Windows Apps

Windows Central Roundup: Windows Phone apps for Super Bowl Sunday

Super Bowl XLIX will kick off this Sunday at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Phoenix, Arizona. The New England Patriots will face off against the Seattle Seahawks at 6:30pm EST. For those planning events around the game, the Windows Phone Store offers a handful of apps that might come in handy as you try to survive the Big Game.

This week's roundup will offer up a few suggestions to help you tackle Super Bowl Sunday. These Windows Phone apps will help you keep track of the game score, stats and news as well as help you well stocked with food. We even toss out one of our favorite YouTube apps to help you keep up with all those commercials that will air during the game.

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It would be putting things lightly to say that this week has been a rough one for users of banking apps on Windows Phone. However, at least one bank has confirmed it is sticking around: Wells Fargo. After both Chase bank and Bank of America said they would be ending support for their Windows Phone apps, Wells Fargo says it has no plans to abandon the platform.

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Happy Friday, everyone! After a week of digging myself out from Tuesday's blizzard in New England, there's already another foot or so of snow on the way. But that won't stop me from telling you about 5 intriguing apps that I stumbled upon this week.

Today we have some apps for travel, entertainment and socializing. Whether you're snowed in or not, you may find them interesting.

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AVG AntiVirus 2015 review

AVG has been on the PC antivirus scene for a long time, and has traditionally been the go-to free antivirus program for ages. Competitors now offer excellent alternatives, but AVG has kept up with the times.

We tested AVG AntiVirus 2015 on a Windows 8.1 PC. This entry level security suite covers day-to-day virus scans, malware detection, and web protection for $39.99/year. For an extra $15/year you can get anti-phishing and enhanced firewall through AVG Internet Security 2015. A full feature comparison is available at AVG's site.

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Back in December, Urbanspoon removed their app from the Windows Phone app store. Part of a growing and disturbing trend, it had appeared that the famous restaurant finder app had seen its last days on Windows Phone. Urbanspoon was a rather nicely designed app, but the last update from the company was back in 2012, so Windows Phone support had already withered.

For better or worse, Urbanspoon was acquired by Zomato just a few weeks ago for a reported $50 million. Interestingly, Zomato not only has a Windows Phone app but a highly-rated one as well (and it looks like they will have a Windows 8.1 app on the way).

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National Public Radio today has released their new NPR One app for Windows Phone 8.1 and Windows 8.1. The app is universal, appearing to use the same code across both platforms. It is also very minimalist, modern, and well done.

NPR One is not your standard public radio app. Instead, it is a new effort by NPR to create a more "personalised" experience based on your preferences. You get a combination of live radio from your local radio station, in addition to suggesting programs. You can also search things you are interested in, and the service will begin to cater to your tastes.

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After making its debut on the platform this month, Dropbox has received a new update that allows you to upload photos from the Pictures Hub directly to the cloud sharing service. The Windows 8.1 version of the app also picked up an update, and now has an improved file picker along with a better PDF reader.

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Now and then an app will hit the Windows Phone Store while we here at Windows Central are looking the other way. BdlPre Shift is one such Windows Phone app that was released last fall and is an app that allows you to track any Borderlands Shift Codes as they are released.

For who are not familiar with Borderlands, it is a vastly popular video game series that is available on a variety of platforms such Windows, Xbox and PlayStation 3 consoles. Loosely described, the game is a post-apocalyptic sci-fi styled first person shooter. The games are full of colorful, charismatic character and highly addictive.

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Marriott is about to make your hotel stay much more rewarding. The hotel chain has confirmed to Bloomberg that it is testing a TV service that allows its guests to access streaming content from their own Netflix, Hulu Plus and Pandora accounts. The service is currently being trialled in eight hotels across the US.

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Google's lack of official support by way of apps for Windows 8.1 or Windows Phone is by now (in)famous. But, in the case of Windows 8.1 at least, most of Google's cloud services are accessible in their full, unhindered web form by using your browser of choice. And this includes Google Play Music.

Google Play Music is, after all, a pretty great music service that currently offers one big feature that Xbox Music does not; a cloud locker for your own music. But the web app is pretty hit and miss, even in Google's own Chrome browser. Fortunately, for the Windows using Play Music fan, there's outcoldplayer. The best way to get your Google Play Music library on your Windows tablet or computer.

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If you have the need to secure your photos from unwanted use or distribution, take a gander at PhotoScrambler.

PhotoScrambler is an app available for both Windows Phone and Windows 8 devices that will encode/decode your JPEG or PNG photos. Images are stored as any other image file but all that is seen is a static image. PhotoScrambler takes a little time to get accustomed to but once you get the hang of things, the apps does have a bit of appeal.

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