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3 years ago

The Smartphone Beta Test - Carl Zeiss Optics [Video]

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The Smartphone Beta Test is the latest marketing campaign from Nokia that's to be continuously rolled out in the U.S. The videos highlight key features of the Lumia handsets, with the above commercial focusing on the Carl Zeiss optics. Nokia is set to release more firmware updates to introduce Internet sharing among other features missing from the Windows Phone experience.

It's interesting that the ad states the Lumia handsets sport better camera specifications for low-light photography, which we'd agree with. But we've said before that it would appear as though the hardware is a slight let down with regards to performance on the Lumia 900.

Source: Youtube; thanks Konstantin for the tip!

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3 years ago

Share a photo representing Spring and win a Windows Phone UK mug

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The Windows Phone UK team are giving away four Windows Phone mugs to those who send in the best photos representing Spring. With the constant weather alterations we're currently experiencing, now would be a perfect time to get snapping to win your own brew server. The winning photos will be selected based on originality and how eye catching they are compared to other submissions - check the above photo for inspiration.

To put forward your entry, simply follow the Windows Phone UK team on Twitter and tweet them your photo. Be sure to include what app you used (if any) to add effects. On the official announcement post the team have encouraged the use of photo editing apps for Windows Phone. There are a number available, some which we've recommended ourselves. Also, why not check out our Windows Phone camera tutorial to make sure you get the most out of your camera's performance?

You've got until April 26th (17:00) to get your submissions in and note that this competition is open to UK residents only. Check out the terms and conditions for more information.

Source: Windows Phone UK

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3 years ago

Best Weather Apps for your Windows Phone

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WPCentral's list of the best weather apps for Windows Phone

Your Windows Phone is a great way to stay in touch with what is happening in the world and with things that impact your daily grind. The weather is one thing most of us will have a need to keep track of.  There are plenty of weather apps to choose from over at the Windows Phone Marketplace but which one will work out best with your shiny new Nokia Lumia 900 or trusty old Samsung Focus.

We've tossed together a small collection of weather apps we like that offers a wide range of choices.  What might be useful for your needs might not match someone else's. We have the basic weather app that shows you the current conditions and extended forecast and the weather apps that would make your local weatherman jealous.

So hit the break and see out selection of the best weather apps out there for your Windows Phone.

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3 years ago

Nokia launches the Lumia 710 and 800 in the Philippines with a rocking party

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If there is one thing you can count on, it's Nokia throwing a great launch party regardless of the location. From London to New York, Nokia has some great flair for device announcements.

A few weeks ago we broke the news of Nokia launching the Lumia 710 and 800 in the Philippines -- an important region for the Finnish company and Windows Phone. The Lumia 710 was launching on Smart while the Lumia 800 was going to carrier Globe. Tonight that launch happened and globe-trotter Mark Guim who runs The Nokia Blog (and the always interesting Married 2 Travel site) was there to film it.

Besides DJs, a great light show and...is that the Blue Man Group?...Nokis seems to have thrown together a popular and successful launch. Kudos to Nokia and to the Philippines -- welcome to the Amazing Everyday.

Source: The Nokia Blog

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3 years ago

Microsoft saving Windows Phone developers time by cross-submitting apps to new markets

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If you're an extremely busy developer with little time available to submit your app(s) to emerging markets that are being added to the ecosystem, then Microsoft is ready to lend a hand. Developers (including our Jay Bennett) have or will be receiving an email from the software giant requesting permission to submit apps to the new markets with no effort required from the developer. From the email:

"We are reaching out to ask your permission to cross-submit each of your Windows Phone apps into the markets* identified below, which includes more than 25 new markets.  We realize that the process to cross-submit takes time out of your busy schedule, so we are requesting your permission to submit all of your applications on your behalf to save you time and effort.  This will provide an opportunity for your apps to get additional exposure in new markets which may lead to more downloads and more revenue for your app(s)."

Markets included in the cross-submission are Bulgaria, Costa Rica, Croatia, Estonia, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey, Ukraine, and Venezuela and will announce UAE, Bahrain, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kazakhstan, Israel, Thailand, and Vietnam. For paid apps, Microsoft will convert the base USD pricing set to local currencies.

Developers who receive the email have until April 27th to respond. It's good to know the team is looking at ways to aid the app building community whenever possible.

Thanks Scott and Dave for the tip!

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3 years ago

Good for Enterprise™ released for Windows Phone

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As we reported earlier this morning, Good Technologies was prepping to release their enterprise messaging app for Windows Phone, a big win for those who need security and a strong feature set for their device.

That app has now gone live in the Marketplace ready for download. We must emphasize: you need Good's back-end technology to run this as it is not standalone (think Exchange). From the app description:

"Good for Enterprise™ delivers secure mobile collaboration and device management for Windows Phone devices.  With Good for Enterprise, employees securely access corporate email, contacts, and calendar.  Good for Enterprise provides a unique, secure container that separates personal from business while respecting employees’ privacy – ideal for BYOD devices.  Unlike other solutions, only Good for Enterprise prevents data loss by providing security at the application layer (in addition to device security)."

We listed the full feature set earlier and needless to say, it's fairly comprehensive for a v1.0 release and what's more, Good promises more features in coming updates.

As noted in comments on our previous article, the main benefit for Good users is encryption of messaging, sandboxing of data and better security than Windows Phone or Exchange alone can offer (for now). Plus, with clients on the iPhone, iPad and Android it's nice to see Windows Phone on par with the competition.

Pick up Good for Enterprise™ for Windows Phone here in the Marketplace. Thanks, Munsey S., for the tip

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3 years ago

Windows Phone 8 "Apollo" being tested on Lumia 800? (Rumor)

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According to a thread over at a Chinese Windows Phone community wpxap, one member claims that the next version of the platform, code named "Apollo", is currently being tested by an employee on a retail Lumia 800. Take this with a grain of salt before we continue, we're not entirely convinced ourselves as to whether or not this is actual reality, but it's best to be informed nonetheless. (In addition, supposed "insider" MS_Nerd Tweeted early this morning that the Lumia 610 was also testing Apollo).

Should what this poster has written be true, this would continue the debate on generation 1 / 1.5 Windows Phones being able to receive the "Apollo" update. What is noted are some noticeable improvements including speed / touch responsiveness, folders, an Internet Explorer overhaul and gravity sensing. Insiders believes the last feature to be tilt mechanics, with an example provided for enlarging image thumbnails by lifting the device closer to the users' eyes.

The inclusion of folders is an interesting addition to the list. What else is active on the acclaimed test version of "Apollo" is VPN support, which is reported to be disabled on the final build. As well as these features that have been published by an unconfirmed source, we expect the next major update of Windows Phone to introduce higher screen resolutions and dual-core support.

Of course, we're in "silly season" mode around here so like we said, put this on rumor shelf as there is no solid evidence for any of this so far.

Source: wpxap, via: Insideris, WMPU; thanks to everyone who tipped us!

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3 years ago

Pepper: a new Windows Phone app making live music more social

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Wouldn't it be useful if you were able to join a music-focused community on your Windows Phone, which would enable you to search, filter and attend music events? An app and service called Pepper aims to provide such functionality. Launching on Windows Phone (iOS, Blackberry and Android ports on the way), Pepper brings a new social network to the platform.

Finding live music events near your location has now been made a whole lot easier. Once an account has been created (takes two minutes through the app itself) users are able to follow venues and artists to find out where and when the next interesting event is. Any gigs or club nights that are to be attended can then be shared with friends to bring a number of people together for the evening. Best of all - it's free.

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3 years ago

Windows Phone Game Review: Incredible Circus

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Incredible Circus is a Windows Phone game that recently hit the Marketplace. It's a free game and the latest release from iNdT - Nokia Institute of Technology.

iNdT isn't a Nokia company but rather a non-profit research and development institute founded by Nokia. It is independent from Nokia and focuses on the generation of new concepts, products and solutions for areas related to mobile technologies and the internet.  iNdT has four current releases on the Marketplace including another game (Frog) and two apps in Portuguese dealing with fuel consumption and lottery numbers (Fuel+ and Loterias). The nice thing about this is that while iNdT is loosely associated with Nokia, the apps aren't exclusive and can be enjoyed on all Windows Phones.

To find out more on iNdT's latest game, Incredible Circus, hit the break.

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3 years ago

Verizon warming up to Windows Phone?

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Verizon warming up to Windows Phone?

While Verizon Wireless does off the HTC Trophy as the company's one and only Windows Phone, customers have been wanting more selection out of the wireless provider for some time. Based on what Verizon's executive vice president and chief financial officer Fran Shammo said during a conference call, Verizon customers may finally see more Windows Phone becoming available.

Shammo said he was fully supportive of Microsoft and discussed the need for a third mobile ecosystem in the wireless industry. This is a bit of a change from late last year when Verizon had issues with the lack of LTE support coming from Microsoft. The feeling was that Verizon would continue to focus on Android devices as their center piece.

If Verizon was waiting for LTE support, the Nokia Lumia 900 and HTC Titan II should prove that LTE support exists with Windows Phones. Another sign that Verizon may be coming around on Windows Phones is the recent announcement of the 8107 update for the HTC Trophy.

Based on Shammo's comments the chances of additional Windows Phones joining the Verizon line up seems promising.  Could we see a Verizon Lumia 900? Or maybe a Verizon Titan II?  

Source: CNET; Thanks, Anonymous, for the tip!

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3 years ago

Nokia Q1 2012 financial report highlights a €590 loss, strong Lumia US launch

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Nokia released its Q1 2012 interim financial and operating report today, highlighting a €590 million loss. The data is the result of the slow and painful transition from Symbian to Windows Phone, as well as more affordable competition from Android. Ironically the only region to illustrate positive results with regards to volume numbers is North America with a 20% increase (compared to Q4 2011). 

Stephen Elop explained in the report the Lumia handset reception and how some markets, including the UK, are proving more difficult to penetrate. 

"We have launched four Lumia devices ahead of schedule to encouraging awards and popular acclaim. The actual sales results have been mixed. We exceeded expectations in markets including the United States, but establishing momentum in certain markets including the UK has been more challenging."

According to Elop, the manufacturer exceeded expectations in terms of sales with the Lumia 900 launch in the U.S., though no figures were provided. The issue with markets such as the UK is how competitors have secured loyal support, whether it be RIM, Android or the iPhone.

Nokia has announced plans to begin rolling out the Windows Phone "Tango" Lumia 610 in Asian markets at the end of April. Coupled with the Lumia 900 heading to the UK as well as a number of other international markets, Nokia will start to have a comfortable level of coverage.

Source: Nokia (PDF)

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3 years ago

Microsoft evangelist retracts claims of Windows Phone 8 updates

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And just like that what seemed to be borderline credible evidence that Windows Phone 7 users would get an update to Windows Phone 8 have vanished again.

Nuno Silva, who stated fairly unequivocally during a video interview that all phones will get Apollo has now retracted his claim. In a post on his MSDN blog, Silva clarified his comments:

"I recently participated in an interview with the Portuguese website Zwame, where I made some comments on the future of Windows Phone that created confusion. Rumors are swirling, so I feel the need to clarify my statements.

The point I was attempting to make was simply that existing Windows Phone applications will run on the next version of Windows Phone. This is the same guidance that Microsoft shared late last year.

I mistakenly confused app compatibility with phone updateability, which caused the rumors we saw yesterday.  I did not intend to give the impression I was offering new guidance on any products under development or their upgradeability.

While we have given Windows Phone developers this preliminary guidance on app compatibility to help them with long term project planning, Microsoft does not have any further news to share on future products at this time. "

Interestingly, his response aligns perfectly with Microsoft's PR statement to all tech blogs the other day which took the stance that Silva must be confusing device updates with software compatibility for apps

We're not claiming conspiracy but there must be little doubt that Redmond probably had a phone call or two with Silva and had him prepare a statement to undo the damage (or redo if you believed him).

Does that mean that no current phones will get Windows Phone 8? Not exactly. Until Microsoft gives us the official roadmap and plans, we're not ready to call this the end.

With low-end Tango devices just about to launch, we're really having a difficult time believing that they won't have any OS updates during their run -- that just seems, odd.  We're still leaning towards the two-pronged route (an Apollo-like update for current devices but "true" Windows Phone 8 phones will have technically a new OS) as a possibility. Or just wishful thinking.

And if you believe supposed insider MS_Nerd, the Lumia 610 is already testing with Apollo.

Only time will tell and that time is getting shorter every day. For more speculation, debate and explanations, read yesterday's summary.

Source: MSDN Blog; via WMPU

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3 years ago

Understanding your Windows Phone Camera

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Understanding your Windows Phone Camera

Want to make the most of your Windows Phone camera? Read our guide on how to get the best shots possible and look like a pro!

While the camera on your Windows Phone may not have been a key factor in the past, with the HTC Titan II sporting a 16mp camera and the Nokia Lumia 900 using a Carl Zeiss lens these little cameras are being seen in a new light. Where in the past many saw the camera as a nice accessory or even a novelty, as technology improves the Windows Phone camera's performance it's becoming a more influential feature.

Additionally, as our Windows Phone camera evolves so does the software that drives it. You have more control over the camera these days along with special settings to use effects, adjust exposure settings, and program settings. From your children at play to a stunning sunset to your new pet the camera on your Windows Phone is a great tool for capturing and sharing memories.

With all the advancements we've recently seen with our Windows Phone cameras (along with a few suggestions from our readers) it's time to offer our guide to understanding the basics of your Windows Phone camera and a few tips on taking pictures.  After the break, we'll cover the principles of photography, the terminology involved, what some of your Windows Phone settings will do, and a few tips to take better pictures with your Window Phone.

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3 years ago

Windows Phone "Dare to Live" challenge hits UK streets

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We recently put the question to you whether Microsoft is doing enough to promote and market Windows Phone, and now we've just caught wind of a new campaign kicking off from the software giant in the UK. The Windows Phone team will be touring the country (10 cities - 11 weeks) and challenging participants who believe their smartphone is faster than a Windows Phone.

Much like the Smoked by Windows Phone campaign, should contestants win the "Dare to Live" challenge, they'll pocket £20 there and then. But should they lose, and this is the exciting part, they'll not have to hold a sign up and announce their loss, oh no. Microsoft is taking things to the next level with actual fear driven activities instead.

Throughout each week the team will hold the challenges, but on every Saturday they will hold adrenaline intensive activities that will push yourself beyond comfortable limits. From tightrope walking to the Big Air, you're destined to get a buzz for losing to Windows Phone. Think of it as Smoked by Windows Phone with a twist for losing participants.

As well as the challenge and campaign, Microsoft is teaming up with O2 and Phones4U to provide a number of deals on Windows Phones throughout the duration of the event. Phones4U is currently featured with an up-to £100 cash back on the Lumia 800 when trading in your old phone. Be sure to check out the Dare to Live Facebook page for more details about locations, dates and -of course- the special offers.

Kicking off on April 21st, do you dare the live? The team is hitting London this week for the challenges. Should you be lucky (or unlucky) enough to lose you'll find yourself on a tightrope at the Westfield shopping centre in Shepherds Bush this coming Saturday. Be sure to pop along to see the action, WPCentral will be there to return with some photos of course.

Source: Dare to LiveWindows Phone UK; thanks Mark for the heads up!

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3 years ago

Swedish retailer Elgiganten offering free Xbox 360 console with LG Optimus purchases

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Elgiganten, a Swedish electronics retailer, currently has an intriguing offer for those who are looking to move to Windows Phone. Should you pick up your own first generation LG Optimus 7 for 2390kr (approx. $360), you'll also walk away with a brand new Xbox 360 console to make use of that Gold subscription while on the go as well as on the big screen.

The website states that there's over 100 in stock so it would be unwise not to take advantage should you still be on the fence of making a purchase. 

Source: Elgiganten, via: WinGadget.se; thanks Peter for the heads up!

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