messenger

It was only last week when we learned that Ngram, an unofficial Telegram Messenger app, would become the official one, receiving approval from the Telegram team. Fast forward a few days and the changeover has now occurred in the Store, as the links to Ngram show the re-branded app as Telegram Messenger Beta v 0.14.5.27.

The whole story started a few months ago when the Telegram team decided to open source their app development in a pseudo-contest, letting numerous Telegram clone apps onto the Store (see app our roundup). Presumably the one that they liked the most becomes re-branded as the official app for Windows Phone. It’s a cool use of the talented Windows Phone developer pool, and we wish more companies would take such opportunities.

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Viber is a messaging services enabling you to text, message groups and make free HD calls. Available cross-platform, the Windows Phone app has again be updated. Today we're looking at version 4, introducing a range of new features for consumers to utilise. The company previously brought back spell checking and added new backgrounds, but today's update includes stickers, notification sounds and more.

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WeChat, the popular communication and social networking app available for both Windows Phone 7 and 8, has been updated. While the service is generally seen to be more popular in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Southeast Asia and India, boasting over 300 million users spread around the globe, it's still worth noting that the app has been updated to version 5.1.

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As part of their latest update, Nimbuzz (www.nimbuzz.com) has introduced VoIP calling to allow users to buy NimbuzzOut credits and make cheap international calls to mobile and landline over WiFi or 3G, using your Windows Phone 8 device.

The 1.1.5 update includes NimbuzzOut, a guided tour, some bug fixes, and overall performance improvements.

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Viber is a messaging app that enables you to text, group message and make free HD calls. Available cross-platform, the app has been updated on competing platforms, but now it's Windows Phone's turn. The client has been bumped to version 3.1. The release itself is quite a large one, packing a completely redesigned UI and more. Head on past the break for the details.

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If you're not familiar with ooVoo (www.oovoo.com), it's a popular proprietary video chat and messaging service (as if we haven't enough solutions already) that's already available on iOS and Android. Eric from the ooVoo team has revealed on the official forum that they're indeed working on supporting Windows Phone in the future.

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Today Microsoft made an announcement for users who use the messaging feature on Outlook.com; if you currently use the Outlook web interface to chat with your friends on Facebook, Google Talk, or Messenger, the site keeps a copy of your chat history in a folder. Starting this fall, the Messaging history folder will be removed.

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WeChat is a popular communication and social networking app that is available for both Windows Phone 7.x and 8 users. The platform is most popular in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Southeast Asia, and India boasting over 300 million users spread around the globe. The company started in China, but has recently been working hard to expand its international membership using brand ambassadors like Lionel Messi. The latest update for Windows Phone helps close the feature gap compared to Android and iOS. Let’s check it out.

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The Talk.to team has published an article on the official blog, detailing plans to cease support for third party messaging services. Google Talk, Facebook and Windows Live played an important role when the service launched back in 2012, but the team notes it's difficult to guarantee a fast and reliable service when external platforms are supported. So how is this going to affect users of the platform?

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Sometimes technology is a collection of circuitry and silicon, sometimes though – it is a magical moment full of feelings and memories. The best experiences are born when technology transcends our knowledge and connects us with what we love. British science fiction writer and futurist, Arthur C. Clarke, once said:

“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”

Microsoft has been around for a long time and for those of us who live off of the technology they provide, some of the memories will never seep away.

In 2007, the company released a four minute commercial that has come to be known as “Your Digital Lifestyle”. The ad highlighted the then current hi-tech Microsoft products of the time and how one green shirted hipster used them to party the night away. The commercial is set to a cover of Ash’s Girl from Mars by Canadian group, Magneta Lane.

Buckle up, because we are going on a field trip to six years ago; along the way, we are going to jam with our green shirted friend and revisit some of our past Microsoft technology goodies. Windows Vista will probably be seen along the way, but there will be plenty of other experiences to combat that bad flavor.

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The popular Talk.to Messenger app for Windows Phone has been updated with some interesting features and is a great solution if you use Google Talk on the go.

If you're into the app and service to keep in touch with contacts, you'll love some of the new features in this latest release. We're looking at lockscreen support in a freely available solution. Talk.to Messenger can now tap into one of five notification spots on the main locksreen and display a counter. Simple but effective.

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As we noted in a recent article, the Voxer team has opened up its Windows Phone 8 app for consumers to hop on to the beta program and get involved to help shape the app for launch. The app is currently listed on the store, but is unavailable to those who are not signed up and been accepted for the test program. But it's not all doom and gloom as this shows it's almost here and also provides a tease to what we can all expect.

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Microsoft is sending out more reminders to consumers who are still using Messenger with an offer for them to upgrade to Skype. On April 8th, the company will be merging both Messenger and Skype together, including IM and contact lists. This will require consumers to upgrade to the communication service, which will see the end of Messenger as we know it. To help soften the blow, Microsoft is offering a month of free calls for those who sign up with Skype.

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The WhatsApp team has released another update for their Windows Phone app. This is becoming regular news, so much so that we're tempted to set up a new website dedicated to the app and its frequent releases. Versions 2.9.2 and .3 both included more improvements and features, so what has 2.9.4 got to offer consumers?

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WhatsApp has only just been updated to version 2.9.2 and the team has already released another patch. Looking at version 2.9.3, WhatsApp for Windows Phone has had yet more improvements implemented on top of what was added the other day, which saw the app sport lock screen integration, backup functionality and some UI enhancements. So what's new in this release?

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Now that Kik is on the sidelines for Windows Phone, WhatsApp has become our default international messaging app on Windows Phone. Luckily for us the WhatsApp team is busy updating and adding new functions to the app, evidently back on their 30-day schedule.

Version 2.9.2 is now live in the Store and it’s the one update you’ve been waiting for, as it really brings this app into its own.

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There's no pressure from Microsoft on upgrading from Live Messenger to Skype as the company has extended the transition period to April. Originally, March 15th was the doomsday for when Messenger would be cut and Skype would become Microsoft's golden egg in the instant messenger realm of wonders. The company has fired out emails to customers detailing the close-approaching switch.

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