Windows Phone 8 Rooms feature

Windows Phone 8 brings with it many improvements to its social abilities, one such improvement is the inclusion of “Rooms”.

Taking some of the ideas from Windows Phone 7’s Groups feature and expanding it out, the new feature allows for powerful social interaction with a selection of your contacts. Windows Phone has always been a powerful performer with regards to its social networking prowess and Rooms is going to take that a step further.

Software Review (Windows Phone 7): Office Hub

Microsoft is one of the most diverse technology companies in the world. Search, Gaming, enterprise class Mail and Storage solutions, and of course Mobile; Microsoft is among the world leaders in all of these areas.

Microsoft Office is one of the most popular software suites ever. Word, Excel, and PowerPoint have been used by millions of people throughout the world. As such a popular set of tools, the Office products are also the de facto standard for document portability. Because of the sheer popularity of Office, even competing products are forced to offer as much support for Office documents as possible.

Windows Phone 7 is Microsoft’s attempt to put their best foot forward in the mobile market. But how does the Office Hub live up to the high standards that Microsoft has set for itself? Read the review for my opinion.

Very Usable, Syncs with SkyDrive and SharePoint
Not yet a full featured product, lack of Cut & Paste hurts

HTC Sense Hub caught on tape


While we've seen the HTC Sense hub on video before, Phil was able to spend some hands-on time with it during the Windows Phone 7 launch.

Running on the HD7, the Sense hub is graphically pleasing and adds yet another diminsion to the Windows Phone 7 experience.

Windows Phone 7 Xbox hubs are now 'live'

For those of you who remember when Windows Phone 7 debuted, you may recall that the Xbox gaming hub was not 'live' at the time--the personal avatar didn't do the little jig  as it was just a place-holder, as well as not updating all the gaming achievements that you may have won.

As we approach RTM, we knew of course that would change and we're getting word now that, indeed the Xbox hub is now live and ready to go. From Michael Klucher, a WP7 developer:

My Windows Phone 7 device has really become my phone. I keep it updated with the latest builds and use it as I would any phone I’ve ever owned. I play games(from App Week), check my email, listen to music, and surf the web. This week started out like most others, I flashed my phone, entered my Windows Live ID, and went into the Games Hub…

Whoa! That’s me! By me of course I mean my Gamertag, Avatar, and latest Achievement in the Games Hub! I couldn’t believe it, we’ve had the Games Hub working for a while, but up until now it’s been on internal networks inside Microsoft. This week was the first time I really got to see my “true” gamer identity on the phone.

... It’s an incredible experience to see something that many of us have been working on really come together and shine

We can't be the only ones who are excited about this Xbox integration and we're pretty psyched to see this all in person at some point. Combined with the re-launch of XBox & Zune in the fall, Microsoft has a great opportunity for synergy here, lets hope they deliver.

[via Deranged Shaman ; Thanks, Sergio F., for the tip!]