Archive for the ‘Windows Phone’ Category

When it comes to apps – even the big ones – it’s fair to say that Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform often gets left behind. It took an age for Instagram, for instance, to make its way over to the WP Store, and even when apps do finally manifest themselves, updates can be few and far between. Spotify is another prime example, and although an official app has been around for a while now, the ability to shuffle songs for free with ads has not. Now, though WP users can listen for free thanks to a new update, and if you don’t mind the occasional advertisement, it’s a great way to enjoy free music.

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Theft of personal, digital devices is fairly rampant, but thanks to the introduction of kill-switches, those snatching the gadgets of others are now often left with a bricked product that cannot be used or sold at will. It’s not much consolation to the victim, but it has made a noticeable difference to smartphone theft in that the numbers have dropped off significantly. Now, a new law has been passed in California that means by 2015, any handset sold in the state will need to be kitted up with its very own kill-switch, and although most top-end devices now ship with such measures right out of the box, this new move will ensure that all new smartphones include something similar.

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The concept of personal assistants has been around for a long, long time, and they indeed make one’s job a lot easier by sharing a hefty amount of your workload, maintaining schedules, prioritizing stuff, keeping track of projects and whatnot. With advancements in technology, a lot of that responsibility has shifted to our smartphones, further supported by the fact that not everyone can afford (or is entitled to) a personal assistant. Apple took the concept to the virtual world with its implementation of Siri, followed closely by Google Now and now, Microsoft’s Cortana for Windows Phone, with the latter being the highlight these days.

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Just yesterday, Samsung took a clever jab at not just one of its competitors, but three of them at the same time, by unveiling a video on its YouTube channel showing the Korean flagship, the Samsung Galaxy S5, taking the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and nominating Apple iPhone 5s, the HTC One M8 and the Nokia Lumia 930 to do the same. It appears that two of the nominees – namely, HTC One M8 and Lumia 930 – have taken up the challenge and took a dip in ice cold water.

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Andrei Neculaesei, a full-stack Copenhagen based developer, has thrown his hat into the mobile app security debate by expressing concern regarding poorly implemented security relating to URI schemes within many popular apps. Neculaesei believes that the fact that many developers neglect to implement vital security measures within their apps could potentially lead to unwitting users falling victim to malicious services that could, in theory, invoke expensive phones calls on the device being used.

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As mobile device owners, we’ve all been stuck in that annoying situation by which our need to play games, send emails and use apps outweighs the device’s battery capacity. We write checks that our overworked smartphones and tablets simply cannot cash, and as a result, the peripheral market makes a pretty penny from developing new, convenient ways to boost the retention. From simple charging cases to full-on battery packs, there are plenty of solutions available, but while many forgo appearance in favor of practicality, this neat new wrist-worn charger serves as an inconspicuous accessory when not in use.

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The higher echelons of the Android market were once completely dominated by Samsung, and after several marked failures, Taiwanese outfit HTC stopped being ‘quietly’ brilliant and actually delivered a device worthy of some fanfare. The HTC One M7 last year has since been followed up with the One M8, and with a slick design and great features, is a worthy competitor to the Samsung Galaxy S5. With Android fans having been catered to, HTC has decided to broaden its horizons, releasing a Windows Phone 8.1 edition exclusively to Verizon. Specs, pricing, and other such details can be seen below.

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After years of trying to make airlines and everyone involved with the aviation industry realize that mobile phones on planes weren’t a recipe for disaster, it seems that once again we may be banned from using them in the air.

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Last week, we informed you that the Windows Phone 8.1 Update 1 had been announced, with Microsoft adding several new features while also broadening the horizons of the Cortana voice assistant. If you want to try out the new release on your compatible Windows Phone 8.x device, it’s actually not that difficult, and before long, you’ll be able to enjoy what is a relatively substantial enhancement.

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The HTC One M8 is already making quite the name for itself in Android circles. It’s arguably the nicest Android phone to look at and it’s certainly one of the best when it comes to build. In fact, apart from the LG G3, we think you’d bee hard pushed to argue that the One M8 isn’t the biggest hit of the year for a variety of reasons.

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If you’re a cellular customer in the United States, today marks a very important day for you. As of today, cellular unlocking is legal in the U.S. again – which basically means you can now unlock your mobile phone, including the iPhone or any Android smartphone, to work on any carrier in the country. According to the White House, President Barack Obama is signing the Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act today.

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There are few things more annoying than when your smartphone starts to lag for no apparent reason. That’s exactly what owners of phones running Windows Phone 8.1 have potentially been having to put up with, and it’s grown into much more than a minor annoyance.

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Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform gets a pretty raw deal when it comes to apps, with developers favoring iOS and Android for the most part. The fact that Instagram only recently made its way to the Windows Phone Store is a testament to this, and with the BlackBerry Messenger app having dropped some time ago for Google and Apple’s mobile ecosystems, it has finally manifested itself for Windows Phone. As usual, we’ve got all of the details right here.

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Since being announced at this year’s BUILD developers’ conference, the tech world has remained fascinated by Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8.1. Given that Cortana, the company’s first mobile voice assistant, has commanded the lion’s share of attention since rolling out with WP8.1, it shouldn’t come as much of a shock that in today’s update to the mobile software, it’s once again the center of attention. As well as offering some improvements to the current Cortana set-up, the feature is now rolling out across several new markets as a result of the bump, and with a number of general tweaks to Windows Phone 8.1 across the board, this is a pretty significant enhancement.

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As our smartphones, watches, tablets and even cars have begun to make ever-increasing use of battery power, those batteries haven’t quite managed to keep up. We’re charging our smartphones at least once a day, and the new smartwatches on the market don’t do much better. Cars need recharging at worryingly short intervals, and at this point it’s arguable that we’ve been held back by the amount of juice we can give things. Something has to change.

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When a major hardware company come to the realization that it needs to launch an accompanying mobile app with its product, it tends to focus on the two biggest mobile platforms; iOS and Android. And rightly so as a recent collection of statistics has suggested that as of June 2014 those two platforms account for almost 90% of the smartphone market. With that said, it’s extremely important to not only remember, but also consider catering for growing options such as Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform. FitBit, the manufacturers of the FitBit Flex and other powerful wearables, provided some good news a few weeks ago by announcing that it was building a native experience for Windows Phone 8.1 users, with that app now being live on the Windows Phone Store for immediate download.

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In spite of the fact that our smartphones are already capable of processing payments and unlocking doors, we’re still quite a way off ditching the traditional card and key from our still-lengthy list of pocket fodder. The Hilton Hotel chain, which already allows those staying to check in using their mobile devices, will soon permit guests to use them for purpose of entering and exiting a room during their stay, promoting the kind of seamlessness that already ought to be a feature at such a high-end chain.

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When Microsoft took the wraps off Windows Phone 8.1 just a couple of months ago, many users rejoiced at the broad range of features that had been introduced. Everything that we expected of the announcement turned out to be true, but even though we really ought to be focusing our attentions on core features like, for example, the new notifications infrastructure, the Cortana voice assistant has commanded a large portion of attention. Just like when Apple introduced Siri, we don’t seem to be able to get enough of these personable, digital voice recognition features, and in a new ad to promote Windows Phone 8.1, the software giant has pitted the Lumia 635 and Cortana up against the iPhone 5s and Siri.

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Modern day smartphones and mobile devices are readily available through bricks and mortar stores, as well as through a multitude of online retailers, but it wasn’t that long ago that owning a mobile phone was considered to be something reserved for high flying businessmen and the financially elite. If you are from the old-school, and fondly remember your old Nokia or Ericsson feature phone, then these recreations of old into new will definitely blow off some of the cobwebs and make you realize how far the mobile industry has progressed.

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Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8.1 has taken the platform to new heights thanks to a range of improvements over previous versions, but the software giant isn’t ready to call it a day just yet. Already working on the next update to Windows Phone, dubbed as GDR1, and expected to release it soon, here are the upcoming features that consumers and phone makers can expect to begin shipping on new devices.

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