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2 years ago

Windows Phone Homebrew app roundup

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Windows Phone Homebrew app roundup

Lots of little things have been happening if you have a developer unlocked device, preferably with the new interop level needed to side-load some more advance apps.

First off, over at Windows Phone Hacker they've detailed a more simple method for getting Internet Sharing onto your Samsung Mango phone (Omnia 7, Focus). Once you have your developer unlocked device also interop-unlocked, it only takes two files and a reboot to get the much-coveted feature on to your phone. As you can see from the pic below, we manged to do it for our AT&T Focus and it works like a charm (seriously, it's a nice tethering solution).

Next up are some HTC apps. Yes, so long as HTC tirelessly works on specialized apps, those mischievous fellas over at XDA will be trying to port them. This time, they've managed to grab the Omega/Radars's OEM files, which includes that new HTC Hub. We loaded it onto our Focus and it works quite well. In addition, you can even add the Dock Mode app, which we're big fans of, for a more complete device. Stay clear though of Attentive Phone, the sound enhancer and camera apps as they won't do anything for your non-HTC phone.

Finally, there's a unique app from GoodDayToDie at XDA called MultiTaskToggle:

"Threw together something fun for you: a one-click (don't sue me, Bezos) app for enabling or disabling multitasking on Mango. Fast app switching + full multitasking = awesome! Disabling multitasking when you need to save battery = convenient!"

"Features: Secondary tile with deep linking! Shows current multitask state and toggles it when tapped. Supports HTC, LG, Samsung phones [NEW]. Works on Mango! Uses no homebrew DLLs."

Basically the app allows you to set multitasking on/off with one tap on a Live Tile. Here's we're talking about the full-fledged, instant-resuming multi-tasking. It sucks up more battery life, but it also faster and allows things to run in the background. Being able to turn it on/of with a simple touch, therefore, is a much welcomed addition for the power users out there. You can find that thread right here.

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2 years ago

NetMarketshare shows Windows Phone growing steadily

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NetMarketshare, a web analytics company that collects data on web usage, has updated their marketshare report interface to include the breakdown of mobile operating systems as well as desktop. According to the data provided, Windows Phone is growing at a steady pace in terms of marketshare.

The report shows that the platform still has yet to overtake Windows Mobile and Blackberry is still a couple of percent ahead, but it will be interesting to see the chart again in a few months time once upcoming hardware have been released. As a bonus we can filter Windows Phone and view the platform growth on its own, as shown below.

Source: NetMarketshare, thanks Keith for the heads up!

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2 years ago

T-Mobile set to launch HTC Radar 4G on November 2nd

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When T-Mobile finally announced the Radar 4G, one thing that was missing was a firm release date. We knew it cleared the FCC and we've seen it videoed already, but all we had for a time-frame was "Holiday season".

Well, consider this your clarification. The HTC Radar 4G is set to launch on T-Mobile on Wednesday, November 2nd--just under 30 days from now. Price is a sane and expected $199 on contract.

Of course, we have a feeling that a lot of you will be griping about the lack of a proper HD7 successor--notably the Titan missing from the lineup. Sadly, this launch lineup adds nothing to that disappointment, although we have to admit, the Radar 4G is a very nice phone. In fact, we're going to advise a lot of you to at least play with it in the store/get a hands on before you outright dismiss it, because its screen and build quality are some of the best we've ever seen--no joke.

Source: TmoNews

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2 years ago

Dell Wrigley Windows Phone still exists? India website lists it as launching soon.

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Dell has been completely MIA from the Mango-madness of the last few months. It all started back in May when Microsoft started leaving Dell off of any list of OEMs who are developing Windows Phones. Speculation at the time suggested that Dell had dropped out of the smartphone biz and were withdrawing and Windows Phone plan. Some of this became evident when the price of an unlocked Venue Pro dropped to $300 and AT&T seemed to have put the phone on the back, back burner.

Now, for what it's worth, which may not be much. the Dell Wrigley appears to be coming to Inida soon, listed on the sites Mobile Dekho, My India Guide and featured in a brief overview on the site Idea Marketers. The device is listed as having an 8MP camera, 4" screen and features TDMA, CDMA and GSM support. Price is listed at about Rs. 30,000 (~$600).

This exact same device with similar specs did show up on our leaked Dell road-map, lending some credence to the idea. Still, we have to ask, Dell...where are you? While the Venue Pro had a rough start, it turned out to be a solid Windows Phone and we sure hope to see more from Dell in 2011 and 2012. On the other hand, this could be an erroneous listing, so we'll just have to remain skeptical for a bit.

Thanks, Jc_Agga, for the tip!

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2 years ago

HTC Titan and Radar available for pre-order in the U.S.

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Earlier we mentioned the HTC Titan and Radar have become available for pre-order in Poland. We are now seeing pre-order ads for these two new Windows Phones in the U.S. market.

Take it for what it's worth but CellHut.com is advertising the HTC Radar (unlocked) for $599.99 (on sale from $739.98) and the HTC Titan (again, unlocked) for $799.99 (on sale from $899.98). Both phones are listed as compatible with AT&T, T-Mobile, Cellular One and a number of other carriers.

Compared to the Average Retail Value Microsoft has placed on the Titan in their Big Box of Awesome 2 contest ($499.99) the prices are a little on the steep side.  Hopefully the discounted prices will continue to lower.

Oh... one caveat in dealing with online retailers is to always check out their scores on resellerratings.com. It might save you some headaches.

Thanks goes out to John for the tip!

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2 years ago

Microsoft discontinues the Zune HD, part two

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Earlier we reported that Zune players had been removed from the Zune.net sales channels. We then were informed by Michael Yeager, a Zune Team member, that such removal was a mistake due to a publishing mishap and that the Zune HD was still listed on Zune.net.

While the Zune HD is still listed and available for purchase (albeit through Walmart.com and out of stock), the Zune support page tells a different story. It clearly states that Microsoft will no longer be producing Zune players and Windows Phone will be the focus of Microsoft's mobile music and video strategy.

Microsoft isn't leaving current Zune owners hanging in the wind. Existing warranties will be honored, devices will continue to work with Zune services, and support sites will stay operational.  Which makes sense seeing that the Zune software is still going strong on the Windows Phone and Xbox Live consoles. 

While Walmart is out of stock, we did find Zune HD units at Amazon.com but BestBuy is only offering refurbs.  So if you want to get your hands on a Zune HD, you better hurry as the device has started it's journey into the sunset.

As we mentioned earlier, the Zune Player was good for what it was but it's time we move on to bigger and better things.

Thanks goes out to Theo and Cori for tipping us on this!

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2 years ago

Windows Phone Mango update status

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Windows Phone Mango update status

Eric Hautala returns on the Windows Phone blog with a big thanks to the community for the eagerness, patience and loyalty shown throughout the release of Mango. The updates that have been carried out thus far have all be successful and the team has decided to open up Mango to 50% of users ahead of schedule.

Remember that if you'd rather not wait, we have a quick guide to force Mango on your handset.

Source: Windows Phone blog

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2 years ago

Microsoft's Big Box of Awesome 2

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Microsoft's Big Box of Awesome 2

We previously covered the first Big Box of Awesome that featured a good load of prizes, now we're back with a second that sports a HTC Titan handset! So how does one enter? Well, visit the Microsoft Facebook profile, "Like" the profile and enter the sweepstake. A good bonus to note: should you share the sweepstake to a friend, their entry will count as a second entry for yourself too (up to 100 additional entries per person).

I know what you're all thinking, "what are the prizes?":

  • One (1) Sony® Vaio L Series All-In-One Touchscreen PC running Windows 7. Approximate Retail Value (ARV) $1,800
  • One (1) Xbox 360® 250 GB console with Kinect™. ARV $399.00.
  • One (1) copy of Microsoft Office Home and Business 2010. ARV $279
  • One (1) Microsoft LifeCam Studio Webcam. ARV $59
  • One (1) Xbox LIVE® 12-month Gold Membership. ARV $59.00.
  • One (1) HTC TITAN Windows® Phone. ARV $499.00
  • Three (3) Xbox 360 game titles (ARV $50 each):
    • Dance Central 2
    • Kinect Sports: Season 2
    • Forza Motorsport® 4
  • One (1) Wireless N Router ARV $100

The total ARV of the Grand Prize is $3,346. Be sure to check the requirements for eligibility - "resident of the 50 United States and District of Columbia, and are 18 years of age or older". The sweepstake ends on October 31, 2011. Do note that this contest requires personal information and an active Facebook account.

Source: Microsoft Facebook

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2 years ago

Comics Trivia - App Spotlight

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Comics Trivia - App Spotlight

If you think you know your comics, check out Comics Trivia. The Windows Phone game is full of over 2,000 questions from your favorite comics.

When you first launch the app you will need establish a user name for the online leaderboard and after that, get ready to be humble. The questions cover a lot of ground from the classic titles to the new age comics. Thankfully, the questions are multiple choice so you can always get lucky if you have no clue on the answer.  Each game is ten questions and the leaderboard scores are cumulative.

Graphically, Comics Trivia is nicely done with various comic book heroes filling up the background as you are quizzed.  The developer should consider adding a gallery page to the game to showcase some of these graphics.  Settings are simple, covering music on/off and vibration on/off.

All in all, Comics Trivia is a fun game to pass the time. Comics Trivia is a free, ad-supported game and you can find it here at the Windows Phone Web Marketplace.

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2 years ago

Game spotlight: Rainbow Rapture [Video]

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Game spotlight: Rainbow Rapture [Video]

We love silly games. Especially when they're good. And free. Rainbow Rapture by Kindling meets all of these criterion. The premise? "Rainbow is unhappy with the way things turned out down below. He wants a clean slate. Help him wipe humanity off the face of the Earth."

Awesome.

The game has strong, bold graphics, smooth gameplay, a catchy jingle and high re-playability, making it our new addiction. It's like those jumper games, but instead you need to try to go a certain distance, all while catching mad air and eating people.

We would like to see some type of leaderboard system thrown in for extra value and perhaps some achievements--even if those are for a paid version of the app, it'd add extra value to an already strong title. Still, being free, we really like this little game. At first, the controls are a bit strange, but after a few tries, mastery is possible.

Pick it up here in the Marketplace (Zune link).

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2 years ago

Zune Media Player goes out with a whimper [Update: False]

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We've been wondering for a long time whether Microsoft would end the Zune Player line of devices sometime in the future, and finally it looks like that future has come. The company has made two small changes on the Zune.net website today to reflect what looks like the immediate removal of the Zune Player from their sales channels. No longer is there a mention of the Zune Player on the homepage, and even if you try digging to find the device for sale, you'll see that it is out of stock and not available to be purchased.

This isn't the end of the Zune software or service, by any means, but it certainly does show the shift in focus for Microsoft's mobile division. Zune will continue to live on in the desktop environment, Xbox and on your WP7 devices, but if you were looking to buy a Zune Media Player any time soon, you might want to start looking elsewhere. You were good to us for what you were, Zune Player, but it's time we move on to bigger and better things.

Update: Michael Yaeger, who works on the Zune team has noted that this was a mistake: "Zune HD product page is still on Zune.net - publishing mishap when we pushed out the CA work."

Source: Zune.net; Via: Neowin.net; Thanks, Cori, for the tip!

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2 years ago

Official Yammer app for Windows Phone now available

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We covered Yammer back in July, when it was first announced that it was headed to Windows Phone and now the corporate social-network is available for our devices.

"Stay connected to your business wherever you go with Yammer for Windows Phone. Yammer is a private, secure social network for your company. No matter what type of business you're in, Yammer let's you connect with your coworkers to collaborate, share ideas, and be more productive. This application offers on-the-go access to real-time conversations happening inside your organization. View messages, post updates, and receive important notifications no matter where you are, because the conversation doesn’t end when you leave the office."

Features include:

  • Threaded Conversations - Post, reply and like messages. Easily follow conversations with replies displayed underneath the original message.
  • Multi-Feed Access - Quickly navigate between My Feed, Group Feeds and Company Feed to find relevant conversations.
  • Multi-Network Access - Switch between various internal and external networks.
  • Member Directory and Profiles - Find updates, links and files posted by a specific colleague in addition to contact information.
  • Private Messages - Communicate privately with one or more colleagues.
  • Live Tile Integration - Receive real-time notifications from Yammer about new conversations and messages on your Windows Phone Start screen, all without opening the application.

The app is Mango compatible and looks to be pretty killer for those of you in enterprise who need this functionality. You can pick it up here in the Web Marketplace.

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2 years ago

App Update Roundup: GChat, 4th & Mayor, Forecast, Slacker Radio and Pictures Lab

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Busy weekend for developers as they've been pushing out update after update lately--see Flickr, Lindy Comics and Mixtapes. A few more have slipped by and we figured we'd quickly run through 'em in case you were curious. Check out the video for a  fast run through of the apps in action.

  • GChat hit v1.2, bringing it with it some bug fixes and more importantly, contact picture support (for non-mobile contacts). The app looks a little nicer now with photos of your contacts, especially when you pin them to the start screen. The app is free and open source, which is pretty awesome, though we still find IM+ more reliable for now. Grab it here in the Marketplace.
  • 4th & Mayor jumped to v2.9 bringing with it rudimentary support for notifications--the structure is there but they're not working, yet. A few other bug fixes on board too and while the app is still not Mango-ready yet, it looks to be getting there. And it's still way faster than the official Foursquare app. Pick up the update here in the web Marketplace.
  • Forecast went to v2.0, getting a Mango make-over. The app now supports double-side Live Tiles, multiple live tiles for locations and of course fast-app resume. In addition, the app has some new features and customizations that we really dig. The app is free (ad-supported) or $1.99 for no ads. Overall a solid update for a solid weather program. Grab the update here in the web Marketplace.
  • Slacker Radio is finally Mango-ready for the masses. Bringing with it background-audio support and fast-app resume, the popular music streaming service (and nice alternative to Pandora) feels much more native to Windows Phone now that it can run in the background. In addition, you can pin individual stations to your start screen for quick access. Grab the update here in the web Marketplace.
  • Finally Pictures Lab, like Thumba, has received a Mango update. Now at v3.0, the popular photo editing app now supports direct-camera access, including touch-focus and gyroscope support for image stabilization. That custom camera app is also pinnable to the Start screen for quick access. In addition, you get fast-app switching, performance improvements and Pictures Hub integration returns. Grab the update here in the web Marketplace.

Thanks to all who sent in tips!

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2 years ago

Silverlight built MMORPG on Windows Phone?

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Silverlight built MMORPG on Windows Phone?

Right, so this is just friggin' awesome (in the words of our oversea brothers). An MMORPG (Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game) called Wowo World has sprung up that is developed with Microsoft Silverlight. In the video above we can see a working client for Windows Phone, something that would surely excite a number of Xbox Live players who are migrating to the mobile platform.

While this title might not be of interest for those who don't speak and understand fluent Chinese, hopefully they will release an international English version or other MMORPG developers who are in the same boat would spark interest in developing a client for Windows Phone. We've previously covered Microsoft further researching into technologies that combat ping and latency with mobile connectivity, so this would certainly be something of interest to real-time multiplayer fans.

Source: WP7 Connect & Wowo World, thanks Se1fcr3ation for the tip!

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