12 Days of Hidden Gems – Our wrap and user poll of what you want to see next!

A few weeks ago, Windows Central in conjunction with Microsoft kicked off our second Hidden Gems campaign dubbed 12 Days of Hidden Gems. The goal of the program is to give some in-depth coverage of apps on Windows and Windows Phone that you may not have known about. Additionally, we allocated $12,000 in prizes to be given away (announcement of the winners is coming soon).

Now that the program has winded down and we start off 2015, we figured we would do a small recap of what was covered, in case you missed our reviews. Furthermore, we are adding a poll at the end so that you can tell us what categories you find most interesting so that we can tailor our future coverage towards your wants.

12 Days Wrap Up!

12 Days of Hidden Gems was an ambitious program for us with plenty of videos, photos, and analysis of various apps in the Microsoft ecosystem. Some of them were new, others were very recent updates that brought new functionality. They were certainly all interesting.

Here was the full program, including links to the original reviews:

  1. Misfit Shine activity tracker
  2. Wellograph heart rate monitor and activity tracker
  3. Fitbit Charge fitness tracker
  4. SmartThings Home Automation
  5. NOAA Radar and Hilton HHonors apps
  6. Garmin VIRB Elite camera and Windows Phone app
  7. GoPro HERO4 action camera and Windows Phone app
  8. Fit Brains Trainer and Doodle Jump apps
  9. Life360 family tracking service and app
  10. Rdio music apps for Windows and Windows Phone
  11. Duolingo Language learning for Windows Phone
  12. Lynda and Endless Reader apps for Windows and Windows Phone

My favorite category to cover was related to connected devices, activity trackers, and those cameras. Many of those I had heard of before, but being able to spend time testing each let me get a deeper understanding of the pros and cons of each.

Indeed, the SmartThings home automation stuff was my top 'Gem', and I was thrilled with our video for that segment (thanks to Mark Guim assisting in the project). My next favorite was the GoPro HERO4, as I was very excited to see the Windows Phone app finally get 4.0 support. The quality of the GoPro app blew me away.

Hopefully, our exhaustive look at those apps and services gave you a chance to learn a bit more about Windows, Windows Phone, and technology!

Poll Time – What do you want more coverage of?

Now that the 12 Days of Hidden Gems is finished we must start thinking of the future. The question is, which category of apps would you like to see more coverage of going forward? Connected devices? Sports? Gaming? Everyone has their favorite, so take our poll to let us know.

The survey allows you to choose 3 out of the 14 categories to prioritize, so make sure you take a moment to pick your favorites. Since the poll does not work in our app, you can just navigate to Windows Central in mobile IE to take the poll that way. Your answers will help guide us in the future on what topics to cover and which to pass on, so please lend a hand.

Moreover, if you participated in each daily contest, we'll be announcing the winners later on tomorrow, so stay tuned!

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central. He is also the head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007, when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and watches. He has been reviewing laptops since 2015 and is particularly fond of 2-in-1 convertibles, ARM processors, new form factors, and thin-and-light PCs. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.