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Although Angry Birds is admittedly getting a little tired these days, it's still kind of fun to see the Star Wars variant in action. Actually, the bigger news is the fact that the Windows Phone 8 version launched at the same time as the Android and iOS versions (gasp!). Folks, we now have platform parity.

We decided to fire up the game to wet your whistle on what the game offers. Sure, it's not going to redefine mobile gaming but we're psyched to know this game is available just in time for AT&T's big push tomorrow. And the game is fun, with those silly birds getting some Force powers and some clever use of the Star Wars sound effects. Plus for $0.99 we can't complain. 

Check the above video and yes, Lumia 7.5 users should be getting this soon too.

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Sure, when it comes to the Lumia 920, Nokia has supplied us with black, glossy white, yellow, red and even the return of cyan. There's also the hard to find matte grey. But what about the more lady friendly magenta? We saw magenta come out for the Lumia 800 and eventually the 900 release but so far, none for the 920.

However, forum member Pontifex has spotted what clearly looks like a highly shiny, glossy magenta Lumia 920. Although it's only spotted at a distance, you can clearly see that curvature and the signature headphone jack of the Lumia 920. 

We're not really sure why Nokia doesn't come out with Magenta with the main release of the 920, instead presumably we'll have to wait awhile until they mix up that polycarbonate. But one thing we do know is that color looks to make a comeback should carriers ask for it. Check the video after the break.

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One of the big new features for Windows Phone 8 is the ability to finally do over-the-air (OTA) updates to the OS—either for big things or little fixes. Previously, we could check for updates but if one were found, you had to head home to your PC and plug in the phone to install (including performing a full backup). Now, things are more streamlined.

In an article over at Mobility Minded, details of the update process were posted, giving a look at what users can expect with these updates.  The updates are listed as manual or automatic, with the latter being downloaded behind the scenes and the former involving tapping in Settings to see if there is an update.

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New Emoticons for Windows Phone 8

If you like sending text messages (SMS) on Windows Phone, you'll love the new emoticon system that Microsoft has put in place. Previously, Windows Phone allowed you to easily send some basic smileys and if you wanted some more advanced symbols, you had to dig out some codes or use a 3rd party app.

This time around, Microsoft put in a selector at the bottom with visible choices for each symbol. You even have categories like faces, food, symbols and more. If you use the same symbols repeatedly, they will show up in a frequently used area for quick access the next time you message. 

We should also point out that they work in all apps. We used them in Kik messenger with no issues (they just don't have color). All in all, it's these small changes that make Windows Phone 8 quite an improvement.

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Microsoft has published the Windows Phone synchronisation tool to the Windows 8 Store. This app enables consumers to plug in their Windows Phone 8 handsets and add / remove media to and from the device.

Music, video and photos can be imported from the connected Windows Phone to the windows 8 machine (and vice versa). One can find quick links to Windows Phone content (including apps and games), as well as quick-glance information representing how much storage is currently being used.

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Windows 8 presents a totally new way of using the OS, from the new touch screen interface to buying stuff from a store. There will be much to learn for consumers and more importantly perhaps, retail store staff.

ExpertZone TV have posted up a video to help the folks who are going to sell these machines work up a nice demo. Unlike your granddads version of Windows, 8 presents more than its fair share of new concepts to get to grips with. Let’s see how well they present the hard sell!

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Yes folks it’s finally here, the week that will see Microsoft launch Windows 8, spearheading its massive 2012 product launch schedule. It’s keystone of the ‘Three Screens & Cloud’ play and this is where we see how it’s all going to shake out.

The pre-orders for Surface have started and even run dry in some regions, invites to the various launch events have gone out and now it’s time to put all the cards on the table. With such a wide ranging spruce-up of the entire product line from Xbox to Windows Phone, we’re in for a wild ride. Windows 8 will be at the centre of these launches, not just because it’s Windows but because with it we will see a whole host of services light up to enable the entire eco system.

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We told you that you have to get used to seeing these side-by-side videos of the Nokia Lumia 920’s video camera in action. That’s because optical image stabilization in a smartphone is kind of a big deal for camera technology—it’s really a big step forward and one of the first real innovations since BSI hit the scene.

The video above, hailing from Russia we presume, shows the Lumia 920 mounted to the inside windshield of a car as it drives over train tracks and some bumpy terrain. It’s compared to…well, we’re not sure, as our Cyrillic translator is a bit off today. But the point should be clear that when OIS is used for video, it actually makes a huge difference in terms of quality. Needless to say, we can’t wait to try it.

Source: YouTube; via Reddit

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We showed you yesterday our hands on video with the new VAIO Duo 11 from Sony and at that same event I was lucky enough to get to use the big brother of the Duo - the VAIO Tap 20 which was announced at IFA in Berlin last month. At first glance this thing just looks like a big PC with a wireless keyboard and mouse, but it has some secrets up it sleeve. With a built in battery, allowing for three hours of power, the Tap 20 can be picked up and taken wherever you like.

So effectively you could be working at your desk and decide to go and have a bath with the VAIO Tap 20 as company. I'm not sure I would recommend that option but it's up to you.

With an adjustable kickstand on the rear of the unit, positioning the device can be adjusted to suit your needs - or just lay it flat and have a HUGE tablet! The 20 inch panel offers crisp, clear images and a wide angle of view, as well as an HD web camera (maybe the bath isn't such a good option!)

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Now I must admit that I'm more of an Apple guy when it comes to computers but after visiting an event held in London today by Sony I'm liking what I see. First up I had the chance to play with the VAIO Duo 11 running Windows 8, which kind of gave me the wow factor. It won't be cheap mind you - Sony told me today this thing will retail in the UK for about £1000 which it a lot of money. However, what you get is kind of cool.

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Read all about artists in the music hub

It would appear that Microsoft is updating the Music & Video hub with new features. According to a number of Windows Phone Central readers who reside in multiple markets, the hub now pulls down and displays the biography of an artist that's currently being viewed on a Windows Phone. This functionality was restricted to the US.

When selecting an artist a new tab will appear between 'songs' and 'related' that will contain a pane of text for the consumer to read through. It's an interesting addition to the service, and appears to be unrestricted - so should you not have a Zune Pass and load your own tracks, it should still pull down the correct biography per-artist if everything is in order.  

It's good to see Microsoft roll out features and useful functionality such as this in markets outside the US. Be sure to let us know in the comments should you notice biographies now being displayed while browsing through your music collection on the go.

Thanks to everyone who tipped us on this!

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As you may have heard, AT&T today announced the Nokia Lumia 920 coming “in November” to the carrier. The phone will feature numerous colors including matte-black, yellow, red, white and of course cyan.

We know many of you have been wondering if the cyan is glossy or matte and the answer is the latter. Yup, it’s the same type of finish at the Lumia 800 and Lumia 900.

We’ll process some photos in a bit of our hands on but we will say this: the Lumia 920 did not at all feel too big or heavy. In fact, we barely noticed it. Our conclusion is that a lot of the concern over the size of the phone is completely unwarranted. In fact, with the smooth roundness of the back and the curved screen, we like it better than the current 900 design, which feels blocky by comparison. 

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One of the more anticipated features of the Nokia Lumia 920 is the camera. The optical image stabilization (OIS) should make for better still and video imaging. The OIS will aid in taking low light pictures and smoother video footage.

But how does the Nokia Lumia 920's video capture compare to say... the iPhone 5? Engadget conducted a side by side comparison of the two phones and the results are as expected.

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We managed to finally get our hands on the finalized (or very near finalized) software development kit (SDK) for Windows Phone 8--the one where only select developers were given access too. The SDK had surfaced on the internet a few days ago via WinUnleaked and has been floating around ever since.

After spending a few hours configuring our PC for the SDK (you need Windows 8 Pro RTM 64-bit, seriously), we fired up Windows Phone 8 OS...

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The 8X features a solid 8MP shooter

Although we’re convinced that the Nokia Lumia 920’s camera sets the bar for “high end” these days, HTC is no slouch either and their Windows Phone 8X has some nifty specs going for it as well.

The 8X’s camera features an impressive F/2.0 aperture at a cozy 28mm and 8MP. It also sports a backside illuminated  (BSI) sensor and a dedicated image-chip for fast processing and some advanced photo processing.

The result? It’s a darn good camera.

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Although Nokia caught some flak for the misleading demonstration of the 920’s camera, we’ve always maintained that optical-image stabilization (OIS) is a very real and proven technology. 

Still, Nokia has some catching up to do to prove to the world just how impressive the 920’s camera can be with OIS on board and as it turns out, the task is simple: just use it.

A Russian site managed to get a meeting with Nokia and to try the 920’s camera in a real-world experiment with the Samsung Galaxy S3. The test? Strap both phones to the top of a remote controlled car, and then drive it all over a bumpy rug.

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As you may have noticed, the new HTC 8X for Windows Phone 8 features a nice little hardware amplifier (2.55v) to boost audio output.

We got to sample it today in New York and you’ll see as I try to narrate over the audio, I simply cannot compete. While it’s hard to get the “real feel” via video, from our limited experience we can say it does indeed make a difference. Audio is noticeably louder and just as sharp without distortion. Running a line-out to some speakers or other media device should ensure some pumping tunes, perfect for the media-savvy consumer out there.

While boosted audio is not everyone’s selling point for a new phone, we can certainly see many folks considering this the icing on the cake for the stellar looking 8X.

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HTC has just released all the juicy details about their upcoming Windows Phone 8 devices but the story certainly isn’t over yet.

It’s clear HTC is keen to get back into the game with Windows Phone 8 and prove they are more than a match for Nokia. Design and colour look to be the key differentiators for Windows Phones from now on, HTC, like Nokia are launching their devices in a spectrum of colour.  A strong focus on stand out design could be what propels Windows Phone 8 in the eyes of consumers.

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