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All posts tagged "windows phone 7"

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Previewing Mango

Posted by Nurhisham Hussein in "Windows Phone Software" @ 10:00 PM

"To say "Mango" for Windows Phone 7 is a large update is a bit of an understatement. It's massive. Although we have had two updates to our fledgling OS, both have been relatively minor. "Mango", however, is Microsoft's attempt to fill in all the gaps left from the v1.0 release last fall. Can it succeed?"

WPCentral has been playing with a preview version of Mango, and really like what they see. The scale of the improvements justifies Microsoft's labeling of Mango as WP7.5, and you'll see why after reading through the article.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Official Evernote Client for Windows Phone 7 Released

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone Software" @ 11:03 AM

"Evernote for Windows Phone 7 lets you save and find your ideas and memories any time, anywhere. As you would expect, it seamlessly syncs with every other version of Evernote you use, but there's so much more. In fact, this is the most feature-rich debut we've ever had. Not only is it packed with capabilities, but it's also beautiful-taking advantage of the innovative Windows Phone 7 Metro interface and its Pivot panels. And, as always, Evernote for Windows Phone 7 is free and available now from the App Hub."

Much love Evernote dev team, much love. I've been using Evernote at an ever-increasing pace over the past six months (after barely using at all for the first year), and the missing piece has been being able to use it on my Windows Phone. No more! Well, soon enough - I just checked and it's not available for me in Marketplace yet, but it should be soon. The Evernote team has created an app that utilizes unique assets to Windows Phone, such as the deep Bing integration. Premium subscribers will get to store their notes offline - that's a must-have feature for me - so I'll definitely be renewing my Evernote Premium subscription when it comes up next month. This is a big deal for the platform - Evernote is one of those services that, if there's no official app for it, some people simply won't consider that platform a viable option.

eWallet Go!

Posted by Nurhisham Hussein in "Windows Phone Software" @ 11:00 AM

We've featured Ilium Software's eWallet before (as WPCentral is doing now) - I've used it for years, since version 4.x on the now rapidly disappearing Windows Mobile platform, as well as the Windows version on my computer. It's an indispensable tool and an occasional life saver. I can't imagine using any smartphone platform without an app like this, and eWallet Go! is available for every major platform including Windows Phone 7. If you've never tried it before, do yourself a favour and get it - at $4.99 I consider it a bargain.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Mango's Music Search: Behind The Scenes

Posted by Nurhisham Hussein in "Windows Phone Software" @ 08:30 AM

"The basic scenario is that you're listening to some music that you've never heard-or you hear a song you like but don't remember the name of it. In Mango, you can just pull out your phone and within seconds get the name of the song or artist and also a link to the Zune music store so you can download or buy it."

Cool stuff - the upcoming Mango update will feature Music Search, which promises to put a name to that tune which you just can't quite remember the name of. The best part is the description of how its done, and why Music Search can potentially return results almost instantaneously - sound is monitored continuously, and "fingerprinted" rather than sampled, which promises to cut data use substantially.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Windows Phone Marketplace Passes 20k Apps

Posted by Nurhisham Hussein in "Windows Phone Software" @ 11:30 AM

In the larger scheme of things, hitting 20,000 apps is a small milestone, but there's no doubt that momentum is building on the software side of things for WP7. What's remarkable is that we're barely a month past talking about hitting 10k - so things are moving. Now if only MS would do something about giving opening up access to the still can't get in from outside the few countries that were available at launch.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Just How Many WP7 Smartphones Have Been Sold?

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 04:30 PM

"Direct sales figures for Windows Phone 7 handsets have been remarkably difficult to come by since Microsoft's OS reboot at the end of last year, but here come the stat gurus at Gartner to provide us with their best estimate. 3.6 million of the world's smartphone sales in the past quarter were counted under the Microsoft mobile OS umbrella, of which 1.6 million featured the very latest WP7 software. That means Redmond partners sold more Windows Mobile devices in the first three months of 2011 than ones bearing the sparkling new operating system."

With all the Mango news today, it is still interesting to speculate just how many WP7 phones have been sold to-date. According to this Engadget article, Gartner has estimated the magic number to be 1.6 million. With what you have seen of the new functionality provided by the Mango update, and with the new relationship with Nokia, do you think we will start to see an acceleration in the number of WP7-based smartphones sold?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Mango Ripening On The Tree: Productivity Improvements

Posted by Nurhisham Hussein in "Windows Phone Software" @ 01:00 AM

"While there are a wide range of new features in Mango that you'll hear more about in the coming weeks and months, at TechEd we're highlighting a number of new capabilities designed to help you stay productive on the go...Mango is designed to make you even more productive right out-of-the-box - helping you quickly and easily stay connected with the people and information that are most important to you."

There are enough nice improvements that Mango does deserve the .5 release number. Including the email conversation view you see above, there's going to be integration with Office 365 and Windows Live Sky Drive, pinnable email folders, server search, Microsoft's new Lync service, and a bunch of under-the-hood improvements to make WP7 more amenable for corporate IT departments to manage.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

APPA Mundi Tasks for Windows Phone 7

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone Software" @ 02:00 PM

"APPA Mundi Tasks is an advanced Task manager application which synchronizes with your Exchange Server mailbox to make your task list available on the move."

As the poll I published earlier this week shows, there's a large majority of users who need Tasks support on Windows Phone 7 - it just so happens that the developer of APPA Mundi Tasks posted in that thread letting us know about his product, so here I am sharing it with all of you. It even syncs with Exchange! If you've been looking for a Tasks solution, try this out and let me know how it works.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

How Important is Tasks Support in Windows Phone 7?

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 10:00 AM

The issue of Tasks is a funny one: people tend to either use them heavily, wish they were disciplined enough to use them heavily, or not care at all about them. The complete lack of Tasks support in Windows Phone 7 causes some people immense frustration, while others could care less. I'm trying to get a handle on how damaging the lack of Tasks support is to the Windows Phone 7 platform, so do me a favour and vote in this survey.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mango Goodies

Posted by Nurhisham Hussein in "Windows Phone News" @ 11:00 PM

"On the Windows Phone Developer Podcast, a plethora of new features were announced that will really bring Windows Phone up to par with the competition..."

I wouldn't consider things settled yet, but there's some real nice additional functionality that's coming our way with the Mango update. Along with real GPS navigation, we're going to get Bing Audio and Bing Vision, as well as Voice to Text SMS. How much of this will actually make it to all markets is still an open question, since Marketplace hasn't been fully rolled out either. But its encouraging to see the progress Microsoft is making towards a truly competitive mobile OS.

WP7 To Beat Android...Really?

Posted by Nurhisham Hussein in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 09:00 PM

"Pyramid Research's Senior Analyst and Practice Leader for Mobile Devices, Stela Bokun, has compiled the firm's latest Smartphone Forecast, which reveals some interesting predictions...Despite the fact that Android will be the mobile OS at the center of surge, Bokun reports that Windows Phone will actually continue to gain marketshare, until it finally replaces Android at the top in 2015."

That's a pretty optimistic forecast. Even assuming Apple and Google stand still, it's a tough call to make especially given WP7's current momentum. Speaking as someone with some experience of statistical forecasting, the error rate that far out will be pretty big. On the other hand, I really respect someone who has the guts to put their opinions out there, especially one that goes against the grain.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Weather Channel App Makeover

Posted by Nurhisham Hussein in "Windows Phone Software" @ 10:00 AM

Version 1.4.0 was released today and includes some nice improvements:

  1. Wallpaper that reflects current conditions;
  2. Facebook and email sharing

The Weather Channel app is free, though you'll have to deal with adverts. You can get it through the Marketplace.

The Utility Of A Smartphone During An Emergency

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 05:00 AM

"It shouldn't be a surprise when someone comments that your Windows Phone is a great communications tool. From using the Phone as a phone to call friends, family and associates to checking your email to updating your Facebook Status, your Windows Phone keeps you in touch. While the abilities and capabilities of communications is tremendous during day to day life, it can also be very helpful in times of crisis. I personally discovered how useful my Windows Phone can be during recent events in my home State."

George Ponder over at the wpcentral website has written a thoughtful article on dealing with an emergency and the usefulness of a smartphone. If you were to stop and think about it, you would probably identify these uses fairly readily, but it is the sense that he experienced a true crisis and reflected upon how you can help cope with a trusty electronic companion that gives the piece such a nice touch. Some of the uses he refers to include basic voice communications, texting (which benefits from short data bursts, important when the carrier signal is sporadic), weather monitoring, alert tracking, and even using the phone as a portable flashlight. He has some good points about sources of power to recharge your phone (e.g. your car battery) when power is out. Hit the Read link and take note of some good tips you will hopefully never have to use (but will be glad you know about if ever needed).

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

file:recon App For Windows Home Server 2011

Posted by Nurhisham Hussein in "Windows Phone Software" @ 08:00 PM

"Simply put file:recon gives you control over all the features of the server addin. It's the power of the WHS 2011 Server Transfer-Manager on the palm of your hand. Wherever you might be."

If you're into this kind of thing, this app is pretty cool. You'll have to have Windows Home Server to take advantage of file:recon, but Pine Valley's forthcoming app allows you to fully control downloads and uploads to your WHS system. If you have WHS, file:recon's one of those apps that you can't live without once you've used it.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Win an LG Quantum Windows Phone 7

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone Events" @ 10:00 AM

Just a quick reminder that we're running a free phone give-away: there's an unlocked LG Quantum up for grabs. It's fast and easy to enter; all you need is a YouTube account. Check out this post for more details.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Telstra Approves March Update for Mozart, Now In the Hands of Microsoft

Posted by Darius Wey in "Windows Phone Mobile Operators" @ 11:30 PM

Telstra may be behind on those Windows Phone 7 updates, but progress is being made with the carrier announcing yesterday that it has approved the March update for the HTC 7 Mozart. Now in the hands of Microsoft, delivery of the update is scheduled for next week. Unfortunately, those of you with the LG Optimus 7Q may have to wait a little while longer. The update is still undergoing testing, and all that Telstra has said with regard to a release date is "May".

Nokia Cuts 12% Of Workforce In Preparation For WP7

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 10:30 AM

"Nokia, the world's leading cellphone maker, said Wednesday that it would eliminate about 7,000 jobs as part of a cost-cutting program that was deeper than expected. The 12 percent reduction in the Finnish company's global work force will help trim operating costs by €1 billion, or $1.47 billion, a 17 percent reduction, by the end of 2012. Analysts had expected that 5,000 to 6,000 jobs would be cut."

By now you've undoubtedly heard a fair bit about the Microsoft-Nokia agreement regarding future smartphones that Nokia will offer based on the Windows Phone 7 platform. Stephen Elop, the former Microsoft executive who became Nokia's chief executive in September, has made reference to impending staff cuts and reorganization in the past. We now know that the cuts were a little deeper than some would have expected. In fact, a 12% staff cut is pretty significant. Nokia said the reductions would be achieved by eliminating 4,000 jobs, mostly in Britain, Denmark and Finland. In addition, 3,000 employees responsible for its Symbian operating system will be transferred to Accenture, a global technology consulting organization. While these cuts have been announced, there are still negotiations to be conducted with the labor union representing employees. For more details, click on the Read link to take you to the reference New York Times article.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Microsoft Schedules Copy-and-Paste Update for Delivery to Optus Customers

Posted by Darius Wey in "Windows Phone Software" @ 07:25 PM

Optus customers, good news. The March update has been scheduled for delivery, so expect all that copy-and-paste goodness and those general OS and app improvements to hit your Optimus 7 and OMNIA 7 within days.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Microsoft-Nokia Finalize Agreement

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 04:00 PM

"Many of you may have already seen the news announced earlier this morning, Nokia and Microsoft signed the definitive agreement for a strategic partnership between the two companies."

Yesterday Microsoft and Nokia finally completed ten weeks of negotiations, culminating in the signing of a definitive agreement for their strategic partnership. Their goal: to build a unique, global, ecosystem for mobile devices and software that is differentiated from all others. The joint team members are already working toward a multi-year product roadmap and are on-schedule to deliver volume shipments in 2012, although the companies report that delivery in 2011 has not been ruled out. In their joint blog post they specifically reach out to developers, who are, of course, essential for any potential success the ecosystem will garner. They also make specific mention of consumer experiences in the app categories of mapping, search, gaming, social media, advertising and productivity, and emphasize their increased focus on mobile business and productivity scenarios that build on Microsoft's cloud services, new features for Symbian, and new capabilities for Windows Phone devices. The two companies mention that reaching this agreement occurred ahead of schedule. Hopefully that is a sign of things to come, because time is of the essence and other ecosystems are growing quickly.

NoDo Fixes Exchange 2003 GAL Lookup

Posted by Nurhisham Hussein in "Windows Phone Software" @ 11:00 AM

GAL lookup has been available in WP7 since the beginning, but only if you were connecting to Exchange Server 2007 or 2010. Exchange 2003 users were out of luck...that is until NoDo. There might be a couple of hoops to go through though - you'll need to delete your exchange account on your phone first, reboot, then set up your account again. Hey, but at least the option's there if you need it.

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