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3 years ago

HTC Mazaa doesn't like HTC apps

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HTC Mazaa doesn't like HTC apps

Here's a funny little anecdote that will affect about 0.2% of you: the HTC Mazaa, basically a limited edition developer device, doesn't seem to recognize that it's an HTC phone. Poor thing.

Reader of the site Achia S. won an HTC Mazaa from Microsoft's WPAppItUp contest. Wanting to install the HTC Flashlight app, they get a notice stating that this app only runs on HTC phones and therefore, you can't have it. Obviously the problem here is that HTC along with this build of the OS aren't recognized by HTC's validating process--something they could probably fix, but are in no rush to address. In fairness, HTC was kind enough to respond to Achia's inquiry on the matter:

"I understand the importance of having an HTC 7 Trophy that functions as it was intended. Unfortunately, with developer devices, we cannot ensure that the ROM on it will function as the released model. I recommend contacting Microsoft to see if they can push the Release build to your device and have it running the appropriate software. I do apologize for any inconvenience."

It's interesting that HTC tech support conflates the 7 Trophy with the Mazaa--they are similar devices but different internals and it's not clear that a finalized ROM will fix the matter either. It sounds more or less like HTC needs to add the Mazaa to their recognized database, but whaddya we know? Thanks, Achia S., for the heads up!

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3 years ago

AVG releases first antivirus scanner for Windows Phone 7

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AVG has been around for quite awhile and have recently entered the growing mobile space (we hear Android is gangbusters for a/v scanners). They've now released a free "suite" for Windows Phones, combining an earlier product (Safe Search) with an actual virus scanner:

"Free Security Suite from AVG Mobilation – security software for Windows Phone™. Keep your device safe with just one click"

  • Safe Web Surfing - Stay safe from phishing and malware while surfing the web
  • Safe Search - Allowing you search the web avoiding malicious web sites

In addition, the virus scanner portion will scan over your music and images. Surprisingly, the scan is pretty fast though we do have to wonder about other vulnerabilities such as PDFs, docx and of course programs. We imagine though when it comes to the latter, AVG can only do so much within the siloed limitations of the Windows Phone OS. So how much of a threat could there be from music or images? We're not too really to sure but we're more concerned about side-loading XAP files from untrusted sources--something which this app doesn't cover.

Still, for being free, it's not bad. It can update/download new AV definitions and the Safe Search/Web Surfing is not bad if you're worried about going to a malicious site. Worth the download? Perhaps--at 5MB, it sure won't kill your device and giving it once-over (under 30 secs for most of you) may not be a bad idea. Read more at http://www.avgmobilation.com/ and pick the app up here in the Marketplace.

Update: Rafael Rivera has broken down the app to see what exactly it does. As of now, since there are no known threats to WP7, it scans for EICAR (test file) and the word עברית (Hebrew) but has no generics capability, meaning there's very little that this will actually scan for.

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3 years ago

Gravity Guy lands on the Marketplace [Xbox LIVE]

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Ready for some serious platforming? Gravity Guy from Miniclip is now available in the Marketplace.

Gravity Guy is a game based entirely around playing with gravity. As the hero automatically runs from left to right, players must reverse gravity back and forth in order to help him make it past obstacles. The game quickly becomes challenging, requiring split-second reflexes and perhaps a touch of memorization in order to keep Gravity Guy from the graveyard. The urge to get just a bit farther pushes players on…

Not only is Gravity Guy a pretty game, with well-drawn characters and backgrounds containing a lot of depth, but it’s also multiplayer! Just not online. That’s right, Gravity Guy is one of the few mobile Xbox Live games to feature local multiplayer that isn’t a board game. Up to four players can participate simultaneously, tapping their respective corners of the screen in order to flip their individual heroes. Multiplayer might not be comfy, but it’s something.

Gravity Guy costs $2.99 and there is a free trial. Hop over here (Zune link) to get it from the Marketplace.

Also, don't forget that Pocket God is the Xbox Live Deal of the Week. It's on sale for $1.99 and you can find it here.

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3 years ago

easyTube Ad-Free completely free through September

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easyTube is a slick YouTube app for Windows Phone. It’s got some nice features like playing 720P videos, remotely loading videos on a PC from the phone, the ability to play only the audio stream from videos, and downloading videos to the phone so that they can be viewed later without an internet connection. Plus you can play your YouTube Favorites continuously without having to select the next video, which I love.

easyTube was originally available in a free ad-supported version only but a paid ad-free version came out in August. Right now they are both free, enabling everyone to get the proper adless version at no cost. This promotion lasts until the end of September - plenty of time to give it a download.

You can get the new ad-free version of easyTube here (Zune link) on the Marketplace.

Thanks to Timmy Bouwmann for the tip!

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3 years ago

Best Windows Phone commerical ever? Yes. Oh yes.

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We all know how Microsoft needs a little help with promotion for Windows Phone. But they are getting better at it and with Brandon Foy having graced Microsoft with his talents (though not in marketing), we think they'll make a turn around this fall.

Still, no one sets the bar like the Japanese. For anything. Case in point, this awesome ad for the Fujitsu IS12T. Oh we have no idea what he's saying but does it matter? Nope, it does not. Don't ever change Japan, we love you.

"Skydrive Toi toi toi!"

Thanks, @Kinsoft_Apps, for the tip!

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3 years ago

Windows Phone Marketplace statistics

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Windows Phone Marketplace statistics

Justin Angel, former Microsoft Silverlight Program Manager, has downloaded all Windows Phone Marketplace XAPs and analysed them. He's then gone on to provide some insightful graphs for us all to see. He ended up with 108GB and analysed 24,505 apps, looking at Obfuscation, Silverlight vs. XNA, programming language, number of cloned apps and more.

We'll get stuck into cloned apps to begin with, which Justin reports as being around 925 of the 24,505 he took into account. These are the apps that share the same functionality as each other, such as the spam that we encountered, etc. He estimated that over 20% of the Marketplace is the same app published more than once. This leaves just 18,549 apps in the Marketplace that are unique. Check out the chart after the break for a visual representation.

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3 years ago

Zune terms changing Sept 13, reducing the number of sync devices for music [Updated]

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Oh this is not something we want to post as this is just bad, bad bad. Evidently, on September 13th Microsoft is reducing the number of devices upon which you can sync with the Zune music service from 6 (3 computers and 3 devices) to just 4 (at least 1 computer and any combo of 3 PCs and devices). You'll also need to download at least one new song to each device to continue using the service.

We're none to pleased with these changes but have a feeling it has something to do with licensing from the music companies, reduction in costs to those licenses and perhaps trying to reduce "sharing" of Zune passes. Regadless, that's just lame. Users are reportedly being sent emails with the following information and you don't have a choice to the change outside of cancelling your subscription.

Update: LiveSide is reporting (via EnConnected) that this is only for Europe and not the US, where as of now, we will still be able to sync to 6 devices. This should ease over tensions between our Euro and US readers /sarcasm.

Thanks, Lee T., for the images and info!; see also My Microsoft Life

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3 years ago

Orientation screen lock for Windows Phone?

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Orientation screen lock for Windows Phone?

We're not sure if these are legit or not but it's not exactly something very far fetched. The idea of adding an orientation lock to phones is a pretty standard one, adding convenience when laying down in bed or if you just don't use your device that way. The method seems simple enough: bring down the volume bar, tap the icon to lock/unlock screen orienation.

These images come reportedly from someone's Facebook page and if real, would be from a newer build of the OS we haven't see yet. On the other hand, they could also be clever concepts, so take 'em with a grain of salt because we probably won't see this anytime soon.  Cool idea though.

Thanks, anonymous, for the tip!

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3 years ago

Microsoft has high hopes for WP7 marketshare

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Microsoft has said that they are predicting Windows Phone to capture more than 20% of the smartphone market over the next few years through clever and effective marketing as well as support from manufacturers. Remember when Pyramid Research predicted the OS to reach top spot by 2013? Well the software giant is looking to smash that prediction.

Achim Berg, head of Windows Phone marketing, had this to say at IFA:

"HTC and other partners will run advertisement campaigns for the Titan and Radar phones, and the company has joined Microsoft in training hundreds of salesmen worldwide to better demonstrate the product. Microsoft plans to build on Windows Phone’s initial success with female consumers as well as with young and first-time users to win market share."

Berg also stated (and quite rightly so) that it took Apple and Google time for iOS and Android to catch on. Granted that Microsoft has arrived slightly late, but they still share the same obstacles when starting out. Apps wise, the Marketplace has shown positive signs of growth and developers are creating superb applications.

With regards to manufacturer support, if the HTC event in London was anything to go by, I'd say they're fairly confident in Mango and it shows in the beastly hardware that's going to hit shelves later this year. It's great to see in the above quote that Microsoft has been actively training salesmen with HTC to better demonstrate products, something carriers could also partner for.

Source: Bloomberg

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3 years ago

Pokemon Wallpapers for your Windows Phone

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Sitting around trying to find a cool looking Pokemon wallpaper for your Windows Phone? Look no further.

pldh.net has compiled a rather impressive collection of Pokemon wallpapers that can easily be adapted for your Windows Phone. The collection includes the first 493 Pokemon and includes Pokemon from the Kanto, Johto, Hoenn, and Sinnoh regions.

The wallpapers can be downloaded as a complete set or by region. The images are sized at 1920x1080 so you'll need to crop them down a little to fit the 480x800 Windows Phone screen.  Then it is just an issue of transferring the image files to your Windows Phone through Zune or email them to Windows Phone.

The wallpapers look good and represent the Pokemon characters well. You can download the wallpaper sets here at pldh.net.

via: 1800pocketpc

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3 years ago

Play god for less - Pocket God is the Xbox Live Deal of the Week

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Fable Coin Golf was a pretty impressive Xbox Live Deal of the Week. It would be hard to match that level of quality two weeks in a row. But hey, this week’s sale game isn’t that bad. It’s Pocket God from Ngmoco (which is apparently a real company name). Pocket God is going on sale for $1.99, down from $2.99.

Pocket God is that game where players get to mistreat a bunch of pygmies and participate in lots of little minigames too. It’s silly fun, as our review attests. The Windows Phone version, however, is kind of buggy, with at least one semi-glitched Achievement. This version also receives far fewer updates than the superior iPhone original, though the developer promised at least one more update a while back. But if you just want to beat up on some islanders (who can blame you? *wink*) and aren’t concerned with all the technical aspects and getting extra content every few weeks like iPhone users, you’ll still have a good time.

Pocket God’s sale price starts on Wednesday, September 7 and lasts for one week only. Grab it here (Zune link) on the Marketplace.

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3 years ago

Next to fall, RIM? BlackBerry maker urged to sell itself or patents.

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We all know what happened with webOS and HP and before that Nokia's Symbian, but what about RIM's BlackBerry? Like Palm, they too were on top of their game just a few years ago but with Android and the iPhone everywhere these days, RIM is taking a beating. Their stock has lost almost half their value this year and things are not looking that much better with their "next gen" QNX operating system.

Now Jaguar Financial Corp. is publicly calling on RIM to either sell itself off or its patents "to boost investor returns". While Jaguar's exact amount in investment in RIM is not known, they are considered to be a major player and can evidently gain headlines when they throw their weight around. Either way, it's never a good thing when your investors are calling on you to get out of the game.

Companies have been in the same position as RIM before--Microsoft just two years ago and Palm before that. While Microsoft's story is yet to be finished, they have certainly fared better than Palm, who was bought out by HP and then subsequently had their hardware killed off, leaving webOS without much of a future. Which route will RIM go? We can't help but notice that they don't have a large developer ecosystem, a desktop OS, a gaming platform or any other source of revenue--the exact opposite of Apple, Google and Microsoft. To that end, we don't see RIM holding on much longer as they won't be able to make a dent in the all important consumer market.

So would Microsoft buy RIM if given the opportunity? Ballmer seemed lukewarm to the idea back in January, but perhaps if the price is right and those patents are for sale they'd change their tune.

Stay tuned...

Source: Bloomberg/SF Gate

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3 years ago

Samsung releases Mobile Print app for Windows Phone

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One word: Nice! That's our reaction to Samsung's new "Mobile Print" app which can be downloaded now in the Marketplace. From the app description:

"Mobile Print is a free application which enables print photos and SNS contents directly from your smartphone. The application also enables scanning documents to your mobile device directly."

  • Automatic print searching on a local wireless network
  • Compatible with Samsung wireless and network printers only
  • Print photos, Facebook and Twitter
  • Scan document directly to your mobile device
  • Print on on supported printers shared on Windows and Mac

Sounds similar to the official Brother iPrint app released a few weeks ago. We're always glad to see Samsung put out cool apps like this, even if it's limited to only Samsung printers. Grab it here in the Samsung Marketplace (only Sammy phones!).

via: Windows Phone Metro; Thanks, Steve S., for the tip!

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3 years ago

Why are indie developers heading for WP7?

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An insightful article has been published over at PCWorld that covers possible reasons as to why indie developers are bothering with Windows Phone at all. Even though Microsoft's platform may appear to be small fish when compared against iOS and Android, it's certainly catching the attention of a wider audience and increasing brand awareness dramatically.

The article goes into detail about the Microsoft Evangelists that get in touch with developers and students to lure them to the platform, as well as a few established developers who have built popular and well received apps. This includes Pieter Voloshyn, of Thumba (our review), and Calum McLellan, of Feed Me (our review). It's worth the read so we wont spoil it too much, head on through the link below.

Source: PCWorld

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3 years ago

Windows Phone Marketplace error c101b00b, anyone?

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So we just noticed we're getting a nasty little Marketplace error when trying to download any app today. We're running on Mango and noticed this on a few of our phones, but we sent out a request on Twitter to see if anyone else was experiencing the same.

Turns out it's mixed, but definitely a large portion of you are experiencing irregularities in the Marketplace today--regardless of Mango or NoDo. We've heard from Portugal, Norway, Switzerland,  US, Romania and Australia so far with parts of the U.S. Italy and UK doing okay.

We're not sure what's going as it could be just a temporary hiccup, but we'll keep you posted.

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