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3 years ago

Trapster Contest Winners!

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Trapster Contest Winners!

Last week we announced the Trapster would be heading to the Windows Phone Marketplace and had a little contest for an Official Trapster license plate frame. You just needed to tweet, "@Trapster announces #WP7 app is in the works on @WPCentral http://bit.ly/kxqLjz"

From the thirty some odd readers who tweeted, we randomly selected ten winners. They are:

mydefposse, ParkerReno, a_hardin, RaceStream, revamp00, Goodeye, purevibz, metsfan421, firecop42, and davidremy.

Congratulations to all and we've got the Trapster swag ready to ship out.  But here in lies the problem we have run into. We've private messaged the winners through Twitter to get their shipping information. But only two have replied (mydefposse and ParkerReno). So... if you're one of the winners, private message @WPCentral with your shipping info.  We'll get the license plate covers out to you as soon as we know where to send it.

Again, congratulations to all the winners!

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3 years ago

Windows Phone Marketplace Top Apps

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We haven't tossed this one around in a while and with Verizon customers coming on board soon with the HTC Trophy, it was suggested (thanks Sam) that we touch on the top apps over at the Windows Phone Marketplace.

We've got two sources to draw upon (actually there's more but we decided to settle on these two). First there's Bing's Visual Search (as depicted above) that lumps free with paid apps in their list. Then there's the Marketplace top ten that breaks things down into a list for free apps and a list for paid apps (see below).

Follow the break to read what apps stood out from both lists.

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3 years ago

Lincolnshire police using WP7 in new fingerprint tech trial

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This is pretty awesome, Lincolnshire county police are piloting new fingerprint technology and are using Windows Phone 7 (specifically a HTC device) with an app developed by Immersive Forensics, which scans the fingerprints in question and adds to/searches the bureau database. According to the report, the force primarily began using Blackberry devices and using email to send fingerprint scans, but the WP7 app and OS platform allows more scalability and connectivity that is required.

Matt Mears, CSI, explains:

"This quick and simple method of image submission allows the Fingerprint Bureau to receive, process and identify crime scene marks in real time. Images are being sent and received this way on a daily basis and have already resulted in successful identifications and detections. This technology has great potential. It is not limited to fingerprints, it also gives the capability to send footwear marks and crime scene photographs."

For the time being only two CSIs are using the application but police forces from other counties are looking to take full advantage of this new technology. Unfortunately, this app isn't available in the Marketplace for everyone to have fun with.

Source: Lincolnshire Police, via: The Lincolnite

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3 years ago

Windows Phone Blog on Mango preview event tomorrow

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Although we'll be in New York City tomorrow doing a live blog of the whole Windows Phone 7.5 sneak peek, Microsoft just put up some info about it as well for those of you who can't be there in person (which we imagine is like, all of you).

We're not sure if they're streaming the event, though it sounds like they are. If so, you'll want to go here to their Windows Phone newsroom: http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/presskits/windowsphone/

Of course, we'd recommend that you have one tab for them and one for us, since we'll be giving our thoughts on the news as it happens. Plus we'll be there afterwards for any device hands on (rumors of prototypes being there) and after-the-event fun.

Needless to say, it should be cool to see those "500 new features" (some of which are listed here). Be here at 9:45am EST.

Source: Windows Phone Blog

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3 years ago

Microsoft Partner Information app released

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Are you a Microsoft Partner? Well if so, this is just right for you. Eric Ligman, Director of Worldwide Partner Experience at Microsoft, has just announced the Microsoft Partner Info app, which brings together a superb collection of information and resources from a number of feeds and displays them in a well crafted UI. 

Some features of the app include a direct feed from Partner blogs found on the Network, Twitter updates from the WPC (Worldwide Partner Conference) teams and from top figures like Jon Roskill, Corporate Vice President of Worldwide Partner Group.

You can download the app (Zune link) from the Marketplace for free.

Source: Microsoft Partner Blog

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3 years ago

Free desktop Metro Weather widget kind of rocks

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We've seen our share of Metro spin-offs for your Windows desktop (see Firefox skin, RainMeter) and heck, Windows 8 is going to have a Metro-inspired UI to it to boot. But for those wanting a quick way to update today, you can run this free weather app right on your desktop that heavily lifts from your precious Windows Phone UI.

The app is simple enough, not even an installation. Just download and extract the folder to your \Programs (or wherever) and run the main .exe file. From there, right click to get options and setup your location and preferences, then hit "refresh" on each panel to get it up to date.

Heck, it even bounces up and down like the Metro UI, so we're giving this a big thumbs up--it looks great, works well and is simple.

Note: the app auto-updates, you only need to manually refresh if you change anything in settings. You can even set the weather-update interval.

Source: Download Crew; designed by 'Stealth'; via Beta News

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3 years ago

Ballmer states Mango will contain 500 new features

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Heading up a presentation in Japan at Microsoft Developer Forum 2011, Steve Ballmer was covering numerous topics including the acquisition of Skype. While discussing this year's Mango update, he set the feature count at 500. We were able to have a good insight as to what a good number of those features will be with MIX, but it's exciting to know that there are a plethora of promised additions to the platform that still need to be covered.

At the VIP Mango event tomorrow, it will be a busy day for the OS with Steve talking about OEMs and carriers as well as further detail surrounding 7.5. Microsoft is also looking to release their Mango developer tools some time soon. You can check out the entire Developer Forum session here, move the video slider to 29 minutes in and you'll witness WP7 goodness.

Via: Nanapho. Thanks tezawaly for the heads up!

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3 years ago

Stormy7 - App Spotlight

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Stormy7 - App Spotlight

Looking for a nifty novelty app for your Windows Phone? Billed as the most natural storm experience on your phone, Stormy 7 might do just the trick.

Stormy 7 creates a mist on your Windows Phone, similar to the condensation that forms on windows during a rainy day or the bathroom window when you take a hot shower. With Stormy 7 you swipe at the screen with your fingertip to doodle or just wipe away the condensation.

The background image can be the stock backyard scene, an image from your Windows Phone gallery or one captured with your Windows Phone camera. The effects are really nice from the sound to the water droplets falling in relation to your Windows Phone orientation. Sound effects range from the squeaking sound your finger makes as it slides across the screen to the sound of distant thunder.

Settings cover which background image you want to use as well as microphone sensitivity. Microphone sensitivity you say? Yep. If you blow into your Windows Phone microphone, the screen will fog up again.

Stormy 7 is an interesting novelty app for your Windows Phone but one downside is that there is no trial version. The full version will run you $.99 and you can find it here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace.

Update: There is now an ad-supported, free version of Stormy 7 available for a limited time.  You can find it here at the Marketplace.

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3 years ago

TweetCaster Pro version launches, charges one arm, one leg

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We covered TweetCaster "lite" before, the free, ad-support Twitter client which was popularized on Android. The app was temporarily pulled from the Marketplace, we believe, because they didn't setup their Ad service correctly (and support never got back to us on the matter, thanks guys!).

Now the company has released a "Pro" version with no ads and get this, no new features. That's all fine and dandy, but they have the audacity to charge $4.99 for the privilege of having no ad banner. Hey, the Lite version is nice and all (though hardly special or unique, not even a Live Tile) and it does rate at a decent 3.5 stars in the Marketplace, but $4.99?

Listen, even we're not dumb enough to buy this app to test for you folks as that's just a ludicrous price for mediocrity. They didn't even have the decency to update their pics for the Pro version...it still shows ads. But hey, if you must have it, here's the link.

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3 years ago

Zune services to be split, re-named [Rumor]

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Zune services to be split, re-named [Rumor]

As the title says, file this under rumor...but one that may be detailed this Tuesday, the 24th.

According to @MS_Nerd, who has an interesting history with leaks from within Microsoft, the Zune services as we know them will be broken apart, presumably in response to the Nokia deal, which is making some of the backend redundant:

"Wee little rumor seeping out now: Zune next to be split into Xbox mobile, Xbox Live & Windows Live Zune on the 24th."

"And the Zune backend platform will become a "Nokia services on Azure" offering, with content from Netflix, Last.fm & Hulu among others."

If true, this comes a little more than 2-years after the first Zune team was broken up into hardware and software services, with the former being absorbed under the Windows Mobile group. Now it's the latter which is being divvied and presumably gobbled up by other divisions within the company.

There's been talk for awhile now of "Zune re-branding" and something happening within that division, so this isn't too far fetched. We'll see what happens, if anything, this Tuesday.

Source: @MS_Nerd 1, 2; Thanks, Amir, for the heads up

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3 years ago

WP7 and Bing Maps saves lives

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WP7 and Bing Maps saves lives

Martin Tirion, User Experience Evangelist at Microsoft, has recently published an article that goes into detail about how Windows Phone 7 and Bing Maps saved his life on a boat trip that went horribly wrong. Cutting a long story short; Martin was on a small rental boat in Greece, where due to poor navigation, instructions, navigational equipment and readiness, was stranded at an unknown location.

Calling back to the rental agency, they attempted to search for the stranded boat but failed to find anything after approximately four hours. With waves increasing in strength and the possibility of a large ship passing by creating more dangerous currents, Martin attempted again after the four hours out at sea to use Bing Maps and attempt a GPS pin-point location. It finally worked over GPRS.

He was then able to relay the information onto the boat rental agency and they were able to rescue him. It seemed that in reality the distance between his human guesswork and satellite accuracy was huge (illustrated in the map above). WP7 and Bing saves the day!

Our George Ponder posted his experience with how WP7 aided him amidst the aftermath of the awful tornadoes the US recently laid host to. We've also seen how the "Find My Phone" feature as stopped some golf club theft. Have you got a life changing story involving your WP7 device?

Source: Martin Tirion's Blog

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3 years ago

Windows Phone Summary of the Week: May 16-22, 2011

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G'day folks, it's that time of the week where the British spider returns (the little devil!) - it's wpcentral's summary of the week. The past seven days have been primarily focused around the aggravating build-up to the Verizon Trophy release date. More rumours have flown around than any celebrity magazine could handle, but we're almost there!

First off, the official wpcentral app has been announced! So keep an eye out for it on the Marketplace and check out the announcement for more information. We've also kick-started our newest weekly feature - developer interviews! Jay Bennett has provided us with the honour in being our first interviewee, read up on the interview.

Samsung Omnia 7 owners have rejoiced with not only leaked NoDo firmware, but Microsoft have re-enabled the updates for this particular handset. No word on the Focus still as of yet. Meanwhile, over at the HTC labs, the HD7S will be available on June 5th for $199 on AT&T and rumours have been circling surrounding the mystery 16MP device featured in an advert, which we covered a while back. Word is that the handset featured in that advert is actually the HTC Bresson and is apparently heading for Mango with beefed-up specifications. Oh, and Nokia still dislikes Qualcomm.

We've seen some more coverage in features coming up in Windows Phone 7.5, most notably; Lync, threaded & pinned email, SmartDJ and disabling that awful camera shutter sound - good stuff. Speaking of Mangos, the media have been receiving them as invitations to the Mango preview event, which is in two days.

Gaming on WP7 has seen a positive push this week with Hydro Thunder being available early next week followed by a line-up of incredibly popular titles including Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I. PayPal has made it's way onto the Xbox 360 system, which is a highly requested payment gateway for WP7 Marketplace, will it come to the platform anytime soon? Once you've had enough of playing Pac-Man Championship for a solid few hours, you can retire and apply the L.A. Noire wallpaper and theme to your device.

Developers! We recently covered how you can receive free advertising for your applications and/or games with certain events managed by Microsoft that provide you with free advert impressions as well as one years worth of AppHub subscription. Keep an eye out for our feed when we cover the next opportunity.

Head on past the break for our highlights.

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3 years ago

New job vacancy for WP7 Bluetooth development

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Seems the Windows Phone team are looking to expand their resources in the Bluetooth area of development on the platform with the latest job vacancy advert being published. Windows Phone 7's support for Bluetooth (in comparison to competitors) is not a feature to be desired and any advancement in the near future (Mango?) would be a welcomed effort by the community. Anyone painfully remember the debacle with Bluetooth a while back?

What are your thoughts on the current Bluetooth implementation for WP7, and what would you be most pleased with changes/improvements wise? Let us know in the comments!

Check out the job advert after the break.

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3 years ago

Developer Interview: Jay Bennett

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Developer Interview: Jay Bennett

We're starting a new regular feature here at WPCentral: the developer interview. Basically we seek out some of the of top, the brightest or rising developers to get their views on Windows Phone 7 and the whole process of bringing software to our phones.

This week we have the delight of being introduced to Jay Bennett, what he's been up to, how he views app development on Windows Phone 7 and what he thinks the future holds. If you're not aware of who Mr Bennett is (or what he does), he's an aspiring app developer on the platform who is behind the highly anticipated official wpcentral app, not to mention RateYourBeer (link to Marketpalce)!

Head on past the break for the fantastic interview.

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