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All posts tagged "windows phone"

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Do Apps Look Better On iOS or Windows Phone?

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

"A while back, Apple Co-founder Steve Wozniak said about Windows Phone that "I'm kinda shocked how every screen is much more beautiful." So we thought it would be fun to look at a few popular iOS apps and how their Windows Phone counterparts compare in the looks department."

Here is a delightfully fun little exercise. Hit the Read link and test whether you like the look of a selection of popular apps on an iOS device or Windows Phone better? This is an unscientific test, but as you look at each image ask yourself to consider things like typography, clarity, ease of use, and overall appeal. Do you suspect people tend to like the look of apps on their own device platform simply because they are more familiar with their style, or do you think they actually do think they look a bit better? It's subjective, but I do like to the look of this OpenTable app on Windows Phone.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Positive Windows Phone News From China?

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

"Going by Microsoft's Greater China COO Michel van der Bel, the launch of Windows Phone in China is off to an auspicious start -- enough to give Apple the shakes. He claims that devices like the Nokia Lumia 800c have helped Windows Phone reach seven percent of the Chinese market, or just enough to get past the six points of the iPhone."

The tricky part of this news item posted on Engadget, as they point out, is confirming the market share numbers. That being said, it has to be somewhat encouraging for the Microsoft team. Could 2012 turn out to be a stellar year for Windows Phone? Only time will tell.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

A Sign Of Improving Times For Windows Phone?

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

"Microsoft's mobile platform has not been the blockbuster success the Redmond, Washington-based technology giant was hoping for thus far. Google's Android OS and Apple's iPhone are still dominating the smartphone space by a huge margin in the United States and abroad, while Microsoft's share of the global smartphone market has continued to decline. According to a new report from market research firm Kantar WorldPanel, however, Windows Phone is finally showing signs of life in several key markets."

While Android and/or iOS are continuing to gain market share as reported in most market share analyses we have been reading for the past year or so, we certainly haven't seen much progress from Windows Phone. Until now, it seems. The bottom line is that Kantar's research indicates that since Nokia's Lumia smartphone launches Windows Phone’s market share has doubled to 6% in Germany, and the platform’s share has increased in the U.S., U.K., France and Italy to between 3% and 4%. These numbers are unlikely to scare the market leaders, but they have to be encouraging for Microsoft and its partners as they battle to maintain and expand a market presence. The Read link has additional details.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Ars Technica: Challenges Getting Windows Phones Updated

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 07:30 AM

"If these rumors are true, buying a Lumia 900-or any other Windows Phone handset-is a risky proposition. If you buy subsidized, on-contract handsets, you'll typically be eligible for a new subsidized upgrade every two years. A reasonable expectation, then, would be two years of software support in the form of bugfixes and updates. But if current handsets can't run Windows Phone 8, they'll essentially be cut off from future support in about six months. Developers might still target the older handsets to some extent, but many more will be targeting Windows Phone 8's extended capabilities and richer APIs."

If you are contemplating buying a Windows Phone it will be of interest to you to understand the update strategy from both Microsoft and the carriers proving the phones. As is outlined in this article, it is clearly an uneven playing field and playing strategy from the participants. Ars Technica goes so far as to warn you that buying a Windows Phone like the Nokia Lumia 900 could lead you down a path where you cannot get your phone software updated, depending on which partners are involved. Note that the Android world also has some of these types of issues. It is an in-depth article, but well worth the read, and only takes one click to get there.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Quick Look At Tango

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 07:30 AM

"Screenshots of an alleged Windows Phone "Tango" build leaked to the internet today and demonstrate a number of new features in Microsoft's next Windows Phone update. Russian site WP7forum says that Tango will include the ability to export contacts to SIM, manage domestic / international roaming, and handle multiple attachments in a single MMS message."

There's not too much to go by here, save for a few little snippets about what might potentially be included in Windows Phone Tango. We do expect, of course, to hear more about future Windows Phone details at the upcoming Mobile Word Congress.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Zune Music Pass Launches In Australia

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune News" @ 05:40 PM

Oh, yes, fellow Aussies. You'd better believe it. The Zune Music Pass has finally launched in Australia, which means 13 million songs and unlimited music video streaming are now at your fingertips on the Xbox 360, Windows Phone, PC, and web. You can get started now with a free 14-day trial; then, if it's to your liking, continue your subscription for $11.99 AUD per month, or go all out with an annual pass that nets you twelve months for the price of ten. Happy listening!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Get a NASA Ringtone for Your Phone, Be It Android or iPhone or ...

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple Software (iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad)" @ 10:00 AM

"Space geeks take note -- NASA has just released several audio samples of famous moments in space history for use as ringtones on your smartphone."

Head on over to this site and see the list of all the ringtones available, including sounds from shuttle missions as well as Apollo and Mercury missions. Once you get the one you like, they also offer a handy walk through guide for putting them on your iPhone. If you have an Android, the best way to do it is to get the NASA Android app here.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Ad Revenue Comparison For App On Android And Windows Phone

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 06:00 PM

"Case studies are always fun. You can't necessarily extrapolate the information and say it will apply to all cases equally, but you can gain some inferences from such cases and look for trends across others. In this instance, one app called 'Mortal Kombat Tactics' by Neuralnet was released both on Android and Windows Phone and offered for free. What's the difference in ad revenue?"

While I wouldn't want to draw too many conclusions from this, it is still interesting to see the comparison of ad revenues from a free app offered for Android phones and for Windows Phone. Hit the Read link for the data collected by wpcentral.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

More Emoticons Coming in Mango

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone News" @ 09:00 PM

This may seem like a silly thing to get excited about, but I actually quite like having the one-tap access to various emoticons on current Windows Phone 7 devices. I tend to be one of those "emoticon" people, and having access to more of them will be great. I do wonder though how good they'll translate across other devices. Some of the emoticons above look like Wingding font icons, so I wonder if many of these will only work in a Mango to Mango phone scenario.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Microsoft App Hub Updated

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 08:30 AM

For our developers our there, you may have noticed the Microsoft AppHub was down today for some maintenance which included the addition of "new features". The Hub came back up in the last hour and devs seem to be impressed with the changes:

  • Updated layout
  • New crash reports
  • Export of download/purchase details
  • Private beta Marketplace."

Developers will know that the App Hub website is exclusively for Windows Phone and Xbox LIVE Indie Games developers. It offers free tools, sample code, community support, and educational resources to help you develop your apps and games for Windows Phone and Xbox 360. The Hub was recently updated with some new features which I suspect developers will be happy to see.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Microsoft to Windows Phone MVPs: "You're Fired"

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 04:14 PM

"Microsoft is making some big changes to one of its Windows Phone programs that is resulting in some unhappy former advocates. A number of Windows Phone Most Valuable Professionals (MVPs) - the volunteer army that has helped Microsoft with its mobile phone charge - are being notified this week that Microsoft is dropping them from its program."

At some point in the future I'll have something eloquent to say about this news, but for now I can only shake my head in dismay. This is simply not the right way to treat people who have volunteered their time to help your customers.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

SmartDJ and Podcasts coming to Music/Video Hub

Posted by Steven McPherson in "Windows Phone News" @ 04:30 AM

"The next release of Windows Phone introduces on-phone podcasts, new features like Smart DJ (my personal favorite), and loads of refinements and tweaks that make it easier to find and enjoy great music and video. As one of the program managers that helped conceive and design many of these new features (yes, I do get paid to listen to music all day), I thought it'd be fun to tell you not only what changes we're making in Mango but also to give you a little insight into why we've made them." said Josh Phillips.

It appears that SmartDJ and Podcasts have made it into the native Music and Video Hub under Mango. SmartDJ is one of my favorite features of the Zune platform going back awhile now and I love the fact that it will now be included on the phone itself. It works like you'd expect it to with a ZunePass; meaning you can pick a tune or an artist and stream "like" music from the millions available in the Zune Marketplace.

Being able to select and manage which Podcast I would like to listen to, store on the phone or stream directly from the phone is also a feature that is much looked forward to.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Windows Phone 7.1 (Mango) on Video

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone Software" @ 09:50 AM

Phonescoop got some hands-on time with Mango - well, someone else's hands - and this fills in a few of the blanks that I've been wondering about. Mango will really enhance Windows Phone, it's just a shame it's not going to be out until the fall. Let's hope it's early fall rather than late fall...

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Windows Phone 7.1 Mango Webcast: The Crib Notes

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone Events" @ 10:29 AM

I was eager to watch the Windows Phone 7.1 (Mango) Webcast, and I figured taking point-form notes would be a great way to share with all of you what Microsoft presented. Here we go:

  • Seven months ago, Windows Phone was launched
  • Everything is people centric on Windows Phone; Mango ups the ante
  • Twitter and LinkedIn now added into the mix
  • They added photo albums via a pivot on the person
  • Call History is sorted by person, including visual voicemails
  • Groups: you can mirror your real-life relationships on the phone. This feature looks killer! It filters all your social networks just for those people, including photos that are tagged with those people. Group email, group texts - Microsoft didn't want to take a proprietary approach like Blackberry Messenger; they used Windows Live and Facebook Chat instead.


Windows Phone 7.1: Mango Brings 500 New Features

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone News" @ 09:29 AM

"REDMOND, Wash. - May 24, 2011 - Microsoft Corp. today previewed the next major release of Windows Phone, code-named "Mango," through a series of media events around the world. "Mango" will deliver more than 500 new features to push the boundaries of the smartphone experience around communications, apps and the Internet. The "Mango" release will be available for free to Windows Phone 7 customers and is scheduled to ship on new phones beginning this fall. More details on device update timing will be provided closer to availability. Windows Phone will also add support for additional languages, expand access to apps by launching Windows Phone Marketplace in new countries, and partner with new OEMs to enable expansion to new markets."

Windows Phone 7.1, better known by it's code-name Mango, is big. Really, really big. Seven months after the initial launch of Windows Phone 7, Microsoft is announcing the next big wave of features - and, frankly, dubbing it a .1 release is under-selling how big this really is. Read, watch, and sound off on what you think about what Microsoft is bringing to the table.

Check out the Webcast (I'm watching it now). The remainder of the press release is after the break. Read more...

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Win an LG Quantum Windows Phone 7

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone Events" @ 08:30 AM

I have an AT&T-branded LG Quantum Windows Phone 7 to give away thanks to the generous people at LG, and I'm giving it away in a YouTube contest. You can check out the video above, but in order to enter the contest, you'll need to post your comment on the YouTube video page (along with subscribing to our YouTube channel and marking the video as a favourite). The phone is SIM-unlocked, but the contest is restricted to people in the USA and Canada. Apologies rest-of-world, but it's too expensive to ship things overseas. The winner will be randomly selected via when the number of entries reaches a minimum of 500 entries. Good luck to everyone who enters!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Survey: Who Would Buy a Windows Phone?

Posted by Danny Simmons in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 08:30 AM

"We'd love to learn more about your smartphone purchasing thoughts. Do you have a smartphone now? Will you buy one soon? Which kind? And why? Please fill out our survey below. We'll publish the results in a few days."

Take a moment to share your thoughts at this surevey here. BusinessInsider wants to know what Smartphone you plan on buying next. Let's make our Windows Phone presence made known...

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Microsoft Stands By "Quality Over Quantity" Strategy

Posted by Danny Simmons in "Windows Phone Software" @ 04:30 PM

"Since the launch of Windows Phone 7 operating system last year, Microsoft has been trying to catch up to Apple and Google in the mobile-apps race. And the software giant took to its blog yesterday to share its progress. Microsoft says that there are now 11,500 applications available in its Windows Marketplace store. Out of that, 7,500 applications are paid, while 1,110 apps are generating revenue through ads, thanks to the company's Microsoft Advertising Ad Control service. On average, Microsoft says, users are downloading 12 apps each month."

Microsoft is slowly seeing the rewards of some hard work. Scratching Windows Mobile and starting a fresh new mobile OS was not an easy task. But here we are 6 months since it's debut, and we're seeing some serious signs of growth. This new OS is catching on. Share it with your friends, share it with your enemies, share it with everyone. Request that companies launch a Windows Phone 7 version of their app. This is how it will continue to grow. I don't know about you, but I'm sick of seeing an app advertised on TV only to find out it's only available on iPhone and Android. Who's going to convince these companies to take Windows Phone 7 seriously? I think it's us. Let's show them that we are growing and deserve the attention. What app do you wish was on Windows Phone?

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

IDC Predicts Windows Phone Will Be Number Two Smartphone OS by 2015

Posted by Danny Simmons in "Windows Phone News" @ 07:00 PM

"Android will take the top spot for smartphone OS worldwide in 2011, analysts IDC have predicted, pushing iOS into third place behind Symbian. As for Microsoft, while the Symbian-faithful aren't entirely convinced by Nokia's decision to climb aboard the Windows Phone train, IDC is more confident in the two companies' partnership. "By 2015, IDC expects Windows Phone to be number 2 operating system worldwide behind Android," senior research analyst Ramon Llamas predicts."

This is a pretty bold prediction. It has been the topic of much debate since this article was released. With Symbian phasing out of the picture as Nokia embraces Windows Phone as their OS of choice, there's bound to be a new number two. Will all Symbian users shift over to Windows Phone to stay with Nokia? Will some of them move to Android or iOS? I personally think we'll see a good mix of users jumping from one platform to another over the next few years until they find the one that suits them best. Each OS provides unique experiences that may appeal to some, but not to others. It will definitely be an interesting few years, especially once Nokia starts flooding the market with Windows Phone. What do you think will happen?

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Rhapsody App Now Available for WP7

Posted by Danny Simmons in "Windows Phone Software" @ 05:00 PM

"Rhapsody continues strengthening its position as a go-to music streaming service in the U.S. In the wake of offering an extended 60-day trial of its services, Rhapsody has now launched a Windows Phone 7 app."

Rhapsody is looking to bring some serious competition to the streaming audio industry. Not only do they offer a $9.99 monthly subscription, they now have a 60-day free trial so you can decide if you like it or not. All of this is now available on Windows Phone 7 in the Zune Marketplace.

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