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All Articles by Phil Nickinson

Twikini has long been one of our favorite Windows Mobile Twitter clients, and it's already getting the ball rolling for Windows Phone 7 Series. Developer Trinket Software has teamed up with Mist Labs (and our old pal Mel!) for the new project, and we must say, they're following the right people, if the screen shot above is any indication. More screen shots after the break. [Mist Labs]

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LAS VEGAS -- I want to noodle a bit about the Start Experience in Windows Phone 7 series, but before that happens I need to get something off my chest as a way of opening the conversation: I have an unhealthy obsession with notifications in Windows Phone 7 Series. There are two reasons for this.

The first and most important reason is that Microsoft is following Apple's cue by suggesting push notifications can replace functionality normally handled by third-party multitasking. If you remove the ability to multitask, you better make damn sure that your push notification replacement system works well.

The second is that we already have two mobile operating systems that do an excellent job handling notifications -- Android and webOS. Both allow notifications to appear without interrupting you, both let notifications "stack," and both offer a unified place to view and manage your notifications. Knowing that there are two systems out there for handling notifications well makes me want to see a similarly elegant system from Microsoft. Despite what I wrote in a recent tweet, WP7S does have a way to manage (some) notifications -- but it's going to require a shift in how users think about their messages.

Read on for more on notifications and how they relate to Start.

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Just got the bad news from another session at MIX10 in Las Vegas: There won't be any copy-paste action going on, at least at first, as apps are going to be pretty well sandboxed.

That's the long and short of it. Whether you really need copy and paste is one of those things that'll be debating until the end of time -- or at least until it actually comes to WP7S. So strap in, everybody. It's gonna be a long ride.

Also gleaned from this afternoon's sessions is that despite Silverlight crawling all over the operating system, it won't actually be baked into Internet Explorer. That means you won't be able to take advantage of the usual Silverlight fodder you find online.

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For all of you who have kept on us about the Sprint Touch Pro 2 Windows Mobile 6.5 update, well, good on ya. We now may finally (FINALLY!) have an answer, courtesy of a post at ppcgeeks. What you see above purportedly is an internal Sprint memo that points to March 19 as the day of days. "Sense UI enhancements" are mentioned, but it's still anybody's guess as to whether we're talking Sense 2.5 or what. So stay tuned, folks. [ppcgeeks]

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So there's that Windows Phone 7 Series "Metro" coffee table design book thingy that Dieter and I were just talking about in the podcast, and istartedsomething's Long Zheng has gone and photographed the whole darn thing for the world to see.

Taking pictures of a physical book and posting them online -- kinda gives a new definition to e-reader, huh? Check out istartedsomething for the entire slideshow.

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Before we all wet ourselves over this supposed "leak" of a Windows Phone 7 Series ROM, let's clear a few things up:

  • It's not a "leak," unless by "leak" you mean a public download straight from Microsoft.
  • It's not a "leaked ROM." Hell, it's not even a ROM.

What's happened is the folks at XDA are furiously ripping apart the code from the Windows Phone 7 Series emulator that's part of Microsoft's developer tools. And there are plenty of reasons to be doing this (and not just "because it's there"). They should be able to find out some interesting things.

But this is not a ROM. It's not going to be a ROM. And while we may, someday, see WP7S ported onto existing hardware (and I'm not going to bet on it), we're still a very long ways away from that.

Don't believe me? Try this, then, straight from XDA:

All you guys asking when and how and if we can have a ROM.....

We can't yet.

This is simply the emulator tools designed to run on x86 compliant hardware. This is by no means a ROM or will it ever be a ROM in this form, let's not clog the thread with continuous useless requests to have this converted to a ROM or 'how can I get it on my device ASAP'... We need to be patient.

That's right. Everybody chill out a little.

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Multitouch and Windows Phone 7 Series

Now that Windows Phone users will have to get used to having capacitive touchscreens (see what we just did there?), let's take a look at exactly what's supported, including multitouch. We'll start with the most basic gesture -- the tap. A single touch on the screen. Or, as Microsoft describes it in the Windows Phone Design and UI Interaction Guide, "Finger down on a single point within a bundled area and back up within a short period of time."

That whet your appetite? Of course it did. Join us after the break for more.

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Microsoft finally came out and said it (again) today at MIX10 -- No Windows Phone 7 Series upgrade for the HTC HD2. Sorry, it's just not gonna happen. And that news comes a mere 24 hours or so before T-Mobile throws a little wake party for its latest and likely last Windows Mobile 6.5 device. (Oh, and we'll be there, so check back in Tuesday night.)

So we'll put the question to you: Now that it's really real that the HD2 won't be getting an upgrade, will that affect your decision to get one on T-Mobile?

Do you still want an HD2, even though it won't be updated?surveys
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It's not all software at MIX10, as Samsung has slipped a slate Windows Phone into the mix. It's the second actual device we've seen Windows Phone 7 Series on (we're not counting the ASUS prototype device), following the LG slider.

We don't really know what's inside this Sammy phone -- it's said to have a great camera and screen. But the exact specs of either (is it a Super AMOLED screen, perhaps?) aren't known. Check out the video after the break. [via Neowin]

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I've gone on record several times as saying that the Windows Marketplace for Mobile, which debuted last fall alongside Windows Mobile 6.5, felt rushed at best, and half-baked at worst, at least as far as the user experience goes.

You can cast any such feelings aside, it appears, with Windows Phone 7 Series. The Windows Phone Marketplace ties right in with the Metro interface and finally -- at least in appearance -- seems to be worthy of the operating system on which it resides.

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One of the things that's new (and long overdue) in the new Windows Phone is better control over how apps look and feel. By now we have a pretty good look at the whole "panoramic" theme going on, as content flows easily from east to west and back again.

How's that all being done? Microsoft spells it out in its Windows Phone Design and UI Interaction Guide. Think of it as a "how-to" for application developers. [pdf link]

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LAS VEGAS--You wanted push notifications in Windows Phone 7 Series, and you're getting 'em. Above you see a little blue bar at the top of the phone's screen that popped down, alerting you to something happening in another app. Click the bar, and you're taken to it from whatever app you're in.

We'll have to see what ends up in the shipped version of the Windows Phone OS -- we wouldn't be surprised to see the look of the notifications change a bit -- but the principle is sound. That's also in line with how we think multitasking will work -- not so much a number of apps running in parallel, but in sequence, hopping from one to another.

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LAS VEGAS--Silverlight was born as a alternative to Adobe Flash, but it's grown beyond the desktop browser and now (finally) finds a home on Windows Phone.

For developers, it's a new way to create fluid (and very attractive) mobile apps. In conjunction with Microsoft's new "panoramic" paradigm for Windows Phone, what you get is an extremely fluid way to move within an app. Swiping left and right is seamless and very fast. The bullet points:

  • Hardware-accelerated video with multicodec digital rights management (DRM) and Internet Information Services Smooth Streaming support
  • Vector and bitmap graphics with perspective 3-D
  • Multitouch support with Accelerometer, an intuitive control that responds to motion
  • Deep Zoom support for rich reading experiences
  • Camera and microphone support
  • Notification Service for pushing information to the phone, regardless of whether or not an application is running
  • Integration with the core Windows Phone 7 Series experience features such as hubs

For end users, it means an immersive experience that's long been missing from Windows Mobile. Examples shown today at MIX10 included the new AP Mobile app, the stock Windows Phone photo gallery, and -- believe it or not -- an honest-to-goodness 3D Xbox Live game, running right on the Windows Phone.

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LAS VEGAS -- Carriers everywhere must be shaking in their boots at this one, as Microsoft just showed off live Netflix streaming on Windows Phone 7 at MIX10.

Live. Movies. Streamed. On Netflix. On your phone.

You can also browse the Netflix catalog and manage your queue, but being able to actually choose and watch movies on your Windows Phone is a serious game-changer. Seriously.

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