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Near Field Communications or NFC is relatively new to our Windows Phones with the technology having enormous potential. With NFC Launchit, you can program NFC tags with a variety of actions to make life a little easier. All from your Windows Phone.

You'll need a supply of unprogrammed NFC tags and with NFC Launchit you can program two types of actions based on System Apps and Popular Apps. If you only use your Bluetooth when in your car, program a NFC Tag to launch your Bluetooth and stick it to your car visor.

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Got a Nokia phone and want to keep up-to-date on news about it without seeing what you missed on their Twitter feed? If so, you can sign up for their new Tweetsender service, which will send you direct messages on Twitter any time they have news related to your model Nokia. The messages you receive will include bits about anything from accessories, to apps to software updates.

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The HTC 8S finally allows Wi-Fi to stay on with the display off, making it the first Windows Phone device to offer this much vaunted feature.

We've noticed something pretty awesome on our HTC 8S (review coming shortly, folks), something that many have been calling out for from Microsoft since Windows Phone launched back in 2010. In the Windows Phone 8 build that's loaded on the HTC 8S, we can enable the setting to allow the WiFi connection to remain active when the screen times out.  Huzzah!

The rumor that the HTC 8S would bring this functionality was first reported back on November 22nd and it is now 100% confirmed.

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Official Met Office App released for Windows Phone 8

There are a number of weather related apps in the marketplace but this one stands out for a few reasons. The Met Office is the UK’s National Weather Service and is therefore the trusted supplier of weather information to everyone from the military or the man on the street.

They have released an official app for Windows Phone 8 that supports Live Tiles, double wide tiles in a super extensive and well-designed package.  The app will only show weather for the United Kingdom but anyone can download it. Still interested? Read on past the break to find out more…

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Huawei Ascend W1 to be released in Italy Q1 2013

Yesterday evening, Huawei presented an arsenal of Android products to attending journalists and bloggers at an event in Rome, Italy. Windows Phone Italy decided to investigate further and revealed the Huawei Ascend W1, which is set to be heading to Asia after it's officially announced at CES 2013 next year, will be also released in Italy.

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BBC News Mobile for Windows Phone, developed by Lawrence Gripper, is a highly rated app that absorbs all the headlines from BBC's news division and presents it in an aesthetically pleasing interface. We've continuously praised the work that Lawrence has poured into the project, but he's showing no signs of halting anytime soon. Version 4 is well on its way.

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A few days ago we ran a story about Verizon HTC 8X being able to work on both AT&T and T-Mobile networks. Now another test carried out recently has showed the Chinese version of 8X shares the same feature.

The test was performed on a HTC 8X customized for China Telecom (CDMA carrier). The handset worked like a charm when switched to China Unicom (WCDMA carrier) using a different SIM card, on HSPA mode instead of the slow GPRS, as shown in the picture below...

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Samsung ATIV S delayed until Feb 2013? – Not so fast

We have been reporting on the Samsung ATIV S since it was first announced. Whilst Samsung were the first to announce a Windows Phone 8 handset they have thus far been unable to deliver it to the marketplace.

We are now hearing rumours that the 4.8” hero device could now be set to arrive in January or even as late as February 2013. Online retailers and stores are all geared up to get the device and the last we saw was delivery being due for mid-December. Missing the launch hype of Windows Phone 8 and the essential holiday season buying, what has gone wrong?

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AT&T HTC 8X available at Amazon Wireless for 1 penny

Good news for anyone who's looking to pick up the HTC 8X on AT&T. Amazon Wireless has the Windows Phone 8 handset listed for just a single penny, that's just $0.01 when taken out with an eligible contract. Consumers will have to either extend their contract or add a new line to their AT&T account to be able to purchase the HTC 8X, but it's a superb deal with the festive holidays soon approaching.

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Nokia has announced on its Malaysian Facebook account that the Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 will be available for pre-order in the country from its main stores for RM1,999 (approx. $655) and RM1,599 (approx. $525) respectively. From tomorrow onwards, consumers will be able to contact / visit Nokia stores throughout the country and order their Lumia Windows Phone 8 handset.

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Walk into any mobile phone shop anywhere and you’ll be greeted with row after row of rectangle shaped devices. How on earth does one choose which phone to buy when faced with this veritable sea of similar looking handsets? Nokia have done good work with their promotion of their Lumia range, often having dedicated displays to highlight the devices in stores but this alone does not sell devices.

As Windows Phone does break away from the standard looking icon-based user interface and offer something new, there is a need to tell its story. We checked in to the ‘Meet Windows Phone’ event yesterday evening to see what Microsoft and O2 are doing to engage the man and woman on the street.

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Draw Something updated to make it more stable?

Draw Something, Zynga's social doodling phenomenon, has been updated to version 1.0.13. This latest patch comes without a change log, but based on recent grumbling and poor reviews on its download page, it's likely that it resolves stability issues with the popular game. There's been a slew of reports of the game freezing and being over all buggy.

If you have the free, ad-supported version of Draw Something offered to Nokia Lumia owners, then this update is not for you. Only the pay-to-play version found in the Windows Phone Store is affected.

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Paper Shuffle is a Windows Phone 8 app that will rotate lockscreen wallpaper images automatically.  While there is a native Windows Phone 8 feature to do this through Bing, those images are chosen at random.  Paper Shuffle lets you choose the images in the wallpaper rotation.

Paper Shuffle is a simple app that lets you select images from your Pictures Hub that can be rotated automatically at various intervals. To add an image, just hit the + button on the Paper Page of Paper Shuffle. Unfortunately you can't add complete galleries but instead the images must be added one at a time.

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Good news for those on Windows Phone 8 or just use Tunein Radio, as you can now download version 2.3 from the Store.

The popular streaming radio app was “hidden” from Windows Phone 8 users due to compatibility problems but we were able to now download and load it up. The app has not been updated for Windows Phone 8 in the sense that it does not have new graphics, fast resume, doublewide Tile or anything cool—it just “works” now.  We put works in quotes because we still find some stations are hit and miss, but the majority are there and do play.

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We’ve already called Pinball League: The World of Dr. Pickaxe one of our favorite pinball games for Windows Phone (there really aren’t enough) but the popular title did have a glitch for Windows Phone 8 users, resulting in the game being recently pulled from the Store.

Now the game is back and better than ever with a modest 1.02 update that just came out today...

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Flashlight 7 is a handy Windows Phone app that has been recently updated to Windows Phone 8. Flashlight 7 not only turns your Windows Phone screen into a flashlight but also utilizes the camera LED light to chase away the shadows.

The update, version 4.9, adds SOS LED support to the mix along with your standard flashlight feature using the LED or screen, a siren mode, a few color lights, the strobe light, a few mood lights, a kaleidoscope and a hypnosis screen. Some of the different light styles have directional arrows that pull up variations of the effects.

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por·ti·co  (pawr-ti-koh, pohr-)

n.  An elaborate or at least covered porch area adjacent to a main entrance, generally in a classical building. The portico functions as a means to protect visitors from the elements as well as emphasizing the taste and wealth of the owner.

Even though Windows Phone 8 has just launched across the world, information on the first OS update was revealed just a week ago. The OS update is rumored to be announced this February during the annual Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and it will reportedly consist of various small patches, fixes and additions to Windows Phone 8.

Windows Phone Central has now learned from a known and trusted source that this update is being referred to not as Apollo+ but ‘Portico’.

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An inside look at the Nokia Lumia 920 Windows Phone

If you've ever wondered what the inside of your Nokia Lumia 920 looks like but aren't willing to break out the power tools, Nokia has made it a little easier. The video dissection reveals the Pureview camera, Snapdragon processor, wireless charging, and all the other nuts and bolts used in the Lumia 920's construction.

Nokia designed the Lumia 920 from the inside out and it appears that made use of every millimeter of space in the Windows Phone's shell.

Bonus Trivia: This video was used to premier the Lumia 920 back in September on stage for the media.

Source: Nokia via: Conversations by Nokia

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You have to give Nokia credit, even when not designing high-end, flagship phones they can nail the looks of a device. Such is the case with the recently announced Lumia 620, being billed as the "most affordable Windows Phone 8 device". Indeed coming in at USD $249 without subsidies is quite an accomplishment.

The site Phone Seven have got their hands on the device, which is being shown off today in Paris, and in a 9 minute video you get a nice tour of the budget phone...

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Nokia Lumia 920T for China Mobile formally released

Despite lagging a bit behind other countries, Nokia finally released the Lumia 920 in China on December 5th Beijing time. The first wave is heading to China Mobile, dubbed "Lumia 920T" for the carrier's TD-SCDMA network.

Being China's biggest mobile carrier, China Mobile has about 700 milion subscribers. Because of the unnecessarily weird unique network, many of them suffer a problem of not having cool 3G phones to maximize the potential of their cellular service. The coming of 920T is quite timely.

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One of our favorite weather apps around here, Amazing Weather, just got bumped with some Windows Phone 8 support to version 4.0. Now appropriately titled Amazing Weather HD, the app weighs in at an impressive 80MB. Reason? It’s all of those fancy high-resolution animations.

Amazing Weather HD features what can be best described as subtle animated GIFs (though technically they are HD videos) in the background of the weathercast. For instance today we have a pile of leaves, some of which are twitching slightly in the wind. On other days you will have rain falling or light snow blowing—it’s some very pretty stuff. But if photo-realism isn’t your thing, the developer has also embraced two Metro UI themes in dark and light choices. That style is flat with just the “just the facts, ma’am” approach Windows Phone users are used to...

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Marko Ahtisaari, Nokia's Executive Vice Preside of Design, today spoke at the annual LeWeb conference and during his talk he covers many of Nokia’s current projects while revealing the Lumia 620.

The video is now available to watch and we see Marko explain some of Nokia’s design choices and also explains the Here location platform. Some nice hands on with the device and different colour body options.  Check the video after the break..

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Windows Phone UK has announced that they will be having a ‘Meet Windows Phone’ event later today in Westfield Shopping Centre.

The event, to be held in conjunction with O2 will see a colourful evening of fun with the O2 angels, demos and of course Windows Phone 8. Chances to win Windows Phone handsets and Xbox’s shouldn’t be missed, check the details after the break.

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