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Every once in awhile we come across a really innovative app that isn’t just gimmicky but extremely useful. Today, that app is ReadyClick!

Built for Windows Phone 8, it allows you take a photo just by using your voice—perfect for getting those group shots and not having to worry about a timer. The app is both a Tile and Lens for the camera, making it quickly available for regular usage. Once launched you have a few options including snapping a photo instantly, using a standard (but configurable) timer or the voice activation.

It’s of course the latter function that really makes this app.

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Windows Phone Central 152


It's been a few weeks since our last podcast so we're back to catch up on Windows Phone 7.8, Windows Phone 8, some marketplace woes and missing Xbox games.

Tune in as Jay Bennett, Rafael Rivera and Daniel Rubino discuss the latest news for Windows Phone...

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Windows Phone Store expands to 42 new markets

In the quest to the get Windows Phone into more hands around the globe, you do have to give Microsoft credit being able to expand as far as they can.

Yesterday, the Windows Phone team announced that they are expanding into 42 new markets starting next week, which is quite the feat.  

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Installing apps from the SD card in Windows Phone 8

Microsoft has previously mentioned that Windows Phone 8 will allow users to install apps from SD cards. The claim's pretty funny. Who needs to install apps from a SD card anyway? We've got the Marketplace, or whatever it's renamed now, and that makes a fine enough source of applications. If anything, we will need the ability to install apps to the SD card, to better utilize the expanded storage property.

But it looks like Microsoft has been serious about it. Here in the company's online Windows Phone 8 FAQ, there's a little chapter instructing you on how to just to that, installing an app in the form of a .xap package from your SD card to the phone.

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HTC 8S Windows Phone not headed to the U.S. Market?

While the HTC 8S Windows Phone recently passed through the FCC with support for both AT&T and T-Mobile bands, word from HTC is that the 8S won't be heading to the U.S. Market any time soon.

HTC puts it all in a brief statement.

"The Windows Phone 8X by HTC is our signature Windows Phone available at AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless in the U.S. With our focus on the Windows Phone 8X by HTC, the Windows Phone 8S is not currently planned for distribution in the U.S. market."

While the 8S wasn't expected to set the world on fire, it was expected to be an entry level Windows Phone option for those not wanting to invest as much as they would with the HTC 8X. All may not be lost though. We may still see the 8S pop up as an unlocked option through retailers such as Expansys. Plus, "not currently planned" doesn't really slam the door closed on the 8S.

Source: Engadget

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Beem gets updated to 1.4, adds Skydrive support

Beem is a Windows Phone music app that allows users to tap into the Digitally Imported music site and stream various EDM radio stations to your Windows Phone. The popular DI.FM client has been recently updated to version 1.4 and has added Skydrive support to allow you to upload recorded MP3 streams to the cloud.  Recording streamed music has been a Beem feature for sometime and with Skydrive support you can now use Skydrive to back up your recordings.

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Lumia 920 preorders rival iPhone 5 in the Netherlands

The Lumia 920 will be available in early January 2013 in the Netherlands, but preorders of the device are currently matching preorders of the iPhone 5 in that country and may even be surpassing it. Dutch website Nu.nl spoke with retailers in the Netherlands about the upcoming device and gave some interesting insight into the device.

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Enjoy a Free Xbox LIVE Gold Weekend

If you're on the fence about signing up for an Xbox LIVE Gold Membership, this weekend you can give the Gold Membership a try for free.

From Thursday, November 29th through December 2nd Microsoft is unlocking Xbox LIVE Gold in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chili, Colombia, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Republic of Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore, Taiwan and the United States.

Xbox owners in these regions will have access to online multiplayer gaming, video Kinect, and the entire collection of entertainment apps for the weekend. You can find a complete listing of the Xbox LIVE Gold Membership features here at Xbox.com.

Source: Major Nelson

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File this under Windows Phone awesome. T-Mobile and AT&T customers who want a wireless charging capable HTC 8X are out of luck, as it's a Verizon exclusive. In addition, some folks may want a black or red version and instead have to settle for “California Blue” or yellow. Don't worry, we've got some good news for T-Mobile and AT&T customers.

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No, Nokia is not making an Android phone [Updated]

Just to throw some water on some of the ridiculousness that is surrounding a single job call by Nokia this morning, we’re going to address this just once.

Evidently Nokia placed a job posting on the site LinkedIn that called for a “Principal Software Engineer, Embedded Linux Middleware”.  A few tech sites (who should really know better) said that this is “consistent with Nokia making a tentative, exploratory move into Android territory” and another site headlining “Is Nokia Planning an Android Handset? New Job Listing Suggests So”.

No, it does not...

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North Pole Pool Party Windows Phone 8 commercial

Microsoft recently published a video on its Windows Phone YouTube channel that featured Misfit Toys and 'Bumble' (The Abominable Snow Monster of the North) for a new Windows Phone 8 commercial. The team is back with another festive themed commercial featuring not only the Snow Monster, but Santa Clause who is enjoying a quick dip before the mad rush to deliver presents to kids around the world.

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TVCatchup app available on the Windows Store

TVCatchup is an invaluable tool (with support for UK channels) for any Windows user who watches television and finds themselves frequently checking catchup listings. The app, available for both Windows RT and Windows 8 devices, enables users to watch over 50 live national television channels with an interactive programme guide for details and times.

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Earlier this week we were lucky enough to be in attendance at the Electric in Brixton where Nokia promoted the Lumia 920 by showing a recorded version of Deadmau5's performance near tower bridge before bringing the man live into the club for a special free live event.

Of course we weren't content with going just for the beer and electro-house music, so we thought we'd use the opportunity to do another comparison for people still torn between the Lumia 920 and HTC 8X.

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Nokia has released an interesting tool that enables the sharing of photos on a Lumia Windows Phone with a PC or other web-enabled device. Through the use of QR Codes, those with a Lumia smartphone can send a photo on the device over Internet tubes to a larger screen or to a friend's smartphone. All that's required is the Windows Phone app and a second screen, both with Internet access.

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Windows Phone Central Game Roundup: Family Games


Windows Phone Central's Roundup of Family Games

With Windows Phone 8, you get the Kids Corner and in this weeks roundup, we are focusing on a selection of Family Games from the Windows Phone Store.  These games can be installed and added to your Windows Phone Kid's Corner to offer your kids a little entertainment to pass the time with.

While these games are "family friendly" that doesn't mean they are boring for adults. They can be full of challenges and rather entertaining.

We've got an Xbox Live title, a couple of repeats to the roundup and a few games that we're taking a look at for the first time. And as always, if we've missed your favorite Family Game feel free to sound off in the comments.

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If you’re a particularly keen user you may have spotted that the v3.2 update for our official app has just hit the marketplace. This is another incremental update clearing up some of the loose ends since the v3 release and various updates to our website.

You can pick up the update on the Windows Phone marketplace here, but if you want to know what’s coming first you can find the change list below.

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The popular media player VLC is setting its sights on Windows 8 and beyond. The developers are calling for donations to be sent forward to fund further development into hiring third-party aid. This will help create a top quality experience on Microsoft's latest platforms. At the time of writing the project has a backing of £4,532 pledged so far with 252 donators.

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If you're looking for the Chase Mobile app for your Windows Phone 8 device, it's no longer available. We aren't sure exactly why the app was pulled but it may be due to a bug with the QuickDeposit feature.

QuickDeposit is a feature that lets you deposit checks by snapping a photo of the check. Apparently the images of checks taken with a Windows Phone 8 device are saved to your Pictures Hub. Not sure if it's a case that the images are sent to the Pictures Hub instead of transmitted to Chase but whatever the reason, it's preventing QuickDeposit from working properly.

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It has been an eventful week with Nokia's recent Deadmau5 partnership to bring more Lumia love to London, UK. We managed to turn up and boogie with other attendees while seeing how the Lumia 920 coped with low lighting, high volume levels and bags of movement. As well as a number of news stories appearing on the radar, our Windows Phone forum has been busy as always.

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Nokia Maps has been bumped to version 3.0.125.8, which introduces improvements to stability and performance. When firing up the app on a Lumia Windows Phone it no longer takes noticeably longer than Bing Maps--in fact we're only seeing about a one-second speed advantage now with Bing Maps for load time.

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Although we’re still getting settled in with our Surface RT Tablet, Microsoft has finally dropped info on its pricier and more powerful big brother, the Surface Pro.

The 64GB version will go for $899 and you can double that with 128GB for a hundred more at $999. The Surface Pro for those unfamiliar runs the full version of Windows 8, meaning it can run Windows 7 desktop apps in addition to the new RT ones. It also has some more advanced hardware including the next-gen i5 processor, 10.6” 1920x1080 HD resolution, a USB 3.0 port and a mini-display port.

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