tease

We’re in a quiet period right now for new Windows Phone handsets. Sure the Nokia Lumia Icon (aka the Lumia 929) is coming out relatively soon, but that device was expected months ago. After that handset comes out we really don’t expect much new hardware until after Build when Windows Phone 8.1 is expected to be unveiled. Nonetheless, Nokia has an unlisted video on their YouTube channel and we've got the scoop below. 

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With sales of the HTC 8X evidently doing fairly well, it would seem obvious that the company would experiment with other colors—after all, California Blue, that fire engine red, Limelight yellow and black are all quite popping. Heck, we’ve even seen a grey/yellow “employee edition” of the 8X previously.

HTC have posted on their official Twitter account a simple photo with the headline “Sometimes you just need to tune it all out. Let us help.” With an accompanying image of a boy “tuning out” the people around him while he listens to what appears to be a red HTC 8X. The two females meanwhile are passing what appears to be a white HTC 8X—a colors scheme heretofore unseen to the public.

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[Update 6 PM ET: The source of the article wishes to have his info removed and denies that this was a tease for a notification center. In fact, he's not an employee of Nokia but rather a student involved in a Windows Phone program, making this info dubious at best.In fact, we're hearing the opposite now, that there won't be a notification center announced at MWC. Due to this new info we are not standing by the story. Sorry, folks.]

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Update: Ah, as it turns out what is shown above is actually an app called Emotiboard (found here).  In other words, false alarm! Sorry folks.

It looks like Nokia is getting frisky as they're showing a glimpse of the Lumia 800 evidently with the upcoming Windows Phone 7.8 upgrade. The image above comes via their Facebook page and while it does not mention 7.8 directly it does show some new emoticons off. Those emoticons are not found in current 7.5 builds but they are found in Windows Phone 8 as we demonstrated in our video tour two weeks ago.

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Best smartphone in the world or the greatest?

Ah, it’s Sunday so let’s get the smartphone jousting out of the way for this week.

Recently Samsung has taken to the printing press to drive home the fact that the Galaxy S3 is arguably more equipped than the latest iPhone set to hit store shelves within weeks. The ad, brilliant in its simplicity simply says “It doesn’t take a Genius” with a picture of both phones and the self-selected listing of hardware specs.

The jab was at Apple’s expense, teasing them about their ‘Genius bar’ nomenclature and it clearly demonstrates Samsung’s intent to not lay down, even after being accused and found guilty of copying Cupertino.

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The Nokia PureView 808

It’s a big question whether or not Nokia’s upcoming lineup will feature any PureView technology in it. While it’s nice to dream of a 41MP camera alongside Windows Phone 8, we’re holding down our excitement until we learn more because so far we have seen little to make us believe otherwise.

Now, the Nokia team (via Twitter) have teased users with the following exchange between themselves and Philip G. He was asking and hoping for some PureView love in the next Lumia series form Nokia. Nokia replied with the following:

“Just keep your eyes and ears open in the next coming weeks....”

That certainly seems like a reference to the joint Microsoft announcement that Nokia is hosting in a few weeks here in New York.  From our own sources, we’ve been leaning towards no PureView device this time but instead slightly further down the road, as Nokia plans to release numerous Windows Phones over the next year.

With Nokia’s tweet though, we could be looking at something sooner. But the question for us is What is PureView exactly?

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What's Nokia teasing for this Monday?

Update -- And we hate to the bearer of bad news but we've heard from a very trusted source that this has nothing to do with Microsoft's announcement come Monday. So what is it? We're told that the area code for Hawaii--808--is the key here. Specifically a new 41MP camera phone called the 808 Pureview--you may have heard of it---that impending announcement is exciting but not for Windows Phone users. Sorry.

Looks like Nokia is itching to tell us something and that something is for this Monday, June 18th. The same Monday that Microsoft is set to announce something as well. Related? Probably.

Nokia doesn't say much on the matter but they did post the above image of the Hawaii islands and what look to be zoom features. If we had to bet, they're hinting strongly at some 3D mapping feature coming to Bing Maps.

Could it also be part of a hardware RT tablet? Maybe. There is currently a lot of speculation whirling around the idea that Microsoft is unveiling their own tablet hardware possibly made by Nokia this Monday but we may need to tone it down and settle for some Microsoft-Nokia mapping collaboration instead.

We revealed that in Windows Phone 8, Nokia Maps will be powering Bing with 3D mapping that is hardware accelerated. This could be a prelude to that as it seems to be intimately related.

Only 72 more hours, give or take, before we find out. Have a theory about the above image? Sound off in comments!

Source: Nokia US Facebook; Thanks, Jack F., for the tip!

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We've mentioned that popular messaging app TalkBox a few times here at WPCentral. The service is not only a way to send messages and photos to your contacts on the go but it also allows you to send those popular voice-clips, you know for those too lazy to type.

That'd be us, actually.

Speaking into your phone and sending the message, especially if you're like us and bathing in AT&T 4G LTE speeds, seems like the next logical step in instant messaging. TalkBox has that service down pat and what's more, it's cross-platform meaning you stand a good chance of your non-Windows Phone friends being able to use the service (it's available on iPhone and Android).

The app went into a public beta a few weeks ago and the developers behind it are putting on the final touches as we speak. Tonight they've released this teaser vid which shows you what to expect.

So should you be excited? Yeah, you should. We've been using it off and on for weeks now (going back to the alpha days) and the app is fast and sharp looking. It's just pretty. Plus it works well.

We'll keep you posted when the app is finally available on the Windows Phone Marketplace for all, which should only be a few weeks at most. Or if you wish, sign up at the TalkBox site to register your interest.

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Gotta give 4th & Mayor developer and Microsoftie Jeff Wilcox credit--he's on fire lately, pushing out update after update.

Version 2.7 is now live in the Marketplace and brings some cool new features:

  • Fixes over 40 customer-reported bugs and crashes
  • Can now flag photos and delete your own photos
  • Exciting new features for early adopters

While fixing "over 40 customer-reported bugs and crashes" is itself no small feat (luckily we never saw 'em), those new features for early adopters are pretty awesome sounding. 

Yes, in v2.7 if you are running "Mango" you can pin your friends or favorite places right to your today screen--booya! [See image of Phil Nickinson for an example] Now, these are admittedly a tease--they don't yet "flip' to reveal information like most Mango secondary tiles do, but you can bet when "Mango" is officially released we'll be seeing these things happen. For now, when you tap on your friend's Foursquare tile, it'll bring you to their profile page as expected.

Very cool. You can pick up 4th & Mayor v2.7 here in the Marketplace.

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