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3 years ago

Microsoft discovers privacy bugs, fix on the way

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Microsoft is reporting that they have discovered unintended behavior with its Windows Phone location services. Following a Federal Lawsuit that claims Microsoft was doing such, Microsoft said they'd look into the claims and sure enough, they found a bug.

In a statement released earlier on Wednesday, Microsoft revealed,

"We have identified an unintended behavior in the Windows Phone 7 software that results in information about nearby Wi-Fi access points and cell towers being periodically sent to Microsoft when using the Camera application, and, for phones that are configured for US-English, when using the phone’s voice command features (such as “Find Pizza”). For the Camera, the software bug results in the behavior even where you have disabled geo-tagging photos in the Camera application."

Oops.

Microsoft did state that the recent Mango Update eliminates the unintended behavior (lawyer talk for "we didn't know it was there") by the camera application and voice command feature. However, the bugs are still present when using the "Me" feature in the Peoples Hub. Wifi access points and cell tower information is sent to the Windows Phone location service each time a user accesses "Me".

Microsoft is already working on an update to fix the "Me" bug after which, information about nearby Wifi access points and cell towers will be sent only if you agree to allow the "check in" feature of "Me". There was no time frame on this update but I suspect it will be sooner than later.

In the meantime, Microsoft is reminding Windows Phone customers that you can prevent access to location information by applications and the collection of location information by going to Settings>Location and turning this feature off.

While it's never good for any operating system to have such bugs, you've gotta give kudos to Microsoft for moving quickly to identify the problem and working to fix things without delay. You can read more about this disclosure and Microsoft's Privacy Policy here at Microsoft.com.

For more intelligent discussion on the matter, take a look at Rafael Rivera's take on it here: "Dissecting Case 01438 Exhibit B, Part 4"

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3 years ago

Samsung and T-Mobile rolling out Mango for Omnia 7?

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We're getting word from one of our readers that T-Mobile UK is at least rolling out Mango for the Omnia 7. Owners of the Omnia 7 may recall the double/triple asteriks in the international 'Where's my Update' page that plainly stated "Except Samsung Omnia 7 models".

Now, Martrin R. has let us know that he received the notification and successfully updated his Omnia 7 to the final Mango build. We should note that he was on the unofficial developer beta, meaning this could be like the HD7s situation--people on the dev beta can get the update, but folks on NoDo or earlier, not so much.

But it looks like at least some users won't have to try the force-update trick, which at least in this case, is only partially successful for some (see forums). Let us know if you're having any luck with the Omnia 7 in comments.

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3 years ago

From the WPCentral Forums...reminder!

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From the WPCentral Forums...reminder!

Just a quick reminder for all of you folks out there with Mango on their phones, who need help getting Mango on their phones or just want to share in the awesomeness that is Mango: head into our forums, which are rocking with enlightening discussion this very minute on all of these topics.

Have a question about your specific phone? Found a cool app? Need wallpaper? Have a question about Zune services? It's all covered here, so hop in, browse and join the conversation in one of the largest Windows Phone communities around. Remember, you're what makes this place the best, not us!

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3 years ago

Video tour of the Samsung Omnia W

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Video tour of the Samsung Omnia W

While not exactly the creme of the crop for Generation 2 Windows Phones, the Samsung Omnia W (see announcement) isn't half bad either. In the above video, we get to see it manhandled in an ultra close fashion, as well as focus a little too much on the video recorder (seriously, it's not that amazing folks).

While featuring a 5MP camera, 1.4GHz CPU and a 3.7" Super AMOLED screen makes this a nice middle of the road device for new customers, we're sure many of you might pass on this for HTC's offerings or perhaps the Focus S, if that ever makes it to Europe.

Thanks, Andrew M., for the tip

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3 years ago

Confirmed: AT&T getting visual voice-mail for Windows Phone

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For many who updated to Mango in the last day, especially if you were on AT&T, you may have noticed the lack of visual voice-mail. We covered how this was a carrier decision--or rather a technical hurdle they had to overcome in order to get it to work.

While AT&T did not launch Mango with visual voice-mail, the door is certainly open for them and others to enable it at some point. Indeed, that seems to be the case with AT&T who in response to a Tweet asking when will they enable VVM, responded:

"We're working to offer that as soon as we can, and will share more info here when we have it!"

While that still won't satisfy everyone, you have to be just a little happier knowing that AT&T does plan to offer VVM for our phones in the near future.

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3 years ago

Windows Phone App Review: WPRemote for Roku

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Here’s something I’ve been wishing Windows Phone would get for quite a while: a Roku remote control app. It’s called WPRemote for Roku and it comes from indie developer Localyf. (Note that this app was previously called ROKUbox before the Roku company asked Localyf to change its name.)

“What’s a Roku?” you might wonder. That’s what I love about you, dear reader – your inquisitive nature.

Had past the break for our full review.

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3 years ago

WPCentral Tutorial - Custom Ringtones with Mango

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WPCentral Tutorial - Custom Ringtones with Mango

One of the many welcomed features of Windows Phone 7.5, more affectionately known as Mango, is the ability to use custom ringtones. But how do you get the ringtone to the phone?

First, there are few limitations. The ringtone file must be in MP3 or WMA format, less then 40 seconds in length, less than 1mb in size and not protected with digital rights management (DRM).

There are a few ringtone apps reaching the Marketplace and we'll cover a few of them in the coming days. Most appear to be collections of ringtones that you can save to your Windows Phone but they don't allow you to create ringtones. That you can do on your own and to find out how, hit the jump.

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3 years ago

LG Jil Sander E906 with new press photos

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LG Jil Sander E906 with new press photos

We've previously looked at the LG E906 that passed through WiFi Interoperbilitly certification earlier this year and reported that it was running Mango and under the design hat of Jil Sander, a German design house. Now PocketNow have come across a specification sheet that confirms the handset is almost identical to the Optimus 7.

3.8-inch WVGA display is present and a 5-megapixel camera capable of shooting 720p. The handset is actually slightly larger than the Optimus 7, but is 15 grams lighter in weight. Still no word on what's going to be present with exclusive content etc. but we could speculate that there will be a few fashion apps. As for frequencies, the E906 will be capable of HSDPA 7.2 on the 900, 1900, and 2100MHz band.

Personally, I wouldn't buy the device. That Windows button is horrible.

Source: PocketNow

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3 years ago

MS launches Windows Phone feedback page

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MS launches Windows Phone feedback page

Microsoft has launched a website where Windows Phone users can express their thoughts about the mobile OS and offer suggestions on how to improve it.  Once an idea is posted, others can vote on them, presumably to direct Microsoft on what to work on next.  You can filter the list by what's new, hot, accepted, completed and most liked.  Completed suggestions even get responses from Microsoft explaining what actions have been taken.

What's particularly cool about the site's setup is that each member is given 10, and only 10, votes that they can distribute among the suggestions on the site.  You are free to change your votes around by moving them from one idea to the next, and your vote will be returned to you if the idea you vote on gets completed by Microsoft or deleted.

In order to vote, you must either create a login using your email address, or sign in using joined logins, like FaceBook, Gmail, Twitter, etc. (there are a lot of them).  Click on the source link to get started.

Source: Microsoft (Thanks for the tip, ShipWreck!)

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3 years ago

Puzzle Quest 2, Brain Challenge, and Gamechest: Logic Games join the sale party

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Yesterday we reported that Full House Poker is the Xbox Live Deal of the Week. It still is, but we’ve learned something unusual. Something magical… There are four Xbox Live games on sale this week instead of one. Madness! Joining Full House Poker (on sale for $1.99) are Puzzle Quest 2, Brain Challenge, and Gamechest: Logic Games. These are weekly sales, not price drops.

Puzzle Quest 2 from Namco Bandai is on sale for $4.99, down from $6.99. Like Castlevania Puzzle, PQ2 is a puzzle role-playing game. It’s got beautiful art, multiple playable characters, and a lengthy quest, plus a few tough (due to their luck-based nature) Achievements. If you like Bejeweled and RPGs, you really can’t do any better. We’ll have a full review soon (long game!).

Brain Challenge from Gameloft is on sale for $2.99, down from a ludicrous $4.99. BC is a collection of brain-teasing minigames that you should be wary of. It sports an amazing five Broken Achievements, and has yet to receive an update. Seriously, Brain Challenge is buggier than an entomologist's laboratory.

Gamechest: Logic Games is on sale for $1.99, down from $2.99. It includes three different games: chess, sudoku, and Minesweeper. Sure, free versions of Minesweeper and Sudoku are already available on Xbox Live, but what about chess? Our review praises the chess game’s multiplayer feature, which allows a Windows Phone player to compete against a PC player asynchronously. Certainly a good idea, though the implementation is so rudimentary as to not be worth the effort.

Gamechest: Logic Games also boasts a leveling system in which players earn experience and level up by winning games. But to reach the max levels in each game and earn all of the Achievements requires a horrendous amount of grinding. Never have I been more bored with a game than when toiling after Gamechest: Logic Game’s Achievements, and that’s not hyperbole.

At any rate, it’s great to see more than one Xbox Live game on sale this week. Let’s hope Microsoft makes a habit of this! You can find Full House Poker here (Zune link), Puzzle Quest 2 here, Brain Challenge here, and Gamechest: Logic Games here on the Marketplace.

Thanks for the tip, DarkSynopsis!

UPDATE: Brain Challenge is part of the sale too.

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3 years ago

Windows Phone and home automation

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Windows Phone and home automation

Julien Schapmen of Touch Xperience has achieved something pretty cool with Windows Phone - home automation. Ever fancied controlling your TV, sound system and lights (to name but a few) from the comfort of your sofa and with a single device? Check out the above video walkthrough of a Windows Phone performing a number of tasks.

Via: WPSauce

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3 years ago

HTC Radar and Samsung Omnia W get pictured

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3 years ago

Burn the Rope now live in the Marketplace [Xbox LIVE]

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For those who like action-type puzzle games, then you'll be glad to know that 'Burn the Rope!' with its catch diddy is now available for $2.99:

"Burn the Rope is a challenging game where you try to burn as much rope as you can in each level. There’s a catch! The fire only burns upwards, leaving you to rotate the level to keep your flame alive!

As you progress through the levels, you’ll encounter bugs crawling along the rope. Different bugs have different reactions to the flame. For example, the ant changes the color of the flame so you can burn different colored ropes, and the spider shoots out a web bridge so you can access parts of the level that you could not before.

Burn the Rope is incredibly fun and addictive. You will actually feel like you’re burning a rope, yet there’s no need for a fire extinguisher!"

The game looks decent enough and that's not a half bad price either. Interestingly, the game is NoDo compatible, so no Mango-goodness here for what we imagine is now the majority of you. Head on here to the Marketplace to give it a trial run. And don't forget, 'Full House Poker' is the Deal of the Week!

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3 years ago

Microsoft signs Android licensing deal with Samsung

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Microsoft has just signed a massive patent deal with Samsung on every Android tablet and smartphone the manufacturer sells, which will earn the software giant royalty revenue per device in addition to being a cross-licensing deal. Microsoft had previously signed a similar deal with HTC and Acer and Viewsonic, but this is said to be the largest Android patent deal to-date.

Microsoft general counsel Brad Smith and top IP lawyer Horacio Gutierrez said in a blog post:

"Together with the license agreement signed last year with HTC, today’s agreement with Samsung means that the top two Android handset manufacturers in the United States have now acquired licenses to Microsoft’s patent portfolio. These two companies together accounted for more than half of all Android phones sold in the U.S. over the past year."

While the deal focuses mainly on patents and Android, it also calls for Samsung to continue to work with Microsoft on Windows Phone, which is a massive bonus for Microsoft (and customers). Something that will hopefully combat what the manufacturer was rumoured to be doing in 2013 - leaving Windows Phone. Unfortunately the exact amount that Microsoft will earn per-device sold wasn't disclosed, could be $15?.

This just goes to show how companies can work together to overcome lawsuits galore.

Source: Microsoft, via: Android Central

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3 years ago

Kinect integration demoed with HTC Radar

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Kinect integration demoed with HTC Radar

In the video above we can see some Kinect and Windows Phone integration being demoed at the HTC Radar launch in Hong Kong. The Windows Phone user looks to be emulating waves through use of the accelerometer while the player has to maintain balance on the raft. We've been seeing more videos cropping up covering the integration between platforms under Microsoft's belt. It's only a matter of time before we see true connectivity released to the mass.

Via: WMPU

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