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3 years ago

Dell Venue Pro coming to Rogers on March 17th?

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The next Windows Phone 7 device hitting Canada is the Dell Venue Pro that is reportedly arriving through Rogers at the suspected date of March 17th.

As previously mentioned, tipsters have supplied pricing information on the vertical-sliding device at $149.99 with a 3-year contract or $599.99 without a contracted commitment. As our Seth Brodeur pointed out in the article, $149.99 seems fairly expensive for a three year bound contract. Since then, there has been word that the prices could be slightly lower at $449.99 and $99.99 respectively. We will inform you as to when we confirm these new rumours.

Source: MobileSyrup

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3 years ago

WP Device Manager won't allow unlocking [Homebrew]

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We have been following the development of the Windows Phone Device Manager with a watchful eye, and the proposed addition to the software was the inclusion of a new "jailbreaking" tool that would allow unlocking a handset without developer registration. Julien Schapman has now sated this is not going to be included with WP Device Manager.

"Because I was bored getting hundreds of emails from people asking me to send them WP Device Manager so they can continue to use pirated applications, and because there will be a short term solution for homebrews, I decided not to include my jailbreak tool. I respect other developers and I don’t want to be responsible for piracy, I’ve been contacted by Brandon Watson from Microsoft and I wish to be involved in the official homebrew support on Windows Phone."

While I'm aware that the majority of folk will be surprised by the latest announcement (we are too!), one must consider the positives that were included in Julien's post. He mentions that he wishes to be involved in the official homebrew development/support on WP7. I believe Microsoft should have as much of the homebrew community onboard as possible to ensure that their solution will be more than what these developers were cooking up individually.

For now, it looks like we will all be extending our wait for setting Barbie Girl as our ringtones and using a colour wheel to select the OS theme. With NoDo just around the corner (should it actually work on all devices), our attention should be occupied with the features included within the update, not to mention the fantastic selection of Xbox Live titles and apps that are available. 

What do you think of this decision, and do you have high hopes for the homebrew support that Microsoft is promising?

Source: WindowsPhoneHacker

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3 years ago

HTC Mozart gets a new ROM with 'NoDo' built in

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For those of you with HTC Mozarts (ours is being borrowed, ahem), you may want to head over to XDA to grab the latest factory ROM: [ROM]RUU_Mozart_HTC_Europe_1.30.401.01_5.54.09.21_22.33 b.50_RELEASE

This is a full ROM update from HTC themselves and in it, it reportedly contains the latest build of Windows Phone 7, including the much sought after 'NoDo' update with copy/paste and performance enhancements. Of course you may want to watch on the sidelines and let some others go first, but this looks like a double win for Mozart owners. No word on what is changed on the HTC/Baeband end, but we assume there's some minor improvements.

Source: XDA; via: @ChrisWalshie; Thanks, Manos, as well

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3 years ago

Microsoft to pay Nokia $1 billion in deal

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3 years ago

AT&T selling Windows Phone compatible microSD cards? Hmmm..

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Last we checked in with Microsoft at Barcelona, they did not have much to say on the expandable storage card issue with Windows Phone. Remember that fiasco, where AT&T/Samsung were saying you can add memory and Microsoft say you can't, then AT&T reversed themselves? Later, Microsoft promised a list of compatible cards and from our impression and we're not joking, it seems like they actually forgot about the whole issue. (When we spoke with Sandisk, they weren't even aware there was a problem, huzzah).

Now we got word that AT&T is evidently selling (has been selling) 16GB microSD cards that are compatible with the Samsung Focus. Hey, for all we know these might actually work as a large majority of cards do. But we're also pretty confident that these are not "approved" by Samsung or Microsoft and that this is probably just a listing accident (plus, good luck on changing that Surround card!). Heck, we're not even sure how long this has been listed for...but we bet it's been up for awhile.

Anyways, consider this fair warning--nothing has changed on the expandable storage front for Windows Phone.

Source: AT&T; Thanks, Lokitoth, for the heads up

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3 years ago

Windows Phone 7 not helping Microsoft's mobile market share?

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Quartely statistics from ComScore indicate Windows Phone 7 may not be giving Microsoft much of a boost in the mobile market. Comparing Smartphone Subscriber Shares for a three month period ending in October 2010 to the three month period ending in January 2011, Microsoft lost 1.7% of the market.

Comscore reports that 65.8 million people in the U.S. own smartphones, up 8 percent from the last quarter. Android moved to the top of the list at 31.2% of the market and RIM experienced the largest decline (-5.4%) moving them into the second slot. Apple held steady in third place with 24.7% of the market with Palm wrapping up things up with 3.2%.

While Microsoft went from 9.7% of the market to 8%, this decline may reflect, in part, the number of consumers moving from Windows Mobile to another OS prior to the release of Windows Phone 7.  Sprint and Verizon customers weren't involved in the initial launch of Windows Phone 7 and may have opted for another smartphone to tide them over.

Regardless, while Windows Phone 7 wasn't intended to be a silver bullet, the decline doesn't help build momentum with the new OS. It will be more telling to see how these numbers compare to the three month period ending in March 2011 after WP7 gets the NoDo update as well as Sprint and Verizon joins the fold.

Source: Comscore Via: ZDNet

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3 years ago

Microsoft and Rovio team up for Bing/Angry Birds tie-in

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According to Bing's YouTube channel, "Bing is now the official decision engine of Angry Birds."  The two have teamed up with a series of videos to promote the partnership, which has resulted in Bing links between levels of the game itself.  If you need tips on beating a level you can touch the button in-game and be whisked away to Bing results for that query.  The first two videos of the scheming pigs are available now on YouTube, with two more on the way.

The recent team-up comes in the wake of the announcement that Angry Birds is on its way to both Windows Phone 7 and XBox Live.  It also points to something much bigger, perhaps a multi-game deal between Rovio and Microsoft?

Source: Bing; Via TheUnwired

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3 years ago

Sony Ericsson Windows Phone is a canceled prototype

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Just as we thought those leaked pics showing off a Sony Ericsson device running Windows Phone 7 were of a canceled prototype, at least according to Eldar Murtazin of Mobile-Review. In a tweet, he reveals that yes, that quirky phone with the super old build of WP7 was back in the days when Sony was a launch partner but alas, something made them back out from the deal.

Kind of a real shame too, since Sony doesn't have that much cred with Windows Mobile/Phone users anymore, yet this device actually wowed quite a few of us. Perhaps they'll have a change of heard and we'll see this device some day.

Source: Twitter; via Pocketnow

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3 years ago

HTC 7 Trophy up in the stratosphere, literally

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The University of Southampton sure has some ideas of how to have fun with their HTC 7 Trophy...namely sending it to the upper atmosphere (18,237 meters/59,832 feet). The project is part of the University's ASTRA (Atmospheric Science Through Robotic Aircraft) program and is meant to investigate "...new technologies for making low cost observations of the physical parameters of the atmosphere."

In this case, they teamed up with Microsoft to use the Trophy, write software for the phone meant to track the balloon and predict where it was going to land. From the Guardian article:

In Flight Mode, the app installed on the handset was able to record and transmit GPS and location data part of the way up and down – while within range of mobile networks – while in Hunter Mode on the team's own handsets, it plotted the latest data and predicted a landing site on a Bing map.

So why a Windows Phone? Partly because no one wanted to program in objective C (what the iPhone uses) and also because mobile phones today, with their small size yet onboard GPS, 1GHz processor and excellent build quality just make great mini-computers. All you need to do is write the app, have the software/hardware back-end (Microsoft Azure, in this case) and a signal. Like others, they hope Microsoft extends the Bluetooth profiles so they can have the phone "talk to" some of their other equipment and that compass API might be useful too. Friday's flight was just a test run and the whole system reportedly did very well. Either way, it sounds like a cool project and it would probably make a good ad for HTC.

Source: ASTRA Launch Diary; via Guardian.co.uk

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3 years ago

Homebrew Skype client for WP7 one-step closer to the real thing

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While Skype is still mum on the whole official support thing, the homebrew scene is still alive and kicking on filling in any gaps. We reported awhile ago about a small project to bring Skype to Windows Phone and it is progressing rather nicely, considering it's being done by only one developer ('Jefis').

Version v0.8 is rather far from functional but what you see above is this: a side-loaded Windows Phone application called 'Skyper' that connects via proxy to your Skype client on your PC. It is then able to pull down your contact information to display. Right now you can't act on any of the information, or rather the messaging part is not complete. Still, it's an impressive first step in the right direction, but a little technical on setting it up.

The real question though is this: with rumored socket support and confirmed multi-tasking ('Mango"), we think there's a high chance Skype may come to market on Windows Phone this year, but will Skyper beat it to the punch? We'll keep track of both sides.

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3 years ago

Flickr goes to v1.3 and fixes 'black screen' bug

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Looks like the Flickr team is on top of the biggest issue with the official client: a nice black screen upon launch. While it doesn't happen every time, it's enough that we've heard quite a few complaints from users about it. In v1.3, we also see a few other bug fixes/additions which are welcomed:

  • Fix problem with blank screen during startup phase for some users
  • Fix for application error when sharing from media hub with a large number of photos
  • Background photos on home panorama now change from time to time

Let us know in comments now if this app is up to standards. We already think of it as one of the best to represent WP7, but it's even better without that glaring aforementioned issue, no? And considering we just got v1.2 last week, it looks like Flickr is actively engaged with this app. Grab it here in the Marketplace.

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3 years ago

Word Search – Review

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Word Search – Review

Remember the word search puzzles that are in the newspaper? You can even find books dedicated to the hidden word puzzles. Word Search for Windows Phone 7 brings the same entertaining puzzles to your Windows Phone.

The game layout is simple. You choose between three difficulties (Easy, Medium, and Hard) then select your word topic. Topics range from Animals to World Countries and if your feeling adventurous, just swipe at the topic wheel and go with whatever appears after things stop spinning.

Once the puzzle is generated (by tapping Start) a list of the hidden words is displayed at the bottom of the screen with a field of assorted letters filling the remainder of the screen. The harder the skill level, the larger the letter fields.

For more on Word Search follow the break.

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3 years ago

Chess by Post – Review

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Chess by Post – Review

Chess by Post is a community chess game for your Windows Phone that follows in the same spirit of other popular games such as AlphaJax and Spellit. Instead of bringing a community oriented game of scrabble to Windows Phone 7, Chess by Post offers you a challenging game of chess.

There are two versions of Chess by Post, a paid and free version. The free version is ad supported and contains a small ad banner that appears at the bottom of the screen. Registration is required and free to join the chess community and find opponents to compete against.

To read more on Chess by Post, move on past the break.

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3 years ago

Cell – Review

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Cell – Review

Cell may very well be the only Windows Phone 7 game that has a single cell organism as the main character. The developers, 2.0 Studios, has created a game that is challenging with graphics that are a little on the psychedelic side.

Cell has three game modes that have fifteen levels each for a total of forty-five gaming challenges. With each game mode, you try to absorb other single cells to work your way towards dominating the field. Simply navigating your cell around the game screen can be challenging and there are other dangers present to keep things interesting.

To read more on Cell, drift on past the break.

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