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3 years ago

Dell Venue Pro to be available in UK tomorrow...No, seriously

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After what seems like countless delays, UK customers will finally be able to order them starting tomorrow, March 1.  Pricing will be £382.50 for just the device, not including VAT and shipping.  Between the long, dragged out release and the history of performance issues, demand will hopefully still be strong. 4.1-inch screen and vertical slide-out QWERTY keyboard make it crowd favorite. 

Order it here at Dell.

Source: Dell; Via: TheNextWeb

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3 years ago

Traffic Cop - Review

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Traffic Cop - Review

Traffic Cop is a free game being offered over at the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace. Traffic Cop pits you against the flow of traffic at a busy intersection.

Controlling traffic is done by tapping the cars you want to stop and swiping the cars that need to speed up. As you progress through the game, traffic speeds and volume increases. To make things a little interesting, Traffic Cop includes a military tank and emergency vehicles that ignores any traffic direction.

Traffic Cop is an entertaining game but lacks an addictive quality to keep you coming back for more. The game is fun for a short time but doesn't have much play. After about thirty minutes, the game begins to feel a little stale. If the game had a change of scenery or achievements, maybe it would have a little more staying power. Traffic Cop does have the ability to post scores online for bragging rights but I couldn't help but feel it needed more gusto.

Regardless, Traffic Cop wouldn't be a bad addition to your Windows Phone gaming library. The game may not keep you hooked but it will add some variety to your Windows Phone. The game ran smoothly and vehicle controls were responsive to the touch.

Traffic Cop is a free app that can be found here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace. Follow the break for a video demo of the Traffic Cop.

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3 years ago

Bombsweeper - Review

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Bombsweeper - Review

Remember the game Minesweeper that was always present on your Windows PC? Techtwaddle is offering a version of this game for Windows Phone 7. Bombsweeper puts this classic game on your Windows Phone and it doesn't stray too far from the original.

The game is played just like the PC version. You face a grid of tiles that has bombs hidden beneath them. Your job is to tag the tiles covering these bombs with red flags. Tap on a tile covering a bomb and it's game over. You narrow down where the bombs are by tapping random tiles to reveal numbers. The number represents the number of mines surrounding that particular tile. For example, if a tile shows 2 then two of the surrounding tiles have bombs under it. To help, if you tap and hold on a number animates the surrounding tiles giving you a visual aid in selecting the next tile to tap or mark with a flag.

The game ran smoothly but the controls can be a little on the tricky side. To flag a square, you tap and hold on a tile. On occasion, the "tap and hold" registered as a tap and boom...game over. Otherwise, Bombsweeper is hard to distinguish from the original Minesweeper.

If your a fan of the classic PC game, Bombsweeper will be an enjoyable addition to your Windows Phone game lineup. If you're not familiar with the classic game, there is a trial version available to let you try before you buy. The full version of Bombsweeper runs $.99.

You can find Bombsweeper here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace. And just make the jump past the break to see a short video demo of Bombsweeper.

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3 years ago

New user-made "We Love WP7" ad is wow-worthy

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Although Microsoft has finally begun running what many consider to be a real solid ad for Windows Phone 7/Samsung Focus, much of the on-TV commercial advertising has been less than exciting so far.

Step in Brandon Foy (website), who is interning at Full Sail University for Motion Graphics + Compositing. He made this "case study" ad featuring the theme "We Love WP7" and boy, it's just amazing what one talented person with an idea can do.

Microsoft: hire this guy to make some ads, he gets it. (By the way, the song is '11H30' by Danger, for those curious)

Source: WeLoveWP7.com/YouTube; Thanks @winphonepro

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3 years ago

Seidio Innocase Surface Combo for Samsung Focus

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Seidio Innocase Surface Combo for Samsung Focus

We’ve reviewed a slew of Seidio products in the past and have consistently found them to be worth recommending. When looking for a case for a new phone, Seidio is one of the manufacturers that should be on your list of brands to research.

The Seidio Innocase line of products has a couple of different pieces. This review covers both the case and holster for the Samsung Focus. Read on for the full review.

Pros: 
Well built, leaves headphone jack open.
Cons: 
Expensive
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3 years ago

Brandon Watson on Microsoft recruiting "One Dev at a Time"

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We’ve discussed at length Microsoft’s commitment to bringing developers to the Windows Phone 7 ecosystem. Microsoft has long been a friend to developers, from making world class tools to educating devs on the platforms that they’re building upon; Microsoft is the company that others emulate.

With Windows Phone 7 Microsoft is going over and above even for them, as exemplified by a recent chain of events that played out on Twitter. In response to a recent blog post by a developer in regards to a competing platform, Brandon Watson reached out to the dev via Twitter. Through the ensuing conversation, Mr. Watson was able to facilitate getting that dev started building apps for Windows Phone.

The fact that the largest software company in the world is willing to work with individual developers is unprecedented, and speaks well of Microsoft’s chances of making Windows Phone 7 relevant in the long term.

Source: Many Niches (Brandon Watson’s Blog)

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3 years ago

Microsoft loaning 50 Windows Phones at CeBIT for the day

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While CeBIT is no Mobile World Congress, it is nonetheless a pretty big tech show focused on digital technology. While it is not shocking to find Microsoft there demoing Windows Phone, it looks like they came up with a unique way to get people to try the devices: lend 50 of them out for the day. (They're also giving away 10 in a contest)

Yup, evidently you can sign up (and we imagine exchange some kind of collateral) to carry around and use a Windows Phone all day at the conference. Gives new meaning to "hands on experience" and we think this is a great way to spread the word, because if it's one thing we know, when people actually try Windows Phone 7, they always walk away impressed. And getting the phones into the hands of analysts, tech writers and company execs is a smart way to sell your product.

Source: Dr. Mobile's Windows Phone Blog (MSDN); Thanks, tezawaly, for the tip

tezawalytezawaly
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3 years ago

Homemade Windows Phone pouch is brilliant

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While we've done our fair share of reviews around here for cases and pouches on Windows Phone, sometimes the homemade variety are the best.

In this case, user Jessica Engstrom, who picked up the Swedish release on launch, had no cases immediately available. So being the creative person she is, she made one up, using the Metro/Tile interface as inspiration (heck, even her blog is based on it).

All we have to say is someone should mass produce these things because the idea is as obvious as it is brilliant.

Source: Catoholic.se; via @vbandi

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3 years ago

Windows Phone Marketplace hits 9,000--right on schedule

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Time for our usual punch-in-the-arm reminder that growth in the Marketplace is a steady as a ninja's hand, hitting the 9,000 mark today. Like clockwork, the addition of 1,000 new apps and games comes exactly two-weeks after the last mini-milestone.

We noted in early January that if the trend keeps up, the Marketplace will hit 10,000 by mid-March. We're now certain that will happen. The big question we have is will the 500 per week number ever increase? (Oh, regarding the image...it's a silly 4Chan meme. 'Aww Yeah Guy' will be back in two weeks)

Source: Windows Phone AppList

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3 years ago

Windows Phone 7 going to Japan by year's end

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We already know that one of the big goals of Windows Phone in 2011 is expansion: more languages, more markets. In fact, it was stated by Andy Lees that they want 88% of the languages covered this year. Japan is obviously a huge part of that market, so it is not too shocking that Microsoft plans to launch there this year.

In an interview with one of Japan's largest papers, Sankei, Jean-Philippe Courtois, president of Microsoft International said "Japan is next on the list" for support. The big hurdle if implementing the Kana/Kanji writing system, something that takes some time. Adding Japan to the Windows Phone roster will help tremendously to WP7 expansion and adoption.

Meanwhile, there are some 3rd party solutions for those wishing to use Japanese now in an unofficial capacity--see 'Flickpad X2' (homebrew) and 'JPinput' (Marketplace).

Source: Sankei; via Nanapho.jp; Thanks, tezawaly

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3 years ago

Verizon Trophy picture surfaces

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Verizon Trophy picture surfaces

We've heard rumors that the HTC Trophy would land at Verizon sometime in March. Pictures of the new Windows Phone are now beginning to surface.

It is our understanding that the pictured Trophy is running the updated version of Windows Phone 7, complete with copy/paste. To help complete the Verizon branding, HTC has also changed the yellow underside to red.

The Verizon Trophy is expected to be introduced with the pricing point of $200 (more than likely $199.99) after contractual discounts.

Source: Engadget

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3 years ago

Haypi Kingdom version 2.10 and 2.11 changelogs

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Since we initially mentioned Haypi Kingdom, the first Massively Multi-player Online game for Windows Phone 7, the game has been updated twice. These updates come as no surprise - MMOs are huge, constantly evolving games. Let's look at what's been added or tweaked. Note that we've edited these a little for clarity and inserted our own comments.

Haypi Kingdom version 2.10.0.0 change log:

  • Enhancement system added: You can improve your current equipment with enhancement stones, which can be attained via hunting, daily gift, competition or purchased from NPC. The enhancements can be made to create additional attribute points to your current equipment, enhancing your prowess on the battlefield.
  • Two new chest types (Gold and Silver) added: These special chests can be gained from war or as daily gifts. They need to be unlocked by coins and there are many alluring surprises in them including coins or valuable treasure. You can also choose to sell the chest to get money.

There's a lot more after the jump...

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3 years ago

24 Hour WP7 Hackathons in UK

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24 Hour WP7 Hackathons in UK

We have learnt of some fantastic news for any England based developers (abroad too if you can get to the events by March) with two local hackathons based solely on Windows Phone 7 development. The one-day events - which are entirely free – are built on the previous successful DeveloperDeveloperDeveloper sessions that focused on developers learning, interacting and sharing unique ideas in a relaxed and informal atmosphere. The event is hosted in Manchester on March 18th, with Birmingham following on the 25th. Both beginning at 18:00 (6pm) on a Friday.

The events have one single goal: to get as many apps ready for Marketplace submission as possible (within the 24 hours), while having fun along the way, learning tricks and networking with fellow developers. As mentioned on the official website, one should attend if:

  • You’ve got a great idea for an app and need help getting started
  • You’re building an app but need help on implementing some features
  • You have an app that’s nearly ready and need advice on how to get it through the Marketplace submission process
  • You want to collaborate with other WP7 devs and contribute to the creation of open source libraries, controls or components

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3 years ago

NY Times on moonlighting at Microsoft and Windows Phone app development

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If you used 'Browser Plus' or the photo-sharing app 'Bubblegum', two of our favorites around here, then you've used programs developed by Microsoft employees on their spare time. In this case, 'Browser Plus' was written by Sriram Krishnan and 'Bubblegum' was written by Sriram and his wife Aarthi Ramamurthy, on their honeymoon. (Aarthi recently announed her departure from the company).

But what makes that dynamic so unique is that these engineers (and over 3,000 others) were able to write these apps in their spare-time and profit from their work. That's different because usually software engineers are encouraged not to work in their spare time, since their ideas and creative energy get company priority. In other words, this was a big shift for Microsoft who went from discouragement to literally throwing pizza parties and openly promoting their employees work.

The change is due to the effort of many on the WP7 team who pushed for allowing employees to work in their spare time and to make money from it. Now we're starting to see the results from the reversal and truth be told their seems to be a re-invigoration behind the company and its employees, something that Google learned awhile ago (they still allow 20% of their employees' paid time to be devoted to personal projects). To that end, we say to everyone at Microsoft, keep up the good work.

Read more at the NY Times and check out Sriram's blog here. Finally, we wish Aarthi good luck with her new pursuits!

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