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New update for Straw adds toast notifications

Straw, the new exciting app for quickly polling your friends and followers, has just been updated. The new release, version 1.0.9, adds toast notifications when a poll ends. It also includes numerous bug fixes.

Straw is still in Beta, but it is frequently updated based on user feedback. For example, last month's update brought better Facebook integration. If you have any suggestions and bug reports, feel free to send them over to hello@pollwithstraw.com.

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Record sales of Microsoft's Xbox One have finally allowed the console to overtake Sony's PlayStation 4 in both the U.S. and the U.K. for the month of November. This is the first time that the Xbox One has outsold its competitor since the system was launched, with Microsoft reporting that it has sold 1.2 million consoles in the U.S. alone.

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Skype Qik for Windows Phone picked up a small little update today. Today's update adds a small new feature, but one that we think a lot you will welcome. With the update to Qik you gain a new menu to quickly delete, save or send your messages. Plus, there's a special holiday surprise in today's update.

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Forest is a new app for Windows Phone that hopes to make you less addicted to your Windows Phone. It's a well-reviewed app on Android and iOS, so we're very happy to see it join the Windows Phone Store. This is an app you need to check out if you're having trouble focusing because of your phone.

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EA Sports UFC comes to The Vault December 18

EA has announced that EA Sports UFC will be joining The Vault starting on December 18, giving All Access members unlimited game play to every mode. EA says that the UFC title is the seventh addition to The Vault for binge play on Xbox One.

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Weekly photo contest: Sunset

This week we're going to go out and capture sunset with our Windows Phones for the weekly photo contest. Our very first photo contest started way back in July! The theme then was sunrise and a lot of you wanted to see a sunset theme at some point in the future. As 2014 winds to a close I figured we better sneak in a sunrise contest. So let's do that this week.

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Misfit releases their Shine sync app for Windows 8.1

Back in September, Misfit released an app for Windows Phone users to allow them to sync with their Misfit Shine or Flash activity/sleep trackers. We gave an early review of the app and came away impressed with the stylish tracker. Now, just a few months later and you can find a Windows 8.1 companion app also available.

The Misfit app can connect directly up to your Shine or Flash tracker via Bluetooth and display your stats right on your Surface or PC. Pairing is easy enough under Windows 8.1 settings and Bluetooth, although our tracker took a few tries to connect (Microsoft's APIs are not the best around, so we put it on them).

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Microsoft is keeping a steady pulse on Windows 10, releasing bits of news along the way to its official release in mid-2015. Today, Microsoft has announced their January 21 Windows 10 event, which is to take place in Redmond, WA.

Although the previous Windows 10 episode focused on the OS general announcement, it was more tightly focused on Windows 10 for enterprise. This time around, the consumer angle is getting the spotlight treatment. Satya Nadella, Terry Myerson, Joe Belfiore, and Phil Spencer will all be on hand for at the event to tell us what is next.

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Update: The MX Player apps have been confirmed as real, but early prototypes.

As Q2 wraps up for Microsoft, you may have noticed a small avalanche of new apps and games for their Windows and Windows Phone platforms. In that sense, the arrival of MX Player, a popular video rendering app on Android, fits right in.

However, we have some problems believing that this is a legit release, rather than a clone, hence our reluctance to write this article.

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With the festive holidays just around the corner, it's fitting to see the release of The Snowman and The Snowdog 2014 on Android, iOS and Windows Phone. Updating the 2012 version, players can experience the world of The Snowman in 3D as they journey to the North Pole passing through new locations all rendered in the same beautiful hand-drawn style as the movie. It's the perfect way to really get into the festive mood.

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Earlier today Windows Central reported on the forthcoming Mixview for Live Tiles in Windows 10. In the article, the cancelled McLaren prototype Windows Phone was brought up in referencing the original Mixview design. Now, new photos of the lost McLaren prototype have come forth, appearing once again out of China.

Previously, it was thought that the photos revealed a possible Lumia 1020 successor, however, newer evidence has come forth to shoot down that assumption.

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