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3 years ago

Halo ATLAS brings non-silent cartography to Windows Phone on December 10

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Microsoft first announced the addition of an ATLAS to Halo Waypoint back in October. But the ATLAS didn’t show up with the Halo WayPoint Mango update that coincided with Halo Anniversary’s release. Thankfully we’ve learned today that the ATLAS is not very far off – it’s coming this Saturday, December 10.

Halo ATLAS uses maps (sponsored by Brady Games) to provide valuable multiplayer data to Halo Reach and Anniversary players. When we say Halo Anniversary players, we really mean Reach players because the non-campaign Anniversary multiplayer simply piggybacks off of Reach.

The connectivity with Reach is possible because during multiplayer games, Reach constantly sends out packets of data called heartbeats that contain gameplay status. Halo ATLAS provides a bunch of that information in near-real-time to smartphone users.

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3 years ago

PC World puts Windows Phone in '10 Tech Wins of 2011'

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It's the end of the year, so it's time for those arbitrary yet popular "lists" by popular magazines and news outlets. PC World is no different and they just put theirs up.

As you can guess from the headline, Windows Phone landed a spot in their top 10 list of "tech wins" for the year, specifically the 9th slide--it's not clear that they organized them in any order, so that's good. Other mentions were the Kinect, Siri, Google Chrome, Samsung's Galaxy series and IBM's Watson.

Do these lists matter? Yeah, actually they kind of do. We take our devices for granted a bit around here but lets look at the audience for these periodicals--fact is, any positive word of mouth is great for the platform. So we're more than pleased to see Microsoft making the cut (twice, in fact) and we hope it piques some interest in 2012.

Source: PC World; Thanks, D-Burrs, for the tip!

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3 years ago

10 meter Windows Phone erected in Paris

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10 meter Windows Phone erected in Paris

We previously touched on Paris being the next location where a giant Windows Phone is to be constructed, just like the event in New York last month. Today, we've got an idea of what the setup looks like. In the photo above we can clearly see the erected display (behind a tree) with what appear to be demo stands situated just in front. Luckily this is in France, since here in the UK the health and safety baboons would not like the event being that close to a main road.

The massive structure (as well as everything else that's planned) will be unveiled this evening, and will run on for 10 days in Champs Elysées. Professeur Thibault speculates that the Nokia Lumia 800, HTC Radar and Acer Allegro will be on display.

Source: Professeur Thibault

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3 years ago

ScrollMotion Inc releasing more than 10 apps in one day

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Microsoft recently restricted the amount of apps developers can submit to the Marketplace to 10 per-day. This was in response to a continued injection of spam, some apps being completely useless. As one can see in the above video, captured by SolidSnakeSK, ScrollMotion Inc. has been able to submit more than 10 apps (or books in this case) to the Marketplace, which were approved. While this isn't spam as such, it does prove to be an issue with scrolling through "new" apps etc. and one can only assume that certain developers can bypass the restrictions depending on what they're submitting. 

It would make sense for one app to be used as a gateway (or digital book shelf) where books can be purchased and stored inside the app itself. Having books published separately will clog up the listings, but will increase total Marketplace numbers of course.

Source: YouTube, thanks Snake for the video!

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3 years ago

Windows Phone Xbox Live Review: Fusion: Sentient

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When Microsoft announced that downloadable Xbox 360 title Fusion: Genesis would receive a Windows Phone companion game, Fusion: Sentient, my eyes lit up. Sentient comes from Wahoo Studios, makers of some charming and creative XBLA titles. And what gamer doesn’t enjoy the promise of cross-platform connectivity? Imagine my surprise then when I finally played Sentient and discovered it to be a dull, arduous cash-in of a game.

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3 years ago

Ffffound finds trouble in the Marketplace. Adult content rears its head again.

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A few weeks ago we highlighted a new app called Ffffound by developer RogueCode. The app, based off of the website Ffffound.com, quickly became one of the more popular apps in the Marketplace, earning excellent reviews from users. The app pulls images from Ffffound.com and allows the user to view, save, favorite and even share the images in a elegant and beautiful way.

However, there were some memory issues with the app, causing crashes on the Samsung Focus. The developer quickly dispatched an update to fix that but in turn, that broke the 'save' option for many users. Not to be deterred, RogueCode quickly sent out another update but this one hit a snag: Microsoft suddenly rejected it based on the grounds that the app showed 'adult content', specifically images with partial nudity. 

Now the developer is in a bind: he can't filter those images automatically and therefore can't push out his update. He would, in essence, have to filter them manually resulting in large delays before you saw the image--not to mention all the work involved. Result? Consumers lose.

This is reminiscent of the app ImageWind, which pulled a stream of photos from Twitter. That app too was pulled from the Marketplace only to appear months later with a 'safety filter'. Now, in doing this story, we learned that app received another update (v1.3) and they have completely removed the Twitter feed altogether as Microsoft still wasn't happy with the "Flickr as a filter' option. ImageWind is now just a Flickr-streaming app, losing its original purpose.

So we ask the question: Does Microsoft need to revise its policy on 'adult content'? Perhaps offering a way for us adults (the majority) to opt-in? We of course think so but we want to hear what you have to say. And maybe, just maybe, Microsoft will listen.

In the meantime, we're not sure what will happen to Ffffound, which is a real shame.

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3 years ago

Unofficial Pandora app clears the Marketplace! MetroRadio is now live.

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Hopefully you saw our sneak preview of MetroRadio, the first unofficial Pandora app for Windows Phone built off of the Metro Pandora SDK. That app is now live in the Marketplace, having successfully cleared the Marketplace guidelines. From the app description:

"MetroRadio is the first Pandora 3rd party application on Windows Phone 7. The app has all the important features from Pandora, such as: Streaming stations, liking/disliking songs, making new stations, album art, and many more... This app is Mango optimized; it will run in the background. This app will be updated periodically, introducing new features such as pinning stations, auto login, etc..."

This is obviously big news for our platform and while not a perfect solution, it certainly is a start. You can find MetroRadio here in the Marketplace for free. Let us know in comments your initial thoughts!

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3 years ago

Gore Verbinski's studio to produce exclusive content for Microsoft

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Gore Verbinski, best known for directing The Pirates of the Caribbean series of films, has signed a deal between his company Blind Wink Productions and Microsoft. The partnership will see the studio produce exclusive content for Microsoft's platforms - including the Xbox 360 and Windows Phone. The first title to emerge is an Xbox Live Arcade game, which will use Kinect and is set to be released next year. 

"Audiences consume content very differently today. As an idea house, we at Blind Wink are looking forward to our partnership with Microsoft. Their various platforms give us access to new methods of distribution, allowing us to extend into emerging markets and connect more directly with the audience."

Founded in 2008 and first production being Rango, we should be able to look forward to some unique and creative content from the studio, going down paths and bringing new games to the platforms.

Source: Hollywood Reporter, via: The Verge

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3 years ago

T-Mobile Radar 4G's software update

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T-Mobile Radar 4G's software update

And since the international HTC Titan received an update this morning, we finally got around to updating our U.S. T-Mobile Radar 4G which is getting its first firmware refresh too (the unlocked version received one a few weeks ago). Here are the software changes.

  • Firmware - 20102 (old - 10802)
  • Bootloader - 2.1 (old - 1.8)
  • Radio - 03.17_ 16.27.00 (old - 02.09_2_16.24.00)

It seems clear that HTC is moving to a 2.x bootloader and 2.x firmware for both the Titan and Radar, meaning the AT&T Titan could very well get a refresh soon too.

The update took about 20 minutes and we even gained a teeny amount of space back (see above) which was kind of nice. There's no word either on what this addresses, but presumably its for performance and fixes--some of which we hope to find in the next few days (lets us know if you notice any).

Also, the international version of the HTC Radar, at least on T-Mo in the Netherlands, received a software refresh yesterday too:

  • Firmware - 20103 (old - 10902)
  • Bootloader - 2.1 (old - 1.9)

Thanks, HPDeskjet, for the info

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3 years ago

International HTC Titan getting new software update

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HTC seems keen on keeping their titan of a Titan in tip-top shape--whew that was a mouthful. We're getting word from reader Rajinder, located in Denmark, that their HTC Titan just got a nice firmware/radio/bootloader refresh. It's only been about three weeks since the last update, so kudos to HTC on their diligence here.

  • Firmware Version: 20104 (old: 10902)
  • Radio Software: 03.17  (old: 02.09)
  • Boot Loader-version: 2.1  (old: 1.8)

No word on exact changes just yet, so that's where you come in. Let us know in comments if you received the update, what carrier you're on and country. And if you think you've noticed some changes, you can add that too. (Unfortunately our unlocked Titan is at home, taking a rest--we can only carry so many phones around with us!).

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3 years ago

"Beaming" coming to Windows Phone, Xbox 360 and Windows 8? [Rumor]

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For those of you who were original Zune 30 owners in 2006, you may remember in the first iteration of that device and service had a feature called "Squirting". While hands down the worst name ever given to a function it was ingenious at the time. Basically it allowed you to share music with other Zune players via WiFi, something that was as far as we know not done at the time by anyone else. The Zune would detect other Zunes within 30 feet and allow you to effortlessly send over a song (or photo, podcast). After three days though (or a couple plays) DRM'd music would disappear--Microsoft wasn't inventing illegal file sharing for mobile here, folks. While brilliant, many complained it didn't go far enough (what about video?) and for various reasons, "squirting" was phased out.

Now rumor-starter MS_Nerd has Tweeted that Microsoft is bringing back "squirting", albeit with a new name simply "beaming". What's more, it will reportedly use NFC, WiFi and Bluetooth (depending on the devices) and will work seamlessly between the Xbox 360, Windows 8 and Windows Phone. It's not clear when this would happen e.g. Windows Phone "Tango" (early 2012) or Windows Phone 8 aka "Apollo" (second half 2012) nor what types of media would be allowed to be transferred.

Couple of things. Is this rumor legit? There's no confirmation, but in the video above from Infusion/Microsoft's 'The Future of Retail Banking' video, you can clearly see "beaming" in action between Windows Phone and a TV and then later, a tablet--perhaps this is what MS_Nerd was referring to in the first place? Regardless, it seems fairly obvious that Microsoft has Squirting v2 in mind. In addition, if Microsoft isn't thinking of rolling this out then shame on them because everyone else is doing nearly the same thing with NFC on board (e.g. Android, Nokia N900) and they did sort of pioneer such technology back in 2006.

We'll have to wait till 2012 though to see if any of this happens, but if we were a gambling site, we would put our money on Microsoft bringing this to their '3 screens'.

via: LiveSide

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3 years ago

Funny Faces allows you to embarrass your family for the holidays

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If you haven't tried Funny Faces yet, the augmented reality app from Schulte Software Development, then you really should. The app allows you to use the camera to take pictures of people and then add hats, mustaches, pacifiers, etc. to them in real time. And since the app has a custom facial-recognition algorithm, you can effortlessly make someone look ridiculously silly just by pointing your camera at them.

Now in version 1.4, you can go back and add over-lays to existing photos in addition to the new Santa Clause hat and beard-- seasons greeting! Just ask legendary metal singer Glen Danzig! He loves his fluffy new beard and hat.

Anyways, we love this app as it's pretty hilarious and perfect for those holiday parties. You can even share to Facebook or Twitter for rapid humiliation. The app fetches for $0.99 and has a free trial, give it a go here in the Marketplace.

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3 years ago

Unlocked Nokia Lumia 800 available in Canada, has AT&T 3G+ bands

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For those with an extra $689 CAD ($682 US) to spare, you can pick up the Nokia Lumia 800 unlocked from NCIX. The phone is normally $50 more but there's a special web-only deal till December 14th. For those curious on the bands:

GSM: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz; HSPA/WCDMA: 850/900/1900/2100 MHz.

What makes that cool is even folks here on AT&T can pick up this bad boy and get HSPA+ due to the inclusion of their 1900MHz WCDMA frequency--just something to think about.

The only bad thing about this is the color: black. Sure, black is always awesome but we wouldn't mind picking up this guy in Cyan at all--stand out a little, you know? Still, we'll take what we can so head on over to NCIX to place your order.

Source: NCIX; Thanks, Baljinder, for the tip!

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3 years ago

WPDoodle - Bow before the almighty Titan! Yes, even you 'Droid and Lloyd

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Hey everyone, we're adding a new feature here at WPCentral--WPDoodle. from Jason Harrison, founder of BrowCo.com, whose work you may have seen before in the form of PreDoodles on PreCentral.net and BBDoodles on Crackberry.com (see this week's for a laugh). Look for more Doodles on all of our Mobile Nations sites soon too! Have a great idea for a WPDoodle? Send an email to doodles@mobilenations.com and Jason'll take a gander.

A lot can be said about the HTC TITAN (yes, technically all caps), but most of all, it commands awe. With a 4.7" Super LCD screen, remarkably thin metal body that's cool to the touch and a blazing 1.5 GHz CPU on board, the Titan in our opinion is the stand-out-phone for WP7 right now. It's the one phone that's truly wow-worthy and just as importantly, available nearly world-wide.

The Nokia Lumia 800 is a close second, but with a 1.3MP front-facing camera, gyroscope and even slightly better rear 8MP camera, we think the Titan just edges it out. Plus that massive screen makes this a web-browsing juggernaut.

Because of that, we think Android users (and that Lloyd guy) may act a bit like the man-apes in 2001: A Space Odyssey if they saw the Titan--a modern day Monolith/TMA-0 for unknowing eyes.  Perhaps the Titan too will spurn them on to better, greater things? ;-)

See our review of the AT&T HTC TITAN right here.

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3 years ago

WhatsApp gets updated adds voice notes

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WhatsApp, the cross platform messenger for your Windows Phone, has been updated to version 1.4. Along with the ability to text across platforms (available for Android, Blackberry and the iPhone) WhatsApp also gives you the ability to send pictures, video messages and now voice notes.

While no official change log is available, it is our understanding that text is larger and sending images is now problem free. If you're seeing additional changes with the update, feel free to share them in the comments section.

You can grab WhatsApp here at the Marketplace. Keep in mind WhatsApp is a mango app so you'll need to be running Windows Phone 7.5.

Thanks goes out to Jon B for the tip!

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