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3 years ago

Deepshining ROM gets 8107 update + custom Marketplace

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Custom ROMs on Windows Phone, mostly isolated to Gen 1 devices like the HTC HD7 which applies here, usually focus on things like updating to the latest OS. In that case, the newest version of Deepshining by dotcompt is up to snuff as it now features 8107 of the OS. But Deepshining goes much further with version 7 released yesterday.

The biggest addition, besides the custom SMS backup tool and Skydrive would be the Deepshining Marketplace. That's right, this is the first custom Marketplace that features XAP files from XDA and Marketplace Aps and Games. The files are stored on the Deepshining servers, which means when they are updated at XDA, they will be uploaded and distributed through the ROM. There will be an update panel for users to check to see if they have the latest and greatest homebrew apps. (At the moment, we're unclear if this features any illegal apps or games, but we're giving the benefit of the doubt it does not).

Early reviews from users seem to be heaping praise on the ROM and no doubt having 8107 on an HD7 must feel pretty good. Of course you'll need to unlock the HD7 and take your time updating, but overall it seems to be worth it.

Head here to XDA to learn more and we'll see about flashing our HD7 to give all this a test drive.

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3 years ago

From the WPCentral Forums: CES 2012

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From the WPCentral Forums: CES 2012

This week in the forums we were talking about, well everything. The beginning of the week was all CES 2012. We were so excited we even made a forum for the event.  Now that CES 2012 is over, all the threads from CES have been moved to our Events sub forum in the WP7 OS General forum area. All the great event discussions from CES 2012 and future events will be there, like my personal favorite thread from CES 2012: "Smoked by a Windows Phone". Come join us for all the CES stuff and discussions about upcoming events like Mobile World Congress in February.

"Nokia shows why it is a failing company" Forums member garment69 started this thread in which he says: "Their first entry into the US market is with a subpar opening price point phone that doesnt even match up against the Samsung Focus" I know you have an opinion on that. We need your help to get this all sorted out so come join the discussion.

Windows Phone Central has added a Pictures & Albums upload area for all our members you can get more information in this thread: New Pictures & Albums Forum Feature 

"The Lumia or Wait Debate": What's it going to be a Lumia 900, Titan II or something else? Take the poll, post your comments and if you look real hard through that thread you might even find out what I'm going to do. (Shhh... Don't tell my Wife!)

If that wasn't enough for one week, check out the Application explosion in our Spotlight Forums. With more than 20 apps and games added just this week your sure to find something you can use. Here are a few that were added recently:

Applications Spotlight:

Games Spotlight:

The forums are more fun when you register, so sign up today.

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3 years ago

WPDoodle: The TITAN II makes other Windows Phones look like wimps

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In reflection of CES 2012 last week (and looking forward to our WPCentral recap-podcast tomorrow), we want to celebrate the TITAN II a little bit with this week's WPDoodle. While HTC did a pretty knock up job with the original TITAN, besides the massive 4.7" screen there wasn't really anything "huge" about it.

Now with that super fast 4G LTE on board and a whopping 16MP camera (the largest HTC has ever used, even besting Android) the TITAN II truly feels like it earned its name.

Sure, we can talk about how the 16MP camera is more gimmick than advantage, but for marketing purposes it will get Windows Phone noticed. We're okay with that as we needed something to differentiate ourselves from the competition, something to get consumers to pay attention. Will it pay off? We'll find out in a few weeks.

In the meantime, check our our TITAN II hands on, video test, 16MP camera samplesLTE information and more photos of the device.

WPDoodle images courtesy of Jason Harrison, founder of BrowCo.com. Have a great idea for a WPDoodle? Send an email to doodles@mobilenations.com and Jason'll take a gander.

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3 years ago

Windows Phone featured in Coronation Street

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In the second part of Coronation Street (a popular British TV soap) that aired this evening (8:30pm), we can clearly see a Nokia Lumia 800 being held by the actor with a beautiful camera shot to show off calendar functionality. At about 21:20 in, we see the product placement. You can check out the episode on ITV Player (link below), but be aware that ITV loves advertisements.

Source: ITV Player

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3 years ago

AT&T updating Focus S and Flash to OS 7739.25?

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Another day, another odd OS update. This time we're getting word from reader Justin A. that the Focus S and Focus Flash were seen in an AT&T store sporting OS build 7739.25. We guess AT&T could not afford the 0.75 to get 7740? Oh, we jest.

No word on an OS changes or fixes here, though seeing as how close it is to 7740, we surmise that this could be a US version of that update which features the Exchange 2003 email fix. That's cold comfort though for all of us who have the "disappearing keyboard" bug which is addressed, along with other security fixes, in OS build 8107. That build of the OS, which features LTE support and will be found on the Nokia Lumia 900 and HTC TITAN II, began rolling out last week. No word on any US carriers getting that update.

We just checked our Focus S to see if there was an update pending and alas, nothing. Hopefully we'll find out more soon.

Update: We should also note that the Firmware has a slight change (11.11.1), as does the Radio Hardware (0.0.0.6 versus our 0.0.0.0) and a slightly newer Bootloader (5.11.3 versus our 5.10.2.0) meaning this seems like a genuine pending OS update.

Thanks, Justin, for the pic!

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3 years ago

Nokia Lumia 800 hitting Ireland February 1st, 900 following?

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Nokia has announced on Facebook that the Lumia 800 will be available on Vodafone in Ireland on February 1st, which we touched on last week. What's more is that according to users who visited the Facebook page, they noticed the manufacturer stating that the Lumia 900 (the recently announced U.S. LTE Windows Phone) will be coming to Europe in Q2 2012. See the below quote:

"The Nokia Lumia 900 will launch across Europe including Ireland in Q.2 of 2012. We cannot confirm whether Vodafone will stock it or not at this point. Hope that answers your questions guys?!"

So that will at least give us hope of the high end handset coming to Europe.

Source: Nokia Ireland Facebook Page, thanks Mike for the tip!

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3 years ago

Nokia Lumia 710 features fast UI rotation [Video]

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We've been using the Nokia Lumia 710 on T-Mobile (see our review) for a few days now and one thing we found is the device is fast. Now by fast we of course mean on T-Mobile "4G' HSPA+ network, which we're seeing quick downloads but also there's something else--the OS itself seems zippier. On WP Bench, we get around 88 for a score, which is high but far below the Titan and Focus S.

Upon closer inspection we noticed the screen rotation from portrait to landscape is very rapid. So rapid that while driving we saw it quickly toggle between the two modes when taking a sharp turn. That tells us that this is either a very sensitive accelerometer with perhaps a lower delay in the transition effect.

When compared to the Lumia 800, Samsung Focus S, etc. the Lumia 710 will always beat them in switching between landscape and portrait. We actually really like this as it makes the OS and device feel even faster (it's very useful for messaging apps where you need the keyboard). Anyways, we thought it was neat and we hope the Lumia 900 features the same type of OS modification too.

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3 years ago

T-Mobile Lumia 710 for a penny at Costco

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A penny for your thoughts? How about for a T-Mobile Lumia 710? We've seen some nice deals on the latest Windows Phone to hit T-Mobile's shelves. Wal-Mart is offering the Lumia 710 for free on-line, T-Mobile is selling the 710 for $49.99 and now Costco is offering the 4G Windows Phone for a penny.  They are only listing the black model with no indication if the white model will become available at a later date.

Pricing is after the customary two year contractual discounts and a qualifying data plan.   Not too shabby of a price for a very nice, entry level Windows Phone.

Thanks, Anthony, for the tip!

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3 years ago

New images of Sony-Ericsson Windows Phone prototype emerge

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We've seen an image or two of the old Sony Ericsson prototype Windows Phone that was canceled before. The device, code-named 'Julie',  was a qwerty-slider and looked quite tantalizing at the time. Since then, SE has jumped on the Android bandwagon while leaving the door open for Windows Phone. We thought for a moment that SE was teasing us with a new Windows Phone for CES, but alas it was more Android.

Now, two new images have leaked of a Sony Ericsson Windows Phone device. Clearly a prototype not much is known about this phone but we're taking a guess that it is just the same qwerty-slider that we've seen previously. If you look closely at the top photo, the thickness of the device and "break" midway suggests that this is a slider.

What does this all mean? Unfortunately, we don't have any evidence that SE (or just Sony going forward very soon) has any plans for a Windows Phone. But Mobile World Congress is coming up at the end of February, so who knows maybe Sony will have something to present.

The site NokiaWP, who received the photos, claim that this is running Windows Phone 7.5 "Mango" which would definitely indicate active development. However, we cannot verify either claim at the moment.

Stay tuned..

Source: NokiaWP; Thanks, Juddy, for the tip!

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3 years ago

Nokia hands over 350 essential 2G, 3G, and 4G patents to IP bulldog

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Nokia has recently sold 450 patents to Sisvel, an italian Intellectual property manager. Of those, 350 patents spanning across 33 families encapsulate key wireless technologies like GSM, UMTS/WCDMA, and LTE. Although Nokia nor Sisvel are going into details of the deal, it's expected that Nokia will retain the rights to use these patents, and likely collect on some of the ongoing royalties, but Sisvel will likely get a cut of royalties in exchange for actively protecting the patents in the courtroom. 

It might seem natural that Nokia hold onto these patents with an iron fist and squeeze every penny-worth of royalties out of them, but legal costs can add up; by incentivizing an outside source to do the trolling while possibly still getting some of the royalties themselves, Nokia will be able to focus their resources (both legal and monetary) on Windows Phone. It will be interesting to see how aggressive Sisvel is in protecting the patents, and if they're able to lock down any big licensing deals that Nokia wasn't able to. The last big case Nokia won was against Apple, so I have a hard time imagining that Nokia has left any stone unturned. 

Source: IntoMobile

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3 years ago

Pandora apps Radio Controlled and MetroRadio working again

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We reported a few days ago that Pandora once again changed their undocumented APIs thereby breaking Radio Controlled and MetroRadio. Luckily the "fix" was easy and both apps are back, fully working again as far as we can tell. In addition, both have some other fixes and new features on board:

  • Radio Controlled - Hitting version 2.0, this app has received many new features and changes including being more Metro-themed, Last.FM login for "scrobbling" and Driving mode. Driving Mode is perhaps the most exciting as it gives a large, finger-friendly UI for when using the app on the road. It allows you to like/dislike a song, play/stop or to skip. We found this part truly ingenious and tremendously useful. In addition, the new "more Metro" look to the app, artists-as-background and other options make this an awesome update. You can grab Radio Controlled here for free in the Marketplace.
  • MetroRadio - Now on v3.3, this update is mostly bug fixes and to address the API change from Pandora. Those fixes include getting songs, Live Tiles and MetroMP3 search service. That app you can also pick up for free in the Marketplace right here.

It's great to know that so long as Pandora remains obstinate, we have independent developers willing to give us what we want. QR codes after the break...

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3 years ago

Unofficial Instagram app for Windows Phone fights for access

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Okay folks, now that it's Monday morning afternoon, we have the skinny on Metrogram, the Instagram client for Windows Phone that we learnt about late last night. The app is being developed by Bil Simser and should be available in two or three weeks.

First the bad news. Indeed, as per Instagram's API requirements, the app is read-only. Still, it offers a lot in terms of functions e.g. browse tags, search for pictures, view details, profiles, leave comments, like pictures, etc.

Now the potential good news. Bil is in contact with Instagram and is trying to get a waiver on their read-only policy and to allow the app to post. If that permission is granted Bil tells us "...a full client will be about 3-4 weeks off (including photo effects similar to the iPhone client)".  However, if Instagram does not grant an exception, Bil may try other means by which to get photos up, perhaps something analogous to the MetroPandora SDK i.e. look for workarounds.

Instagram claim that they don't allow 3rd party access for uploads to  “fight spam & low quality photos” which at first makes sense until you realize no one is monitoring photo uploads to their service, making it a hollow promise. Surely safeguards could be put into place to prevent spam, such as limiting the amount of uploads over a given time-frame.

We'll definitely keep you posted on what happens with Metrogram and what Instagram has to say about it. One way or another though, we'll get this service on our phones. Just take a look at Pandora. For more info on Instagram, read here at iMore.

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3 years ago

Nokia's 6 "Amazing Days" in France [Video]

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Nokia has been real busy creating videos with the official Lumia product introductions, the Little Amazing Show campaign, and now we have six videos from France. These "Amazing Days" follow the Nokia Lumia Amazing Calls video that we covered at the end of 2011. All six contain upbeat music to accompany prizes being obtained, which were awarded to the winners of a promotion ran by Nokia and Microsoft back in November. The six "Amazing Days" explained:

  • Amazing Day 1 : VIP pass for Joey Starr's Birthday (French rapper)
  • Amazing Day 2 : 5 minutes to take whatever you want for free in Fnac
  • (like U.S.' Best Buy)
  • Amazing Day 3 : VIP pass for a football match, Manchester United
  • Amazing Day 4 : a day surfing with Bixente Lizarazu (a well known French
  • football player)
  • Amazing Day 5 : private show of Metronomy
  • Amazing Day 6 : a free week in Paris, with a private driver and  luxury
  • cars.

Head on past the break to check out the remaining five videos and watch in awe....

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3 years ago

MSN Weather going Mango and getting a Live Tile

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MSN Weather, like all of those MSN app, are actually pretty cool little offerings--they're Metro, minimalist and do what they're suppose to do. In 2010, MSN Weather was for many their first weather app. Not much has happened though in terms of updates, which is a shame since Mango offers a lot e.g. Live Tiles.

That's why we became a little excited to see an image of an updated version that is coming down the road. In the above screenshot from Microsoft's Jeff Wilcox (of 4th & Mayor fame), we see that it finally now has that Live Tile with the current temperature, making this app very useful for many and a good free alternative. No other details are known currently but the app is being beta tested meaning release in probably only a few weeks away.

It's great to see Microsoft finally updating some of these apps though we think it would have looked better 4 months ago.

Update: Regarding Jeff's grey theme, there's no shenanigans there. That is simply one of the theme's on his unlocked Lumia 800 purchased through Expansys. While that's a great theme, he did lose out by not having the "Nokia Blue" accent color.

Source: Image, Twitter; Thanks, Jan T., for the tip!

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3 years ago

Windows Phone Game Review: ByeByeBrain

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Yes... it's another zombie, tower defense game for your Windows Phone. But don't be too discouraged. ByeByeBrain is a wonderfully animated addition to our zombie/tower defense game line up.

Armed with five different, upgradable, volunteers to defend your city from the invading horde of zombies, the game takes on the typical tower defense goal. Prevent the hordes from passing from one side of your Windows Phone screen to the other. As you wipe out the zombies you earn cash and for each zombie that survives your onslaught, you loose a life (you only get twenty of them).

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