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3 years ago

ZTE to bring Mango devices to Europe in Q3

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This is interesting news, at the VIP event yesterday, ZTE was one of the new manufacturers who will be joining the Windows Phone 7 platform and increase the number of handsets available to consumers. Today, we've learned that they apparently plan to launch their first device Q3 this year.

According to a report over at Reuters, Jeffrey Fan (Vice-President of ZTE's terminal devices unit) told them that they're already working on a smartphone for Europe and plan to launch it this year. It will be exciting to see what the Chinese manufacturer brings to the table. Being the fourth largest handset producer in the world, it could be yet another positive push that WP7 needs on top of Nokia.

Source: Reuters, via: WMPU

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3 years ago

Sprint Arrive May 7392 update being pushed out now

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We mentioned a few days ago that Sprint would be pushing the May 7392 OS update on May 24th and sure enough, we just got the notification.

The update addresses fraudulent security certificates and doesn't seem to offer any new functionality, though we'll update if we find any on the HTC ROM side. To update, just plug your Arrive into your computer and sync and/or hop into Settings --> Phone --> Update and make it check for an update.

Say what you want, but at least with T-Mobile and Sprint here in the U.S., there's no drama.

Update: Looking at the "About" info before/after and we can confirm that only the OS is updated, there is no firmware revision, no new radio software nor new bootloader.

Thanks, @tiggscolo, for the heads up

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3 years ago

Demo: LiveTris shows how powerful the new Mango Live Tiles can be

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Rudy Huyn, the developer who brought you TVShow, has just posted up a video showing how one could create a Tetris game, using just the new and expanded Live Tiles in Mango.

The developer has no plans to actually release this commercially, but the code exists and he's going to be putting it out on Codeplex for others to look at. The point, of course, was more conceptual: to make an app without an app. And in doing so he took advantage of Mango's new features for developers, including multi live tile + agents + deep link.

It's nice to see devs like Rudy pushing the boundaries of programming less than 24hrs after the release of the Mango SDK. It will be very interesting to see what devs come up with next!

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3 years ago

The Wall of Live Tiles exists

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The Wall of Live Tiles exists

Remember how a few weeks ago we reported on how Microsoft was contacting developers about featuring their app with a Live Tile on a "wall" and that this wall would be featured at some upcoming Mango events? Ahhh...yes, now you do!! It's all making sense now, right?

And what you see above is, you guessed it, the developer wall of Live Tiles. Basically a large LCD screen, it featured 112 apps all blinking, flipping and doing their live thing. In fact, before the main even kicked off, this was the screen shown on the projector.

Microsoft seemed pretty proud of it and it does show one of the more important elements of our OS in action, plus it's a nice tribute to the developers out there.

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3 years ago

Not that it matters, but it's Windows Phone 7.5, not 7.1

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Earlier this morning, a bunch of tech sites ran with a "Mango is Windows Phone 7.1, not 7.5" story, citing one section of the WP developer site with placeholders front and center. We didn't run it because it seemed to not be an accurate reflection and we've seen quite a few 7.5 references that cannot be so easily dismissed.

Long story short, in the newly released Mango emulator, the "About" screen clearly shows Windows Phone OS 7.5, putting to rest any doubt. (Or is it, perhaps Microsoft is just toying with our nerdy fascinations?)

But as the title says, it's not like it really matters in the end.

Source: Den Delimarsky (Twitter)

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3 years ago

Developers to get Mango prior to release

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Joe Belfiore, Vice President of the Windows Phone Program Management, has tweeted today that Microsoft is looking into releasing Mango early to the developers before end users receive the update later this fall. This would make sense with giving developers an opportunity to update their applications to take advantage of the new 1500 APIs, as well as giving them an early preview on what's to offer and how they can further improve the user experience their end.

However, nothing has been finalized as of yet, but Brandon Watson did mention back at MIX that developers would possibly get the chance to receive Mango before it gets rolled out. Here's hoping.

Source: Joe Belfiore, via: WPSauce

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3 years ago

Microsoft shows off new 'I Heart WP' design, makes a sticker for the Focus

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Microsoft has made a subtle yet significant change to the famous "I Heart Windows Phone" theme which came out just before Windows Phone was released. Before, the icons were in circles but now...they're boxes, there to represent those iconic tiles on the start screen.

As a way to promote that, they made a handful of stickers that fit on the Samsung Focus, giving it a very custom and kinda kewl look to it. Gimmicky? Sure, but we grabbed one just to make our Focus more hip than yours.

Be jelly, it's okay.

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3 years ago

Multitasking on Mango demoed in detail [Video]

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Microsoft's Executive Communications Manager on Windows Phone, Derek Snyder, managed to show off and answer some questions about multi-tasking on the upcoming OS update. As a result, we can see it in action here, how selection and management works and basically how smooth the whole process is.

We'd say more, but honestly the vid shows enough. It does get pretty geeky in spots, but that's a good thing, we think.

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3 years ago

Bing Vision demoed on a pack of gum...'cause we can [Video]

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Okay, this Bing Vision thing is really nice. Although augmented reality apps and one that scan are not new to the world (see Google Goggles), the way Microsoft does this on Bing is actually very elegant.

For one, we like how the overlay works when it finds what it's looking for. Just something really nice about the transparency and the items "floating" there. Second, the camera sensor works very well, even in low-light with little "re-adjustment" needed by the user. Barcodes read a bit better than CD cases or books, but even the latter should scan fine on a bookshelf in the store.

Finally, we also just like how it scans anything. You just point it at a CD, book or barcode and it just reads it. There's no settings, not select-format, it just works.

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3 years ago

Brief tour of MS Office on Mango [Video]

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Title says it all. We got a more detailed look at Office on the new version of Windows Phone. We knew about Skydrive expansion, better support, Office 365 integration and now we see it in action.

What's also nice, though not seen, is if you need an app e.g. Adobe for PDFs, the OS can now recognize file types and match them against supporting apps in the Marketplace, making the process of finding the right app to "handle' the task much more simple.

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3 years ago

Microsoft on Dell not being listed: "Don't read too much into it"

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We spoke with someone from Microsoft about the touchy issue of why Dell was left off of the above slide--was it a small acknowledgement that Dell won't be making anymore Windows Phones? That the leaked road-map from a few months ago was now invalid?

Turns out, it's probably more innocent than sinister. We were told directly "don't read too much into it" and to "stay tuned". We took that, especially the latter part, that Dell was certainly still on board and in fact, that we'll see some new Dell hardware this summer as Microsoft continues to draw out this Mango preview.

So as Microsoft said, stay tuned on this Dell rumor...

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3 years ago

Sneak Peek: History Here app gets a Mango make-over

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The History Here app is actually quite cool if you live in a populated area, like New York City. For one, just by design we have more "history" per square foot and two, we learned the History Channel folk have been pushing point-of-interest updates to the app a lot more recently.

In the above video, you get to see how the History Channel are updating their app with augmented reality, offering a new way to discover interesting things around you. Heck, you can even save a POI as a start tile for later use.

Pretty cool stuff, if you ask us. Thanks to Kalem Fletcher of UI Centric for the tour

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3 years ago

Mango Preview Event, wrapping it all up

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Microsoft took barely an hour (felt more like 45 minutes) to share a preview of the upcoming Windows Phone update, code named Mango. Andy Lees, Windows Phone Division President, didn't waste any time getting into the presentation.

The Mango Update is primarily focused on three areas of the Windows Phone operating system; Communications, Apps, and the Internet. Microsoft builds upon the mission to make smartphones smarter and easier for the consumer. Communications improvements will allow users to better connect and share information between family, friends and colleagues. App improvement will bring richer applications that will let you do more, wherever you go. And finally, Internet improvements will bring IE9 to the mobile platform in order to, as Lees mentioned, bring the internet to the palm of your hand.

Andy Lees, along with Derek Snyder (Windows Phone developer), covered a lot of information in a short period of time. Slide on past the break to see how it all breaks down.

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3 years ago

Sneak Peek: The Weather Channel on Windows Phone 'Mango'

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Hey, look at that! The Weather Channel was here in New York City today showing off their new, still in development, Weather Channel app that takes advantage of Mango's new features.

Specifically we have a new Live Tile abilities:

  1. One live tile is dynamic and tracks your location, updating where you are
  2. You can add multiple live tiles based on other locations e.g. family, travel, etc.

And of course they'll be using "deep linking" e.g. the ability to take you directly to a sub-section of the app, like when there is a Flood Warning.

Overall, we dug what we saw and this is a great example of how Mango will change those little things in our lives.

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3 years ago

Mango Games hub and Xbox Live improvements revealed

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Xbox Live integration has been a selling point of Windows Phone since day one. Gamers can earn Achievements; view their avatars, friends lists, and more from the convenience of their phones. But to do many of those things, you have to download the separate free Xbox Live Extras app and then launch it from the Games hub. It’s a needlessly complicate process.

Thankfully Mango will greatly streamline Xbox Live integration. Xbox Live Extras will join the dinosaurs and Milli Vanilli in extinction as its contents will now be built into the main Games hub. The Xbox Live page within the hub will display a user’s polygonal avatar and several other items: Xbox Live Gold membership status (lending credence to the rumor that online play will finally debut alongside Mango) and links to the user’s Profile, Achievements, and Avatar (for customization). This should make the profile and avatar editing options much easier to find than their previous location: stashed away in a pop-up menu at the bottom of the screen.

Live tiles are a great and wonderful thing. We all love them, and I’m pretty sure WPCentral’s Daniel Rubino has several tattooed on his arm. On the other hand, live tiles also take up a lot of space – only 6-8 will fit on-screen at once. People who own a lot of games on Windows Phone often have to scroll quite a bit to find the title they wish to play. Game organization and launching will become slightly easier in Mango thanks to a new list view within the Games hub. The list view displays each game’s name alongside icons that are about fifty percent smaller than before. It doesn’t really fit much additional information on-screen, but gamers will be able to locate titles by names instead of icons.

The Friends section will also receive a few minor tweaks. Friends’ profiles and bios will be separated onto two pages instead of being crammed onto one. Additionally, it will become possible to add new friends directly from the phone thanks to the addition of a New Friend button at the bottom of the Friends page. Now if Microsoft would just add the ability to send and receive Xbox Live voice messages from the phone too – only text messages are supported right now.

These changes will strengthen gaming and Xbox Live use on Windows Phone. Today’s conference didn’t address online play, but we’re still hoping for an announcement sometime around Mango’s actual launch. For Windows Phone gamers, that date can’t come soon enough.

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