News

Every once in awhile the Windows Phone Store throws a small tantrum causing apps to not be properly indexed by the system. As a result, many of you begin to think your favorite apps have been "pulled" or "deleted" or "removed" from the Store, all due to some mysterious reason.

As it turns out, nine times out of ten the apps are still there, accessible via a direct Store link. Very rarely are apps actually removed. Case in point, Skype, Vine, and Rudy Huyn's apps are all still alive and well on the Store.

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Porting games to Windows Phone and Windows 8 is about to get a whole lot easier. A new company called 'Game Troopers' has launched as an independent game publishing service today, and claims to be solely devoted to bringing games from other platforms to the Windows ecosystem. The first batch of games slated to be ported by the company includes Tiny Troopers, Make it Rain: The Love of Money, and Abyss.

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Microsoft is planning to release an update for both the Lumia 925 and Lumia 1020, to hopefully address freezing issues many owners have been reporting since updating to Windows Phone 8.1. There has always been the odd issue with the two Windows Phones since both were launched, be it freezing, random restarts or even the occasional serious brick.

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Yep, it's Windows Phone's Cortana poking fun at Apple's Siri in a commercial. Again. Highlighting how Cortana and Windows Phone 8.1 are able to do things like offer reminders when a contact calls or prompt you with traffic reports, the ad definitely emphasizes the strong points of Cortana (notably, they're not poking at Google Now, which offers many of the same features). Meanwhile, the iPhone's gotten bigger with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.

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If you are using a Windows Phone 8.1 device and use the offline maps option, you may want to check for an update. Users are reporting to us, and we have confirmed that multiple states in the U.S. – and likely elsewhere – are flagged for some map refreshes.

We can confirm that at least New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts and California all have fresh maps to install. To clarify, this is not an update to the HERE Maps app, but rather the downloaded maps data for offline usage.

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PayPal Here (site), a credit-card scanner and app service akin to Square, is set to debut on Windows and Windows Phone sometime in early 2015.

The information comes via an email sent to a reviewer asking about the app, who is informed that a pilot program is set to begin in "January-February 2015". The PayPal Here app is releasing to Windows 8.1 first and then Windows Phone 8.1 shortly thereafter.

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A new Windows Phone with a 5-inch display is currently being developed, at least according to leaked photos from a Chinese factory and published by the site IThome.

The photos appear to show hardware test samples of new displays being developed for a forthcoming Windows Phone. During this process, companies usually experiment with different variations and test the quality of the factory producing the part.

It is not clear if the displays, which clearly reveal a Windows logo for the Start key, are destined for a Microsoft Lumia or if these are for some other manufacturer.

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What happens when you take a National Geographic photographer and send him to Africa with a Nokia Lumia 830, a Microsoft Surface Pro 3, and not his DSLR? You still get fantastic photos and video, as evidenced in the above video partnership between photographer Alvarez and Microsoft's #MakeItHappen campaign. The video itself was even shot with Lumia phones (pictures of people taking pictures of people taking pictures...)

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The popular social network Skout is working on an app for Windows Phone, according to a tweet published by the official Skout Twitter account. The tweet urges those who await for an official Windows Phone app to "stay tuned" and that an app is currently in the works.

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Goodbye, Nokia Collection and hello Lumia

Earlier today, Windows Central began receiving reports from users that their Nokia Collection in the Windows Phone Store had altered to Lumia Collection. Sure enough, hours later the conversion is going wide as our Store now reflects the new name as well.

The shift in branding should come as no surprise, as for months now Microsoft has been scrubbing the Nokia name from apps, websites, Twitter, Facebook and more.

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Lumia 830, the affordable flagship from Microsoft, is now available for sale in New Zealand. The Windows Phone device is available exclusively from Spark, the leading carrier in New Zealand.

The Lumia 830 is the first Windows Phone to use Spark's brand new 700MHz spectrum, which promises blisteringly fast 4G speeds in more places allowing people to do more and get more out of their devices.

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Snapchat has a had a rough few weeks in terms of security. People's photos were allegedly stolen and posted online recently through the use of a third-party apps. Those apps used reversed-engineered APIs to access the service, which creates a significant vulnerability in account security.

Now, the company appears to be taking a hardline against the practice by sending out emails to those who have been utilizing third-party apps, including 6snap found on Windows Phone.

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Whether or not all current Windows Phones would get the Windows 10 update due next year is certainly on the minds of many people. In the past, I have detailed why the chances of a Windows 10 update being available were much higher this time around, as opposed to the trend-breaking Windows Phone 8 OS.

On November 11, the official Lumia Twitter account has publicly declared all Lumia phones with Windows Phone 8 would get an update next year.

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Earlier today, Microsoft unleashed a new update for their Battery Saver app. At the time, there was no changelog posted, so instead we had to infer the changes, some of which were obvious.

Tonight, Microsoft has updated the changelog in the Store, and it is a whopper, with many details about the refreshed system app. Even more, the changelog refers to Windows Phone 8.1 build 14203. The current Windows Phone 8.1.1 build for the Preview for Developers program is 14192, meaning there is a good chance Windows Phone users are about to get another OS update very soon.

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For those on Verizon waiting for the Lumia Cyan and 8.1 update to grace your Lumia 822, Lumia 928 or Lumia Icon, there is more bad news to report.

Windows Central reader NOLATechy has noticed that the Lumia Cyan update page has shifted the status from 'Under Testing' to a new stage 'Under Development'. If that sounds like a step backwards, you are correct.

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The Lumia 535 is official! The first Lumia device to feature Microsoft's branding, the Lumia 535 is targeted at the entry-level segment, and is set to retail later this month in China, Hong Kong and Bangladesh for $140. To show how the device performs in daily scenarios that involve gaming and multitasking, Microsoft posted an official hands-on video of the device on its new Microsoft Lumia channel on YouTube.

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