Archive for the ‘Windows Phone’ Category

Microsoft’s Windows Phone is still playing catch-up with the competition, but it does have some benefits that even iOS and Android can’t quite manage to put together. Windows Phone’s Joe Belfiore has tweeted about one new feature that is on its way to Windows Phone and that can now be added to any Windows Phone 8.1 smartphone via a downloadable app.

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We’re doing something really different today, and to make it more fun and interactive for everyone, we’d love to see some input from our readers on this one.

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The United States House of Representatives has taken the opportunity to unanimously pass a bill that finally declares the act of unlocking a cellphone to be perfectly legal. The bill, which passed through the Senate, overturns last year’s decision to continue to make unlocking cellphones illegal, and is expected to be signed into law by President Obama’s administration.

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Gaming doesn’t get more mobile than the folks at Gameloft. The company has been making mobile games for what seems like forever, and with the arrival of high-end smartphones and tablets, it has become the go-to place for highly realistic, highly fun games.

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Concepts are a double-edged sword in that while they often dazzle, leaving us wishing that they were real, it’s often the case that these products are unrealistic, infeasible, or simply impossible to create in the real world. With the smartwatch market currently experiencing something of a boom, we’ve seen a fair few wondrous concepts in this department already, yet the new, innovative design you see before you is not only extremely creative in beaming notifications using its projector, but it’s also something that you can, quite literally, get your hands on.

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For cellular customers in the United States, it’s time for good news again, as the US Senate has just passed a bill that makes unlocking of cellular phone devices legal again, preceded by the passing of a similar bill back in February this year by the House of Representatives.

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Having wrapped up the acquisition of Nokia earlier on in the year, Microsoft’s BUILD developers conference was largely focused around the Windows Phone 8.1 update. Having been seen as a distant third place to iOS and Android thanks to its lack of key features, Windows Phone has struggled to make a dent in the market share of the Big Two, but with the newer software promising some great features including a voice assistant in Cortana, there’s renewed optimism that the software giant may finally stake more than just a token claim to the smartphone industry. After the developer preview launch shortly after BUILD, Windows Phone 8.1 is this week rolling out to Lumia devices via the Cyan update, and as ever, we’ve got all of the major details right here.

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Any mobile gadget looking to attain FCC certification must, at this moment in time, have certain details branded onto the product itself, stating that said device has indeed been approved. However, the agency has today relaxed these rules somewhat, and mobile devices, including the Apple iPhone, may no longer need these details to be etched onto each and every unit as standard.

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BlackBerry may well be scrambling for some sort of relevancy in the smartphone world, but it seems that some people just wont let their BlackBerry Messenger, or BBM accounts die. Announcing its first beta release of BBM for Windows Phone, BlackBerry took to its blog in order to claim that it had received an “incredible number of requests for BBM to come to Windows Phone.”

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Nokia, which was recently acquired by Microsoft, has long built great smartphones, particularly those of the Lumia variety. But while the market has been enticed by the sleek, funky designs and top-notch rear-facing camera technology, most have been put-off by the Windows Phone OS, which is nowhere near as evolved as, say, Android.

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If you’ve been on an airplane in the last ten years, then the chances are you’re already well aware of some of the rather overzealous restrictions that are being enforced upon air travellers. Mothers forced to prove that baby milk is indeed just that by drinking it is a story we’ve all heard before, but now it seems that the US Transportation Security Administration isn’t content with just making sure liquids are as they appear, anymore.

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The Nokia Lumia 830 may have only made its first appearance in a spy shot that popped up a few days ago, but it’s already making headlines once again after new renders were leaked which appear to show the unannounced smartphone with some rather new branding.

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We cannot, it seems, help but get carried away by voice assistants, and even though Microsoft joined the party extremely late with the introduction of Cortana earlier this year, the amount of hype it has generated for the software giant will certainly do Windows Phone’s cause no harm whatsoever. Having already been compared a dozen times to Google Now and Apple’s Siri, Cortana has had the benefit of watching and learning from both, but while the Halo-based voice assistant has clearly borrowed from its two longer-serving rivals in many departments, Siri is now looking to Cortana for inspiration.

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As most of you will be aware, Microsoft’s deal to acquire Finnish telecommunications outfit Nokia was recently given the rubber stamp of approval by the relevant bodies overseeing such takeovers, and even though ties between the two firms have been fairly close for years now, the software giant has gradually been integrating Nokia’s staff and product lines with its own business model. As a part of this ongoing process, Microsoft is said to be on the cusp of licensing the iconic Nokia brand, and according to leaked info, may opt for “Nokia by Microsoft” labeling on its smartphone line-up.

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Indian manufacturer XOLO has just launched what it claims is the world’s lightest smartphone. Running on Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform, the device combines its lightweight profile with a rather slick form factor, and with the company having just recently unveiled a Windows 8.1 tablet, those looking to invest in the Redmond’s ecosystem now have to very appealing new products to consider.

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There’s nothing worse than being out and about and finding out that your smartphone or tablet has suffered from total battery drain and will no longer function. A lack of battery power means that access to text messages, emails, navigation apps and even Facebook is no longer possible when on the move, and for a lot of you guys out there that will almost feel like life as you know it, has ended. Thankfully, Microsoft and British designer Adrien Sauvage can sympathize with that pain and have teamed up to create a pair of innovative wireless charging trousers that will ensure compatible mobile devices remain powered up.

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As a part of the Windows Phone 8.1 announcement, Microsoft finally took the wraps off Cortana, it’s ecosystem’s very own answer to Siri and Google Now. At the time, the software maker touted it as a voice assistant encompassing the best features of Apple and Google’s respective services, and such is the faith that the Windows maker has in Cortana, that versions for iOS and Android are now being prepared.

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Moving files around on smartphones is the kind of thing we’ve been arguing over for years. There are two schools of thought; one group of people think that seeing as our smartphones are basically little computers, we should treat them as such. That means file systems, directory structures and a file manager just like our computers. The other group of people thinks that we should take the opportunity to dump all that nonsense, hiding the whole thing.

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Even though the tiled nature of Windows Phone serves as a quirk, it’s also a hindrance to those who like their traditional wallpapers. Recognizing this, Microsoft has come through with a compromise in Windows Phone 8.1, allowing wallpapers to be spread across tiles in a neat, mosaic fashion. But there is still a conflict of interests between tiles and wallpapers thanks to fixed-color tiles, and with everything appearing a little too busy and cluttered, one developer has decided to create an app that renders these stubborn tiles completely transparent.

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Samsung and Google have already invested time and resources into the emerging smartwatch market, and with Apple widely expect to follow suit later on this year, Microsoft is also rumored to be planning a product line-up of its own. We’ve already seen patent filings to corroborate this notion, and now, a credible new report has offered some fresh details.

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