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4 years ago

Registry and File system access on HTC & Samsung devices: done

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The other day, we mentioned about running native, unmanaged code on Winodows Phone 7. The achievement was illuminating since it showed that advanced "rooting" can take place on WP7and that modifying system software was feasible. A milestone, indeed.

A minor, but important, advancement was just accomplished by the same developer, Chris Walsh, who just tweeted that he has managed to get "registry and file system access" on an HTC and Samsung device, noting that the LG was next. This is good news because it shows that this type of work is device independent--something we would assume to be the case, but as the Samsung/LG tethering tricks show, sometimes there are device level differences after all.

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4 years ago

Currencies - Review

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Currencies - Review

Curious what the current exchange rate is for the Croatian Kuna? How about the Turkish Lira?

Well there's a Windows Phone 7 application available for $.99 at the Marketplace that will help you with all your currency conversions. Currencies (link opens your Zune browser) is a currency converter that makes use of the Windows Phone 7 hub layout with pages for your favorites currencies, exchange rates, a currency converter and settings.

You can set any of the currencies as your home currencies and the exchange rates are based off that currency. Exchange rates are updated daily to keep things current. Currency settings on the converter can be changed by tapping each square to pull up a listing of currencies you can convert to and from.

Currencies is a straightforward, simple to use, stable application for your Windows Phone. There is a trial version available if you want to try before you buy. If you have a need for currency conversion, Currencies is worth a look.

Hit the jump to see a short video demo for Currencies.

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4 years ago

Software Reviews (Windows Phone 7): The Weather Channel

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The Weather Channel is offering a free weather application for Windows Phone 7 over at the Marketplace. The application makes the most out of the hub system providing local weather information, forecasts, radar maps, locations, and menus to other Weather Channel services. In addition, you have a live tile that can be pinned to your Start Screen which will display the current temperature and a icon representing current conditions.

To read more on The Weather Channel application, follow the break.

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4 years ago

Verizon's "excited", waiting on Microsoft for Windows Phone 7

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A few months ago it seemed Verizon Wireless was giving the cold shoulder to Microsoft and their new OS, taking a "wait and see" approach.  However, things may have changed recently, possibly due to positive word-of-mouth that WP7 may have potential after all.

In a recent Tweet, the company suggested that they're just waiting on Microsoft to deliver the OS and that they're "excited" to offer the new platform to their customers. The waiting on Microsoft bit goes back to the unfinished work on porting the new OS to CDMA. We know Sprint is a big partner with Microsoft and that they're getting close to launching the much anticipated 7 Pro.

Will we see some WP7 action from Verizon sooner than later? It looks like we will.

Thanks, Joe C, for the catch!

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4 years ago

Microsoft's Brandon Watson lost a bet, got a serious hair cut

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And by haircut we mean had his head shaved by a bunch of fellow Microsoft employees.

Watson should be a familiar name  by now. He's the Director of Developer Experience at Microsoft, overseeing the roll-out of the tools and ecosystem that developers rely on to make our new software.

Long story short: in a bet on how many applications would be in the Marketplace on launch, he under-estimated. In turn, he lost his hair in a public event. Which he should have. Who under estimates? While you don't have to watch the whole video (nearly 13 mins), you can skip to the end for the good part.  What can we say? We love seeing the dorky/geeky side of Microsoft and them having some fun. So should you.

Source: E's PhoneBlog

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4 years ago

Software Review (Windows Phone 7): The Harvest

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Software Review (Windows Phone 7): The Harvest

One of the premier features of Windows Phone 7 is the integration of Xbox Live. Without a doubt, the quality of games offered by such a popular platform as well as the social aspects that Xbox live offers are light-years ahead of where we were with Windows Mobile 6.5. One of the first Xbox live games that we saw demonstrated (remember MIX?) was The Harvest from Microsoft Game Studios.

Pros: 
Incredible Graphics, Intuitive game-play
Cons: 
Takes a while to load the game
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4 years ago

Choices: HTC Surround or Samsung Focus?

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Choices: HTC Surround or Samsung Focus?

A discussion is going on over in the WPCentral Forums is going on that's trying to decide between the Samsung Focus and the HTC Surround. Which phone is better?

Both are quality phones and, honestly, niether one is a bad choice. It's more of an issue of finding which phone fits your personal tastes best.

That's a nice, safe position to take but we couldn't end things with that. In weighing the pros and cons, I see the Samsung Focus having an edge over the HTC Surround. To see why, follow the break.

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4 years ago

Slacker Radio: We're giving away subscriptions!

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Slacker Radio is a popular radio service that has done really well on the Windows Mobile platform and all indications are that success is carrying over to Windows Phone 7 (we'll have a review up shortly).

To help celebrate the launch of Windows Phone 7, Slacker Radio and WPCentral are going to giveaway six, three-month subscriptions to the radio service. All you've got to do is head on over to the WPCentral Forums and, in this discussion, let us know what you would like to see Microsoft include in the first Windows Phone 7 update.

We'll let the conversation run through 7:00pm CST on Thursday, November 18, 2010.  We'll then randomly select six posts as winners. You do have to be a registered member and that simple process can be found here.

So, head on over to the forums and tell us what you think and good luck to everyone.

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4 years ago

First Look: Neurons for Windows Phone 7 [Video]

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We mentioned Neurons awhile back. It's a video streaming app dedicated to science and features TED Talks, Fora.TV, Science Dump and The RSA. Designed by Justin Angel, it's quite useful and nicely laid out.

It's free, available now and quite impressive. Unlike the TED app which I covered last week (see here), this will work over 3G, making it much more practical. It's open source, meaning anyone can improve upon it if they wish and integrates with the Music & Video hub nicely (i.e. previously watched material shows up).

The program is solid and has some nice pizazz to it. Highly recommended for those interested in all areas of science.

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4 years ago

Bejeweled Live: Xbox Windows Phone Review

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4 years ago

Windows Phone Video Tip: Changing your Pictures Hub picture

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Don't like the picture that is showcased in your Pictures Hub tile? You know you can change it?

The process is painless and easy. Just go into the Pictures hub and tap/hold the screen above the displayed pictures. A pop-up menu will then appear with two options; "Change Background" and "Change it for me".

If you choose "Change it for me" your background and tile image will be randomly selected from all the pictures on your Windows Phone. Choose "Change Background" and you can browse through you picture galleries to find just the right photo.

Just one more way to personalize your Windows Phone.

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4 years ago

Let the hacking begin: How Windows Phone 7 can run native, unmanaged code

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We've already seen how on LG and Samsung phones, accessing the diagnostic menu can allow one to enable USB tethering. Now it is becoming evident that we can run unmanaged, native code on our phones too. Well kind of.

First, unmanaged, native code just means direct access to the software systems e.g. phone, email, etc., not just Silverlight applications that 3rd parties use. Second, the requirement here is you need to be able to sideload apps and only developers who pay the $99 fee get access to that feature. However, we've already heard from one of our sources that the whole "unlocking" business is tied to a single registry edit, meaning it may not be hard to circumvent at all.

What this all means is this: we may, at some point, be able to load custom software that not only is not approved by Microsoft, but changes fundamental restrictions on the device as well. In addition, changes to Metro UI may be possible. Of course, we won't be able to distribute these through the Marketplace, so you'll have to have the iPhone-model of a Cydia-like store. Cydia is the non-approved Apple App store where all the "hacks" and non-approved software are distributed. We so no reason why this won't happen eventually for Windows Phone either.

All of this comes back to what happened today with Australian developer Chris Walshie who was able to run unmanaged, native code on his device. The file modified “Microsoft.Phone.InteropServices” which may allow COM access in the future. By being able to modify that and write into a program, he was able to do something that only Microsoft, carriers and OEMs could do. In other words, today was the 1st day and 1st big step in "freeing" our phones.

Source: iStartedSomething

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4 years ago

Rumors: Kin rising from the dead?

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Rumors: Kin rising from the dead?

Just when you thought we had heard the last of Microsoft's Kin One and Kin Two, they find a way back into the news.  Even after their death, we saw not only one update but two updates.  Now it appears their absence may be short lived.

The Kin is listed as coming back as early as this quarter on a Verizon device guide, identifying the target audience being young adults/teens. Could this simply be an attempt on Verizon's part to liquidate the KIN inventory that's collecting dust in a warehouse or an effort to revive the Windows Phone?

If it's the latter, Verizon will have to work on device and service pricing. The units will be harder to sell to the younger crowd if they are priced along side other smartphones. We felt that the Kin phones were nice but not for everyone. A step above featured phones but they didn't rise to the level of what we expect from a Windows Phone.

If Verizon can market and price the Kin with that in mind, they might actually sell more than handful of units this time.

via: Precentral.net and thanks to ericn32 for the tip!

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4 years ago

LG Optimus 7 gets hacked for USB tethering too; LG Quantum next?

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Wow, so looks like that whole back and forth on whether Windows Phone 7 could tether is turning out to be settled: of course it can, they just hid it.

Much like the Samsung Focus and Omnia 7, the LG Optimus 7 has also been shown to be able to USB Tether as a modem. Once again, it's a bit tricky, requiring some drivers to download and tinkering with a diagnostic menu, but overall is pretty straightforward.

Directions are posted after the break.

There's a good chance that the LG Quantum will be able to do the same, seeing as they are essentially sister devices. Considering how cheap the Quantum is going for on Amazon Wireless (that'd be  1 cent), it might be a good investment.

Now we're all looking at HTC and Dell....fellas?

Source: SmartphoneFrance; via wmpoweruser

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