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Help & How-to Reviews


For those needing a little help navigating around Windows Phone 8.1, you now have at least two options. First, you can head over to the WPCentral Windows Phone 8.1 topic page and read up on tips, tricks and news items about Windows Phone 8.1 or you can install the new Microsoft app, Help And Tips.

The app covers tips from how to make a phone call to dealing with Cortana. The app can come in handy for those just starting learn about the updated platform or for those who are already old pros with Windows Phone 8.1.

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You've seen something awesome on your Windows Phone (perhaps a sunny day in England reported by a weather app) and you wish to share this screen with the world. Taking screenshots is super easy and fast (hold power and tap the Start key).

The only issue with taking screenshots on any Windows Phone, especially when wearing earphones and listening to music, is the camera shutter sound when an image has been saved. Luckily, there's an easy way to disable this audible alert.

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So you're thinking about developing an app for Windows Phone, but how does one create an awesome app for consumers to download and enjoy? Much like our own Windows Phone app - which is highly rated by our readers - there are a number of apps available on the store that are effectively designed for the platform. Microsoft has detailed some pointers on how to make a quality app.

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Sorting through a number of emails can easily become a tricky business, especially if there is a large collection waiting for you to synchronise your email client - we're sure you've experienced the post-holiday email craze, right?

Microsoft has designed to be extraordinarily easy to use, and to get common tasks done quickly. We took a look yesterday at how to automate inbox clean-ups to either delete or move emails and keep the inbox clutter free.

Today we'll be looking at how we can utilise Instant Actions to make email management easier. So just what are 'Instant Actions' on They're quick tools that enable users to quickly manage individual emails. On hovering over a message in a folder, you'll see three icons appear under the received date (see below).

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By now Nokia’s commitment to the Windows Phone OS should be well established. What has made their role so vital to Microsoft is not just the hardware they’ve created (4 phones in 12 months) but the support they’re providing to the platform from all directions.

Whether it’s original OEM apps, exclusive titles, developer support tools, mapping data, dispersing thousands of free Lumias to devs or their promotions, Nokia has gone beyond their competitors in many ways.

One of those is one that may not be too familiar with Windows Phone Central readers but is just as impressive: Nokia’s SmartStart program.

What’s SmartStart? We get a behind the scenes glimpse of Nokia’s growing support system for new Lumia owners and share what’s coming next…

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Have some questions regarding the Lumia 900 (both U.S. and international)? Perhaps this fairly brief FAQ will help you out when deciding whether or not the Lumia 900 is the best Windows Phone for you. Questions range from the design and availability to battery and volume / speaker improvements.

This FAQ wont answer every burning question you may have on your mind, but at least some will be taken care of. It's interesting to note that the 900 is destined for Australia too (confirming the pre-order at MobiCity), something that will certainly please local Nokia Windows Phone fans who desire a more advanced device than the Lumia 800.

Source: Nokia Connects; thanks damthman for the tip!

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Are you experiencing problems with Outlook synchronising your Windows Phone 7 device? Why not check out the available guides over at Microsoft Support? A step-by-step process is present to aid customers with any issues one may experience in syncing contacts and appointments.  The Help Guide covers Outlook version 2003, 2007 and 2010.

Join in the discussion over at our forum!

Source: Microsoft Support

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Everyone loves the Microsoft knowledge base, rebooting your PC after a BSOD (Blue Screen of Death) to look up potential causes. We now have an article based around the process in updating Windows Phone 7 that has been published.

Although this sign is a positive move by Microsoft in displaying their continuous effort to ensure customer satisfaction with maintaining a good self-support system, one can't help but hope that this KB article will never be accessed. Containing the usual error code descriptions, there is also information present that covers the installation of Zune software. 

What's exciting about the approaching updates (and ones in the far distant future) is the ability for Microsoft to update devices directly, something that Android has been criticised for.

Excited about the upcoming updates? What are your thoughts on how the OS will develop after the first half of 2011?

Source: Microsoft; via: wmpoweruser

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Microsoft has been quietly updating their Windows Phone site to include Windows Phone 7. The links to see the phone line-ups is a dead-end, taking you to a page that simply reads, "No Devices Found".  But the Help and How-to link has a lot of information on the upcoming phones.

Everything from the basics to email to Office Mobile is covered. You have information on how to set up your Windows Live ID and your XBox Live Account. There is so much information in the Help and How-to site that it's a little overwhelming.

The site is basically an online owners manual for Windows Phone 7 and is a good way to get familiar with OS before it hits the shelves.

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