How To

This is a strange one indeed. OneNote for Windows Phone 7 allows consumers to pin the create note tile to their Start screen, but this feature is amiss in Windows Phone 8.

That is unless you're using the latest hardware with the GDR2 update. We've checked on our Nokia Lumia 925 and it does indeed enable us to pin the tile to the Start screen, which has been confirmed by the OneNote team on Reddit.

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Xbox gamers have been eagerly anticipating Halo: Spartan Assault ever since Microsoft announced the Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8 game at the beginning of June. Many Windows Phone gamers especially look forward to it since Spartan Assault is likely the only Xbox Windows Phone game that will be released this month (we hear next week, in fact). Be that as it may, Windows 8 users got the first shot at the first mobile Halo game today, however briefly…

For a few hours, the tablet and PC version of Halo: Spartan Assault became available for purchase in the Caribbean island nations of Trinidad and Tobago. People from outside of those countries were able to buy it too, thanks to a little regional trickery and the magic of PayPal. Unfortunately, Microsoft quickly pulled Spartan Assault as we were in the process of writing this story to tell you about it, just hours after the game first appeared on the Windows Store.

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At last count, Nokia had well over 50 exclusive apps or games in its Collection, giving Lumia owners a slight edge in features.

But that advantage may be no more, at least temporarily. According to Chinese site WPDang, there is a freshly spotted glitch in Windows Phone Store that could enable everyone to download exclusive apps from the Nokia Collection.

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We’ve seen quite a few projects come from our forums and the latest is from AccentAE86, who took the concept of Nokia’s “dual shot” Lumia 620 shell design and applied it to his Lumia 920.

For those who aren’t familiar, “dual shot”, especially on the Green Lumia 620, is actually a two-layer yellow and blue shell that results in a bright green color. It’s an interesting new design language that Nokia is evidently experimenting with and something we hope to see in future devices.

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Hey Xbox game fans, Windows Phone Central is back with another exclusive and professional-quality Achievement guide. This time we tackle the Windows Phone version of NBA Jam from EA Sports. Whether you’re a Jam veteran or new to the series, our guide will help you knock the game’s Achievements out as quickly and easily as possible, though it’ll still take just over 30 hours to unlock the final one.

Earning NBA Jam’s Achievements also unlocks a variety of characters, but several of the game’s most outlandish characters can only be accessed via secret codes. We’ve got those for you too, right after the break. Boom shaka laka!

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You may or may not know that if you buy a Nokia Lumia 928 from Verizon, you qualify for a $25 Windows Phone Store credit. That’s a big chunk of money actually for picking up some $0.99 apps and even a few EA games.

The question you may have is how do you get it?

As it turns out, Verizon, who is not shy about emailing or calling you, will pass along an email with the voucher link.

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The Xbox Windows Phone version of Monster Burner started out as a free game before jumping up to 99 cents a few days later. Like most freemium games, it features In App Purchases that speed up player’s progress in the game. Using the in-game currency, you can buy upgrades to increase your firepower and life or single-use items to slow down the enemies and make tough levels a bit more manageable.

The game doesn’t force players to buy coins; you’ll earn some every time you complete a level. But while the first upgrade of any type sells for a reasonable price, subsequent upgrades cost astronomical prices. Even if you repeat an easy and high-coin level like Plains 3, it would still take hours of grinding to afford the best upgrades on your own.

Fear not! We’ve caught wind of a trick that reduces grinding times tenfold. Using this method, you could easily earn an average of 10,000 coins every two minutes! Read on for our full guide and video.

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Metrofy all the web with these browser extensions

File under fun. Like most of you, we spend a lot of time staring at some screens throughout the day. Typically our Windows Phone device and computer are the ones that get the most action. You love the look and feel of Windows Phone and get that same familiarity in Windows 8. But what about in the wild web? You don’t have much control over how a site looks. Or do you?

If you want to make your web browsing experience on the desktop a little more like Windows Phone check out the following extensions for Chrome. Yes, Chrome, mostly because Internet Explorer doesn’t support add-ons/extensions at the moment like Chrome does. We’ll be making Reddit and the general web a little more “Metro”.

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When you picked up your Nokia Lumia 920 a few months back you probably had a color in mind before heading to the store. Maybe you wanted Cyan or Yellow to stand out from the crowd. But you get to the store only to have your selection limited to whatever was on hand. You could have waited for more colors to come in, but you said screw it and took black because you wanted that Windows Phone 8 goodness right then and there. You could throw on a case and get a new color, but you’ll lose out on the beautiful industrial design of that high-end Lumia.

Why not just swap the shell?

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If you use Windows Phone, 7 or 8, you probably know that holding down the Start button will bring up TellMe, the native voice command service from Microsoft. You can use it to launch app, write an SMS message, etc.

For Windows Phone 8 users though, you get the added bonus that apps optimized for the new OS can also take advantage of TellMe, allowing you quickly open an app and then go to a specific section, for instance.

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About a week ago Microsoft made your account more secure. If you use any Microsoft service or product you own a Microsoft Account. You use that account to sign into your Windows Phone to download apps and track the phone if you ever lose it. On Xbox it’s associated with your Gamertag and allows you to carry your profile from Xbox to Xbox and keep your Gamerscore and Achievements synced. On Windows 8 it allows your settings and wallpapers’ to sync across your laptop, desktop, and tablets.

If you’re in anyway shape or form using a Microsoft product you need to enable two-step verification to keep your account secure. Here’s how to set it up.

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One of the bigger news coming out from last summer’s Windows Phone 8 reveal was support for game engines – like Unity. It allows game developers to easily target multiple platforms if their particular engine is supported there. Unity is one of the more popular engines at the moment, with support for nearly any platform you can think of. Right now game developers can get early access to the beta of the Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 versions of Unity.

Want to jumpstart to Windows Phone 8 and Unity?

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Whether you like it or not, Instagram is here to stay as a social network. Whatever plans Facebook has in the future are irrelevant, today it’s a huge platform for a lot of users. Its presence (or absence) makes or breaks potential smartphone purchases by the active 90 million users. Windows Phone still doesn’t have an official app, but Instagraph is a good workaround for right now. From the forums, here’s another slightly more involved way to get pictures up to Instagram without using an iPhone or Android device.

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If there’s one thing people really like about their Lumia 920s and that is underappreciated, it’s the ability to wirelessly charge them. So it’s fun to see forum regular and video guru Nisse Tuta show us how to improve upon our nightstands by integrating our standard Nokia wireless charging plate.

The process is not that involved and only requires a few tools for the job, but it is something you’ll want to take your time with and plan out accordingly. Personally, we think this project came out quite nicely and makes us wish for more furniture that is Qi-ready.

See an earlier and similar project using a coffee table here.

Source: Windows Phone Central forums

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One look at the comments section of our article announcing the release of Asphalt 7: Heat on Windows Phone 8 will tell you that the game is pretty popular. Hey Microsoft, we told you people wanted decent mobile Xbox games!

Ahem. With that gloating out of the way, we have more tasty Asphalt 7 tidbits to share with you now. Head past the break for a hands-on video, multiplayer walkthrough, and update news!

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Update: Files have been updated to make the app more stable and reliable and indeed it does work better now. (5PM ET)

Windows Phone Hacker has released a new “wrapper” tool called 'Seven-Eighter' that reportedly makes manually installing the 7.8 update less cumbersome than downloading all the files yourself. The app comes in x86 and x64 and is a simple executable that you run on your PC (you’ll need to give it permission in Windows 8).

In theory, it’s the same method we detailed in our CAB file post yesterday---you specify the languages on your device and then it fetches the files for you, all through a progress-bar UI.

Since Windows Phone OS updates are cumulative but iterative in the process, you’ll have to go up through Tango before proceeding to 7.8 meaning there will be a few cycles of updates.

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Want to update your Lumia 920 early? Read below on getting started, including the risks.

Although folks on Rogers and AT&T have successfully received the Windows Phone “Portico” and firmware updates for their Nokia Lumia 920s, there’s a good chunk of the rest of the world who has not. In fact, the plan is not roll out that update for another month or so, which is a bummer for those looking to improve their camera or get new features.

What follows down below is a very detailed and well written guide on how to manually update your Lumia 920. The information is actually well known and many of us have used the same “system” for updating our previous Lumias, but this one is clearly written and regularly updated. Started in our forums by Nabkawe5, it’s one of our hottest threads.

But first, we need to explain a few things…

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What would a mobile phone be without an address book of contacts to open up communication with, or a calendar to keep up-to-date with social events? Windows Phone takes strives in being more socially connected than the likes of iOS and Android by sporting integration with Facebook, Twitter and other social networks. But how does one import contacts and calendars from services that are also used on competing platforms?

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