Windows Phone Central Game Roundup: Games for all occasions
Windows Phone games are a great way to pass the time with. Whether it's waiting hours in the car tag line or just a few minutes before a class starts, there is a vast assortment of quality games available in the Windows Phone Store. Some games are great for a quick gaming fix while others stand up to longer gaming sessiosn.
Then there's games that can cover all the bases, good for all occasions. Entertaining for short bits and addictive enough to keep you entertained for more extended periods.
For this week's roundup, instead of picking three or four games, we focus on four developers/studios that have a respectable portfolio of Windows Phone games. Some of which that can hold their own for those short gaming sessions or the longer marathon sessions. Along the way we'll spotlight a few of the titles offered by these developers and as always, if we've overlooked your favorite title feel free to sound off in the comments.
The US retail chain Best Buy is running a trade-in promotion for those who own a Microsoft Surface tablet. It's worth noting this promotion as you're guaranteed a gift card worth at least $200 when a full functional unit is traded in at a participating store. The most you'll be awarded is $350, so while it's not as lucrative as eBay you'll still be offloading your older model in time for Surface v2.
Earlier this summer, Microsoft released a preview for the next version of their popular art app Fresh Paint. The beta was aimed at users on Windows 8.1 and was notable for bringing SkyDrive integration into the app. That syncing abilty later came to the Windows Phone version of the app. Now both apps are ready for a big update next week that will coincide with the launch of Windows 8.1 to the general public. Let’s check out some of the new features you’ll be using next week.
Microsoft UK's TechDays Online are running from Wednesday November 6 until Friday November 8th. There are numerous sessions lined up with daily prize draws and competitions for attendees to enter. There will also be Xbox One bundle packages on offer, so if you're wanting to learn something as well as potentially grabbing an Xbox One package, you'll definitely want to check these sessions out.
By heading into Settings > Phone Update > Check for updates, users should now be greeted with a message about a new one being available. The update is strictly related to firmware and it will bump it from 1330 to 1336.
According to Bloomberg, Microsoft is set on finding a replacement for Steve Ballmer before the end of this year. Sources have stated that the company is currently reviewing a list of possible candidates as a successor. The choices are currently being narrowed down and lists of declined candidates and candidates currently up for consideration have arisen.
Nokia today unexpectedly released the glance Background beta app, which enables you to add some cool backgrounds to your Nokia Windows Phone when the Glance Screen is activated.
As well as showing off how awesome our logo looks when used, we thought it would be a great idea to launch a small contest. Simply show off your Glance Backgrounds and you'll be in with a chance to win some cool prizes.
You may (or may not) be aware of Nokia's latest app that just went into beta - Glance Background. If you're not, be sure to read this article for more information, as well as our awesome hands-on coverage to see what all the fuss is about.
While you can add your own images and create some cool effects, we thought it would be truly awesome to show off the Windows Phone Central logo while glance screen is active.
Last night, we reported that our app was having a few troubles on the AT&T network (and a few of you on Verizon said the same). It was a networking issue, not the app directly and while we won’t bother you with the details, it should be working for most users now.
We just checked on our phones and have finally had a successful connection, but we need to make sure all is good for the rest of you. So if you use our app and are on AT&T, Verizon, etc. please take the poll below and let us know your results!
The wait is over.
Yesterday we reported that AT&T was planning on releasing the double punch Amber and Windows Phone 8 GDR2 OS update today. As predicted, the update has begun at 1 PM ET / 11 AM PT and users should now be able to head into their Settings > Phone Update > Check for updates to initiate the process. The update will bump the firmware to 1325 and the OS to version 10327.
Nokia and AT&T have been working on bringing the coveted updated for a few weeks now, coming in near last in terms of the global rollout. Nokia had previously stated that the Amber update should be completed by the end of September and while that was accurate for most users, those on AT&T had to sit by as T-Mobile and Verizon both beat them to the delivery.
There's nothing worse than running over your contract allowances when using your smartphone. It's easy to do should you include data-intensive services and numerous friends requiring social time. Luckily, mobile operators have been releasing apps that help customers keep track of exactly what they're using, whether it be data, calls or SMS.
Vodafone NL has launched such a solution for Windows Phone, offering a free tool to Windows Phone customers to help them remain on top of contract allowances, as well as general account management. Better yet, it's well designed and is yet another official solution from a mobile operator that's beginning to back Windows Phone.
With no new Xbox release for Windows Phone this week, gamers in search of a fix will have to look to the Xbox Red Stripe Deal for their entertainment. The latest deal game is Gameloft’s Dark Knight Rises for Windows Phone 8. It’s on sale for $2.99, as it also was back in June. If you’re looking for a long and meaty game, it should fit the bill.
Non-Xbox Red Stripe Deals include the phenomenal strategy game Armed from Sickhead Games for 99 cents, plus the popular app Weave News Reader for $3.99. We’ve got details and Store links after the break.
Angry Birds Star Wars 2 has been bumped to version 18.104.22.168, but isn't joined by an official changelog. Because the version increment is rather minor, we can only assume the update addresses reported bugs and implements some improvements. The Xbox for Windows Phone title was released in September and has proven to become a rather popular game.
Have you looked at the Glance Screen on your Nokia windows Phone and wondered what it would look like if you added a background image? Nokia has released a beta app that enables you to achieve just that. Glance Background is a new app for Nokia hardware that allows you to pick and choose images to have set as a background when the Glance Screen is active.
Back in September, Evleaks revealed on Twitter that Nokia was working on a dual-SIM version of Lumia 720. So far, the device hasn't materialized in front of us yet. But according to latest rumors, it's still on the way: Nokia's dual-SIM isn't dead yet.
Citing an unnamed insider source, Chinese tech site WPDang reported that both Nokia and HTC are currently preparing several dual-SIM Windows Phones. Unlike on some Nokia feature phones where you are allowed to shove in two SIM cards, but only one will work at a time, SIM cards in these devices will work simultaneously.
The Nokia Lumia 521 on T-Mobile (or the Lumia 520 to the rest of us) is a delightful Windows Phone, which is also the most affordable Nokia smartphone running Microsoft's OS. We've covered in the past how this Windows Phone 8 device is a bargain to grab, but Best Buy has gone one step further by throwing the handset on sale.
SongArc is a brand new game that’s unique to Windows Phone. It went into beta earlier this summer and just hit the Windows Phone Store a week ago. Quite a bit has happened in just that first week of being on the Store. So we’re going to dive in on the current progress of SongArc and its future on Windows Phone.
We're not entirely sure what's going on here, but we've just had a flood of e-mails from users who are reporting that our app is crashing when they try to use it. Coincidently they all appear to be AT&T variants of Windows Phone. We're currently testing the app to establish exactly what's happened but first tests seem to show that when loading over the AT&T mobile network, the app fails, Wi-Fi connections and other networks appear to be unaffected.
File this one under hopeful, but AT&T via their support forums have confirmed that the Windows Phone 8 GDR2 OS update and accompanying Amber firmware from Nokia has been cleared for the Lumia 820 and 920.
ETA? Tomorrow, October 10th.
Now we should be clear that this isn’t an AT&T or Nokia press release and Nokia’s own webpage has not yet been updated to reflect this news (it still says ‘waiting for approval’). However, a Community Manager did post the information, and it seems too detailed and confident to just be a rumor. Indeed, the Community Manager is an employee of AT&T so it has some credibility to it.
Rudy Huyn, the machine is at it again. The best Vine client for Windows Phone has picked up an update. 6sec launched on Windows Phone in early June and quickly climbed the charts for social apps on Windows Phone. Let’s check out what’s new in 6sec.
Tapatalk has updated its official client for Windows Phone. Bumped to version 22.214.171.124, the team has added some new features and fixed numerous bugs and issues. If you're not familiar with the name, Tapatalk enables you to access multiple forum software installations around the web. It's a neat concept that makes it super easy to enjoy discussions on multiple websites. Best of all, it's completely free.
The Verge reports that "Batman" is actually the internal codename for a new low-end Windows Phone from Nokia, not the Lumia 1320 / 929 as reported by @evleaks. It's believed to sport a large display, be an affordable smartphone and it may fall in the 6xx range. According to sources familiar with Nokia plans, the handset will be placed just above the Lumia 625, a low-cost Windows Phone with the largest display on any Lumia device.