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You may recall the media reporting that Microsoft was looking to purchase Nokia and then we covered well-respected Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat, which detailed a rather bleak picture regarding Nokia. If that wasn't enough already, Nokia's board of directors were rumoured to have been summoned to Finland and Joe Belfiore was even seen wandering around Nokia's campus while on vacation. 

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Windows Phone 8 users should rejoice as evidently the newly updated WhatsApp and Twitter apps are just the beginning. Microsoft’s Joe Belfiore took to Twitter to react to the mostly positive news by teasing  he has a “few more apps on my #WP8 phone that aren’t in the Store”.

Microsoft in the past has had headline grabbing “app pushes” where a near steady cadre of awaited apps were launched on Windows Phone. The last time this happened was soon after Windows Phone 7.5 was launched with nearly 50 high profile apps being released over a span of weeks.

While we’re certainly not anticipating that many apps this time (Microsoft did just hit 130K apps) there are a few big titles that we’re still missing...

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Tweet This Song! is a simple Windows Phone app, enabling users to tweet a song that's currently being played to the popular social network. The tweet contains details including an Xbox Music deeplink. Time spent within the app itself is minimal. The app was recently bumped to version 1.4 which introduced Windows Phone 8 support.

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How close are we to a Nokia Windows Phone 8 device?

If there is one thing we can say about Nokia and Microsoft lately is that both companies have faith in their products. Whatever the sales or marketshare figures show, the Windows Phone OS and Nokia hardware are a brilliant combo.

So we’re relishing the words by Chris Webber, Nokia’s Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing, who Tweeted this morning a nice little message to rival Samsung:

“Samsung take note, next generation Lumia coming soon.”

It is a bit unusual for companies to directly call each other out so publicly, which is why this probably has garnered so much attention. If we wanted to deconstruct that tweet a bit we could highlight the usage of “note” by Weber as a hint to Nokia’s upcoming Windows Phone 8 plans. Samsung has quite successfully launched and sold a few GALAXY Notes in recent months (see our hands on when we compared it to the HTC Titan).

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The premium version of Rowi has been updated today, which introduces features implemented in the recent Rowi "Lite" release. Without repeating ourselves too much, this update to both versions of the Windows Phone Twitter client makes use of the Aviary SDK (see our earlier exclusive first look) for photo manipulation and editing. 

As well as catering for the die-hard amateur photographers, version 2.1 also brings support for TweetMarker (website), a service that synchronises accounts across multiple clients and platforms. The update is rolling out for the paid version of Rowi as we speak, so fear not if you haven't received the notification just yet.

If you haven't got Rowi, you can download the app from the Marketplace.

Thanks to everyone who tipped us!

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Nope, No Mango tonight

September 1st is quickly losing daylight and Joe Belfiore has just tweeted what many have suspected. There will be no Mango tonight. Earlier rumors called for a September 1st release of the Windows Phone update but unless Joe's pulling our legs, it looks like we'll have to wait for another day.

We keep seeing indicators that September 15th might be that day and we'll know if our crystal ball was in focus soon enough. In the meantime, sit back, relax, hit the break and enjoy the tunes Joe linked us to in his tweet. It has to be the most unique cover version of a Black Eyed Peas song I've ever seen.

source: Twitter Thanks goes out to Enver for tipping us on this!

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While the aftershocks from HP showing webOS hardware the door continue to ripple throughout the smartphone industry, Microsoft is extending a hand to webOS developers. Brandon Watson has extended an offer to any published webOS developer to provide them what they need to successfully transition to Windows Phone.

According to the tweet that includes phones, development tools and training. At last check the tweet has been re-tweeted 100+ times and has received several positive replies and interest from webOS developers.

Personally, I hope webOS finds a way to survive for sentimental reasons. But it's nice to see Microsoft extending a hand to the webOS community to give developers options.

source: @brandonwatson via: thenextweb

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NowPlaying - App Spotlight

Looking for an easy way to Tweet the current song you're playing from the Music Hub on your Windows Phone? NowPlaying might do the trick.

You can choose from various Tweet formats that highlight the song title, artist, album name and genre. You can even create your own Tweet format should the templates not suit your fancy.

There is a trial version available with no limits on the tweets you send. But the trial version does limit you to only one custom Tweet Format. The full version runs $.99.

You can find NowPlaying here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace.

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Seesmic updated to 1.7 and is now a game

Have you not got the latest version Seesmic yet? It's just been updated to 1.7 and now appears to be located in the Xbox Live hub instead of the usual place where applications hang out. Unfortunately, Seesmic isn't a Xbox Live title and therefore doesn't have achievements, but it's still strange how it's following suit of Shazam, which also had this issue.

Version 1.7 was supposed to address Twitter authentication issues (that's all 3rd party Twitter clients seem to do with updates) and permission alterations where users can now message authenticated accounts without actively following them. Re-authenticating your Twitter account is relatively straight forward, simply opening up the app after updating (from your Xbox hub remember?) will load the account migration wizard. This will allow you to re-authenticate your account in a few steps.

Not so long ago, our Paul Acevedo covered how Seesmic now reads out tweets to the user and this was the first step in the app taking over humanity. This is stage two, taking over Xbox Live. It's only a matter of time folks, only a matter of time!

Source: Seesmic

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Quick look: Tweet & Go [Video]

For those looking for a quick way to just Tweet, without loading their full Twitter client, waiting for all those tweets by their friends to show up, then 'Tweet & Go' is for you.

The app is by Adam Nathan, who brought us Metro Browser and numerous other apps to Windows Phone and it's quite useful, elegant and just right. You simply launch it, it logs in with your account and you can post away. You can even upload an image and use (or your custom Plus, we just really dig the design (it uses your Twitter account's background image for that extra pizzaz).

The app fetches for $0.99 with no trial, which is a bit of a bummer. On the other hand, for those of you who need such an app, we feel pretty good about recommending it. Still, there is room for improvement: we'd like to see multiple Twitter account support, geo-location tagging and there looks to be a slight bug with the options not highlighting properly (see video). Hopefully we'll see those in later versions. Despite that, we really like it since nothing is faster for just posting a Tweet to the world.

Grab the app here in the Marketplace.

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Seesmic, the free Twitter/Facebook app, received a major update today. Watch out! With all these new features, it's only a matter of time before the app outgrows its human oppressors.

Seesmic version 1.5 changelog:

Improved user experience: We worked hard to improve the user experience with the context menus, and we hope you'll agree that the experience is slicker than ever before.
Saleforce Chatter: We improved the UI to make navigation more intuitive.
Speak a tweet: Yes, tweets read outloud to you! We are not kidding!
Trend integration: Check out "What The Trend".
SMS Integration: Send a tweet via SMS.
Hyperlinks: You choose how you would like to open hyperlinks, either in-app browser or Internet Explorer.
Spring cleaning: Yes, we got rid of a few pesky issues in Facebook timelines and complications with Twitter logins.

The Speak a tweet option is the most promising new feature. You just click on a tweet, expand the menu at the bottom of the screen, and choose ‘Speak.’ Seesmic then reads your tweets back in a frightening robotic voice, but it’s still a great idea. I’d like a Speak button to join the Reply, Retweet, and Favorite buttons at the bottom of the screen instead of having to expand the menu first. The feature seems like it would be most useful while on the road or when your hands are otherwise full, so less clicks is better.

Seesmic is a great way to tweet and check your Facebook feed and messages. Pick it up here in the Marketplace.

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We made mention of an update to Beezz some time ago.  The update would add a live tile, toast for direct messages, language support, and other fixes.  The update ran into some snags when first submitted for validation.

Based on the Beezz Tweets, the problems have been addressed, corrected and the update has been validated.  Next stop the Zune Marketplace.

Not sure how long it takes to go from validation to being pushed out by Zune but keep an eye on your Marketplace Tile for the update.  Based on the Tweet, we should see it later tonight.  If you haven't downloaded Beezz, you can find it here (opens your Zune desktop).

Source: @beezzapp

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Update: We think the Windows Phone team may be getting their releases mixed up as in a follow up tweet they now say "Verizon is a valued partner and we look forward to seeing Windows Phone 7 devices in their stores in 2011." Going further, they evidently deleted the earlier tweet you see snapped above ;-/

It appears that Verizon customers will be enjoying Windows Phone 7 this holiday season after all. A tweet from @windowsphone is giving a strong indication of such and not mincing words about it either; "devices will be rolling into Verizon stores this holiday season and more will arrive in early 2011."

It's a shame these tweets didn't offer more detail such as when exactly the Windows Phone will hit Verizon and which phone(s) will be first. We've seen signs that the HTC Trophy 7 is confirmed for Verizon but not expected until early 2011. Could the production time table have shortened for the Trophy?

Or will we see another Windows Phone 7 device appear on the radar for the holidays and the Trophy will be a part of the "more" devices in early 2011?

Source: Twitter, Thanks, Eric, for the tip!

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A few months ago it seemed Verizon Wireless was giving the cold shoulder to Microsoft and their new OS, taking a "wait and see" approach.  However, things may have changed recently, possibly due to positive word-of-mouth that WP7 may have potential after all.

In a recent Tweet, the company suggested that they're just waiting on Microsoft to deliver the OS and that they're "excited" to offer the new platform to their customers. The waiting on Microsoft bit goes back to the unfinished work on porting the new OS to CDMA. We know Sprint is a big partner with Microsoft and that they're getting close to launching the much anticipated 7 Pro.

Will we see some WP7 action from Verizon sooner than later? It looks like we will.

Thanks, Joe C, for the catch!

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Twitter client Twikini updated to 1.2

Twitter client Twikini V 1.2 has been released. While it's not the cheapest (read: free) client out there, it is one of our favorites. Here's what's new in 1.2:

  • When you click a Twitpic link, a large version of the photo is shown inside Twikini. No more having to launch a browser.
  • You can choose to launch links in Skweezer.
  • Twikini can show @replies and DMs by default at startup. Similarly, you can choose to only auto-refresh @'s and DM's.
  • Nu på dansk!
  • If you scroll to the end of the time line, Twikini will "wrap" back to the top. (Careful: If you're at the top of the time line and hit "up," it'll take you to the bottom of the time line.)
  • After replying to a tweet, the time line won't jump back to the top.
  • Improved GPS codes and several other bug fixes.

You can install this version right over your old one, but you'll have to re-input your accounts. Twikini is $4.95 and has a 14-day trial. You can find it here.

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