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3 years ago

Torchbear gets updated, torches continue to circle globe

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Torchbear is a social networking styled game for your Windows Phone where you see how far you can pass a torch between other Torchbear members. A torch can be a thought, idea or image and collectively, Torchbear torches have traveled approximately 86,750 miles. Working off the success of the application and feedback from users, Torchbear has been updated to version 1.2.

New features include:

  • Torch points have been removed, torches are now ranked by Number of Followers the torch has
  • Players now receive points for distance traveled whilst carrying a torch (1 point per 50 miles) and unique torch exchanges (15 points if exchange is less than 1 mile, 10 points if exchange is less than 5 miles,5 points if exchange is less than 10 miles)
  • New Leaderboards that now include leaderboards for both torches and players, each category is split up into Worlds Top 20, Nearby Top 20, and the Top 20 Players/Torches you are following
  • Torch Profile - ability to save any torch profile pic to your phone and the Ability to rotate torch profiles pics
  • Torch Details - You can now update torch details after you have created a torch
  • Torch Exchanges - we now allow players to make multiple exchanges with torches they have previously held
  • The "Around Me" list has been improved, we now visually show which torches you have already held, and which torches currently have pending torch requests either by you or by someone else
  • Photos - all photos including both torch & player profile pics can now be saved to the phone

Torchbear is a free application for your Windows Phone and you can find it here at the Windows Phone Marketplace. You can also check in on torches and view a world map of Torchbear activity at the Torchbear website.

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3 years ago

Nokia Lumia 800 goes up for pre-order in Switzerland for CHF 599

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Live in Switzerland? Want to order the Nokia Lumia 800? Then good news as Digitec.ch has it up for pre-order for CHF 599. The only bad news is it's not shipping till mid-January. However, all three colors--black, cyan, and magenta--are available for ordering at least. Other than than, not much else to say outside of get your order on!

Source: Digitec.ch; Thanks, Eric S., for the tip!

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3 years ago

Fuse news reader finally goes Mango with v1.3

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For those of you using Fuse, the great looking news reader from Rudy Huyn, you'll want to check our v1.3 as it just went live in the Marketplace. The new update finally brings those much needed Mango features, joining our growing list. New additions include:

  • Fast app resume
  • Multiple live tiles (you can pin feeds or groups)
  • Background agent to update live tiles
  • A choice between 5 types of live tiles (seen below)

All in all it's performing great for us and looks to be a solid update to an already fantastic app. Pick it up here in the Marketplace for $1.29 with a free trial. And check our our early sneak peek video of Fuse in action.

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3 years ago

Nokia tripled normal marketing expenditures with Lumia Windows Phones

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In a new article with Business Week, Nokia CEO Stephen Elop talks of US plans next year as well as Nokia strategy. While nothing concrete is stated, multiple US carriers were noted (and we know T-Mobile is one of those). In addition, it was revealed that Nokia has tripled normal marketing expenditures for the Lumia 710 and 800 when compared to previous launches by the Finnish company--both a sign of desperation but also perhaps confidence in the platform.

Also worthy of attention is the mention of them being picked up by 31 carriers in six European countries for the Lumia 800, with Russia and Asian markets by year end. A notable accomplishment for an initial launch. Finally, Elop dodges the question a bit about Windows 8 tablets but notes “There’s a new tablet opportunity coming...We see the opportunity...", possibly hinting at future plans (see their experimental flexible display for another hint).

One thing that can be noted about Nokia: they're the 800lb gorilla in the room and we're starting to see them make some movement.

Source: Bloomberg Business Week

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3 years ago

ST-Ericsson gets deal with Nokia to supply chipsets, breaks Qualcomm's hold on Windows Phone

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Although Qualcomm is sitting comfortably with Microsoft and Windows Phone, it looks like their monopoly on the OS has finally given in. Today, ST-Ericsson has announced a deal with Nokia to supply low-end chipsets for upcoming Windows Phones. The deal both confirms and contradicts and earlier report about Microsoft's plans, though it does reinforce earlier rumors of a Nokia-ST Ericsson alliance.

So far, Qualcomm's chipsets, while diverse and flexible in design, have only been used in "high end" phones. Microsoft and especially Nokia though have been keen on cracking the low end market found in developing/emerging countries and ST-Ericsson will reportedly help in that area. STMicro's shares were up 4% and Ericsson's was up by 2% as of the news. From ST-Ericsson:

"We are pleased to have been selected by Nokia as a key partner for Windows smartphones, in line with our goal to be present in all segments and major operating systems," said Gilles Delfassy, president and CEO of ST-Ericsson. "Our NovaThor platforms continue to gain traction as they enable customers to bring great smartphones to the market."

This is an early breaking story so we expect more details soon. The current Lumia devices (710 and 800) both use Qualcomm chipsets and that's expected to stay the same.

Source: Reuters; Finanz Nachrichten; Specs of the U8500 chipset after the break

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3 years ago

T-Mobile HTC Radar 4G for $49.99 on Wirefly

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If you wanted the new HTC Radar 4G on T-Mobile (and it is a pretty sweet phone, we have one in our hands as we speak), you'll want to take a look at getting it through Wirefly. They have it for the low-low price of $49.99 for either new service, new line or your upgrade, should you have one waiting.

To put that price in perspective, T-Mobile-direct advertises the device as $99 with a new contract, but alas, it's actually $150 with a $50 mail-in-rebate. We say "boo" to those and would rather just pay $50 direct to Wirefly and call it a day.

We'll have a review up of the Radar 4G in a few days, but so far we're impressed with the device--solid build, beautiful screen and fast. Shame about that 8GB of storage though.

Source: Wirefly

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3 years ago

Kinectimals for Xbox LIVE on Windows Phone roars back into the Marketplace

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For those who missed the connected Kinectimals last week, which made a "teaser" appearance, you'll be happy to know it's back for your enjoyment. Priced at $2.99, the game has garnered mostly positive reviews with comparisons to Nintendogs but with the further bonus of having some iteration with your Xbox/Kinect setup.

As Paul wrote last week:

"Kinectimals is the portable version of Frontier Software and Microsoft’s feline-themed Kinect game. Players can choose one of five kitties or import an existing cat from the 360 version (which we haven’t tried just yet). Then it’s time to teach your kitty tricks by performing swiping motions, play catch, complete challenges, and buy lots of accessories. So far Kinectimals is a surprisingly faithful port of the retail Xbox 360 version, and it doesn’t even have the original’s obnoxious announcer, always a plus. The Achievements are also super easy. And last but not least, it’s Nodo compatible!"

You can grab the game right here in the Marketplace. Check our hands on vid with the game from Nokia World after the break...

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3 years ago

Duudle: Nokia-Windows Phone Hackathon winner

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The very last event at Nokia World last week was the announcement of the winner for the Hackathon event. Basically 40 devs had 40 hours to write up and code an application on a Nokia phone (either Windows Phone, Qt or S40). Some were games and some were apps (even HalfBrick, the makers of Fruit Ninja were there), all were pretty awesome.

In this Channel 9 video, we see the winners Peter Lindgren, Lukas Gustavsson and Hendrik Pettersson from Visiarc who won with their killer game called Duudle. It's like AlphaJax but for Pictionary on Windows Phone--you get a word, you doodle it on the device and then it is sent to your opponent who has to guess the word by seeing the image re-drawn. The faster they "get" the word, the more points. Our opinion? This game will be huge. It has a great UI, the gameplay is totally unique and it has what you folks want, turn-based multiplayer action.

The team won 50,000 euros in prizes and cash, which ain't too shabby. Hopefully we'll be seeing Duudle in the Marketplace sometime soon, after they polish it up a bit. We can't wait.

Check the Channel 9 and Hackathon videos after the break...

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3 years ago

Samsung Omnia W approved in Brazil by Anatel, headed for TIM?

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Brazil already launched the HTC Ultimate aka Titan, so why stop there? Looks like TIM (Telecom Italia Mobile) is slated to get the Samsung Omnia W to compliment the Ultimate in that country.

The news comes via WinPhoneBlog Brazil, who confirm that the device has passed Anatel (that country's version of the FCC) including pics of the battery, charger and even the full manual (PDF) for your perusal.  In case your forgot the specs of the Omnia W:

  • Super AMOLED screen of 3.7 "
  • 8 GB of storage
  • 512 of RAM
  • VGA Front Camera
  • Rear 5 MP camera with LED Flash and Autofocus
  • 1500 mAh battery
  • Dimensions of 115.6 x 58.8 x 10.9 mm
  • Weight 115 g
  • DNLA
  • WiFi HotSpot

In other words, a solid middle of the road phone, which seems like good marketing. No word on release or pricing, but it should only be a matter of time before we find out.

Source: WinPhoneBlog; Thanks, Fabio T., for the tip!

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3 years ago

Nokia Lumia 710 heading to T-Mobile as the Sword?

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TMoNews is reporting that the Nokia Lumia 710 is slated to be introduced to the T-Mobile line-up in January of 2012. The internal codename is being listed as "Sword" and the Windows Phone will be available in black and white colors. Makes sense as we first broke the news about the phone passing the FCC with T-Mo bands a few days ago.

No word if "Sword" will stick and we'll see the curtain raise on the T-Mobile Nokia Sword come this January.

We liked what we saw of the Lumia 710 at Nokia World. The 710 sports a 3.7" WVGA 800x480 TFT screen, 8GB of storage, 1.4ghz processor and a 5mp rear facing camera.

So... two questions for our T-Mobile customers. First, happy with the 710 or would you have rather seen the Lumia 800 hitting the shelves? Second, should T-Mobile stick with "Sword"?

via: TMoNews

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3 years ago

Monopoly rolls a double, lands in the Xbox Live Deal of the Week position once more

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A couple of weeks ago, Puzzle Quest 2 became the first mobile Xbox Live title to go on sale two different times. Now Monopoly breaks new ground – or is that old? – as the first game to be an official Deal of the Week twice. It’s going on sale for $2.99 once again.

The Windows Phone version of the classic board game/capitalist propaganda tool Monopoly comes from Electronic Arts.  Our Monopoly review praises its faithfulness to the original board game and support of customizing the game rules. We would have liked to see online multiplayer, but it does at least support local multiplayer. The Deal of the Week price should make offline-only Monopoly a lot more palatable. The game was also updated to support Mango Fast App Switching recently, but NoDo owners can still buy it too.

Monopoly goes on sale Wednesday, November 2 for one week only. It will cost $2.99 (the price it always should have been), and there is a free trial. Grab it here on the Marketplace. And don't forget, Kinectimals officially comes out tomorrow too.

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3 years ago

View the status of car parks with Parking Pal UK

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Introducing Parking Pal UK, a unique Windows Phone app, which enables users to search through 14,000 car parks in the UK for spaces, pricing and other features. The app is constantly updated with more car parks being added and existing entires being updated annually. It's guaranteed to improve the life of any driver who frequently parks up.  

Unfortunately, the app does not support on-street parking. Some features include:

  • Car parking information is obtained from the most comprehensive database of car parks in the UK, with over 90 % of car park information updated annually (no on-street parking)
  • Rapid car park location and price information.
  • Choice of using Bing or Google maps.
  • Searches can be filtered to narrow down leads. For example, by toilet availability or locations holding safer parking awards.
  • In-built 'reminder' function- to record where you are parked and note parking ticket expiry time.
  • Live tile with currently parked space information, and ticket expiry time.
  • Ticket expiry reminder alarm.

It's a neat little app with an intuitive user interface and integrated map. Future versions will introduce real-time space information. You can download Parking Pal UK from the Marketplace for £2.29 (trial provides 4 free app uses) and a demo after the break. 

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3 years ago

Fusion: Sentient comes to Xbox Live on November 9 alongside Fusion: Genesis on Xbox 360

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Microsoft is really starting to make true on the promises of connectivity between Xbox 360 and Windows Phone titles. This week’s Xbox Live release, Kinectimals allows gamers to transfer their personalized kitties to the console version and vice-versa. Next week we’re getting another ‘connected’ title in the form of Fusion: Sentient from developer Wahoo Studios (aka NinjaBee) and Microsoft Studios.

Fusion: Sentient is the portable companion to Xbox 360 title Fusion: Genesis (developed by Starfire Studios). Both titles release on the same day, but unlike Full House Poker, the Fusion games are much more distinct from each other. Sentient is a third-person strategy game. Visually, it closely resembles The Harvest but the gameplay is closer to BioWare RPGs like Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic thanks to the turn-based nature of the combat.

Head past the break for more details on connectivity between Fusion: Sentient and Fusion: Genesis, screenshots, a trailer, and a free MP3 soundtrack.

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3 years ago

New Nokia Lumia 800 ad shows up in London's Heathrow Airport [video]

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For business-people and travellers that are on the go, nothing says "Buy this smartphone" like 6 huge screens showing off major features of the latest ultra-portable computing device (a.k.a. a smartphone) from Nokia. The Handheld Blog has taken a nice video of the Nokia Lumia 800 ad while it was running near Departures at Terminal 5 of the Heathrow Airport in London, England.

It's done in a similar style to other ads and demo videos that we've seen pop up around the web, and focuses on the features that travellers would be most interested in; voice-guided car navigation, easy to use camera, managing office documents on-the-go. fast internet browsing, and of course the ability to connect with your friends no matter where you are through social networks. The ad is beautiful, fairly descriptive and will likely draw a lot of eyes - a great thing in a world filled with advertisements already.

With only two weeks left before the handset is made available, we'll likely see more than just a few airport ads released. If they are as eye-catching as this one, you won't hear many complaints from us. Check the video above to see the 1-minute long ad, and let us know if you've seen other ads around the country in the comments below.

Source: The Handheld Blog; Thanks, Mo for the tip!

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3 years ago

Marketplace Extras: Helping you find just the right app

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The Windows Phone Marketplace has undergone its fair share of renovations here lately.  One new feature that might come in handy if you're looking for new, trending and staff recommended apps is the Marketplace Extra.

Marketplace Extra highlights eight categories of apps, focusing on about a dozen recommended apps from each.  You also have video demos, news items on Windows Phone apps and feature articles from The Windows Team Blog.  Marketplace Extra is a good source, along with WPCentral, to find those pin-worthy apps.

Thanks goes out to TheWeeBear for the tip!

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