connector

The poor Windows Phone Connector for Mac (now known as just 'Windows Phone') has always had issues since the app was made available on the Mac Store. Enabling the synchronisation between a Mac and Windows Phone, Microsoft was praised in allowing those who happen to own Apple computers to control what content is located on their mobile device. But it hasn't always been a rosy experience.

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Microsoft has published the Windows Phone synchronisation tool to the Windows 8 Store. This app enables consumers to plug in their Windows Phone 8 handsets and add / remove media to and from the device.

Music, video and photos can be imported from the connected Windows Phone to the windows 8 machine (and vice versa). One can find quick links to Windows Phone content (including apps and games), as well as quick-glance information representing how much storage is currently being used.

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Backing up Windows Phones on Macs is a breeze

We've already established that backing up your Windows Phone can prevent any unnecessary headache due to the loss of personal data. There's no guarantee you'll always remember to take the Windows Phone out the pockets before bundling clothes into the washing machine. We recently took a look at how to back up Windows Phone using a third-party Windows tool since Microsoft doesn't offer said functionality in Zune.

In that article we incorrectly believed that the Windows Phone 7 Connector for Mac doesn't feature any backup facility. Turns out, it certainly does (officially too) and shares the exact same functionality as the tool we used in our previous how to, except we're now on a Mac. It's odd that Microsoft would provide Apple Mac users the means to successfully carry out backing up their Windows Phones without using third-party software, yet Windows consumers are left in the dark for now. 

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Good news for those of you in our audience who use Macs, you can now get the brand spanking new v2.0 of the Windows Phone Connector app that will allow you to use your Windows Phone with your favorite Apple computer. Changes in v2.0 seem significant and it's just in time for Mango:

Features:

  • Full sync and import support for Apple Aperture software
  • Drag and drop import of files from Browse Device
  • Ringtone transfer support (for phones running Windows Phone 7.5 or later)
  • Improved video conversion process with user configuration options
  • Support for Windows Phone Marketplace (for phones running Windows Phone 7.5 or later)
  • Localization support for 13 additional languages
  • Improvements to backup and restore operations
  • Improved configuration for podcast sync and photo import
  • Improved iTunes import support in certain languages
  • Improved metadata support for videos

Fixes:

  • Added additional error codes and help references for device update
  • Resolved connectivity issues with certain devices
  • Resolved album art display issues for certain devices

Sounds like a solid update and you can find it right here on Apple's website. Thanks, Ashley B., for the tip!

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Microsoft has announced the Release Candidate for the Windows Server Solutions Phone Connector for Windows Phone Server 2011. Basically, it's a Windows Phone app that gives you remote server management for your home server.

We mentioned some time ago that Microsoft was working on a connector for the Windows Phone, code named "Vail", and it looks as if all the hard work is about to pay off.

The app will enable remote server management tasks and relay media streams for Windows Home Server 2011. Once authenticated with your home server, the Windows Phone connector will:

  • Give you access to system alerts
  • User management features that include viewing user accounts, enable/disable accounts and password management
  • View server joined computer details including initiating system backup and viewing backup status
  • Stream media stored on your server to your phone (music, pictures, and videos).

The Connector App will also have Live Tile support allowing you to view a variety of "at-a-glance" information that includes count and type of network alerts, storage used on main server, and the server name.

You find out more information on the Windows Phone Windows Home Server 2011 Connector (WP7WHS2011 for shor?t) and access to the Release Candidate download here.

Source: WindowsTeamBlog Thanks goes out to Tim for the tip!

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Connector - App Spotlight

Connector is a Windows Phone 7 is a rather interesting multi-level puzzle game where you have to connect various towers that appear on your Windows Phone screen. You do so by drawing a line from tower to tower (tap, hold and drag on the screen) and connect them in pairs. Lines can be drawn in segments (to create bends and turns) to help connect the towers. Sounds simple enough but there are some rules that adds to the challenge of the game.

  • You can only connect towers of the same color.
  • Lines may not collide with obstacles.
  • Lines may not cross each other.
  • The more line segments used, the worse your score.

Connector shows a tutorial before you attempt the earlier stages to better acclimate you to the game. All in all, there are 60 levels to tackle with new challenges every twenty levels. This gives Connector plenty of playing time.

There is a trial version avaiable for Connector and the full version will run you $1.99. You can find both versions of Connector here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace.

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While we don't know just how many Mac users out there have a Windows Phone, for those brave enough (we salute you) there is some good news as Microsoft has published an update to the Connector app. To refresh, Connector allows Mac users to sync certain amounts of information and media to Windows Phone 7. While not a full Zune client, it's a step in the right direction for many who don't want to be tethered to Apple's ecosystem.

The latest version (0.6 beta) released on December 16th addresses some ongoing issues:

  • Fixes playback for the AAC files synced from iTunes that wouldn't play
  • Reverse sync MP3s bought from the WP7 phone
  • Properly sync from remote iTunes installs
  • Transfers bookmarks, ratings, release dates that were previously left out

Probably one of the biggest additions is the ability to support firmware updates via Connector, something which we believe all Windows Phone users will need in two months time. Finally, to round it out:

Direct device browsing has been given much more control and lets owners not only manually import individual items from the phone but delete them or preview them.

Other media forms also get improvements. Connector now better handles iPhoto '11 libraries and will organize iPhoto collections by event first and by album only if necessary. The video preparation process has been improved, Microsoft said. Remaining changes bring early support for updating a phone's firmware, faster overall syncing, a new device setup experience and a more graceful handling of when the phone needs to be unlocked with a PIN code.

Sounds like quite the update and not just some minor bug fixes. You can grab the new version right here.

Source: Electronista

 

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Just as expected, the Windows Phone 7 Connector for Mac users is now available for download. Though only in beta, it should at least allow those users to "Sync music, photos, videos and podcasts from your existing iTunes and iPhoto libraries to your Windows Phone 7".

While not a full Zune Desktop alternative, it's a start for those heavy iTune users. You can grab the beta right here.

Source: Microsoft; via PhoneScoop

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We knew that Microsoft was working on Windows Phone 7 compatibility with Mac.  Microsoft stated, "Later in 2010 Microsoft will make a public beta available of a tool that allows Windows Phone 7 to sync select content with Mac computers."  It now appears that "later" is going to be sooner than expected.

Electricpig.co.uk has been testing the Windows Phone 7 Connector for Mac and has been pleased with it's performance.  The Connector, once loaded on to your OS X machine, syncs your iTunes content and playlists with your Windows Phone through iTunes.  There is no support for Wifi as of yet.

It's not Zune for Mac but it's a start.  Speculation is that a Beta of the Connector will be launched on October 24.  We'll keep an eye out for the Beta and keep you posted.

via @techbytesbe

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For those curious, the Zune connector i.e. the sync/charge interface cable from the Microsoft Zune series, won't be used at all with Windows Phone 7 Series devices.

That's the good news, since said Zune connector is a little large and more than a little proprietary.

The bad news is that the WP7s chassis specifications don't require any specific sync/charge format, meaning OEMs who make our next-gen phones are free to use Mini-USB, Micro-USB or even their own proprietary format.

Now we hope OEMs have learned their lesson in regards to that last one, so we don't think we'll see many of those. Still, for those wanting a definitive decision with regards to Micro or Mini USB ... looks like Microsoft is going to let the old free market decide. [via Windows Phone Secrets]

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