windows phone

A few weeks ago I wrote an editorial piece on how 2013 was finally turning into the year of Windows Phone (after numerous false starts).

There turns out to be another facet though that I missed in my analysis, which I'd like to address here. Besides increased advertising, impressive hardware, a maturing ecosystem and a reinvigorated Nokia who has hit their stride, Microsoft is using another tactic: direct action.

It’s a fascinating change in strategy from previous years where Microsoft took on a more “hands off” approach, often leaving marketing up to their OEM and carrier partners. Now, in 2013, Microsoft is asserting themselves a lot more directly (and it’s not isolated to just Windows Phone as the recent Surface rumor suggests).

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Welcome to the world of Windows Phone

Are you new to Windows Phone, or just the realm of mobile when it comes to Microsoft? If so, then welcome aboard! You’re at the right place as Windows Phone Central is the number one online resource for all things Windows Phone. We’ll be diving into why you should choose Windows Phone, what makes the platform great for not only personal, but work life too and how you can get involved in the community. So grab a cup of tea and let’s dive in.

As this is a guide through the basics of the platform, we’re going to assume that everyone reading this will either be new to Windows Phone or smartphones in general. If you're already up on your knowledge, these guides may not be for you. Let’s start with some history about the platform itself.

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It has been revealed that Microsoft has delved into voice-controlled camera technology. The US Patent & Trademark Office has published a patent application filed by the company, which would introduce speech commands for camera operation on a smartphone. Just when you thought the handsfree approach couldn't go any more... well... handsfree.

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Everyone has witnessed a slightly irritating child in the public (or perhaps you're the parent of one?), but an advertisement published on the Windows Phone UK YouTube account shows exactly how to handle such a situation. The point of the video? When handed a Windows Phone, said child soon hushes and gets on with firing some birds at pigs and all the rest.

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It's been almost three years since Windows Phone succeeded Windows Mobile and now Microsoft has managed to take third position from BlackBerry in the global market for Q1 2013 shipments, according to IDC. The gap between the two platforms has been closing in for some time and with Nokia's strong marketing push, Windows Phone is now well on its way to the iOS and Android pool party.

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Swedish accessory manufacturer Jays will be launching the a-Jays Five series of earphones this summer, with a version for each mobile platform supported - iOS, Android and Windows Phone. Sporting flat, tangle free cabling, a handy clip and MEMS microphone, every Windows Phone owner will find the new kit useful when out and about.

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Microsoft hasn’t been shying away from the competition lately. Last week they finally hit a home run with an ad for Windows Phone. So here’s one highlighting the strengths of Bing over Google. It also happens to showcase a killer, but underused feature of Windows Phone. Videos below.

The following videos aren’t HD. Sorry, we got them from a reader before they were hidden from the Bing YouTube account. They were prematurely posted there, but not before our man grabbed them for us. Check them out.

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Microsoft launched it's latest Windows Phone ad the other day poking fun at the Samsung/Apple rivalry. The end result was a humorous poke at the competition while highlighting our Windows Phones.

Microsoft is now sharing a behind the scenes video filmed during the making of the commercial.  It's an interesting, funny perspective on how the ad was shot. The behind the scenes footage might even make for a nice follow-up commercial.

Source: Windows Phone Blog

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Latest figures released by Kantar Worldpanel shows that Microsoft is actually starting to perform rather well in the US, one of the more important markets for the company. So much so that the platform is growing at a slightly faster rate than Google's Android. Microsoft still has a tough mountain to climb to tackle both Android and iOS, but it would seem as though the third position is firmly in its grasp.

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Have you ever wondered what it would be like for a Windows Phone to stream music to other Windows Phones so each one plays the same audio file at the exact same time? Well, we have too. But that trail of thought will be answered with soundSYNK, an upcoming exclusive app for Windows Phone. Once again the platform will have an offering that will be restricted to Windows Phone and it sounds brilliant. So, what's soundSYNK all about?

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Level with me. You’re civil and fairly polite here in the comments on Windows Phone Central. But on other sites you’re a Microsoft fanboy. Don’t worry, there’s one deep down in all of us. Here’s some fodder for the next little flamewar you start with your Android frenemies – Microsoft will pocket dough for every single Android and Chrome OS device that Foxconn makes.

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Is there a need for a Microsoft Windows or Surface Phone?  Microsoft's Vice President of the Windows Phone Division, Terry Myerson, doesn't think so.  Speaking in an interview with AllThingsD's Dive Into Mobile series, Myerson said there just isn't a need for such a device but left the door open should situations change.

"It would have to be something where Nokia or HTC was not providing the consumer experience we think is possible with our platform."

There has been speculation for sometime that Microsoft was leaning towards producing their own hardware. Myerson feels that Microsoft's partners are doing a good job of it and doesn't see the need for Microsoft to step in and start producing hardware.

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Believe it or not, there are some settings where you shouldn't have your smartphone around. Places like a doctors appointment, job interview, or court hearing are fairly obvious places where you should leave it in the car or at least put it on silent. So what happens when the professional across the table breaks this rule, especially if it's your own? In the case of a Michigan judge, you hold yourself in contempt. No, this not the Onion. 

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We’re not a 100% certain on the specific of this one, but the Samsung SCH-R860U has cleared the FCC sporting Band 12 LTE. That band is used by US Cellular, making this phone destined for that carrier and that carrier only (sorry, Sprint fans).

The question is, does the phone run Android or Windows Phone 8? With the Galaxy S4 right around the corner and Sammy’s slightly cold support of Windows Phone 8, we’d lean on it being another Android phone. But the site Blog of Mobile, who have a pretty decent reputation for finding these filings, claims it sports Windows Phone 8. 

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Songza (www.songza.com) has revealed that the company is working on a Windows app, but more importantly a Windows Phone app thereafter. But what is Songza exactly? It's a free music streaming and recommendation service for the US. Playlists are claimed to be created by music experts and the service recommends various playlists based on time of day and mood or activity. 

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Kantar World Panel has released it's U.S. market analysis for the three month period ending February 2013. While Android slipped into the number one spot  with 51.2%, ahead of iOS, our Windows Phones has made a nice jump with its market share.

Compared to the same period in 2012, Windows Phone's market share went from 2.7% to 4.1%. Apple experienced a decline falling from 47% to 43.5% and RIM fell from 3.6% to 0.7%.

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