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All posts tagged "wp7"

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Create Your Own Live Tiles From Any Web Page

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

"Web Tiles enables you to create live tiles out of any web page. You can select the area of the page that will be shown on your live tile. You can also choose how often your tiles will be updated. This is great for example for weather or stock graphs and image feeds."

Here's what appears to be a very effective app for WP7. Do you really like live tiles? I bet you do and now you can create a tile from any web page. You can configure the tiles to update in a number of ways, or force one to update every 15 minutes by tapping on it. A trial version is available, which limits you to three fixed addresses, but that should be enough to win you over. Give it a try!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

SnapCrowd Provides Effective Cloud Storage

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

"SnapCrowd is the most advanced DAM (Digital Asset Management) platform on the market and we plan to keep it that way. Whether we like it or not our lives are now digital in some way or another, so why not keep it simple and secure. At SnapCrowd a user can store photos, video, documents, audio and even contacts, all in their original form protected behind SSL / TLS and HTTPS protocol layers."

Cloud storage has hit mainstream, and in the past week or two you may have noticed a number of reviews of Google Drive, Microsoft SkyDrive, Dropbox, and Apple iCloud. These services offer a number of unique and competitive features, and are worth checking into. I would definitely add SnapCrowd to your list though. It has a some compelling features and very competitive pricing, and may just facilitate your computing and mobile life in ways you might not expect.

The SnapCrowd developers state they allow larger file upload sizes than their competition, like 200 MB for photos, 4 GB for video, audio and documents, and allow RAW files from all the major camera manufactures. Their proprietary user interface allows all user functions even while uploading files. What's more, if for any reason your file gets interrupted in the upload process, you can just log back into your account and queue the file back up and it will continue where it left off.

The SnapCrowd WP7 app looks well designed and is very functional (see the demo on the linked page). The user-interface directly guides you to manage specific file types (like documents, music, photos and video). Meta data about your files is clearly presented, and interactions seem very straight-forward. Hit the Read link for additional information and a demo of how the WP7 app works.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Foursquare Client "4th & Mayor" For WP7

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 09:00 AM

"In the case of 4th & Mayor, an app that ties into location service Foursquare, there is already a native app, but that hasn't stopped Jeff Wilcox from trying to improve upon it. A year after its release, 4th & Mayor is sitting at version 3.3, and the app has been run over eight million times in that period. There have been over 7.5 million Foursquare checkins using the app, too. Wilcox says that the app is by over 60,000 people every day, with 35k enabling push notifications on their Windows Phones."

If you are a fan of the Foursquare service, which helps you find new ways to explore your city by checking in to places that you enjoy, you will want to "check out" this client app for WP7. Developer Jeff Wilcox is also intending to develop this app for Windows 8 tablets down the road.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Nokia Lumia 900 Pre-orders Now Possible In Canada

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 02:00 PM

"Rogers in Canada is taking pre-orders now for the Nokia Lumia 900! For those here in Canada who have been waiting for the providers to finally move into the next generation of WP7 phones, here's your chance. No word on pricing yet, but Rogers is talking about availability in mid-April."

Although I have not seen one of this handsets in person, I have certainly read about them and can believe that they are beautiful devices. With Rogers in Canada now taking pre-orders the wait to actually try one won't be too long. The Source link below has the details about the pre-order.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

It's All About The Interface (And That's Where WP7 Shines)

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 07:00 PM;txt

"One company makes a beautiful, intuitive, elegant interface, and the other makes a dated, clunky interface. But now it's Microsoft showing off the thing of beauty, and Apple that's behind the times. Microsoft is the underdog and Apple is the monolithic, restrictive monopoly. Has the world gone mad?"

Rich Trenholm, over at CNet, doesn't want an iPhone any more. It's not because they are not impressive phones, and it's not because the iOS app store isn't big enough. It's primarily because he believes there are better smartphone interfaces for him to work with, ones that make him more productive without having to wade through the icon metaphor of the Apple iOS devices. His preferred interface? The Windows Phone 7 Metro interface. His editorial goes into more detail about the reasons why he prefers the WP7 interface, and it's quite interesting reading. The Read link has the complete story.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Relative Merits of iPhone 4S/iOS 5 and Windows Phone 7

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 10:00 AM

"Speed and consistency has always been a hallmark of iOS, but Windows Phone 7.5 beats Apple here with an extremely snappy performance even on old hardware. Windows Phone 7.5 is as consistent as iOS and maybe even more so with less menu options and settings available to the end user. Windows Phone 7.5 does an excellent job with service integration while Apple forces you into the idea of working with specific apps, such as separate Facebook and Twitter apps."

While the comparison of two smartphone platforms is naturally a subjective exercise, one would think that reading the opinions of someone with a fair bit of hands-on experience with both would increase the credibility of the comments. So, it was with some interest I read the editorial by Matthew Miller on the ZDNet site. One of the more interesting points he makes is that the Windows Phone 7 platform is more task oriented (with quite a bit of task integration) when compared to the iOS 5 platform which is more app-centric. He gives quite a strong endorsement for WP7, but comments on the need for better hardware from the vendors. It's an interesting read, and well-worth contemplating.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Monday Reflection: RIM's Malaise A WP7 Opportunity?

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

"Here's the thing about BlackBerry users: We're people who, at least when it comes to our phones, appreciate function over form. We've stuck with our little, not terribly stylish bricks because they worked. They didn't drop calls at bad moments. The e-mail came in and was easy to access. The point was simplicity, lack of worry. It just worked. Can I really say that now?"

CNET's Jim Kerstetter has written an editorial suggesting his days of being a dedicated BlackBerry user might be over. If I read his editorial correctly, I think the reason can be summed up as: his perceived benefit of the BlackBerry platform has been pushed to the brink with yet another service outage, leaving the other platforms much more attractive than perhaps they were before.

I was a BlackBerry user for six years before switching about a year ago. I haven't looked back. I prefer the physical models of the other platforms, their user-interfaces and availability of apps. I am not aware of a service outage in the last year on my platform. I think I would have a hard time to go back to the BlackBerry platform. Are there others out there like me? I bet there are a lot.

So, is this an opportunity for Microsoft and Windows Phone 7? I think it is. For one reason, anyone who might have been teetering on the edge of switching from the BlackBerry platform (assuming they have control over that decision) might just have had that little nudge they needed. We have become so dependent on multiple forms of communication through our smartphones (e-mail, text/instant messaging, voice, video, broadcasting (tweeting)), that even an hour without service can be annoying. Another reason is that the timing might just be perfect - Microsoft's new Mango version of the WP7 operating system is hitting mainstream and garnering attention the platform needs. Combine that with the BlackBerry users' drifting eyes and there might just be an interesting intersection point being formed.

It could be an opportunistic period of time for Microsoft and WP7 in the lead up to the holiday season. Your opinion please: is this a realistic opportunity for Microsoft, or just a speed bump for RIM?

Friday, October 14, 2011

Demand For Windows Phone 7 Models On The Upswing?

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 06:12 AM

"Here's some interesting statistics that jive nicely with that earlier Australian report on the HTC Mozart. At least on eBay in the UK demand, as measured by increasing prices, has been on the upswing for the last few weeks for certain Windows Phone models, specifically the HTC Mozart, Dell Venue Pro and HTC 7 Pro--basically the creme of the crop, if you ask us."

I'm personally not so sure you can read a lot into these statistics, but here you have it. The site has an article suggesting that the price of WP7 handsets on eBay may be an indication of rising demand. Note that this only applies to certain models. I think there may be too many factors to link this directly to demand, but who knows, there may be something to it.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

TodayXLive the Next WP7 Makeover for Windows Mobile

Posted by Darren Blade in "Windows Phone Software" @ 10:00 PM

Still holding out on making the jump from WinMo 6.X, but want the look of WP7? If so, TodayXLive is the app for you. TodayXLive is a plugin for your Today screen that gives you a tile-based start page, complete with live updating. The plugin works for Windows Mobile Pocket PC 5 and 6 and requires .NET Compact Framework 3.5.

Before I purchased my Samsung Focus with its slippery Windows Phone 7 interface, I was chugging along with my Omnia II with its ageing Windows Mobile interface. It was atop this that I had finally installed the SPB Mobile Shell which kept me going, I guess. When skins for the SPB Mobile Shell became available sporting the then new WP7 look and (somewhat) feel, I had to give it a go. It was nice to be touting my Omnia II in its new WP7 dress, but it was at the detriment of overall performance and ultimately battery life. One annoying side effect of the SPB Mobile Shell for a sizable subset of us users was the Alarms bug, or lack of alarms going off, as the case was for me. I need alarms; nothing irks more than missing something important. Read more...

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 21, 2011

Drynks Lets You Keep Stock of your Stash

Posted by Jon Westfall in "Windows Phone Software" @ 05:05 AM

"Drynks is a wicked WP7 app built to give you an easy and simple way to catalogue your drynks, rate and share them."

Good Things keep coming out of the New York Phone User Group's membership. Members Fernando & Chevon have just released their newest app, Drynks, which lets you keep track of your favorite beverages and record and post your impressions of them. A really nice combination of useful infotracking and beautiful design!

Tags: apps, wp7, nypug, drynks, drinks

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Zunepass To Be Made Available In More Countries

Posted by Richard Chao in "Windows Phone News" @ 08:00 PM

"Joe Belfiore (Corporate Vice President of WP) mentioned, while enjoying the Mango Twitter integration, that there are plans in the works to expand the Zune services along with speech and more."

According to a tweet by Microsoft's Joe Belfiore, Zunepass and a few other Windows Phone 7 services will soon be available in a few more countries. This is good new as Windows Phone adoption rate hasn't exactly been stellar. Hopefully the availability of more Windows Phone 7 services in additional countries will be able to spur more interest in the platform.

For you users that are not in the US/UK, what services would you like to see?

Tuesday, May 31, 2011 Gift Card Code Available With Windows Phone 7 Purchase

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 08:00 PM

"Purchase any Windows Phone 7 device from Amazon Wireless between midnight, May 30, 2011, and 11:59 p.m. PDT, June 30, 2011, and receive a $25 Gift Card code. Gift card codes will be sent via e-mail within 5 days of shipment and will be limited to one per customer. See terms and conditions for additional details."

If any of these phones are of interest, buying from will result in a nice $25 gift card code.

Tags: amazon, gift card, wp7

Rumored HTC WP7 Phone Seems To Have A 12MP Camera

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 06:30 PM

"According to Eldar Murtazin, famed Russian leakster, this is the HTC Mazaa, which appears to have a 12MP camera and the ability to shoot in RAW mode if so required. And wait-is that Mango it's running?"

A juicy rumor has HTC releasing a new phone with a 12MP camera. What's more, the camera is purported to have an option to shoot in RAW format, and to be running Mango. Curious? The Read link also directs you to a somewhat lengthy video with additional "evidence".

Thursday, April 28, 2011

The Magic Behind The Windows Phone Keyboard

Posted by Richard Chao in "Windows Phone News" @ 06:55 PM

"Fat fingers and compact smartphone screens just aren't a good match. Combine a few key misses with a well-meaning auto-correction feature and it's no wonder that "I ate the hummus" turns into "I ate the humans." But Windows Phone 7 users find that their keyboards seem to have a better knack for knowing what they intend to type-or even what they intend to say."

If you have used a Windows Phone 7 device, you will undoubtedly be amazed by the on screen keyboard and its knack of guessing what you want to type. Douglas Gantenbein has posted an article about their concepts and thought process that ultimately resulted in the Windows Phone 7 keyboard.

Friday, April 15, 2011

AT&T's Update For Quantum And Focus Now Updated To Scheduling

Posted by Richard Chao in "Windows Phone News" @ 10:42 PM

"I'm happy to report that two Windows Phones sold by AT&T are a big step closer to getting updates."

Eric Hautala has just posted on the Windows Team blog stating the February and March (NoDo) updates for AT&T's LG Quantum and Samsung Focus are ready. The devices have now been upgraded to "Scheduling." Per the Where's my phone update page, 'Scheduling' means: "Microsoft is scheduling the update for delivery. This phase typically lasts 10 business days or less."

Unfortunately, the HTC Surround is still in the testing phase and has been cited to require more work.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Video: Joe Belfiore At MIX11 On Windows Phone

Posted by Richard Chao in "Windows Phone News" @ 10:51 AM

"... CVP Joe Belfiore goes over the headlines and gives us several demo's to show off the new capabilities such as advanced searching for apps, phone integration, live agents, multi-tasking and a REALLY cool demo of Layar."

Joe Belfiore demos the new capabilities of Windows Phone 7 on video for Channel 9. It gives us an idea of what developers can do with the new APIs given to them.

Watch the video here.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

AT&T WP7 Update Expected To Finish Testing Soon And Release of Update Central

Posted by Richard Chao in "Windows Phone News" @ 11:51 PM

"I know many of you are waiting eagerly for news about the Samsung Focus, LG Quantum, and HTC Surround. As we've noted on Where's my phone update?, these phones are expected to finish update testing in early April."

According to Eric Hautala, the update for Samsung Focus, LG Quantum and HTC Surround are still in the testing stage and expected to finish in early April. Hopefully this means any day now as it is already the 12th of April. When they will be pushed to phones is still an unknown.

Eric also announced a how-to website dedicated to assisting you with update related problems. Update Central can be found here.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Microsoft Hopes To Woo Developers At MIX11

Posted by Richard Chao in "Windows Phone News" @ 10:15 PM

"At Mix 2011, a Web and Windows Phone app development conference in Las Vegas, Microsoft plans to hold workshops on building apps for Windows Phone 7. Boot-camp sessions begin Monday, and Joe Belfiore, corporate vice president with Microsoft's mobile business, is expected to give a keynote speech on Wednesday."

MIX11 is set to begin tomorrow and Microsoft is expected to make a major push to get potential developers to begin publishing apps for their Windows Phone 7 platform.

In their statement last month, Microsoft stated 1.5 million copies of developer tools were downloaded and 36,000 people paid to become an official developer. This has resulted in over 11,500 apps with more being added everyday. While this is a good start, Microsoft would definitely like to see more developers producing apps.

Watch the keynote live at

Tags: microsoft, 2011, wp7, mix11

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?

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