Windows Apps

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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Using your pen stylus to grab notes in Windows is already a great experience, but anyone who has used Papyrus on smartphones knows that the tablet version of the app was really going to drive things home. At CES this week we were able to spend a few minutes with Andrew Hughes to talk about the changes that had to happen for tablet support. It's mostly the same Papyrus you already know and love, with multiple journal styles and a visually pleasing experience, but with tablet support comes pen support.

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Today is the last day of our 12 Days of Hidden Gems series. We've covered a broad range of subjects including fitness accessories that work well with Windows Phone and Windows 8.1, the connected home, some great travel apps, cameras for capturing all of life's adventures, super fun games, an app to keep you in touch with people that matter, an app for taking your music everywhere you go, and a free app for learning a new language. You can catch up on all of the articles to date on our Hidden Gems page.

Today is the 12th day and we're looking at Lynda.com, where you can learn technology, creative, and business skills you can use today.

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