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Fhotoroom v2 brings a new look to the photo editing app

Fhotoroom is a popular photo editing app for your Windows Phone that includes a Photo Sharing Network that throws a social networking twist into the pot. We mentioned over the weekend that the app was recently updated to version 2 which brings a new menu and user interface layout to table.

It's not as if the old layout of Fhotoroom sucked wind but the new version moves away from the multiple page editor to a single page layout. The results is a larger preview image and one stop editing.  The Photo Sharing Network may not appeal to everyone but if you're looking for a straight forward photo editor with plenty of filters, Fhotoroom is worth consideration.

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Howdy folks, your grouchy but occasionally lovable editor here for our new segment, appropriately titled From the Editor’s Desk. (Truth be told, it’s more of a couch-n-laptop kind of setup rather than a desk, because that’s how I roll).

Here at Mobile Nations, all the site editors are doing these posts on Sundays as a way to recap the week’s news, our opinions on things and anything coming up. I encourage you to check out iMore, Android Central and CrackBerry for their often hilarious insight. As usual, I’m a bit behind them but I’m slowly catching up.

This past week we had an odd combo of August-slowness combined with breaking leaks of new Nokia phones. There was also that Metro-controversy, which turned out to be nothing and of course Nokia and Microsoft announcing that they’re going steady…err...having a press conference.

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O iPlayer, Where Art Thou?

The on again, off again saga of iPlayer for the BBC and Windows Phone has been toying with anxious readers for months now. At first the Inquirer said it was coming and then Pocket-lint effectively squashed that rumor just three days later, leaving consumers with little hope for an effective media solution.

The hope was always that Nokia would some how come in and save the day for Windows Phone users but alas, that does not seem to be the case. One of our readers, Paul A., emailed the BBC asking for information as to their reasons for not supporting Windows Phone. Surprisingly, Daniel Danker who is the General Manager of Programmes & On Demand for the BBC gave a very thorough response to Paul’s question as to why there is no Windows Phone support.

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We had a chance to sit down and chat with Thom Brenner, Vice President of Location and Commerce for Nokia and Pino Bonetti who writes about location on the Nokia Conversations blog. We wanted to hear what Nokia are planning for the future with its location services, which the company has touted as its main focus and differentiator for Windows Phone.

Being number one in location and mapping is not anything new to Nokia as they have been at this game for many years, ever since they purchased NAVTEQ back in 2007 for a reported $8.1B. Their services power products from Microsoft, Yahoo, Flickr and four out of five cars on the road today use Nokia mapping technology. Nokia have announced their intention to be the “where” company, making location services the very heart of what they do.

Mapping and location are set to get a big boost from this drive, as Windows Phone users we will be pole position to see some of those fantastic innovations.

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Marketplace fix has been applied but it may take a day or two deploy

As expected, Microsoft has begun deploying the digital certificate fix for the Marketplace that has resulted in some Windows Phone users unable to either install or update a select few apps (notably WhatsApp, NY Times and Translator). In a recent change to the Windows Phone Developer Blog, Todd Brix notes:

“We fixed the digital certificate problem and last evening resumed publishing new apps. It will take a day or two for the repair to fully deploy and newly-published apps to begin appearing in Marketplace again.  If your app was in the process of being published, you don’t need to take any action.  We have applied the fix and the app will continue through the certification and publishing workflow as normal.”

Of course as mentioned above that does not mean you can now instantly re-install or update those apps with issues as it can take time for the changes to rollout across their servers. Still, users should be begin to see updates by the end of the weekend.

Let us know in comments if you have had any success. Thanks, ThisIsMetro, for the heads up

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How close are we to a Nokia Windows Phone 8 device?

If there is one thing we can say about Nokia and Microsoft lately is that both companies have faith in their products. Whatever the sales or marketshare figures show, the Windows Phone OS and Nokia hardware are a brilliant combo.

So we’re relishing the words by Chris Webber, Nokia’s Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing, who Tweeted this morning a nice little message to rival Samsung:

“Samsung take note, next generation Lumia coming soon.”

It is a bit unusual for companies to directly call each other out so publicly, which is why this probably has garnered so much attention. If we wanted to deconstruct that tweet a bit we could highlight the usage of “note” by Weber as a hint to Nokia’s upcoming Windows Phone 8 plans. Samsung has quite successfully launched and sold a few GALAXY Notes in recent months (see our hands on when we compared it to the HTC Titan).

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Microsoft and Nokia just sent out press invites for a joint conference happening on Wednesday, September 5th here in New York City.

No word on what will be discussed or revealed but you can bet it has to do with Windows Phone 8 and Nokia’s upcoming lineup.

What makes this interesting is the fact that Nokia is to have Nokia World at the same time. But it now looks like that event may be downgraded for carriers and partners only with the main press event for new-phone announcement happening in New York instead.

Of course Windows Phone Central will be there live to cover the event in its entirety, seeing as this our stomping ground. Tune in here for live coverage starting at 9:30am EDT on September 5th.

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We gave you a sneak peak a few days ago of the AT&T-Nokia update for the Lumia 900 which features and OS update (‘Tango’ build 8779) and new firmware (build 12223) and now that update is live for all to download (or should be very soon).

Starting today, plugging your AT&T branded Lumia 900 into Zune Desktop should prompt you for an OS update, which will then walk you through the short process. A hard-reset is not required and users will not lose any information.

According to Nokia, this update has many new features...

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Mush: Xbox Windows Phone Review

People play games for many different reasons: to be challenged, to be stimulated artistically or intellectually, for the narrative, and even for the Achievement points. Not every game needs to be a high-pressure experience or a bombastic assault on the senses though; sometimes you just want to relax and play. In fact, I would argue that calming games are especially suited for mobile play since we often play them on the go during our otherwise hectic days. Mush - from student developers Angry Mango - is just the game for such an occasion.

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Explained: A familiar error message for some Windows Phone users

Ever since WhatsApp was pulled and then re-released this past weekend, we have had a small deluge in complaints from users that they cannot install the update. Instead, they are greeted with the above error message, resulting in user frustration. What’s more, uninstalling the app, resetting the phone and dancing around in a circle did not fix the problem either.

We’ve been trying to figure out exactly why some users have the problem while others, including ourselves, do not. Just as interestingly, we wanted to know which apps were exhibiting the error.

Microsoft has now detailed the problem on the Windows Phone Blog and there’s good news and some bad news. The good news is they acknowledge that there is an issue and they even know what is causing it. As it turns out, there are some problems with certificates for new apps published in the Marketplace within the last week. 

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Image removed by request from ALPS

With just a few weeks before Nokia World is scheduled to take place it is not too surprising to see more and more leaks happening regarding the Finnish company’s Windows Phone 8 plans.

The photo to the right is just another piece of that puzzle and is certainly one of the more unique pieces of evidence to come out. What we are allegedly looking at is the display frame for a new Nokia Windows Phone that came from one of Nokia’s new screen sub-contractors called ALPS (that company does make capactive panels for smartphones).

Measuring roughly 4.3” across the part looks to be a reference design used to manufacture the expected high-resolution display (1280x720 or 800x480). Besides the new Windows Phone 8 logo and hole for the ambient light sensor not much else can be garnered from the image.

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It looks like Samsung may have inadvertently leaked their upcoming Windows Phone 8 device for peppy T-Mobile. And if accurate, fans will be very excited.

The data presented in the document, found by TmoNews, hints that this device is none other than the Samsung Odyssey, which was initially leaked in court documents at the end of July.

The info comes from Samsung's wap.samsungmobile.com site which notoriously shows upcoming devices before they are announced...

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WPCentral's roundup of running/jogging apps for your Windows Phone

Several months ago the popular fitness app RunKeeper was pulled from the Windows Phone Marketplace. The reason was simple, the developer decided to drop support for the app and focus on other platforms. This opened the door for other fitness apps to step up and fill the gap.

We decided to take a peek at the popular fitness apps that concentrated on running/jogging to see what alternatives are out there. Plus Dan just joined a fitness center and is looking for a good jogging app.

After reading user reviews on the Marketplace and taking a peek at the apps ourselves, we've narrowed the field to five.  All five have similarities with online components and making use of your Windows Phone's GPS.  One even adds a storyline and a bit of suspense to your workouts.  As always, if we missed the running app that you think is the bee's knees, jump in below and share your thoughts in the comments.

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Lo and behold, WhatsApp for Windows Phone has returned. The popular messenger app vanished from view just over a week ago and has remained "private" since. We got in touch with the WhatsApp team in attempt to withdraw information detailing the reasons why it was hidden from consumers who may be looking to download (or reinstall) the app, but had no luck with replies received from employees.

We later relayed the news that WhatsApp for Windows Phone was possibly removed because of security concerns and vulnerabilities. A German website reported an Android WhatsApp sniffing tool was able to intercept messages sent using the messaging app over a WiFi connection. WhatsApp later denied this as the cause for the app pull and assured Windows Phone Central that this was not a security related incident.

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In the ongoing saga between Samsung and Apple, documents came out late last night from the court case that detailed a proposal by Apple to charge Samsung for royalties on their smartphones.

It’s interesting for a few reasons. For one, Apple almost never enters into cross-platform patent royalty deals with other companies, specifically if it is tied to any of their “product differentiating” technologies. Back in 2010 though, Apple was willing to make an exception to this with Samsung because they are a major parts supplier for Cupertino and they wanted to preserve that relationship. Apple was also “shocked” at just how much Samsung was willing to allegedly copy the iPhone.

In the documents, Apple spells out some license terms it was willing to offer Samsung back in October 2010—just a few weeks before Windows Phone 7 became available.  Although Android was offered a $24-per-device royalty fee, which yes, is extremely high, Apple evidently also wanted $9 per ‘Windows Mobile 7’ device as well.

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Crackle, a digital network and studio, has released an official app for Windows Phone. The service offers commercially supported streaming of video content in Flash format. Owned by Sony Pictures, its primary collection is Sony's library of films and television shows. Crackle (crackle.com) provides its content through a web syndication network, which includes YouTube, Huhu, AOL, MySpace, and mobile service providers.

Without requiring to signup and register an account, Crackle enables Windows Phone owners to enjoy content for free from its expansive collection. According to the company, twenty new movies and television episodes are added monthly. Genres include the likes of action, comedy, crime, horror, thriller, sci-fi, and anime. There's bound to be a title for everyone.

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For a long time, Windows Phone users have speculated about the possibility of a Tablet based on the OS. It never happened, but even now, I’m left wondering if Windows Phone is the more capable and desirable portable computing experience.

Microsoft are on the cusp of releasing Windows 8 and with it we see the software giant plunging head first into the world of true mobile computing. They have dug in deep and hammered away at the core of Windows to enable new, mobile orientated computing experiences. At the same time we also have Windows Phone 8 getting ready for primetime. Windows Phone is now reaching its first major upgrade, and it's about to fully mature.

Given the right form factor it's an OS that could work better as a tablet than Windows 8, and here is why...

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Internet Explorer 10 is good but is it the best?

Although Windows Phone 8 is still a few months away from release, it doesn’t mean we can’t start to gather information about it or one of its main new features: Internet Explorer 10.

The new browser was revealed back at the Summit in June and it will match the desktop component found in Windows 8 Desktop, due in late October. Featuring a new JavaScript engine, better performance, twice the HTLM5 compatibility, advanced privacy features and optional data-compression, the browser should really be a step up for consumers.

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We're back for another exciting chat on all things Windows Phone. This week we catch up on the great SDK leak, the disappearing Metro name, disappearing apps and our user polls on missing features.  Listen above or watch the video after the break...

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