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3 years ago

Google Mobile gives their search page a makeover for Windows Phone

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We may occasionally riff on Google around here due to their Android OS, but there's no doubt many use their search services. And while they have not been the most friendly to our OS, it's still news when they do make something a bit more Windows Phone friendly.

So at least according to their Facebook page, the new Google search page has been reformatted for Windows Phone 7.5, which we take to mean has HTML5 elements on board. While not earth shattering, it does seem a lot nicer (see our screen shot to the right).

Notice anything else? Let us know in comments. Thanks, David W., for the tip!

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3 years ago

Windows Phone unlocker ChevronWP7 Labs is now live

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We last reported on ChevronWP7 last month where the team announced the release of the service was to be within a few weeks. Fast forward three weeks and the Chevron Labs page has been updated with a login via Live ID button. The site is going live as we speak, so if you have any errors logging in, just give it some time as they finish updating the site to full-release mode.

The ChevronWP7 Labs will enable users to unlock their handset(s) for a fraction of the cost for the official developer membership. It will allow Windows Phone owners to have fun with homebrew apps without breaking warranty on the device and being hunted down by Microsoft. The process is fairly straightforward:

  • You'll need a Windows Live ID (it can be different from your Windows Phone Live ID)
  • Purchase an "unlock token". Cost is $9.00 via PayPal and is good for infinite unlocks per single phone.
  • Download and install an unlocking too, which is similar to the official AppHub registration one
  • Your phone will be placed in a queue to be unlocked and that's it!

So by show of comments, how many of you are going to be unlocking? If you do, don't forget to take a look at some of our past Homebrew coverage to get started.

Update: The tools have been temporarily pulled till two issues can be resolved.

Source: Chevron Labs, thanks H3ALY for the tip!

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3 years ago

Nokia and Microsoft at Gamex with Lumia Windows Phones

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Gamex, a video game event being held in Sweden, is running from November 3rd to the 6th this week where Microsoft and Nokia will be present with Windows Phones. This should come as no surprise with Microsoft's three screen dream, which they are so determined to achieve. The two companies will be showing off the Lumia 710 and 800 handsets with presumably a number of Xbox Live titles being demoed. We need more Angry Birds!

You can check our hands on videos of the Lumia 710 and 800, as well as our coverage from Nokia World '11, where these handsets were announced. According to the report at WinMobile.se, the Lumia handsets will be launched in Sweden in 2012 with price tags of the 800 at 4500kr (£425/$680) and the 710 at 3000kr (£285/$450).

Source: WinMobile.se  Thanks to Hussein for the tip!

 

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3 years ago

Vodafone UK taking pre-orders on Nokia Lumia 800

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We previously covered the deal where Vodafone is going to be offering £60 worth of vouchers to the first 10,000 customers to order the Nokia Lumia 800, but they weren't taking pre-orders yet. We can now confirm today that Vodafone UK has opened the doors and the Lumia 800 can now be pre-ordered. It's great to see the UK carriers taking the Nokia handset and showing it off with pride along with Android and the iPhone. Should you be one of the lucky ones to take advantage of this offer, you will receive a £10 voucher for six months.

Source: Vodafone

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3 years ago

World Weather - Review

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World Weather - Review

We touched briefly touched on the Windows Phone weather app, World Weather, earlier this year. It's a handy, basic weather app that covers locations world wide. World Weather was recently updated to version 2.5 adding mango features such as fast resume and multiple live tile support. The app also received a major facelift in design and added new features beyond what Mango has brought to the table.

To see if the changes to World Weather helped or hurt, slide on past the break.

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3 years ago

Rainbow Rapture - App Spotlight

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Looking for a unique game for your Windows Phone? Rainbow Rapture should be unique enough for most and turns out to be a fun game.

The story line goes that the our rainbow character is unhappy with humanity and has decided to wipe everyone out. The object of the game is to consume as many humans and travel as far as you can. You control the flight of the rainbow by touching the screen to have the rainbow dive and release the touch to have it soar. You use hills and valleys to give the rainbow a little speed which results in more hang time.

You do have an energy meter to the left of the main screen that needs to be replenished by maintaining a healthy diet of people, objects and air time. Once the energy meter goes out, so does your rainbow.

Rainbow Rapture has an online leaderboard so you can compare your carnage and travel distance to others. At first, you'll feel a little uncoordinated in controlling the rainbow but once you get the timing down, the game is really fun.

Rainbow Rapture is a free, ad-supported game that you can download here at the Windows Phone Marketplace.

Thanks goes out to @SassyBob for the suggestion.

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3 years ago

T-Mobile HTC Radar 4G - 1st Impressions [Video]

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T-Mobile released the HTC Radar just a few days ago and we've gotten our grubby little hands on a review unit. First impressions? This Windows Phone is nice.

The HTC Radar is deceptively large with its rounded edges and feels really good in the hand. If I had to compare the Radar's feel to another Windows Phone it would be closest to the Focus but with a smoother and lighter feel to it. The 3.8" WVGA screen is nice in both appearance and responsiveness.

Not sure if many will like the small storage capacity (with preloaded stuff only 6.12GB free) and the white/silver color pattern does take some getting used to. Personally and at no fault of the Radar, I don't like the color pattern. I would much rather have seen this phone in gun metal, black or even light gray.

Color preference asides, the HTC Radar makes a very nice impression. The new Windows Phone feels good in the hand, is solidly built, and zips along rather nicely.  We've got the review unit for a few days, will take it out for a test drive and get a full review up shortly. If there's anything in particular you would like us to take note of, feel free to let us know in the comments. If it's possible, we'll add it to the review.

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3 years ago

Make $100 by buying T-Mo Radar?

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Make $100 by buying T-Mo Radar?

What could be better than a free WP7 phone?  How about making $100 on the deal?!  T-Mobile is running a promo on their WMDeals site where you can pick up a 4G HTC Radar for free (after rebate) with a 2-year agreement.  The phone comes with free 2-day shipping and no activation fee.

While this is reason enough to grab one, we are catching word that if you go through their trade-in page and enter the promo code "MSMango" you will receive a guaranteed $100 for any phone that you trade in, even something as simple as an old flip phone, as long as it is in working condition.  According to reports, the $100 comes in the form of a check that is mailed out after the phone is received. 

If you are looking to upgrade, or get into the WP7 game, the HTC Radar is a solid phone, especially for this price.  We have not confirmed any of this, so by all means, let us know if it works.

Source: T-Mobile; Via: TMoNews (Thanks for the tip, Jon!)

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3 years ago

Bing Mobile shows what Hybrids are really capable of

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Hang on to your pants WP fans, because an HTML 5 version of Bing Mobile is right around the corner, and it's bringing some neat new functionality along with it. While the Bing team is currently only making the update available to iOS and Android devices (WP7 is, strangely, waiting for a future update), the latest news coming from the Bing blog does show one more thing that we can look forward to in the future for Windows phones.

HTML 5 is not just a new bit of code to provide the same search engine to mobile devices. By going with the latest standards in mobile development, the Bing design team is working to create one universal Bing experience across all devices. This new version will allow Microsoft to make future updates automatically without asking the user to download new versions of the app, and will significantly enhance their experience as well. Rather than downloading separate Bing-powered applications developed with proprietary code for individual platforms, each device will provide users with a Bing that can hook into functions and features on the device just like a native application would (such as voice input or camera support).

Yes, it is true that the new app will only be released on Android and iOS devices first and not WP7 devices until later (doesn't make too much sense to us either), but it's good to see Microsoft deliver a unified experience for their products to all applicable devices, and not just their own. What's more is that this new app, coupled with HTML 5, won't be like a native application or a mobile website - it will be a hybrid of the two. And we all know that hybrids are better at everything.

Hit the break to watch a video explanation on what the Bing design team plans to do with their mobile service in the future.

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3 years ago

Nokia Lumia 800 tops the sales charts in France

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Even before their marketing team has had a chance to start working in the country, the Nokia Lumia 800 is already topping sales charts in Phonehouse.Fr in France. As you can see from the image above, the brand new Nokia WP7 device is trouncing on Android and iOS devices alike, making it the first WP7 device to do so well in the country since... ever.

It's a great sign to the potential future of the relationship between WP7 and Nokia, and shows how a good name, great design and good timing can go a long way towards the success of a device. Now we wait to see how well it performs once that marketing push starts to happen in the country; from the looks of things in the early stages of the race, the Lumia 800 should do quite splendidly.

Source: Windows Phone Blog France; Thanks for the tip, Stephane!

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3 years ago

What's in a name? Nokia Lumia explained.

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What's in a name? Nokia Lumia explained.

Ever wonder how companies come up with the names of their products? With a name like "Lumia" there is generally a meaning behind it to try and build good rapport with potential consumers. As it turns out, Nokia went through a nice long process in finding the name of their first Windows Phone 7 device. When you're a worldwide leader in mobile devices, you can't just pick a word that sounds good in your own language - you need something that will stick with the people no matter where they are from.

There are certain criteria that a name must first fit in order to make it through early stages of the name-selection phase. What started off as a list of over 200 possible names for the new Nokia phone, the company efficiently whittled the list down to one, but not before comparing each name to over 300,000 other tech brands and consulting with 84 different language experts. 

The name Lumia had some of its own difficulties to triumph over. While in many Spanish-speaking countries the people think of it as meaning "light", there are some old-timers who might remember that the word was once a slang-term for "prostitute". After taking surveys and doing research, Nokia found that roughly 60% of Spanish-speakers thought the name "Lumia" was a positive one for a piece of mobile technology, thus easing worries that there could be a negative vibe towards the brand over time.

In other countries Lumia has a different meaning; in Finland it means "snow", which is handy since the device is being released this winter. All fine words for a brand that Nokia wants people to talk about. Of course, the ultimate catch is in the way the word sounds - Lumia is distinctly similar to the name "Nokia", and repition is always a great thing to have when you want a brand name to stick. Nokia is not new to researching a name before putting it on shelves - "Asha", a brand for devices sold in emerging markets, means "hope" in Hindi (a language of India).

So there you have it. Whether Lumia means "snow", "light", "hope" or maybe something else in another language, Nokia has definitely done their homework before picking this name. Let's just hope they've done homework in other areas, too, and that this brand new device is the success that Nokia and WP7 need to get some attention in this very competitive mobile world.

Source: Mon Windows Phone

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3 years ago

Microsoft teases something big in NYC next Monday for Windows Phone

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Next Monday is a big day. First off, there's a mini-press event which we'll be going to, meeting with Microsoft's Andy Lees and Joe Belfiore. Segueing into that is this publicity stunt that Microsoft is evidently doing but not revealing too much about just yet:

"If you live in or around New York City, you might want to find an excuse to wander past Herald Square sometime during the day next Monday—noon would be an especially good time—for a fun surprise we’re putting together. All I can say is we’re bringing Windows Phone to life in a big, big, way. Curious? Stay tuned…."

We think we actually know from an insider what (some) of it involves: If you're familiar with Herald Square, there's a certain historically relevant area that is known for, ahem, displays nearby. Hint, hint...

Well anyways, we'll be there all day covering the event, so don't worry--you'll get some photos and video if needed. And don't forget that night is the Windows Phone party where you can get some drinks, food, see a band and play with some new Winodws Phone hardware. We'll see you there as well.

Source: Windows Phone Blog

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3 years ago

AT&T Focus S and Flash to have Internet Sharing

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It appears that both the AT&T Samsung Focus S and Flash will be capable of Internet Sharing. Or at least that's what AT&T's Support Websites are indicating.

Support sites for both the Focus S and Flash contain instructions on how to turn on your personal hotspot with these new Windows Phones. Both instructions do note that there is a prerequisite to have a compatible rate plan. We're not sure if that means you have to belly up for a DataConnect plan or if the DataPro 4GB plan will do the trick.  Personally, I'm crossing my fingers that the old unlimited plans will work.

You can find the tethering information for the Focus S here and for the Flash here at AT&T Support.

Thanks goes out to Ryan for the tip!

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3 years ago

Nokia Lumia 800 Review

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Nokia Lumia 800 Review

The Nokia Lumia 800 is the final result of hard work and active development in the time that was available since they announced the partnership with Microsoft earlier this year. Nokia has stated that 2012 will be the year to look out for innovative hardware, powerful handsets (with possibly dual-core chips) and much more. The Lumia family also includes the 710, a more affordable option.

The Lumia 800 is a solid phone with a unibody and a single piece of injection-moulded polycarbonate. The Gorilla toughened glass appears to "fold" into the chasis to provide the design a smooth surface. The screen is a ClearBlack AMOLED display, which ensures there's enough attention focused on what's being projected. The technology used in construction allows the Lumia 800 to be used in sun light. Being powered by a 1.4Ghz chip and fuelled by a 1450mAh battery, the Nokia Lumia 800 is a perfect handset for those who are arriving to the platform or looking to upgrade. Head on past the break for the run through.

Pros: 
Solid hardware Good camera Slick screen unibody design
Cons: 
No FF camera Buttons feel cheap Capacitive keys are too close to screen
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3 years ago

The Prepaid App Card program

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The Prepaid App Card program

Thinking of buying a Windows Phone but not too sure when weighing pros and cons with competitor platforms? Will a free $25 prepaid app card sway your mind? That's correct, we have come across a prepaid app card program from Microsoft that will see customers who purchase a Windows Phone receive a prepaid card to kick-start their app collection for free. 

The offer will be started on November 18th. If you have purchased a handset between November 2nd and December 31st then you'll be eligible for the card. To redeem, you'll need a copy of the receipt and proof of purchase on the phone box. This is U.S. only.

Source: App Prepaid Card Program, thanks @burnethanol and @schweetzeke for the tip!

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