official apps

The super-popular fast food outlet McDonald's has released multiple Windows Phone apps for a number of regions. The company has now launched the official app for the UK market, enabling consumers to search for nearest restaurants, get directions to selected McDonald's and even save favorite restaurants for future use. It's a neat little app that we're sure many fans will enjoy using.

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Arriva is a multi-national transport company operating throughout Europe. The UK division has apps available for both Android and iOS that make it super easy to purchase tickets and travel on the network of buses. Windows Phone still has no official solution, but an app is well in development, according to the Arriva website.

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It’s been awhile since we’ve seen an update to Instagram Beta, the official (but in perpetual development) Instagram app for Windows Phone. The app launched and became available in the Windows Phone Store back in late November. It’s picked up a handful of intermittent updates in the subsequent period. Today we’re looking at a nice addition to Instagram Beta. Anyone up for Lock screen support?

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Yoga.com (yoga.com) is a great resource for folk who are looking to get into the art of stretching and moving into incredibly awkward-looking positions. An official app for Windows 8 has been released, opening up access to 300 poses and breathing exercises, all displayed in HD. Boasting the largest database of yoga content, users can deploy this companion app on a Windows tablet or PC to engage in spiritual practices and discipline.

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Pandora is a popular music service available in the US, Australia and New Zealand. Since the official app for Windows Phone launched on the store last year, consumers have been able to enjoy an ad-free experience without having to upgrade to a premium subscription.

This commercial-free Pandora experience was down to Microsoft, but now Pandora has announced that advertising will be coming to the Windows Phone platform, unless you have Pandora One.

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Popular file sharing website 4shared.com (www.4shared.com) is currently developing an official app for the Windows Phone platform, according to a response from the support team. When contacted about a possible app in the works, a member of the 4shared.com support team confirmed that an app is indeed in development. Unfortunately, no further details were shared.

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Music streaming services like Spotify aren't available worldwide. While millions of consumers can tap into huge collections of music tracks for a monthly fee, there are some regions that aren't covered by the popular companies. This is where services like Anghami (www.anghami.com) come into play, which supports the Middle East and North African regions (MENA).

Today, we're looking at the official Windows Phone app, which has just launched on the store.

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You would think with devices like the Lumia 1020, Lumia 1520 and even the venerable Lumia 92x, a photography site like Flickr would be catering heavily towards Windows Phone users. Instead, we have an app that was last updated almost two years ago from the Yahoo! owned shutterbug site. An app that is plagued with performance and login issues, giving users a subpar experience.

Now, Flickr through their support forums have confirmed that they are purposefully giving the cold shoulder to Windows Phone. If you were expecting a massive update waiting in the wings from the company, you can now stop.

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The official Instagram app (beta) for Windows Phone has received an update just a little over 48 hours go. Don’t worry if you missed it because another update just came out. The previous update, version 0.3, has brought performance improvements, crash fixes, and UX refinements. The latest update, version 0.3.1, does not list anything new in the change log. We think it brings more bug fixes and performance improvements.

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QNAP makes a series of Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices for professional and home usage. All of that sounds bizarre to myself, because frankly I don’t follow home-networking news. NAS devices though are becoming increasingly popular as homes – to break out a buzzword – become more ‘connected’ in 2014.

For those still confused, it’s a home cloud server akin to having your own local SkyDrive account. NAS devices allow you to configure them with multiple terabytes of storage, and they then connect to the ‘net. Tablets, PCs, laptops and phones can then join to pull down (or upload) videos, music, photos, etc.

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UK mobile operator Three has been supporting Windows Phone since the beginning. The Samsung Omnia 7 was the first Windows Phone the operator stocked back in 2010 and both the platform and inventory have come a long way since then. However, the Three UK app available in the Nokia Collection on the Windows Phone hasn’t been updated since 2011. Finally, Three UK has released its own official Windows Phone app, available to all customers.

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The Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (www.smhi.se) has launched an official app for Windows Phone. Due to levels of demand displayed in Sweden, the SMHI app is now available in the region (the only supported language is Swedish). While the app itself appears to be rather limited in advanced functionality, it's an official offering and a beta at that.

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Beats has announced a new music service (www.beatsmusic.com) that will be available on Windows Phones on January 21st. Not only that, but should you be with the US mobile operator AT&T, you (and every member of your family, up to five people and ten devices) will be able to take full advantage of a sweet deal to get you all started. Rock on past the break for details and more.

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In an age where technology reigns supreme, online dating has skyrocketed in usage. No longer are people meeting face to face out and about, but rather at home in their comforts, while browsing around and communicating with people they've yet to meet. Looking at published photos, reading through populated profile fields, people are using these websites to find their ideal partner.

One such service, Bleenka (www.bleenka.com, a popular dating website in Italy), has released an official Windows Phone app to help you find love on your Windows Phone when out and about.

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