Jeff Wilcox, independent developer and Senior Software Development Engineer on the Silverlight Phone & Devices Team at Microsoft, had decided to take matters into his own hands and make a super Foursquare app--an app that is almost ready to for launch.
While his new version won't support everything in v2/v3 from the get-go, he hopes to roll them out in frequent updates, so although we don't know the exact feature-set of his v1, here's what he wants it to support eventually:
Photos of venues
Photos with tips
Associating a photo with a check-in
Commenting on check-ins
Leaderboard results when checking in
Additional special types
One thing that is really nice about Wilcox's approach is his penchant for detail--the guy works on the Silverlight team and knows how things should look and how they should work, case in point:
Building out an application this large with the right level of performance is not easy, and I’ve had to build a number of specialized components along the way. Many of these components I’ve polished enough to behave just like you would expect the Windows Phone to – and this is important to me. I don’t want a user to have an inconsistent experience from the rest of the phone, and so I’m taking the time to build these to a high level of quality.
I have an eye for detail and as a result really find it offensive when I’m using apps that don’t respect the OS design and user’s preferences, for example: I want my selected “accent color” to come through in the app. I would like the experience to feel authentic to the Windows Phone, and not be a “port” of some other app experience from another platform.
In other words, we can expect quality, not something rushed and thrown together. We'll be looking for this app and hope to have a hands on soon.
Microsoft is set to launch Internet Explorer 9 tonight with a big bash at SxSW. According to a Tweet by Joe Marini, Windows Phone Web Platform Program Manager, you can at least get a glimpse of the mobile version as well. He will be packing a WP7 phone sporting the new browser and invites attendees to check it out.
Though it is widely thought that the new browser will be rolled out as part of the highly-anticipated Mango update, we could see it much sooner. For more detailed info on what to expect from IE9from Marini himself, check out our previous coverage.
We got a tip from a reader claiming they and others are having trouble logging in to the official Foursquare client for Windows Phone. The problem reportedly started a few days ago and people on the Zune Marketplace have been giving some poor reviews citing the same issue.
For what it's worth, we just created an account with Foursquare (web) and are unable to login via the client, just like others are reporting. Anyone else having this problem if you logoff the app and log back in? We're reaching out to Foursquare for a comment and will keep you posted...
Comments via WP7Applist;Thanks, Victor Hugo Marques, for the tip
Did Microsoft sell 877,000 Windows Phone handset last February? Microsoft has reported earlier that two million of the phones (or is it licenses) have shipped/sold since release. One source is now calculating, based on the use of Windows Phone Facebook applications, that an additional 877K have moved since. Could Microsoft be approaching 3 million units sold mark?
The basis of this projection is a presumption that for every active user of the Windows Phone Facebook application, there are 6.756 handset in circulation. If this ratio is correct and there are 504,972 monthly active Facebook app users, then there should be 3,378,000 Windows Phones in the hands of consumers. Subtract sales that Microsoft has reported and you come up with 1,378,000 units sold. That comes out to 31,318 units per day and in subtracting the few days in January following the MSFT sales announcement, you should come up with about 877,000 units sold in February.
Without anything official from Microsoft, or any other Windows Phone partner, all of this is purely conjecture. While it will be nice if these numbers eventually hold water, you have to wonder if there's a more accurate and verifiable way to calculate sales than by the number of Facebook applications in use.
One month ago we covered the story of developer Rudy Huyn--he was looking for a challenge: code a Windows Phone 7 app in 30 hours (including sleep), all he needed was an idea. One idea came up and 'TVShow' was born.
TVShow is one of those TV scheduling apps of which there are plenty in the Marketplace. We know because we've tried a lot and sorry to say, have not been that impressed. However, TVShow Lite is what we wanted and we have to give it some high praise: nice, highly legible UI, fast load times and logical layout make this TV schedule app our new favorite.
The app is "lite" meaning free and lacking features of which the paid version will fulfill. We're not sure when that version will be released but we want it: push notifications to alert you your show is coming up, device caching of images to allow faster loading times, "...retrieve episode subtitles, use your phone as a remote screen for subtitles, translation feature for recaps and summaries". Yeah, we want that. So hurry up Rudy!
Seeing as we now have a new partner--that'd be Nokia we're talking about--we figure we would start to cover a little bit more about them, since they are a rarity here in the U.S. One of the biggest sites for Noki'a OS, Symbia, is All About Symbian and they just did a real nice review comparison between the HTC 7 Pro (coming to the U.S. as the Sprint Arrive) and the Nokia E7. Both are landscape messenger devices and on the face of it, quite comparable.
But it's the details that are of interest and while we won't ruin everything, a pretty good argument is made that the E7 is much better than the 7 Pro. Now granted, All About Symbian is a little biased towards Nokia and their OS is certainly much more mature, but if you factor in just the hardware quality, well, you'll see why HTC may need to step it up a bit and perhaps why you, as a consumer, should be excited about Nokia's hardware.
The short of the matter is that the E7 has a much more solid body (aluminum shell), better screen (CBD AMOLED), slightly nicer keyboard and sharper video. We recommend folks head over there to see the side by side--you'll learn as much about the 7 Pro as you do about the E7 and Nokia's finesse with hardware.
If you haven't played Bye Bye Brain, you're missing one of the great gems in the Marketplace right now--it's a zombie tower-defense type game, but slightly different in approach. It also easily has the best theme song ever and some really snappy graphics.
The game has evidently had quite a bit of success because we just got word a sequel is in the works: ByeByeBrain: App-ocalypse! and you can see some concept art above giving a sneak peak (we said the graphics were great, didn't we?). The game will have the following features:
3 new amazing stages
history mode, new enemies
fast forward mode
new units upgrades
more minigames and much more!!
It will also be available on iPad, iPhone and of course Windows Phone 7. The team is trying to negotiate a deal with Microsoft to get Xbox LIVE status and they have our full support behind that move--it deserves the recognition. Try Bye Bye Brain paid here ($1.99) or the free, lite version here.
Yomomedia is a popular RSS reader that first hit the scene with Windows Mobile and has successfully made the transition to Windows Phone 7 (here's our review of the classic version). Yomomedia 7 is available in two versions, a free Lite version and a pay full version.
Yomomedia 7 is a not only a media reader but you can also tap into your favorite podcasts (audio and video). Yomomedia 7 feeds can be pulled from your Google Reader account, Yomomedia 6.5 accounts (for those who used the WinMo version) or content can be chosen from Yomomedia 7's default catalog.
To see how well Yomomedia 7 made the transition to Windows Phone 7, follow the break.
Cubed is a Tetris styled game for your Windows Phone that takes advantage of your phone's touch screen. The gaming concept of this Windows Phone 7 game is rather simple.
Various shaped blocks fall from the top of the screen and you rotate them as they fall to form a solid row at the bottom of the screen. As you form a solid row, it implodes and you score points. If your stacks of blocks reaches the top of the screen; game over.
Space.... the final frontier...for those who seek to launch satellites into various celestial objects there's a Windows Phone app for that. Satalaunch is a Windows Phone 7 game that challenges you to launch "Astro" ,your satellite, into moons, planets and stars. Along the way you'll make use of planetary and solar gravity fields, as well as on-board thrusters to guide Astro into your targets.
The game has thirty-eight levels divided between three stages. Satalaunch is an interesting Windows Phone game and to learn more, drift on past the break.
Though we have yet to play this game, we're looking forward to it as it has just been submitted to the Marketplace.
TapSplosion looks to be one of those massive shooter games, which for some reason we just love around here. In fact, just going by the trailer, we're kinda really psyched for some reason and have high hopes--graphics look good, music sounds sweet (not sure if it's part of the game) and this style looks great for quick gaming. Instructions are simple enough:
Tilt to dodge and Tap to explode! Tilt the device to control the player, tap anywhere on the screen to create an explosion.
No word on pricing but we'll try to find out soon enough. Also, check out the dev's blog. Evidently he's a university student who spends 1-hour a day making this game (he's on hour 70)--very cool project.
We covered Pixel Man a few weeks ago (video). The cool retro platformer game has a unique charm in its simplicity and we highly recommend either the free, ad-supported version (Pixel Man Zero) or the no-ad one for $0.99.
At the time we mentioned how the developer, Nick Gravelyn, had a bet with his customers: if his game was downloaded 5,000 times, he'd release Pixel Man 2. While he's just shy of that 5,000 (300 to go), Nick has made tremendous progress on PM2 and has been showing off some screenies.
As you can see, the game now has a 3D textures to it, making those always-tough jumps that much more interesting. There also appear to be power-ups as well as a few other "bonus" features yet to be added. Finally, the game will be available on Xbox 360 for Indie games, Windows Phone and he now looks to be adding PC support as well--that should pretty much cover those "three screens" we think! Anyways, we can't wait to see the final version. Pick up 'Pixel Man' (or 'Pixel Man Zero') here and here.
Panoramic managed to get their v2.1 update through the Marketplace today for moTweets and it was well worth it. The full changelog is listed here, but what you need to know is that it is significantly faster, in our opinion.
Loading of the app is quick but more importantly, the overall performance between swiping actions is near instant now. In fact, the on-device caching of data (meaning you don't have to redownload each time on launch) is top notch, making is very smooth and quick. Heck, it feels almost brand new to us. We also like the ability to "run beneath the lock screen" which means if your device turns off, when you click it back on there is no "refresh" operation taking place--you're just back where you started with no delay. We also dig the Tap’n’Hold options on a Tweet--makes tasks easier.
So is this our new default Twitter app? It just may be, between all the options and now the performance enhancements, we're impressed. Of course Panormic isn't done yet and have even more features we're told coming "in the next few weeks".
Grab moTweets (Free) here and moTweets 'premier' here. Give it a spin and let us know if we're too exuberant in our new assessment.