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4 years ago

Windows Phone 7 Marketplace bans suggestive material; Android phones are still for porn

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Move over Apple, you now have a friend in your quest to keep sexually suggestive material out of your app-store. In a hitherto unknown area of the Marketplace guidelines (PDF), Microsoft has outlined what kind of dirty smut won't be allowed in their Marketplace.

Some of the material is obvious, but some others are a bit more subjective, leaving us to wonder just how strict MS will be in enforcing these policies. We see Microsoft's point too--though perhaps they could have had a separate section in the marketplace?

  • Any content of a sexual nature depicting children or animals.
  • Sex / Nudity – Images that are suggestive or sexual (e.g. sexually provocative touching, bondage, masturbation) or provocative images that reveal nipples, genitals, buttocks, or pubic hair.
  • Any adult and/or borderline adult content (images or text).
  • Content that generally falls under the category of pornography.
  • Content that depicts or suggests prostitution.
  • Any content depicting sexual fetishes.

Well there goes my idea for the Microsoft design-your-own app contest as it violates easily half of those unmentionables above. It was awesome.

We guess this means that Android will remain the sole proprietor of smut and cheezy "sexy Asian girl" apps (seriously, not making that up, the Android Marketplace is filled with it). Speaking of, if you haven't seen the 'Android phone is for porn' video, you owe yourself the laugh. 

But what do you think? Take the poll, leave a comment!

 [via DailyTech]

Should Microsoft ban 'adult content' in WP7 Marketplace?customer surveys
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4 years ago

AT&T holding a fire sale on Windows Mobile phones

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"Everything must go! Folks we are literally giving away these phones, we cannot hold on to them any longer! We need to make room for the iPhone 4 and Andro...err, Windows phone 7 devices"

That's what we think it sounds like over at AT&T right now as evidently they sent out an email to their "premier" fancy-pants customers noting that you can get some pretty solid Windows Mobile 6.5 devices for bargain rates (*with a new contract of course, they're not that desperate).

For example:

  • HP Glisten (review) for free
  • Samsung Jack (review) for free
  • HTC Tilt 2 (review) for $74.99
  • HTC Pure (review) for $39.99 (out of stock)
  • LG eXpo (review)for $69.99

A 1GHz Snapdragon device for $70? Oh LG eXpo, we hardly knew you! (-_-)

Anyways, if you need a backup device, want to stock up for the apocalypse or befuddle friends and family by giving them as gifts, head over to AT&T and get them while we still recall their names (Premier account login required).

Hey everyone, remember how like nine-months ago, these devices were the talk of the town and the Touch Pro 2 was a boarderline unicorn? Yup, those days are now over, time to move on, the unicorn is dead.

[Thanks, Mark L, for the tip!]

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4 years ago

Windows Phone 7 + Zune featured in new Razorfish ad

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Awhile back, Microsoft bought an advertising company called Razorfish, who now handles a lot of those video clips for them promoting their products. We like 'em. They even created that "giant interactive Windows Phone7" we see at many events.

A few of them just created this "commercial" that highlights the power of Windows Phone 7 and the ability of it to sync with the Zune music/video suite. It's sort of an extension of the original Windows Phone 7 "features" video that made the rounds in February.

We're not sure if this is an "official" ad or whether it will be used anywhere but we think it's actually effective. And that, my friends, is something we're not used to saying about Microsoft when they pimp their products.

But what do you think? Is this the kind of thing that you think would grab people's attention? Let us know below and watch the commercial after the break.

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4 years ago

SPB TV 2.0 is out; now free

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SPB TV 2.0 is out; now free

For those of you who like free things, especially when they used to cost money then SPB will make your day. They upgraded their SPB TV software to 2.0 and in turn, made it freeware (previously it was $14.99). See a review of the older version here.

Well, it does play a mini-ad before your program starts, so more like a Hulu-method sans the cool content. A lot of it is local stations and some web-based things, no major networks, so this isn't a Hulu/Slingbox replacement by any means.

Other additions to 2.0 include

  • Video-on-Demand channels added
  • High quality h264/AVC streams supported
  • Hardware video acceleration support improved
  • Advertising added into opening screen
  • Backlight supported for new devices
  • Other bugfixes

We can't say it doesn't work well and it that is serves as a great "I'm bored, need something to do while I wait for the dentist" program, so we say go for it, after all it won't cost you anything.

It's available in touchscreen and non-touchscreen versions and you can grab it right here; unfortunately it's not available yet in the Marketplace.

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4 years ago

Windows Phone 7 video at TechEd 2010: Cloud computing

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Here's a video of Microsoft demoing the latest build of Windows Phone 7 at the TechEd conference currently going on.

Cloud computing and enterprise was the focus of this session with Sharepoint, Office, Excel and Outlook being featured in this presentation. Overall, the UI is looking real smooth with some nice animations and transitions--in fact, it looks zippier than earlier demonstrations. While full document editing is not really plausible on a smartphone, they stress the importance and ease of document-commenting in WP7 and show off how that works. They do this by opening an email, then modifying an Excel document via Sharepoint.

Plus, that whole spell-correction/word prediction thing has this sorry-speller sold.

Check out the whole demo after the break, it's worth the few minutes.

[Thanks, wreiad, for the video & tip!]

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4 years ago

iPhone 4 follows Windows Mobile in line of high-resolution, high-dpi phones

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Gee, that new iPhone 4 sure is shiny, with its high-resolution, 326-dpi screen. But you know what? It's not the first to cross the 300-dpi threshold. That news comes from from an Android guru, actually. Tim Bray, who joined Google earlier this year and knows a thing or three about this business broke it down today on his blog. The Windows Mobile-powered Toshiba G900 and the Sony Ericsson Xperia X1 (remember them, folks?) both packed in the pixels back in their day. Of course, neither was a big hit in the United States, so we'll forgive you for not counting their pixels. Check out the whole hubub over dots per inch at Tim's blog. [TimBray.org]

Edit: Getting a high DPI is easy when you double the resolution but *don't* increase the size of the screen, which is what Apple did with the iPhone 4. Fact is, 3.5inch for the iPhone is on the small side these days for smartphones as HTC has made 3.2"  small, 3.6" the medium and 4.3" as large. 

Had Apple made a 4.3" screen to compete with the HD2, their DPI would drop to a less impressive 268

Incidently, the AT&T Pure is about 291 DPI, which while lower than the iPhone 4, is still in the ball park despite having a lower resolution. Why? It only has a small 3.2" screen. The Xperia X1 was over 300 DPI because it only had a 3 inch screen.

While a high DPI is nice, having a larger screen can be just as preferable, especially for reading on-the-go.

--Malatesta

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4 years ago

Windows Phone 7 developer-phones shipping in July

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A few weeks ago, Brandon Watson of Microsoft let it be known that they were going to be sending out actual hardware phones to developers and too look for that announcement "soon".

Well, today at TechEd 2010, Watson provided further details and it looks like devices will begin shipping in July. How many handsets is not know, nor which ones, though presumably a large number will go out and they'll be of the LG/Asus/Samsung variety that we've seen so often.

The month of July gives developers plenty of time ahead of the "holiday 2010" OS release date to experiment with their software, so we can expect software not rushed to the Marketplace.

Overall, Microsoft seems to be, dare we say, executing this launch of Windows Phone 7 effectively? They're meeting deadlines, making progress and keeping developers happy. Granted, the road is still long but so far we like this measured approach.

[via iStartedSomething]

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4 years ago

Software beta testers welcomed to Windows Phone 7 Marketplace

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In a nice follow up to those Marketplace revisions, Microsoft has just announced that they will allow developers to identify and interact with beta testers for their software via the Marketplace for Windows Phone 7.

Up till now, the question of whether some mechanism for developers to let the public test their program before release was unanswered. With no side-loading available for software installation, it's only through the Marketplace can the public add software to their phones, so some structure in the Marketplace had to be defined.

The mechanism will work via a "deep link" sent by email to the testers and presumably their Windows Live ID will be tagged by the Marketplace to grab the download. In addition, Microsoft is looking for a similar expansion of this public/private "cloud" distribution system to be applied for corporate environments, where they need to roll out their own proprietary software to employees. This latter part is important for the future success of WP7 in the business sector.

Once again, this is a great move by Microsoft and we're glad to see this becoming available.

Read the rest of Charlie Kindel's post on the Windows Team Blog.

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4 years ago

Windows Phone 7 developer “Rockstar” & runners up are announced

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Microsoft held a contest recently for new and independent student developers to submit applications for Windows Phone 7. Dubbed the "Rockstar" award, it was to be a part of the Imagine Cup competition.

Today, they announced the winners out of the 131 teams who participated. Unfortunately, they just have screen shots of the apps and games so it's hard to get excited over these, but still, a big congrats to all the students who participated and were singled out for excellence.

The "Rockstar" main award went for a game called "Droid" (seen above) built by a team of 2 from the Advanced Technology Academy here in the U.S. They walk away with $8,000 and free WP7 phones--not too shabby! The game "...leveraged the use of the accelerometer on the device unlike any other app we’ve seen." Sounds good to us.

Other runners up, some seen below, included programs for a comic book reader, scavenger, task manager, price check, travel trails, restaurant finder, weather, trivia quiz, health fitness and more.

[via Windows Team Blog]

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4 years ago

Subtle changes noted in latest Windows Phone 7 UI at TechEd2010

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TechEd North America 2010 is going this week and Long Zheng of iStartedSomething is there to document that happenings.

This morning he posted some photos of the latest build of Windows Phone 7, which we haven't seen yet. Clearly and obviously Microsoft is still putting the finishing touches on the OS and even parts of the UI, making it look even better today than 4 months ago.

Worthy to note is how the lock-screen text is now smaller to fit on the screen (but looks like this was done for the ReMix events), which Long Zheng comments a lot of people disfavored. Also, the Marketpalce and Outlook "tiles" have been updated with a new look, plus overall changes to icons and other subtle bits.

Head over to check his full photo stream and begin fantasizing what it will be like to use in-real life.

[via iStartedSomething]

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4 years ago

Microsoft launches app design contest for Windows Phone 7; no skill required!

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Ever have a great idea for a program that no one else has thought of, yet are hampered by the fact you have ZERO programming skills and no graphic talent? Then boy does Microsoft has a contest for you.

In an attempt to further lure interest in Windows Phone 7, Microsoft is holding a contest whereby you submit your verbal design for a dream application that doesn't yet exist. The community then votes on it and the winner's creations will be turned into a free app by professionals and dumped in the WP7 Marketplace for all to use.

You'll be a legend!

Oh and the winner gets $5,000 and a free Windows Phone 7 device.

So take those old bar napkins with your hopes and dreams scribbled in boozy ink and submit right over here. As an example, you can check out Todd Portz's creation right here (yeah, he gets a free plug since he tipped us off to this contest).

Anyways, this a great idea from Microsoft. Lets see what you folks have lurking in your geeky heads...

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4 years ago

WMExperts Podcast Episode 101

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4 years ago

Windows Phone Marketplace policies updated

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Microsoft's Windows Phone Marketplace polices have been updated. These policies govern the application submission and certification process.  According to Microsoft, the changes are to "attract a much wider range of developers, from large software companies down to students and hobbyists."

These changes seem to follow Microsoft's efforts to court the development community. From offering the Development Tools for free to waiving any fees for unlocking codes, Microsoft is creating a very developer friendly environment for Windows Phone 7.

The new policies include:

  • Annual registration fee of $99
  • No limit to the number of paid apps submitted 5 free apps per registration, $19.99 each after that
  • Free registration to DreamSpark students (same unlimited paid and 5 free apps applies)
  • A new optional push notification service to help developers stay engaged with customers
  • A new optional Trial API - trials mean more customers try your app, and less likelihood that they return it. The length or type of trial is fully controlled by the developer
  • The ability to publish to all available Marketplace markets through a new “worldwide distribution” option, allowing developers to pay once and distribute broadly
  • Wider range of business models; free, paid, freemium and ad-funded

What isn't changing includes:

  • A revenue share of 70/30
  • Developers manage their business with Marketplace via the self service portal http://developer.windowsphone.com
  • Payout takes place monthly for developers that have earned more than USD$200 worldwide
  • Developers can make ad funded applications
  • All applications go through a process of technical and content certification
  • Marketplace offers support for credit card commerce, and where available mobile operator billing.

A full list of the Windows Marketplace policies can be found over at the Windows Phone Developer site.

[read: windowsteamblog.com]

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4 years ago

Marketplace Spotlight: AP Mobile

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4 years ago

Have a question about WP7? Ask here & it may get answered by Microsoft.

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If you folks recall, a few weeks ago we summarized an interview with Brandon Watson, Microsoft's Director of Developer Experience. The video itself was very informative as Brandon was especially forthright in answering questions about Windows Phone 7. No PR spin here, just answers from someone who knows software development on the inside and what WP7 can and can't do.

Mobility Digest has graciously organized a Q&A with Brandon with various supporting sites, including our own.

How this works is simple: post your question about Windows Phone 7 in the comments of this post by Friday, 5pm EST.

Out of all of the questions, a total of 20 will be chosen from the participating sites to be answered by Brandon (since he can't possibly answer them all, plus there will no doubt be redundancy). In about a week, the results will be posted.

Now what we're going for here is new stuff--not the usual why no copy-paste or why is the OS the way it is kind of thing, but rather advanced, detailed questions that we haven't heard yet. So put on those thinking caps! As a good primer, maybe go watch/re-watch the interview with Brandon to get some ideas.

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