3 years ago
Microsoft's marketing chief: It's now up to our OEMs to launch Mango
There's been a lot of speculation on when exactly Windows Phone "Mango" will launch--or even what that means exactly. The reason it is a questions is because there are device upgrades, there are device launches and there's no reason to think the two are tied together. Hence we've seen September 1st, August 25th and the vague "this fall" all thrown around and in fact, they're most likely all true for specific situations.
Microsoft's marketing chief for Scandinavia, Peter Wissinger has taken to Facebook to clarify the "Mango" launch. In short he tells WinMobile.se that it is completely up to the OEMs to decide the timeline for launch of the next-generation of Mango devices. In fact, as has been speculated, Microsoft came out ahead of schedule this time with "Mango' which is why OEMs, who just received the RTM version, may seem a little behind--perhaps they weren't prepared to have it all ready this early (although Fujitsu seems prepared).
Of course in the US, OEMs still have the FCC and carriers to deal with before launching a device, making the situation more complicated. We're expecting a similar style to last years launch: announcement in October, availability (on AT&T, at least) a few weeks later with numerous devices.
Source: Facebook; via WinMobile.se
3 years ago
Russian Windows Phone dev podcast launches
Dobroye utro! Sure we're biased towards English around these parts, sorry about that. But that doesn't mean we can't give some love to our non-English speakers, after all we're pretty sure there's more of you than us. So we're pretty excited to mention that a new podcast in 100% Russian is now available for your pleasure (assuming we have some Russian readers, of course).
The podcast seems to focus on the developers perspective (so, it sounds analogous to the WP Dev Podcast here in the States) and hopefully it'll be a regular thing. Good lucks guys!
Head over to Windows Phone 7 Rocks #1 to give it a listen; Thanks, Alex K, for the heads up
3 years ago
AU Japan evidently launching Fujitsu IS12T on August 25th [Updated]
There's been a lot of talk about when the Fujitsu IS12T is launching exactly in Japan. There was mention of "end of August" and the "After September". And to be clear, we're still not 100% sure. But what we do know is that the carrier, AU, who has the big exclusive deal to sell the phone, is taking reservations now for delivery on August 25th.
Japanese Windows Phone news site NanaPho reports on one AU shop in Nishikasai, Tokyo taking such reservations. Going further, one of our readers, Chris Loguidice, let us know that he too was able to place an order:
"Just reserved my Toshiba IS12T at AU yesterday arrives next week on the 25th. So I guess that's the official drop date for mango."
Indeed, translated from the AU Shop page:
"This title will be released in stores August 25, we accepted from today pre-ordered!"
So either one of two things: come August 25th there will be a lot of thrilled new IS12T owners, or conversely a lot of disappointed ones. We should note that the official site for the phone still lists "after September 2011", so who knows--it's not like we've never experienced Best Buy report a false sale date, amirite?
Update: Tezawaly from NanaPho sent the above shot (and a few others) showing the phone stocking up and ready to sell, so August 25th now seems like a go!
Source: NanaPho, @cloguidice
3 years ago
From webOS to Windows Phone 7 - Welcome to your new home
After yesterday's news that HP is discontinuing all webOS mobile devices, many members of the very passionate and loyal webOS community, including myself, have been shocked into wondering what we are supposed to do next. While I'm not saying that I've already jumped ship to Windows Phone 7 from webOS already (I still love my devices and the community behind them), it's not uncommon to see that many of you are already planning your trip to the store to pick up a new smartphone to replace the soon-to-be-antiquated HP Veer, Pre 2 or even the original Sprint Palm Pre (what we back at PreCentral call the Pre-Minus). Let's get this straight, because I know how loyal you guys are to your platform, switching to a WP7 device is not abandoning the webOS platform - but HP has made it very clear that they're not making phones anymore, so what else are you supposed to do?
I've been using WP7 on my Dell Venue Pro for a little while now, and even though it's not a shiny new HP Pre 3 running webOS 3.0, it does have a whole lot going for it. If I absolutely had to make the decision tomorrow (which I don't and I'm not... yet), it would be very easy for me to make Windows Phone 7, and WPCentral.com, my new home in the smartphone universe. Let me put it to you this way: If you're thinking about switching to another platform from webOS, WP7 is one of the best options, if not the best, out there for you to choose today.
It's easy to say all of that, though without backing it up; but that's why I've come to WPCentral today to help ease the pain and make things a little more comfortable for those of you joining this community. The webOS platform had a whole lot going for it as an operating system built on mobile devices. Synergy, Just Type, Multitasking, Touchstone Charging, Exhibition Mode, non-interrupt notifications system and other great features (just to name a few) made webOS wholly unique and intuitive - but to say that WP7 isn't already pushing forward with many of these concepts (and even jumping ahead in a few) is to be ignorant of the facts.
To be quite frank - WP7 over any other platform is probably the most similar to webOS as being intuitive and market-changing, and even though many of you might choose this platform simply because it isn't iOS, Android of Blackberry, you should also be choosing it simply because it's a great operating system to use.
Here, by popular request, is a guide to help your transition from whatever webOS smartphone you might be using over to a Windows Phone 7 device. Written by someone who has loved webOS since the day it was announced and will stick with it until the day that it is finally put to rest.
3 years ago
geoDefense update fixes save game bug, restores balance to universe
geoDefense, the Xbox Live tower defense game with Geometry Wars-inspired visuals, has been a bit buggy since its release. Chief among those bugs is the dreaded save data bug, which we reported on in June. This bug caused some gamers to lose all of their progress when replaying levels, and nobody likes that.
Thankfully today’s version 1.6 patch fixes the save data bug at last. No longer should anyone fear playing geoDefense and trying for higher scores. We’re glad to see Critical Thought Games continuing to hone its enjoyable strategy title.
If for some reason you want a more traditional tower defense experience than the exceptional Plants vs. Zombies, geoDefense is the place to look. It costs $2.99 and there is a free trial. Get it here (Zune link) on the Marketplace.
3 years ago
UCWeb Browser to begin closed beta testing for Windows Phone 7
File this under: very interesting
For those of you who used Windows Mobile 6.x, you'll remember a neat little Chinese browser called UCWeb. It was similar to Opera where it used servers to compress and reformat websites that were then passed to the phone. The design was pretty sharp, offering an all "black" theme that was great for reading and photos looked great on it. Plus it was free.
Surprisingly, in their help forum, the company has announced plans for a closed beta testing. They're taking applications via the forum, but since it's Chinese you may have a tough time registering and getting a spot. From the Google-translated post:
UC browser Wp7 platform closed beta began recruiting friends
"The UC long-awaited platform for closed beta browser Wp7 recruit friends, are welcome to join closed beta.
The recruitment only accept Windows Phone 7 platform Friends of Friends applications for Friends of Friends in the following format for replies, we will follow all mobile phone technology in the customer service area and the level of activity in the sector assessment, the results we will be a forum SMS notification to you.
Application requirements: Be sure the phone is unlocked, the deployment process on their own Friends of Friends"
This raises all sorts of interesting questions, like will this be allowed in the Marketplace? Will they localize the language for English (they've done it before, obviously)? When can we see it? We'll try to find out more and we'll keep an eye out for this one.
Source: bbc.uc.cn; via @Chassit
3 years ago
Mobile Nations 5: A wedding and a funeral
Mobile Nations 5: A wedding and a funeral Phil, Kevin, Derek, Dan, Georgia, and Rene talk HP dumping webOS hardware, Google picking up Motorola Mobility, RIM's new BlackBerrys reviewed, and what it means for Microsoft and Apple. This is MobileNations!
3 years ago
HTC Omega Windows Phone shows up in gaming stats
The HTC Omega showed up on Elbert Perez's game stats page--there's only one, but there only needs to be one, right? Perez gets his data from the ton of high quality and popular games that he has on the platform. (See the Nokia 800 referenced just a few days ago).
Device information such as make and model are commonly collected and it's turning out to be a great source to know what may be coming next.
So. Omega. That sounds pretty epic and we've seen it referenced just a few weeks ago with a basic 1.5Ghz CPU, 800x480 screen and 16GB of storage.
Source: Occasional Gamer, via @elbertperez
3 years ago
IM+ v1.4 is now live - reminder!
For those who use IM+, you'll be happy to know that v1.4 is now available. The big new features are faster loading/connecting (confirmed) and advanced push settings, including a sweet auto-responder and message forwarder:
- Significantly improved contact list scrolling and overall application performance
- Push-to-Email option allows incoming messages to be forwarded to your email
- Autoreply feature will instantly notify your contacts that your are in Push mode
- ICQ / AIM / AOL / iChat group chats
- ICQ contacts can now be added into your AOL/AIM/iChat contact lists and vice versa
- VKontakte and Yandex IM services are now supported
But, we must also remember that MSN/Live Messenger is also now gone, so you are warned--don't upgrade if you need that! Anyways, besides the loss of Live Messenger, we like the improvements and additions. Grab IM+ here in the Marketplace (if update doesn't show, just back out and head back in to the Marketplace to refresh).
3 years ago
Hyper Defence XT - Preview
Hyper Defence XT is an upcoming gaming title headed to the Windows Phone Marketplace. We were fortunate enough to get a sneak peak at the game and found it to be an entertaining, slightly addictive tower defense game.
The premise is that you are defending Outpost 26 from invading aliens. Hyper Defence has 15 levels of play, 7 fully upgradeable turret defenses, collectable Hyper Energy power boosts, and an unlockable Survival Mode.
Game play is not unlike any other tower defense game in that you have to survive a certain number of waves in each level to advance. As you take out enemy forces, you earn credits to buy or upgrade your defenses.
Defensive placement is key (as it is with any tower defense game) and to purchase a weapon you tap, hold and drag the turret to the desired location. A green halo around the weapon indicates the location is suitable for placement. Weapons fire automatically when the enemy comes into range and to upgrade, simply tap on the weapon to pull up the upgrade menu.
Hyper Defence XT isn't too easy to become boring or too hard to become frustrating. The developer has found a good middle ground with regards to difficulty to keep the game interesting.
Hyper Defence XT is expected in the Marketplace any day now with a free trial and the full version running £.99 (about $1.60 U.S.). We'll update the post with the Marketplace links as soon as they become available. If you like tower defense games, Hyper Defence XT is worth checking out.
3 years ago
HP shutting down webOS device operations
HP made their quarterly fiscal report today and announced that they planned to discontinue operations for webOS devices including their TouchPad and webOS (formerly Palm) phones. Wow.
In the press release, HP did leave the door open stating they will continue to explore options to optimize the value of webOS software going forward. What this means is anyone's guess. As our friends at PreCentral note, HP is discontinuing operations for webOS devices, not the OS itself.
Could we see HP follow suit and license out webOS to, say, HTC? Could HP take advantage of all the headaches/litigation Android is creating and offer manufacturers an alternative? Personally, I just don't see HP giving up on webOS after, only a year ago, spending $1.2 billion to acquire the system. On the other hand, who is interested in licensing an OS that has failed to catch on? Twice.
What does this mean for everyone else? I'm not sure if it will really impact Microsoft, Google, Apple or RIM. While webOS devices have a strong following, they were on a downhill slide when HP acquired Palm and never took off. With Mango just around the corner, Microsoft may be able to attract Pre customers with webOS's future being uncertain.
As a former Palm user (still have my first Palm Pilot) I hope HP finds a way to keep webOS as a viable system. One thing is for certain though, it seems these days the smartphone industry is constantly changing.
You can read HP's full press release on their quarterly report after the break.
Update: The Verge confirms that HP is not killling WebOS as a platform and they are looking for partners and options. In short, they're killing HP's attempt at hardware noting that they need to stop putting under-performing hardware in the market. Still, WebOS's future, even as an OS, obviously remains in dire straits.
3 years ago
Developer Interview: Levi Fussell
Dalton Carl is a Windows Phone fan, an aspiring developer and a WPCentral reader. Dalton had the opportunity to interview Levi Fussell, developer of several Windows Phone apps, and shared the interview with us. We in turn thought we would share with you.
What caught Dalton's attention was Fussell's Windows Phone game Rooftop Rage (link opens Zune). According to Dalton, it was the only game outside the XBox Live titles that made him go "wow". According to Dalton, "It was such an interesting game, I had to know more about the creator".
Follow the break to read Dalton's interview with Levi Fussell.
3 years ago
We're In from Microsoft brings friend finder to Bing, Windows Phone
Update: Sorry folks, appears to be U.S. (and Israel) only for now :-/
We've always wondered whether Microsoft would launch a Google Latitude service--after all, they have Bing, a nice aGPS/WiFi location finder and a solid mobile OS. So it comes as a nice surprise to see them launching "We're In" today:
"We’re In makes organizing get-togethers, carpooling and trying to find people in a crowd a breeze. Any time you want to see where your friends are—We're In can help you. It's simple, invite your friends, and when they join, they'll see your location and you'll see theirs. When the invite expires, so does the shared location – no complicated process to worry about.
We’re In is a great way to save time and frustration when planning your road trip or meeting your friend at the mall – helping you connect with your friend faster."
The best way to describe the service is it's like Latitude combined with Glympse--the former because it allows you to see where your friends are, the latter because these events "expire" meaning you're not tracking people (or being tracked yourself) for eternity. The app allows you to
- Create a get-together invite for a group of friends
- See where your friends are
- Share your location with your friends in real time
- Control your privacy - your location is only shared with the group of invitees, only for a short time slot
Interestingly, you don't use LiveID to sign up but instead your phone number. Microsoft is looking to make this platform agnostic (it's coming to other mobile OSs) and by keeping LiveID out, Microsoft seems to be keeping the entry-barrier low. That's good news if the system is to grow and catch on.
Oh and the code didn't work with our Google Voice number, just FYI. If you want the app, here you go: link to the Marketplace.
Source: Bing Community; Thanks, Michael, for the link!
3 years ago
Samsung leaked roadmap includes one Windows Phone (Updated)
A recently leaked Samsung roadmap is chocked full of Android phones and tablets but it does support the existence of one Windows Phone we've read about.
The i8350 Omnia W isn't new to the rumor mill but the leaked map indicates an October release and gives the phone a 3.7" WVGA (we're still going with AMOLED), 1ghz processor, and running Mango. All of which we've seen in earlier reports along with the phone having 512mb of RAM and a 5mp camera.
The leak gives credence to our earlier thoughts that the i8350 and the Omnia W are one in the same. Now we just have to figure out how the GT-i8700 fits into the picture? We still don't know where the i8350 will land and hopefully that will come to light in the next few weeks.
via: gsmarena; Thanks, JustVisiting, for the tip!
Update: In digging a little further, this appears to be old speculation on Samsung's Fall roadmap which was denied by Samsung a few weeks ago. So for the time being we'll re-file this under "extreme rumor".
It's consistent with other reports but it is still uncertain if the i8530 will see the light of day. In a long shot, it could be an attempt by Samsung to test the waters to see how well such a device would be received. If that's the case, we'd like to see more in their next Windows Phone, such as a Samsung Galaxy S II running Windows Phone Mango!
3 years ago
Dilbert's Scott Adams declares Windows Phone a "winner" against iPhone 3GS, EVO 3D
If you recall, Scott Adams of Dilbert fame was lamenting his iPhone and EVO 3D on Twitter and thus fell in to Brandon Watson's clutches. Watson famously offered Adams a $1,000 donation to his favorite charity if he would take Windows Phone for a spin and didn't like it.
Well, Adams received the phone and has written up a decent little review of it compared to his iPhone 3GS and HTC EVO 3D (Android). We'll just cut to the chase:
"The Windows phone has the best user interface experience, although the onscreen keyboard is problematic just as it is with the other phones I used. The Windows interface is intuitive, simple, and has a liveliness that I find appealing. Voice call quality was good, and battery life seemed good too. I declare it the winner compared to my iPhone 3GS with AT&T and my HTC EVO 3D with Android on the Sprint network."
..."If you want a smartphone that is easy to use, performs well, has a good battery life, and doesn't frustrate you, the Windows phone is the best choice of the three options I tested. All you give up is some hipster credibility and access to lesser-used apps."
Now, having said that, it wasn't all gushing either. Adams did a neat breakdown of major features and gave pass/fail grades to all three devices. He confesses he's not a professional reviewer, nor a gadget geek like we in his write up, which we think is a good thing sometimes. Areas he didn't care for on the AT&T Samsung Focus running Mango:
- On-screen keyboard - yeah, he actually didn't like it. In fairness, he didn't like the iPhone's or EVO's either, so he's being consistent. Fact is, he just doesn't like soft-keyboards and you can't fault a guy too much for that (there's a reason why we like the Quantum, Arrive and Dell Venue Pro around here).
- "Intangible coolness factor" - this is pretty arbitrary but hints at a larger problem for Microsoft, namely they're just not cool. Yeah, we know, kind of a lame thing to judge the phone on, but lets face it, Microsoft has an image problem. It's getting better but they're still no Apple and that matters to consumers.
- Apps - "okay-ish". This has been the Achilles heel so far in reviews and while he notices the lack of some big name apps, he doesn't consider the whole phone a fail because of it.
Overall though, Adams seems impressed with Windows Phone, slamming the EVO on its clunky UI and terrible battery life (no argument there) and the iPhone 3GS gets bad remarks for reception and okay results for UI. So Watson, mission accomplished.
Source: Dilbert.com; Thanks, Paul, for the heads up!
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