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3 years ago

Share your Windows Phone fan art to get it featured on Facebook

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Have some interesting and / or humorous Windows Phone fan art? Or do you simply have an awesome photo containing a handset that you wish to show off? If you share it on Facebook with the Windows Phone team, they may well include your submission in their album.

Checking out what has been added so far shows there are a lot of cakes around that have been Metro'd. From the previous competitions we've held here at WPCentral, we know our reader base is bursting at the seems with talent (we have to suck up to you guys at some point, right?), so it'll be interesting to see what you call come up with.

Source: Facebook

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3 years ago

Experiencing battery drain issues? The cause could be free apps

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Abhinav Pathak, a computer scientist at Purdue University, Indiana, and colleagues have concluded that free smartphone apps with in-app advertising may lead to the battery being drained at a faster rate, compared to paid apps. What's interesting (and slightly alarming) is the team discovered through testing that Angry Birds, Free Chess and NYTimes only used 10 - 30 percent of the battery power for core functionality.

Using the Android Market as the test grounds for the research, the team found that 25 - 35% of the app power consumption went to third-party advertising code displayed in apps for developers to make ends meet. In the case of Angry Birds, 20% is used to display and run the game, while 45% of the power is used finding and uploading the user's location with GPS, followed by downloading location-appropriate ads over a 3G connection.

This is something to consider when next browisng any smartphone marketplace. The findings will be presented by Pathak at the EuroSys conference in Bern, Switzerland, next month. Be sure to check out the full research documentation as it's fairly lengthy, but interesting.

Source: Microsoft Research, via: NewScientist

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3 years ago

Windows Phone App Review: Black Box

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3 years ago

NDrive app heading for Windows Phone

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NDrive app heading for Windows Phone

NDrive has announced plans to introduce an app for Windows Phone, according to a press release published late last month. To bring the service to the likes of Blackberry and our platform, NDrive will enter a partnership with Appello. NDrive is currently already available for Android, iOS and Samsung bada.

Luis Baptista-Coelho, NDrive’s Chief Executive Officer, added the following:

"We are very excited to address 100% of the smartphone market with our location based app. On top of the current Android, Apple iOS and Samsung bada environments, we are now delivering a Blackberry and a Windows Phone 7 app that will strengthen our offering into the carrier markets around the world."

The move will provide Windows Phone users with another turn-by-turn navigation app. Check out the press release for more details.

Source: NDrivethanks Ricardo for the tip!

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3 years ago

WeatherLive getting themes & animated radar in 4.0 update [Video]

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It's been awhile since we've seen WeatherLive get some major new functions, so it's with great joy to see version 4.0 beta making the rounds.

While the poplar weather app has grown in functionality, it has also become a little sluggish too. In addition, some people missed the simplicity of the the versions 1 and 2 of the app over the more busy 3.x. Luckily, the developer has been listening and 4.0 looks to make everyone happy. Here are the major changes:

  • Faster - the app's transitions and loading times are much zippier and more fluid
  • Theme support - With three themes, including Metro Minimalist, Metro and the new Glass, users can choose how they want the app to look
  • Animated radar - the radar map is now animated with 'pinch and zoom' built right in
  • Graphic tweaks - improved and cleaner UI

We really like where 4.0 is heading with the themes support as it will seemingly make everyone happy who has used this app in the past. The performance increase is also welcomed as the app was getting a big bogged down with the latest updates.

Look towards version 4.0 hitting the Marketplace in a few weeks. In the meantime, take v3.5 for a trial in the Marketplace or buy it for $1.49.

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3 years ago

Unofficial Grooveshark client coming for Windows Phone [Video]

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Grooveshark is a streaming service that allows you to pick any artist, song or album and simply create playlists to listen to on your computer, tablet or phone. Unlike Pandora or IHeartRadio, it does not give you new artists/songs based off of your listening preference. Instead, it's more like just streaming the music you want to hear with no experimentation.

The HTML5 site works well enough on Windows Phone for streaming in IE9 but Grooveshark have stated they have no intentions for a dedicated client for Windows Phone. That's too bad. However, the developer of MetroRadio (an unofficial Pandora app for Windows Phone) is now working on Groovyshark, an unofficial Grooveshark client for our devices.

We took the alpha build (i.e. pre-beta) for a test drive just to show you that indeed you can hook-into Grooveshark. We also got a sneak peek at the new "screensaver" function that's coming to MetroRadio too which is very reminiscent of Zune's music player on the Zune HD and Zune Desktop. That latter feature is something many have wanted Windows Phone to have built in so it's nice to see someone is working on it.

Groovyshark will hopefully be out in a few weeks to the Windows Phone Marketplace with full queue and playlist functionality built in. We'll keep you posted on  its developments right here at WPCentral.

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3 years ago

Windows Phone won't get Angry Birds Space on March 22

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Sad news from the outskirts of space: Windows Phone won't be getting Angry Birds Space on March 22 when Android and iOS do.  An email from Rovio, developer of the mega-popular phenomenon, told DailyMobile that while they are "working day and night to get the game to all relevant devices," they do not have the resources to get deliver to all platforms at once.  Having been wait-listed for the first installment of Angry Birds, only to be missing 105 levels when it finally did arrive,  this comes as another heavy blow from Rovio.  Being that Android and iOS dominate mobile market, it makes sense that Windows Phone takes a back seat, but it doesn't sting any less.

Rovio declined to share any information about specific features of the newest add-on to the Angry Birds franchise.  However, the game was previewed at SXSW on Samsung's Galaxy Note, which benefits from Samsung's partnership with Rovio by getting exclusive in-game content.  For now, you can get a small taste from the teaser below.

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3 years ago

Carphone Warehouse shows Windows Phone support with myth buster

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We're not sure when this was published, since it's well hidden on the website, but it would appear as though the Carphone Warehouse has a soft spot for Windows Phone. They have an entire page dedicated to attacking myths that are continuously posted by those who are fans of competitor platforms, or who simply don't like Microsoft products.

From terrible battery life, to the lack of apps, the most common groans and moans are all covered in this myth buster. The following excerpt from the article sums up the user friendliness perfectly:

"Windows® Phone has a Start screen with large Live Tiles (icons) that are easy to read and not fiddly to use. It's also simple to customise and pin the apps and live updates you want right on the Start screen. Then you swipe to the right to access the full list of apps. Options are accessible in any app by pressing the three dots in the bottom right of the screen. And there's a home button, a back button and a search button on the front of each phone. Simple."

Be sure to check out the full article at the Carphone Warehouse. All-in-all we're impressed with this positive exposure for the platform (and a strong sign of support). Also, for it to be handled by a popular UK retailer is even better. There's more that can be done, however.

Take the above screen capture. This is from the navigation drop-down on the Carphone Warehouse UK website. As you will have noticed - there's no Windows Phone accompanying Android and the iPhone menu entries. Then again, the retailer has continued to stock and promote Windows Phone handsets (including the upcoming Lumia 900) on the website with some good deals. Either way, hats off to the Carphone Warehouse.

Source: Carphone Warehouse, thanks Ian for the heads up!

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3 years ago

Nokia Lumia 900 available to pre-order at Swiss retailer Digitech for CHF 699

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Online Swiss retailer Digitech has the Lumia 900 listed on the website for CHF 699 ($760), but unfortunately no release / availability date is provided. The phone sports a 4.3" AMOLED display, 8MP camera, 1.4Ghz chip and a 16GB storage.

We're still waiting for the 4G LTE Lumia 900 to hit AT&T, but it's good to see more retailers list the international version.

Source: Digitech, thanks Simon for the heads up!

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3 years ago

Windows Phone Game Review: Tile Attack

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Looking for a challenging game for your Windows Phone? Give Tile Attack a try.

It has a little bit of a Tetris feel to it with a little Bejeweled mixed in.  Your goal is to eliminate tiles by grouping three or more of the same colored tiles.  Add three game modes with multiple levels and you've got a decent little puzzle game for your Windows Phone in Tile Attack.

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3 years ago

Windows Phone Summary of the Week: March 12 - 18 2012

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Welcome to your Windows Phone summary of the week, where we fill you in on everything that has happened over the week here at WPCentral. It's been fairly eventful period (with advertising and promotion anyway - looking at you Nokia), so let's head straight into it. Before we crack on with the goodies, WPCentral is judging a Windows Phone UK contest where the main prize is a shiny new Lumia 800! All you have to do is review your favourite must-have Xbox Live game and submit it for a chance of winning.

We've got episode 138 of the WPCentral podcast published and ready for your viewing pleasure - Jay and Dan are joined by Justin Angel from Nokia. Over at our Windows Phone forum, we've got a new bartering section implemented that enables registered members to exchange / buy / sell devices and other products. Among the active discussions currently taking place, there has been particular interest in Apollo (Windows Phone 8). Be sure to head on past the break for the full summary.

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3 years ago

Debunked: Microsoft's Belfiore: "Some problems" with AT&T Lumia 900

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A supposed earlier correspondence between Microsoft's Joe Belfiore and Aamer Khan denoting "problems" with the Lumia 900 is evidently erroneous.

Belfiore has sent out a Tweet, in response to our own Rafael Rivera, noting that the account referred to in our earlier post is in fact a fake:

Any alleged FACEBOOK message from me that claims anything is wrong with Lumia 900 ... also a fake. :)

The Lumia 900 is a Nokia phone in AT&T stores.. the launch date is Nok + AT&T's news to announce. Not us MS folks. Sorry!

So while we still don't have a Lumia 900 on AT&T and no firm date is in place, let it be known, we now know nothing more nor nothing less than a few hours ago.

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3 years ago

Rogers accepting pre-orders for the Nokia Lumia 900

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While we had all hoped the Nokia Lumia 900 Windows Phone to become available today, there is some good news. Rogers Canada is now accepting pre-orders for the Lumia 900.

As an added bonus, as was teased earlier, those who pre-order the 900 are entered for a chance to win a private screening of The Dark Knight Rises and a special edition Dark Knight Lumia 900. Five runners up will have to catch the movie in theaters but will get a special edition Lumia 900 (likely designed just like the Dark Knight Lumia 800).

Pre-order (new customers) costs for the Lumia 900 will run $99.99. Reserve orders (existing customers) appears to be running $159.99.  Unfortunately the only date we could find is the deadline for the movie contest (April 10th).  There was no reference on an expected ship date.

You can find all the details on pre-ordering the Lumia 900 and the Dark Knight contest here at Rogers Canada.

Thanks, Matthieu, for the tip

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3 years ago

Microsoft's Belfiore: "Some problems" with AT&T Lumia 900, probably coming in April [False]

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While we just posted about the TITAN II's no show and we're still unsure about the Lumia 900, evidently Microsoft Corporate VP of Windows Phone, Joe Belfiore knows what's going on.  See update to story.

As usual, the problem is either related to certification/finalized firmware for AT&T or Nokia building up enough supply. At least that's how we're reading this message (via Facebook) exchanged with WPCentral reader Aamer Khan just a few hours ago:

Khan: Any word on the Lumia 900 for ATT? Word on the sesame street is March 16th? Would you like to comment?

Belfiore: Dear Aamer there are some problems..nothing serious. Probably Lumia 900 ATT will arrive in April...stay tuned bye

Though the specifics are unknown it sounds like the normal hiccups with getting a new device out the door and getting a large launch lined up.  Of course that does little to satisfy the majority of you who are itching to get this phone as soon as possible. At least we can take solace in knowing the launch is growing near.

Update: For the record, we're getting a lot of tips still saying the 8th is the new day for launch (with it being available in stores on the 9th)

Thanks, Aamer, for the heads up

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