software with Android, while Microsoft holds continuous tea parties with Nokia. But they're still two completely different relationships. Manufacturers were sceptical about the Motorola acquisition whereas Acer and others are still pretty excited about the future of WP.

Should this be true, 2013 is still two years away. If the platform really does capture the market by storm with Mango then perhaps Samsung may change their tune. Android (and Google) need Samsung, but it could be that bada will be competing for market as well as WP.

0
loading...
1
loading...
39
loading...
0
loading...

Here's a bit of a mystery.

There is a Windows Phone 7 update available for your Windows operating system. It won't show up on your update list unless you have Zune running and your Windows Phone connected.

Listed as Microsoft-Other hardware-Windows Phone 7, the 4.2mb update apparently deals with your USB connection and recognizes the Windows Phone device by name. Gone is the generic "Windows Phone device" identity whenever you connect your Windows Phone.

As to the "why", your guess is as good as ours. Could it allow Microsoft to open up the device specific apps to the Zune Desktop? Could it be a sign that the Mango's release is close at hand?  Or could it simply be someone at Microsoft getting tired of seeing a generic description of your Windows Phone?

Thanks goes out to Jarrod and everyone else who tipped us on this!

0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...

While this is far from official being a part of the growing Kinect Homebrew scene, what this demonstration of a Xbox 360 Kinect, Windows Phone and Grand Theft Auto proves is that come 2012, we could be set for some truly unique game play.

The sensor here is using a custom "KinDriver" app which allows you to control the character using the phone, in addition to virtual steering with just your hands.. The fact that this as been done on the homebrew level already is quite impressive, so lets just hope some of the big game houses are working on the same. The combo of Kinect and Windows Phone could be the biggest thing for Windows Phone in 2012...if done big.

Source: YouTube (theSchokoBiscuit); via WPSauce

0
loading...
0
loading...
23
loading...
0
loading...

Looking to pick up the a new HTC Titan or Radar when released? Have questions about the Fujitsu IS12T? Or just want to discuss why these devices are totally 'leet? Then hop on into the WPCentral Forums where we've recently created dedicated sub-forums to these upcoming phones, in addition out our cadre of existing devices.

So come on by and add your two cents...  http://forums.wpcentral.com/

0
loading...
0
loading...
14
loading...
0
loading...
5

Cradle delay for the HTC Titan?

This is pretty odd, it seems as though the cradle for the HTC Titan will be available after the device arrives to stores. Sure enough this isn't a biggie and will give users ample time to get used to the massive 4.7" screen, but it's strange to see an accessory that's required for one of the selling features of the handset (alarm clock, etc.) won't be available for a while.

SmartphoneShop.nl (as well as HTC Netherlands) is showing the HTC Titan release date as October 4th, while HTC Accessory Store (both for NL and UK) has the cradle accessory delivery estimation for 50+ days. So we have October for the handset and November for the cradle/dock? For us Brits it's not so bad as Amazon has the HTC devices (both Radar and Titan) as October 15th.

0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
24

Mango to be released next week?

We've previously covered the release date for Mango, and this is pretty much confirming with what we've already published (September 15th). On the Windows Phone Developer Podcast (episode 33), Ryan and Travis Lowdermilk explain that they've heard from a number of sources that the upcoming major update will be arriving next week.

While this is still up in the air, it's starting to piece together like a jigsaw. I'm sure most of us are more interested in how efficiently the roll out will prove to be. Listen to the podcast (if you haven't already) below and keep an eye out for the 34:20 marker where the Mango goodness is discussed.

Source: Windows Phone Dev Podcast, thanks Sander for the tip!

3
loading...
12
loading...
75
loading...
0
loading...

Pages