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2 years ago

From the WPCentral Forums: AT&T Nokia Lumia 900 shipping today

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If you pre-ordered the AT&T Lumia 900, today is the day for it to ship if we are to get it in our hands tomorrow. It was reported that if you Pre-order your AT&T Lumia 900 and you'll probably get it early right here on WPCentral and everyone is anxiously awaiting their tracking information from AT&T.

We have a thread started in our forums Official 'Has your Lumia 900 shipped yet?' thread where I am certain we will get our first indication that they are on their way. This is the thread to watch as a lot of us are refreshing our AT&T order status awaiting any changes. If you want to know the minute these devices start shipping, this is the thread for you.

If you just want to show your excitement for today's activity, forum member txaggies07 has started this thread "Shipping Day!!!". Come share your excitement. We are also still talking about any potential delays of our phones in this thread "Backordered Status?". We have heard many opinions about this and it has put everyone on edge. We share in your anxiety, so don't despair. Come join us as we're the best support group around.

Remember, the forums are more fun when you register, so sign up today.

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2 years ago

Alleged poster template for Nokia and Windows Phone 8 appears

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Even though the Lumia 900 is barely out the door it doesn't mean we can't start the rumor mongering and passing of faked images for Windows Phone 8, does it? Phone Arena were sent the above image described as a "non final poster template" that allegedly came out of Nokia's headquarters.

The poster reveals a "Windows Phone 8" name, a designation that has not been officially given for the updated OS, expected in late 2012. Nicknamed 'Apollo', little is known about the successor to the current Windows Phone 7.5 'Mango' although an earlier leak from a video was purported to divulge some details including dual-core support, higher display resolutions and removable SD cards.

Besides the neon-glow of those three Nokia phones, which vaguely looks like Nokia's newly granted design-patent, we get the Nokia slogan of "Breaking the limits since 1865" which as pointed out in comments, references Nokia's origins  as a "ground wood pulp paper mill in Tampere, Finland". Odd, yet we kind of like it -- how many tech companies can claim that much of a legacy?

Then again, this could easily be spoofed as that "Windows Phone 8" font may be a little off and there's no redesigned Windows 8 logo present, which we would expect. Plus lets be honest, there's just really nothing in this image that's too informative.

It's fun to wonder but for now, we're going to remain skeptical.

Source: Phone Arena

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2 years ago

Windows Phone App Review: Clearer

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Windows Phone App Review: Clearer

The other day we took a look at the Windows Phone app Zero, a gesture based To-do list manager. We then received several tips suggesting another gesture based To-do list manager for your Windows Phone, Clearer.

In many ways Clearer is just like Zero but with a bit more features. Which is better? Both Windows Phone apps do what they do really well.  I'll try to break the differences down in a bit but for now, if you like gesture based apps Clearer is well worth a try.

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2 years ago

Official Qantas app for Windows Phone now available

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The official Qantas app for Windows Phone, which we have been anticipating since MIX '11, has now been released on the Marketplace. The app enables users to keep track of their upcoming flights with the operator. As well as mobile check-in, the app also displays the status of the customer's frequent flyer programme with accumulated points.

The free Qantas app provides a boarding pass for the selected flight that can be used for a more efficient experience, just remember to charge the Windows Phone the night before (nothing worse than relying on your dead smartphone for checking into your flight). Should you have access to the available lounges at numerous supporting airports, the app will also provide information as to the location and opening hours of said areas.

Live tiles are present with the ability to pin flights to the homescreen for up-to-date details regarding the scheduled time of departure, etc. The official Qantas app is a convenient companion for any frequent traveller, it's just a shame that there doesn't appear to be any way to book flights through the app itself. It's pretty much identical to the British Airways app, which is also available on the Marketplace, basic but sports enough features.

You can download the official Qantas app from the Marketplace for free and find the press release after the break. Via: Techin5

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2 years ago

High app submission rate to Windows Phone Marketplace causing delays in publishing

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We've noticed in our Twitter stream and from interacting with developers that there have been quite a few delays with Windows Phone Marketplace submissions. Before, it would take around 72 hours from submission to approval to publishing of the app. Now, it's taking significantly longer and there have been a few hiccups along the way too (see Rowi's recent update woes).

In the latest Windows Phone Developer Newsletter (April 2012), Microsoft confirms that indeed "due to high submission and update volumes, the app certification process is continuing to take longer than it has previously." Just how long? Microsoft states it can now take up to seven days which is quite an increase from the previous 72 hours. In turn, Microsoft is recommending to developers to plan accordingly by submitting as early as possible if they want a certain publishing date.

Of course this is a good news/bad news situation. It's a bit frustrating to developers who now have to wait significantly longer than it did a few months ago to get their app or app update to market. On the other hand, these delays are caused by a nice problem: a huge increase in app submissions to the Windows Phone Marketplace.

For point of reference, nearly 340 new apps are being published daily in addition to over 400 app updates which has resulted in just over 70,000 apps being available in the Marketplace (the 80,000 number is a bit misleading since it aggregates worldwide and doesn't count removed or inactive apps).

We imagine that if the Nokia Lumia 900 is successful, new app submissions could also increase over the next few months -- an issue we'll return to soon enough. Finally, Microsoft probably won't let this delay get any longer as they are trying to scale appropriately to meet the demand.

Marketplace statistics provided by WP7AppList

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2 years ago

Microsoft and Nokia holding "Free time machine in your pocket" contest on April 9th

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As we approach the release of the AT&T Lumia 900 this weekend, Nokia and Microsoft have a few tricks up their sleeves for promotions. The first of which is the Times Square event here in New York City on Friday night at 7pm. That event, which is open to the public, will involves some live performance(s) of some kind and presumably some other publicity stunts to drum up attention. And yes, WPCentral will be there to document everything, we have you covered.

Now MS_Nerd has Tweeted that another promotion will be happening on Monday, April 9th. Details are scarce but it involves the slogan "Free time machine in your pocket" which seemingly is referencing the whole "glance and go" efficiency of Windows Phones.  This seems to be a theme along the lines of the "24 hours with the Lumia 900" web video posted earlier today.

There is also a corresponding website www.freetimemachine.com already up for the event which is to take place in New York City, San Francisco and Chicago.

MS_Nerd notes that this will be an event to win a Nokia Lumia 900, perhaps in the form of a "Smoked by Windows Phone" type contest or other method. No other details are known at this time but we're sure to find out more soon enough. (Interestingly, if you enter in a wrong sub-address, you get an error message with an ePrize logo. That's a marketing group for promotions and social media who specialize in mobile in addition to working with Microsoft on Xbox rewards.)

Source: MS_Nerd (Twitter); via Mobility Digest

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2 years ago

The science behind the Nokia Lumia 900's screen quality

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One of the many things that stood out in our review of the AT&T Nokia Lumia 900 is how good the screen looks. Nokia is using ClearBlack display technology with the Lumia 900 that definitely makes a difference.  But why?

In a recent interview with CNET Raymond Soneira, president of DisplayMate Technologies, explained why ClearBlack display technology gives the Lumia 900 such a nice screen.  Soneira explains that reflectance of a screen can degrade the sharpness and color quality you see. It may be nice to touch up your make-up or comb your hair from your Windows Phone screen's reflection but it doesn't help with screen quality.

Nokia manages to address this issue with the ClearBlack technology and circularly polarized glare suppressing optics. The polarized optics disrupts the reflections, minimizing tier influence on image quality. According to Soneira,

"The Lumia 900 has the lowest screen reflectance of any mobile device I have ever measured, 4.4%, which is almost forty percent lower than the iPhone 4."

DisplayMate Technologies also found the reflectance rating of the Lumia 900 to be noticeably better than that of the new iPad which is rated at 9.9%. Science asides, the bottom line is that the Lumia 900's screen looks really good.

source: Cnet

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2 years ago

Windows Phone App Review: Clever Alarm

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2 years ago

Nokia TV confirmed to launch in Finland in coming weeks

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Nokia TV, a television programme streaming app for Lumia Windows Phones, has been confirmed to be launching in Finland in the coming weeks, according to an announcement article over at Nokia conversations. We previously looked at Nokia's latest Windows Phone OEM app courtesy of WP7Forum.ru.

A quick reminder of notable features:

  • View TV shows provided by local networks.
  • Videos can be downloaded to the device (presumably for offline usage).
  • Does not use technology for mobile TV (DVB-H).
  • Search for content / programmes within the application.

Nokia TV is set to be released in the next few weeks, and will then allow Finnish Lumia owners to enjoy programme streaming while on the go with offline functionality (similar to Nokia Music) hopefully implemented. Will the app be released beyond the borders? We're not entirely sure, but we'd certainly be excited at the prospect of Nokia TV expanding to other countries.

Requiring no registration or account creation, the app will provide users the means to browse / search available catch-up TV catalogues from major broadcasters. Mika Suomela, head of TV and video at Nokia, explains the idea behind the service:

"With Nokia TV we are bringing existing services in Finland together in a convenient way. We're making it easier for people to find and watch TV, while supporting broadcasters' existing internet TV business models. Finland is the ideal country in which to introduce this service due to its advanced mobile user base and great existing broadcaster catch-up TV services."

Nokia TV is expected to launch within the next few weeks in Finland only. 

Source: Nokia Conversation

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2 years ago

Lumia 900 review roundup: mostly positive but with a few annoyances

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A number of technology blogs and news sources have published reviews for the Lumia 900, including ourselves. What's the general reaction from reviewers? Mostly positive. Critical on certain aspects of Windows Phone itself, but positive nonetheless. The Lumia 900, with the polycarbonate unibody, shouts out "I'm good looking!" but there are a few apparent flaws with both the hardware and software that could put off potential buyers.

We've taken a look at a number of reviews on the web, from the likes of CNET, Engadget and VentureBeat to name but a few. We can now pass on a summarised feeling as to how the Lumia 900 has been received by critics. We'll hit the negative points first. Unfortunately, many reviewers stuck to their guns and complained about the lack of apps available on the Marketplace. Even though Microsoft has been accelerating growth with numerous developer camps, competitions and giveaways the company still needs to work on getting big names on-board. Something their future developer plans appear to address.

As well as the lack of apps, a number of reviews touched on the multitasking in Windows Phone, which was implemented in the "Mango" update last year. Comments include the lack of robustness that is present when compared to both the iPhone and an Android handset. As for the Lumia 900 itself, the speaker was noted as being "too quiet". This is a flaw that many Lumia 800 / soon-to-be 900 owners can (and will) agree on - the speakers could be improved.

Lastly on the negative front, a few comments were made regarding the Windows Phone 7 Connector for Mac - I wanted to touch on this personally. Of course the small app isn't Zune, but it doesn't have to be. I'll be the first to admit I'm a fan of not only Microsoft, but of Apple as well. My main two computers I use on a daily basis is my trusty Mac Mini and white MacBook, so I'm familiar with not only the Zune suite on my Windows desktop, but also the Mac Connector. The app that Microsoft is continuously developing, which allows me to synchronise and update my Windows Phones, is more than enough. I would actually go as far to say it's more efficient than Zune.

It's not all doom-and-gloom for Windows Phone and the Lumia 900 however. As I mentioned in the opening of this article, the majority of reviews were positive overall with compliments provided for not only the hardware, but the software too. The LTE speeds experienced using the 4G Windows Phone were particularly impressive. Then you have the award winning design of the Lumia 900 itself, which originated from the N9. Nokia has done a superb job with fitting the 1830mAh battery as well as adding the 1.3MP front-facing camera with an f/2.4 lens to really make the 900 last and be capable of more advanced tasks.

As well as the hardware side of things, Microsoft's operating system received some love with the "silky smooth experience" being mentioned more than once. While handsets on the platform don't sport 15Ghz octo-core chips that require a mobile nuclear reactor to power them, the experience that the consumer will continue to enjoy is heavily optimised for low-end hardware. It's also slightly lighter on the ol' piggy bank with manufacturers being able to drive down cost.

To conclude; Microsoft has a long way to go. They already realize and understand this fact. As the company has reiterated: they're in for the long haul, it's a marathon and not a sprint. With their apparent planning of Windows Phone's not-so-distant future with bringing on-board more big name developers, we should see the annoyances rectified and the handsets sent to the games. But it's a positive step in the right direction.

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2 years ago

AT&T's "24 hours with the Lumia 900" ad hits the internet

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AT&T has released a new video promo highlighting the Nokia Lumia 900 over on their YouTube Channel. Not sure if we'll see this hit prime time but the "just under two minute" video follows the Lumia 900 for a 24 hour period.  It's a nice video promo on the Lumia 900 and shines a nice light on the new Windows Phone.

The day begins with an alarm, a check of the weather and a quick status update. From there you see how the Lumia 900 fits into your everyday life up until it's time to set the alarm again and call it a day.  The promo is a little on the subtle side showing only glimpses of the Lumia 900 in action.  Just enough to get your curiosity up but not too much to be overwhelming.

So, what do you think? Does AT&T need more flash or is showing the Lumia 900 in action strong enough to attract new customers?

Source: ShareATT; Thanks, Jose, for the tip!

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2 years ago

Nokia announces Lumia 710 and 800 for Vietnam and releases Vietnamese keyboard app

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Nokia has announced the release dates for the Lumia 710 and 800 in Vietnam. Both handsets will go on sale and will be available on April 9th, for 6,299,000 VND and 10,599,000 VND respectively. Nokia Vietnam has listed 21 retailers to stock and ship the two Windows Phones, and all stores will be decorated in Lumia promotion material.

Unfortunately, the Vietnamese keyboard and language aren't supported by the platform, but are on the horizon (as well as Local Scout, Maps, etc.). Nokia has attempted to soften this blow by releasing Viet Keyboard, an app which provides a convenient text input solution for the Vietnamese language. 

Users are able to type as they would normally in the app and then copy the text to the clipboard, which can then be subsequently pasted elsewhere on the smartphone. Viet Keyboard will be especially useful for common tasks such as SMS, email social network posting, and web browsing.

You can download Viet Keyboard from the Marketplace (Lumia restricted). Source: Mainguyen; thanks Hoang for the tip!

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2 years ago

Developed Down Under: a local Marketplace highlighting app for Aussies

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Developed Down Under is an upcoming app, developed by Mobile Wares, that will be of use for Windows Phone owners and developers who reside in Australia. The free app will allow developers to showcase their apps and games to a local audience. The targeted reach should provide developers with more downloads, ratings and usage compared to relying on the global Marketplace itself (depending on app functionality).

Some highlights of Developed Down Under:

  • Random suggested Apps upon each application launch
  • Additional search capabilities (includes ability to browse by publisher, latest apps, etc.)
  • Australian Windows Phone news related feeds
  • Relevant tweets displayed (#wp7au Twitter search feed, etc.)

For more control on what content is displayed, developers will have to opt-in (for free) to have their apps featured in Developed Down Under. News and tweets will be pulled down and loaded in the app from numerous sources and search / browse capabilities are present to create an efficient user experience for consumers.

Should you wish to have your app listed in the app, head on over to WPDownUnder to opt-in by filling in the available form (be sure to check out the terms and conditions first). WPDownUnder expects the app to be released over the Easter break. As well as the new localised developer app, a new hashtag for Twitter has been created - #ddu.

Source: WPDownUnder

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2 years ago

SkyScanner updated to version 1.4 with more added functionality

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SkyScanner, the popular (and highly rated) travel companion app, has recently been updated to version 1.4 with more functionality being pumped into the experience. The app integrates with the service on the SkyScanner website, and the iOS and Android apps have both proven to be very popular. SkyScanner for Windows Phone is developed by Distinction - the folk behind AppFlow and Cocktail Flow.

The free app boasts the following features:

  • Search over 1000 airlines and travel agents to get the best deals
  • Watch flight prices: pin your flight searches to your start screen (prices update every hour)
  • Search trains too: compare rail travel and flights on major European routes
  • Available in more than 25 languages
  • 100% independent and shows ALL airlines including low-cost carriers and scheduled airlines
  • Email flight details to yourself for later
  • Share your flight details with friends, family or colleagues

So what's new in version 1.4? Users of SkyScanner for Windows Phone can now view flight prices for each day of an entire month / year , making it easier to choose the best deal. An "Everywhere" search feature is now also present, which enables the user to search for cheapest fares without entering specific destinations. As well as the two feature additions, a number of optimisation improvements and fixes were implemented.

Bonamy Grimes, Co-founder and Director of Mobile at Skyscanner, had the following to say about the app on Windows Phone:

"We launched our first app for Windows Phone late last year and it has been very well received. But we’re always trying to improve overall user experience, and it’s a testament to our mobile development team that we’ve managed to surpass even our own expectations of version 1.4 in such a short space of time."

Some positive words from a well used service. You can download SkyScanner from the Marketplace for free.

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2 years ago

UK pricing for unlocked Lumia 610 and 900 revealed

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Clove UK, a mobile phone retailer, has published an article on their blog confirming pricing details for the Lumia 610 and Lumia 900 (our review), which are both heading to the shores. Unfortunately they don't have an ETA as to when the Windows Phones will begin to ship to consumers. 

Should you desire to pre-order the Lumia 610 and / or 900 unlocked from Clove, you'll be set back £228 and £486 (including VAT) respectively. A fairly attractive price for those who aren't locked in contracts and are looking for a smartphone that's both feature rich and affordable.

Source: Clove UK (Pre-order: Lumia 610 / Lumia 900); thanks Tahiti for the heads up!

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