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2 years ago

Facebook Beta app for Windows Phone gets performance improvements in latest update

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In a late release Friday night, Microsoft has pushed out another minor update for their Facebook Beta program, which also now includes a version for Windows Phone 7.x users.

The update bumps the versions up to 5.1.0.3 for Windows Phone 8 and 3.1.0.3 for Windows Phone 7.x and brings along with it general “performance improvements and bug fixes”.

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2 years ago

Screenshots of Windows Phone 8 GDR3 and Nokia’s Bittersweet Shimmer surface

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Update 2:30 AM ET: We have secondary confirmation that these images and features are authentic. More information at the end of the article.

Later this year, towards the November time frame, Microsoft is rumored to be releasing Windows Phone 8 General Distribution Release 3 (GDR3) along with alleged new firmware from Nokia named “Bittersweet shimmer” (originally reported by the site Nokiapoweruser). The OS update will once again enable new hardware features like advanced Qualcomm processors and 1080P display resolution, but it will also have numerous enhancements for current devices. The release will coincide with the availability of Nokia’s Lumia 1520 with a 6-inch display.

Tonight, a poster in the Windows Phone Central Forums with the handle xs2k has posted alleged screenshots running Windows Phone 8 OS Build 10484, supposedly taken from a Lumia 920 developer device picked up on Craig’s List.

Windows Phone Central has not been able to verify the authenticity of the screenshots but it does match what our inside sources have revealed to us off the record.

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2 years ago

SmartGlass for Xbox One will be a new app, coming later this year to Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8

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SmartGlass was unveiled during Microsoft’s 2012 E3 presentation in Los Angeles. The service allows users to connect to their Xbox 360 in a variety of ways through their smartphones, tablets, and PCs. However, it was introduced late into the Xbox 360's lifecycle, something that impacted performance and features.

The Xbox One has been built with SmartGlass in mind, so we can expect a lot of improvements not just in performance, but new features to take advantage of the platform. Here’s what we can look forward to.

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2 years ago

Hipstamatic yields to users, now allows photos to be imported into Oggl...kinda

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The addition of Hipstamatic’s Oggl and Oggl Pro to the Windows Phone Store was welcomed by community. The app was first announced back in May and finally joined the platform after the launch of the Nokia Lumia 1020 in the United States.

Two versions exist, Oggl and Oggl Pro, with the latter a special edition of the app going to users on the Lumia 1020. Performance was sluggish at first, but has slowly been improving with a fairly constant stream of updates. What’s the latest update bring?

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2 years ago

Surface Pro could be getting a docking station soon

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Microsoft is in the midst of a companywide re-organization to become a “devices and services” entity. One of those new divisions is the Devices and Studios, which is responsible for the Surface, Xbox, and more within Microsoft. It’s currently led by Julie Larson-Green, but will see Stephen Elop take the reins when Nokia’s Devices and Services division joins that section of Microsoft.

The Devices and Studios division in Microsoft has a few more tricks up its sleeve for the Surface RT and Surface Pro. We’ve had hints of a battery extension for the Surface Pro in the past, but now Paul Thurrott has a few more details on what we can expect with future accessories.

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2 years ago

Verizon’s backing away from Canada, but are we really missing out?

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There's been a big to-do lately up here in Canada about Verizon crossing the border by snagging local carriers WIND Mobile and/or Mobilicity. A lot of people were optimistic that they could bust up the oligopoly established by Rogers, Bell, and TELUS, but following their $130 billion Vodafone buy-out earlier this week, Verizon said they weren’t interested in entering into Canada. So we’re back to square one with three intractable providers and two struggling ones, but I’m not convinced things would have been an amazing wireless wonderland up here if Verizon had followed-up on their Canadian ambitions.

2 years ago

Angry Birds Rio gets 15 new levels with latest update for Windows Phone 8

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Are you a fan of Angry Birds and you just can’t get enough? Then make sure you head to the Store to grab Angry Bird Rio, version 1.7, which is now live for Windows Phone 8 (the 7.x version has not yet been updated).

So what does version 1.7 bring? Bug fixes? Performance enhancements? Nope, how about some actual new gameplay with the Golden Beachball pack.

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2 years ago

Belfiore: Nokia deal will cause fewer secrets with Microsoft, faster production

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A few days ago, Microsoft announced their plans to purchase Nokia’s Devices and Services division (along with some patent deals) for 7.2 billion dollars. The deal was both expected and somewhat of a surprise since the last we heard a deal was off. Since the announcement we’ve heard stories trickle out to the public. Like the inside story of how the deal came to be.

Tearing down the symbolic walls between the Windows Phone software team and Nokia’s hardware team has been cited as the biggest boost for consumers. Recent statements by Microsoft’s Joe Belfiore echo that idea.

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2 years ago

Tweet It! gets massive new update, making it a solid choice for Twitter on Windows Phone 8

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When it comes to Twitter clients on Windows Phone, we’ve noticed everyone has their favorite and its usually for specific reasons. Tweet It! by developer Timur Khamidov has always impressed us for standing out from the pack.  The app comes with numerous unique options like a using the camera for a background, so you can see where you walking when typing, orientation lock, tweet your currently playing music and more.

Version 6.2 just went live in the Store and it’s quite a colossal update. The update and changes are so big, we would have thought it was a worthy of a 7.0 designation.  Let’s see what’s new.

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2 years ago

Ragdoll Run on Windows Phone and Windows 8 adds carrier billing for In-App Purchases

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Earlier this year, we brought news of a mobile payment system called Fortumo extending its support to Windows Phone and Windows 8. Fortumo allows developers to add mobile carrier billing to their games and apps, even on platforms that don’t normally support In-App Purchases  like Windows Phone 7. Fortumo’s carrier billing can allow users living in countries where credit cards are uncommon to make online purchases that they would otherwise miss out on.

Fortumo support on mobile Windows Phone platforms is still fairly new, but one popular game has already integrated it: Ragdoll Run from Swedish developer Dawnbreak Studios. Ragdoll Run is a free to play game that also happens to be exclusive to Windows Phone 7, 8, and Windows 8. Just how well do the game’s the Fortumo payments work, and what made Dawnbreak decide on Fortumo integration? Head past the break for the full story.

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2 years ago

UC Browser updated, adds more sharing options and enhanced music playback

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UC Browser is a web browser alternative to Internet Explorer for our Windows Phone. The app was recently updated to version 3.1 which brings a few new features and performance tweaks into the mix.

This latest update comes with multiple enhancements including greater sharing options that allow you to share to Facebook and Twitter, the ability to play downloaded music in the background after you exit the app, and optimized searching by allowing searches through both the address bar and search bar.

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2 years ago

Nokia exercises option to sell almost $2 billion in bonds to Microsoft

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While Microsoft's purchase of Nokia Device and Services Unit is a work in progress, Nokia has exercised an option to receive €1.5 billion ($1.975 billion US) from Microsoft ahead of the purchase closing.

Microsoft will deliver that amount in the form of convertible bond purchases from Nokia. Should the purchase be approved by Nokia's shareholders in November and becomes finalized, the bonds will be redeemed.

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2 years ago

UK supermarket Asda leaves Vodafone and chooses EE for MVNO deal

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Asda and EE have today announced a partnership for Asda Mobile, an MVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator) running on the EE network (previously with Vodafone since 2007). This new deal builds on an existing partnership, which includes in-store Wi-Fi and provision of mobile services. Asda Mobile customers will have access to EE's network, taking advantage of wider coverage and faster connection speeds.

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2 years ago

Nokia working to bring more enhancements to Lumia line through Glance and Touch?

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Recent updates by Nokia may reveal forthcoming additions to expand Lumia functionality for users

Nokia has been churning out quite a few updates lately for its Lumia Windows Phones, especially for those with the Amber update. The last few system app changes, notably Extras + Info yesterday and Display + Touch for today, simply moved those settings into their own categories.

While that is seen as a fix for discoverability, there are few other deviations that have been noticed as well that may be a sign of things to come.

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2 years ago

EE customers rejoice; operator plans to roll out GDR2 and Amber mid-September

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Those of you who are still eagerly awaiting the Amber / GDR2 rollout, we have some positive news for EE customers. The UK mobile operator took to Twitter today to reveal mid-September as to when Lumia Windows Phone owners can expect to see the updates shipped out on the network. Not long to go now, folks. EE is the last UK mobile operator to approve the software updates for the Lumia 920 and Lumia 820.

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