4 years ago
HTC is first to push own ROM update
While NoDo is still in the process of being tested and rolled out across networks, HTC have played a wild card and have began rolling out their own update. While we previously covered the news that Dell is looking to push out their own separate update post-NoDo, but this is the first attempt from a manufacturer on the platform.
[Edit: Actually, Samsung has been doing it with the Focus for various users too]
According to the information received at TheUnwired, users are reporting that they too are receiving the update while being prematurely on NoDo, so it seems as though ChevronWP7.Updater isn't such a huge problem. This - of course - is an update from HTC and not Microsoft though.
Our own George Ponder has received the update for his Surround (updates the firmware to 2250.09.10307.502) and notices that their is no noticeable change in performance, and no word has been located as to what the update actually add and/or fixes. Could well be simply HTC showing off. Have you received the update, do you notice anything different?
4 years ago
Bank of America App sneak peek [Exclusive]
The Bank of America Windows Phone 7 app was first mentioned during Steve Ballmer's CES 2011 keynote address. We are now getting indications that the app is in the final stages of testing and should be available over at the Marketplace soon.
Not sure if this will be how the final product looks but based on the screen shots we've received, it appears the app will give you access to a wide range of banking information. Features appear to include checking account balances, paying bills, transferring funds and finding local branches. Branch searches will pull up Bing Maps and map the nearest branches to your current location. We're not sure if turn-by-turn directions will be a part of the search results. The app looks nice and should be well received by Bank of America customers.
It's a nice looking app and hopefully other financial institutions will follow Bank of America's lead and bring more banking apps to the Windows Phone.
4 years ago
ChevronWP7.Updater pulled, breaks future updates on Windows Phones? Maybe not.
Information is a bit murky, but it looks like there could be a problem with the recently released ChevronWP7.Updater that was posted a few days ago by Chris Walsh. The updater as of now has been pulled offline with no explanation given. Based on Microsoft's own tools for fixing NoDo installation errors, Walsh was able to modify it so that it forced a NoDo update for any device queued for the ROM upgrade without any "hacking" to the phone itself.
Adding fire to the mix is a report, unconfirmed, from the::unwired who said this:
According to Microsoft, the use of ChevronWP7.Updater could possibly put the updated Windows Phone 7 device into a state where it cannot receive future regular updates to the OS anymore and the only fix will be re-flashing the device with an original stock ROM. At the end of the day if could mean that such Windows Phone 7 devices have to be send to the manufacturers or carriers service centers because unlike for Windows Mobile, stock ROMs are officially not available as a public download for end-users.
However, before we all start panicking, the man himself, Chris Walsh, has chimed in on Twitter saying "Don't believe everything you read" in response from numerous people mentioning the potential issues.
Pure speculation here, but we imagine Microsoft asked Walsh to pull the update till they could test all the ramifications of the hack. In the process, some premature dire warnings made it out to the 'net without 100% confidence behind them e.g. better to be cautious than not. In short, if you haven't done this update yet, your best bet is to wait a few days for the dust to settle as we're sure Walsh and Microsoft will have something to announce on the matter when something definitive can be said.
Source: the:unwired, My Coding Adventures, Twitter 1, Twitter 2
4 years ago
Monopoly is the Xbox Live Deal of the Week
It’s time for another Xbox Live Deal of the Week! Get ready to roll around the town with Uncle Pennybags, because this week’s sale title is Monopoly, down from $4.99 to the sale price of $2.99.
The Windows Phone 7 version of Monopoly was developed by Babaroga Interactive (makers of Zombies!!!) and published by Electronic Arts. Our Monopoly review praises its faithfulness to the original board game and support of customizing the game rules. We would have liked to see online multiplayer, but it does at least support local multiplayer. The Deal of the Week price should make offline-only Monopoly a lot more palatable. This also raises hopes that we may see other Electronic Arts titles go on sale eventually – I’m looking at you, Sims 3!
Monopoly goes on sale sometimes after midnight tonight, and the sale lasts for one week. It will cost $2.99, and there is a free trial. Grab it here on the Marketplace.
4 years ago
Praetor - App Spotlight
4 years ago
Photowiz 7 - App Spotlight
Cheat sheets, tip cards, reference guides have been a part of photography long since the days of Matthew Brady. Photowiz is a Windows Phone 7 application that brings the basic photography reference cards and tips to your Windows Phone.
The main pages of Photowiz 7 spreads the photography information out nicely and breaks down as such.
- Picture of: The "Picture of:" page offers tips and tricks for taking a pictures under certain conditions or of a certain style. Landscape, portrait, water, flowers, fireworks and sunrise/sunset photos are covered.
- Night ISO: Night ISO gives you recommended settings for night photography. Options are available to take the amount of moon illumination into account.
- DOF Calc: The DOF (depth of field) calculator helps determine your depth of field based on your image sensor size, f-stop, focal length and distance from the subject. The sensor size selection is scrollable and ranges from 1.3x cropped sensors to 8x10 large format sensors.
- Help: The Help page will provide you with definitions for several common photography terms. This page covers metering, exposure, lighting, and the Sunny 16 Rule.
PhotoWiz 7 can be used for both film and digital cameras. And as popular as youth sports is, I'm a little surprised there wasn't a sports category on the "Picture of:" page.
Regardless, Photowiz 7 is a handy application for the beginner shutterbug and could come in handy for the seasoned photographer. It is a free application and you can find it here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace.
4 years ago
Photo Search - App Spotlight
Need to hunt down a particular photo from the internet? Photo Search is being offered over at the Windows Phone Marketplace to help fill that need.
Photo Search does what the name implies, searches the internet for images based on keywords. Photo Search also has the ability to filter your image results by type (photo, faces, clip art, etc.) and size (small, medium, and large).
Once you find your image within the search results, you can save the file to your Windows Phone Picture Gallery or share them through email. In tinkering with the trial version, the search results were accurate (not indicative of the sample screen shots) but some of the thumbnail results generated a "image not available" error.
There is a free trial available for Photo Search to let you try before you buy. The full version runs $.99 and you can download either here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace.
4 years ago
o2 rolling NoDo out as planned
Recently we covered o2 claiming that they're looking to push NoDo update out for customers on April 5th, which is today. Long and behold folk are begining to announce they're updating and we've had a reader tip us that he's received the update notification and is updating his device too. Seems o2 held their word and all WP7 users on o2 UK should begin to receive the notification from today onwards.
Have you received the update notification on o2 yet?
Thanks StaticPlaya for the tip!
4 years ago
Samsung Focus update imminent?
Being a member of the Chevron team, Chris Walshie isn't one to raise false awareness or hope, so Focus owners could be in with some luck shortly, which is fantastic news. According to his tweet, the update will a Bluetooth fix may be specifically targeted, and hopefully bundled with NoDo. We previously covered Dell teasing about NoDo and a post-NoDo firmware update, and it would be great to see Samsung nail it all in one.
We're not currently aware what the safe steps to update are should you have updated your device prematurely. If any information be made available from a source or Focus user who updates, we will of course publish it.
4 years ago
Microsoft may be bringing Silverlight to Xbox 360
WinRumors has reported on some interesting news that Microsoft may be planning to announce intentions to bring Silverlight to the Xbox 360 platform, and look set to display their plans at the MIX11 conference, which is in Las Vegas next week.
With both Windows Phone 7 and Xbox 360 already sporting XNA, their connection would be improved heavily with the addition of Silverlight. Being Microsoft's alternative to Adobe's Flash (and a damn good one too), Silverlight could open up a new app Marketplace for the gaming console, a source (who wishes to remain anonymous) suggests. Windows Phone 7 developers could be greeted with a gateway to over 50 million users who could potentially become active customers and use their apps.
WinRumors has claimed that Microsoft plans to include a new application model (codenamed "Jupiter") that will allow developers to create and develop applications on Silverlight, deployed as AppX packages (.appx) which will be part of an introduced application store in Windows 8. This could well be Microsoft's answer to Apple's App Store, which is available on both OS X and iOS. Angry Birds on the 360 as well as more Xbox 360 and WP7 integrated games like Fable Coin Golf. Ah, the possibilities!
4 years ago
Microsoft Tag passes 5 billion tag marker
4 years ago
Triple Flip smartphone design running WP7
It's not everyday that we witness an incredible smartphone conceptional design, but the above video shows what SchultzeWORKS have come up with - the Triple Flip smartphone. One could wrap this entire post covering the video in one word - stunning. Both the 3D modelling and the functionality of the device is inspiring, and it doesn't seem too farfetched at all. Best part? It's running Windows Phone 7.
The research for the “Triple Flip” was driven by the notion that the static smart-phone-with-touch-screen may be reaching the limit of their usefulness. Lead designer Dave Schultze explains, “We looked at the areas where smart phones were falling short and then delivered seven innovations to make them truly better. We had a few more, but seven was a good place to stop.”
Will we see this sort of advancement in future smartphones? Probably not for some time. Only one thing's for sure though (from this video anyway), Windows Phone 7 is a true contender for the smartphone market and I wouldn't be surprised if ideas begin to be drawn around WP7 with how new smartphone devices could function and look like.
4 years ago
Jay Sullivan says Firefox is not coming to WP7
In an interview with OnSoftware, Jay Sullivan, VP of Products at Mozilla, insisted that Mozilla is not planning a version of Firefox for Windows Phone 7, but should we be bothered? Sure, Internet Explorer on the desktop has been continuously questioned/trashed by users, battered by EU to be uncoupled from Windows due to security concerns and more, but it's a fantastic implementation on WP7.
At the moment we are focusing on Android in terms of the browser. For those other platforms we may do things like Firefox Home, so you can fire up any browser and get to your Firefox data. We’re not looking to bringing Firefox itself to Windows Phone 7 at this point.
Microsoft are working hard to bring the ancient browser up-to-date with current standards of speed, reliability, security and computability. Our Tim Ferrill wrote an article on why we should care about IE9 on WP7. So is Firefox really needed on the platform?
We've witnessed more and more readers voice opinions that they prefer IE even over the stock Android browser, which is no slouch. How about you? Do you want to see Firefox on Windows Phone 7, or are you content with IE and how Microsoft are developing it?
Source: OnSoftware , via: Softpedia
4 years ago
Marketplace displaying in wrong languages
One of our readers, Kibosh, has posted on our forum that he seems to be experiencing some issues with language in the Marketplace. Being fluent in Dutch (with good English), he has trouble browsing and - in rare cases - using apps on his device due to the Marketplace being displayed in French.
I'm a Dutch speaking Belgium guy owning a nice HTC Mozart and I'm happy with it. Only there is one major thing wrong with it and that is that the marketplace displays French. There are some more smaller things, but this language issue is for me very annoying.
Because not many people know Belgium (I guess), there are three official languages. Dutch (Me), French and a small part German. For some reason, Microsoft decided to offer the marketplace only in French for Belgium. I can assure you that they made a big mistake. We, the Flemish, speak better English then French. Also there are 6,200,000 Flemish and 3,500,000 French. You can do the math. Consider also the fact that Belgium is going through a political crisis about French vs Flemish and you can see the size of the error.
As one could imagine, this is frustrating for Kibosh and he posted a reply to a Microsoft Answers thread covering language issues on Windows Mobile. Doing some searching, we managed to come across a similar scenario where someone from Switzerland had to browse the Marketplace in German. A few replies later and a solution was posted for a new Live ID and Zune account to be created (with correct settings to force English or a desired language), coupled with resetting the device to attach the new accounts.
Seems a bit much work to change the language, hopefully Microsoft will work on a feature that allows one to alter their language across their Live ID, Zune account and device with one selection. Have you had any trouble with the wrong language being displayed in the Marketplace?
4 years ago
Xbox Live: Must Have Games not starting on April 6
Back in February, WPCentral reported on the Xbox Live 6 weeks of Must Have Games promotion. Basically, every Wednesday for 6 weeks, a high-profile game will come to Xbox Live.
We expected the promotion to begin on April 6, but it turns out that won’t be the case. This week’s Xbox Live title is Super Monkey Ball, which will cost $4.99. Read our impressions here. Who Wants to be a Millionaire also comes out that day, but only in territories outside of North America.
April 13 will see the release of Harbor Master and Centipede. Thus the earliest the Must Have Games promotion could start is April 20, but it might be even later. Update: When contacted, Microsoft would only confirm Spring as the promotion's launch date. We'll surely hear from them again in the coming weeks. Stay tuned!
For now, let’s look at the Must Have Games themselves:
- Hydro Thunder Go – The only Windows Phone-exclusive of the bunch. Go is the mobile adaptation of Hydro Thunder Hurricane, the latest entry in the popular boat-racing series. Go’s 3D graphics and water effects are probably the best Windows Phone 7 has seen. Follow this link for a video trailer and our first impressions.
- Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode I – Sonic 4 marks the return to side-scrolling gameplay for everyone’s favorite blue hedgehog. The series has been marred by lackluster 3D titles in recent years. Sonic 4 doesn’t quite match the quality of the 16-bit Sonic games, but it’s still a worthwhile platformer. The mobile version of Sonic 4 was developed concurrently with the console title and features different stage layouts. Follow this link for our first impressions.
- Plants vs Zombies – From the makers of Bejeweled comes a unique tower defense game in which players place plants in strategic locations across lawns, swimming pools, and rooftops in order to fend off an army of cartoonish zombies. The PC version of Plants vs Zombies is one of my all-time favorite games.
- geoDefense – A challenging tower defense game that features neon-colored vector graphics, much like the Geometry Wars series of shooters. geoDefense is a pretty game, but is it really that popular?
- Doodle Jump – The original jumping game makes its way to Xbox Live. Tilt the phone to steer Doodle Jumper up a never-ending series of platforms, much like MonsterUp. Knock out enemies by furiously tapping on them. Windows Phone gamers may already know Doodle Jumper from his Parachute Panic cameo.
- Angry Birds – One of the most popular mobile games of all-time rounds out the Must Have Games promotion. Launch birds out of a slingshot in order to collapse structures and eliminate the pigs who’ve stolen the birds’ eggs. The Windows Phone version of Angry Birds has a whopping 195 levels.
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