Jun 122012
 

We believe it and so does the Windows Phone Gear store.

Microsoft has launched the brand new concept of “Wearing your heart out” for the madly-in-love Windows Phone users. With the launch of the official Windows Phone Gear store on CaféPress, now you can buy online goodies to express your love for the Windows Phone.

Let the world know your love the Microsoft way. From waving off your device and “Smoked by Windows phone” videos earlier to smoking the non- Windows user, by showing off some great Windows Phone gears.

The coffee mug, T-shirts, water bottle, thermos, drinking glass, magnets, stickers, tote bag with the “ I Heart Windows Phone” is all for grabs in the Windows Phone Gear Store.

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Despite the limited selection of items, the most popular goodies already are the T-shirts (Available in all sizes for men, women and infants) and Coffee mugs. Microsoft will be adding more items to the list. You can order the gear from : http://www.cafepress.com/windowsphone

May 012012
 

LG, not surprising to us, has decided to shut it’s doors for Windows Phone platform. The reason behind this is a less than respectable number of Windows Phone (and Windows Mobile) devices sold. The company, though, has sold a handsome number of Android powered devices, and hence has decided to focus more on Android, with Windows Phone being a research platform only.

The blogosphere is buzzing with reports that Steve Ballmer (The guy in the fist pic), will be visiting Korea sometime in the third week of may to remind LG of it’s pact and negotiate.

In 2009, at the GSMA MWC, LG and Microsoft had made a pact wherein LG would bring 26 Windows Phones to market in 2012 alone.

P2161068 thumb LG shuts the doors for Windows Phone Platform, keeps a window open for future

And it kept a small part of it’s promise by introducing several Windows Mobile handsets.

P2160989 thumb LG shuts the doors for Windows Phone Platform, keeps a window open for future

P2180641 thumb LG shuts the doors for Windows Phone Platform, keeps a window open for future

P2180640 thumb LG shuts the doors for Windows Phone Platform, keeps a window open for future

And Making a pomp about their dedication to the Windows Platform

P2161045 thumb LG shuts the doors for Windows Phone Platform, keeps a window open for future

But LG is known as an organization with a hedging strategy. They license every OS which attracts their attention. But at the same time, they are pretty quick to kill any OS that they can not milk.

Hence, as we mentioned in the beginning of the article, we are not surprised…!!!

Feb 292012
 

The much promised and similarly awaited Windows Phone Tango has been unveiled by Microsoft at the MWC.

Microsoft has lowered the hardware specs for Tango to smoothly run. The Windows Phone 7.5  now runs on Qualcomm 7×27 processors and 256MB of RAM, thus ushering a new era, ahem, for low end smartphones.

But this comes alonwwith some sacrifices at core level. SkyDrive automatic uploads and Bing Local Scout have both been removed from devices with 256MB of RAM. The reason behind this is that they stored a large amount of data in RAM, which is plainly not feasible on low RAM devices. Though 95 percent of existing applications will work fine on these devices, apps that use a lot of memory (aka badly programmed apps) will be slow and clunky on the updated platform.  The multitasking feature is also to go down the gutter except for background audio.

But there is a silver lining to all this..!! The perk comes as an improved MMS which can  now handle video and multiple images as well as a new voice notes feature to record one minute audio snippets.

you can get a hands on demo of the ZTE orbit running the Tango HERE.

Stay tuned for more..!!

Nov 292011
 

When CNET got their hands on Windows Phone (Nokia Lumia 800 to be precise), they were simply awestruck by the balance the platform had to offer. The UI was, well, slick, but was a lot less clunky, as per CNET.

According to the article:

The king is dead

Until not so long ago, that meant Apple. But something insane has happened. Something that we simply wouldn’t have countenanced just three short years ago.

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?

Sure, the iPhone and iPad interface is still slick and simple. But the shine is gone — iOS 5 looks almost exactly the same as iOS 4. Android showed what you can do when you can truly customise the look and feel of your phone, with its flexible home screens, handy widgets placing information right at your fingertips, and the capacity to alter any feature you like.

I seem to recall an old story, when the only smartphone OS of the time, Symbian, was bashed by everyone. People wanted behemoths of phones. They worshipped a large screen and a powerful processor, only to realise that the duo would eat battery faster. They demanded an app store like no other, only to trial a few apps and then delete them and move on to the next.

Nokia was undeniably the game setter, Apple was the game changer, Android was the turmoil that uprooted everyone, and yet RIM et al were wondering what just happened. This proves the age old proverb – The only thing which is constant is change.

Source

Nov 182011
 

Nokia’s flagship phone, the Lumia, has received a mild start. With pre-orders in the EU falling a lot short of the iPhone, and even the high end Android phones, Nokia has failed to gain a head start it had expected from it’s first bath of Windows Phone powered smartphones.

According to Financial Times, Orange said it was the most successful Nokia launch ever and had been popular in pre-orders.

In an interview, Stephen Elop said

We are interested first and foremost about volume. Our highest priority is to help Windows Phones to compete with Android. This is the first showcase product.

…You see us pricing the devices so that that we can get what we think will be a good volume…

What a nice strategy Stephen, rather than eyeing for the top spot, you want to be content with the second position.

Also, there are reports about Nokia launching tablets running Windows 8 in June next year. Despite having the most powerful platform named MeeGo out there, Nokia decided to drop it for an untested Windows8 (coincidentally, I tried the developer preview and it is not that great).

Elop said that

It is clearly a very interesting opportunity

We need no proof of Elop handling “interesting opportunities” well, a historically factual example quoted above.

We have to see if Windows Phones made by Nokia bring up the mojo or will they be recorded in the annals of history as the biggest failure in the history of Finland. Only time will tell

Nov 032011
 

Windows phone users rejoice. You will soon be getting a free app in the Windows Marketplace, known as Nokia Maps.

The maps will come as agreed terms where Nokia would be giving some of it’s goodies to non Nokia Windows Phone users.

According to ZDNet

This version of Nokia Maps will NOT support offline maps or voice guided navigation, but does have the following features:

  • Local POI details (provides you location, phone number, reviews, and photos of up to 25 locations in your vicinity)
  • Deep link support (you can pin destinations to the Start screen)
  • Detailed maps in satellite, 2D, and 3D views

So the voice guided navigation would be exclusive to Nokia Phones, but the universally acclaimed Nokia Maps can be downloaded and used by any Windows Phone user, irrespective of the device on which the maps are being installed.

Nov 032011
 

When the XBox 360 as released long time ago, it was just another console. It was marred by the popularity and prowess of the PS3 and the ingenuity of the Wii.

Wii was the console that popularized the concept of motion gaming going extreme. Soon Sony jumped in by introducing the PlayStation Move, which mimicked the Wii  on a superior and proven console.

What Microsoft did was to introduce the Kinect, the controller without boundaries.

Almost immediately following the launch of Kinect, hobbyists and academics from around the world embraced Kinect possibilities in ways that surprised and delighted. And with the launch of a non-commercial software development kit, we saw even more exciting and creative applications in the areas of healthcare, rehab, education and so much more. As we watched these stories unfold, the term “The Kinect Effect” emerged in hallway conversations at Microsoft as a way to describe the amazing and creative ways Kinect was being used.

What began as pure entertainment had taken a new form altogether. See for yourself

Frank X Shaw over at the Technet blog quotes

Bill Gates once said, “We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years, and underestimate the change that will occur in the next 10." Last year was an incredible year for the Kinect Effect, and with so many fantastic ideas made real in just the one year, I can’t wait to look back in nine!

Being an avid gamer and having owned a lot of consoles myself, I can vouch that no console is inferior when it comes to gaming and enjoyment, but I must really commend Microsoft and the guys who got this idea to transform the Kinect into something unexpected.

Oct 132011
 

Everyone is aware of the burning ship memo, the abandoning of Symbian and MeeGo and the steady fall in the Nokia share prices. Nokia’s credit rating had gone hazardous after the daring moves of the newly appointed CEO, Stephen Elop.

After all the hubbub, it was decided that Windows Phone would be the future of mobiles. But that too did not dissipate the heat that Nokia was taking.

But as the day of the launch of Nokia Windows Phone draws near, analysts begin to think that maybe it was not that bad at all.

Nomura Securities analyst Stuart Jeffrey states

We are upgrading Nokia to Neutral after raising our estimates to reflect a likely stronger-than expected Q3 [third quarter] and solid Q4. In addition, we expect new Windows Phone launches to feature at October 26th‘s Nokia World event and that Microsoft supported advertising will build shortly after

We all know that had Symbian got the chance on powerful hardware that Nokia has decided to build for Microsoft, things would have had been drastically different.

We still see a high risk that growth in Windows Phone will not offset declines in Symbian. We believe that Windows Phone might struggle to establish itself at the high end and that a sub-$200 version might take another year or more to develop.

It has been a long time since Symbian has been murdered, it has been a long time since developers were crying blood from their eyes while developing on Symbian, but all of the community, and even the staunchest critics of the “late” platform have to agree – That Symbian was the only mobile OS that ever was.

What do you think?

Oct 112011
 

App store content leaders of today are not those of tomorrow, is what the research firm Distimo believes. According to DIstimo

…within this year, Android Market will overtake Apple’s App Store for iPhone to become the largest content market – while both will see growth, Android Market currently has the momentum. There is also a significant shift underway among the smaller stores, with Nokia’s Ovi Store set to slip from fourth place to sixth place, while Microsoft’s WP7 Marketplace will move from sixth to fourth.

Apple’s App Store for iPad is currently holding its third place, while RIM’s BlackBerry App World is holding station in fifth.

Noticeably, 4 percent of products on the App Store for iPhone feature in-app purchases, these account for 76 percent of revenue. Free apps with in-app purchases account for 52 percent of the total revenue, with paid apps with in-app purchasing accounting for 24 percent. The remaining 24 percent is generated by traditional paid apps.

Android is not far behind in this model. Android in-app purchases were only introduced in March 2011. 76 percent of the top-25 grossing US apps are free titles monetised through in-app purchases.

The growth of tablets meant that the content has to be suited to the tablet form factor. Though the featurephones will never be extinct, the smartphone use is inarguably on the rise, and so is the number of apps downloaded. The research pointed that North America, Europe and Asia are now “almost equal in size” in download terms.

Oct 102011
 

Research firm Berg Insight has claimed that the number of apps downloaded globally will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 56.6 percent between 2010 and 2015, taking the total to 98 billion at the end of the period.

….revenues from paid applications, in-app purchases and subscription services – so called direct revenues – reached € 1.6 billion in 2010.

…direct app store revenues to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 40.7 percent to reach € 8.8 billion in 2015.

Apple’s App Store is forecast to remain at the Numero Uno spot during this period, followed by Android and Windows Phone.

Johan Svanberg, Senior Analyst quoted

Even though the download numbers will increase during the forecast period, most apps are free to download and app monetisation will be a challenge for developers.

Free to download monetisation strategies such as in-app advertising and in-app purchasing will be increasingly important. This is especially true in the APAC region, which will account for over 40 percent of all mobile app downloads in 2015.

He said that the future belongs to new web technologies such as HTML5, which would replace the native apps. Developers should not see the web and native technologies as “mutual exclusives” and should target the web and mobile platforms logically and strategically.

Sep 262011
 

Microsoft, in an attempt to lure Symbian (soon to be obsolete platform) developers, has released the Windows Phone tools for Symbian developers.

The package includes

The guide is organized into 8 chapters and features around 100 pages of documentation:

    • Chapter 1: Introducing Windows Phone Platform to Symbian Qt Application Developers
    • Chapter 2: Windows Phone Application Design Guidelines
    • Chapter 3: Windows Phone Developer and Designer Tools
    • Chapter 4: C# programming
    • Chapter 5: Introducing Windows Phone Application Life Cycle
    • Chapter 6: Porting Applications to Windows Phone
    • Chapter 7: Windows Phone Example Applications
    • Chapter 8: Using the API Mapping Tool

The Windows Phone API mapping tool focuses on the core libraries for Qt 4.7 for Symbian (QtCore, QtGui, QtLocation, QtNetwork, QtSensors, QtSql, QtXml, QtWebKit, QML Elements, QML Components.

Regarding the Nokia Windows Phone Training roadshow,

starting today in Paris, France. During this one day training event, you’ll learn how to take your ideas and get them running on the Windows Phone platform. Upcoming dates and locations for the roadshow are as follows: Milan, Italy (Sept 26), Madrid, Spain (Sept 29), Berlin, Germany (Oct 4) , London, United Kingdom (Oct 10) and Silicon Valley, USA – date & details coming soon!
Similar events are also happening in Australia: Sydney (Sept 24-25[SOLD OUT], Oct 8-9), Melbourne (Oct 8-9[SOLD OUT, wait list]) and Brisbane (Oct 8-9).
We realize this is only a few dates and locations, so for all the developers who want to learn Windows Phone, I recommend that you follow at your own pace the EXCELLENT “Window Phone Mango Jump Start” online video training.

So what are you devs waiting for? Microsoft has released similar tools in the past to woo iOS and Android devs. Why wait and not port your already successful aps and games on Windows Phone platform?

Happy developing….!!

Source

Sep 192011
 

It was this month that two prominent organizations put the credit ratings of Nokia in the reverse gear.

According to WSJ

Standard & Poor’s and Fitch downgraded the Finnish mobile manufacturer this month—the latter to its lowest investment grade, with a negative outlook—amid concerns about its cash position….

Sure, Nokia’s current €6 billion ($8.6 billion) net cash pile gives it a cushion for this year. But the speed of the collapse in its handset sales and uncertainty over its new Windows-based smartphones, scheduled for launch by year-end, are spooking the ratings agencies. Credit Suisse believes the collapse in sales and margins will result in negative free-cash flow of €500 million in 2011. Along with €1 billion in restructuring charges, that could cut Nokia’s net cash to €3.75 billion by 2012.

Nokia is taking a sturdy hammering from all the fronts. And if Microsoft doesn’t come to Nokia’s aid, things might now be as sweet as they were portrayed. After all, Microsoft is Nokia’s software partner on which Nokia has bet everything.

Of course there is Nokia-Siemens Networks, but that partnership is no more than $1 billion. So Nokia HAS to inevitably look to Microsoft for help.

Sep 162011
 

We have been ranting about the demise of Symbian and it’s distant cousin MeeGo. The demise was a direct result of Nokia Partnering with MSFT and adopting Windows Phone as the third ecosystem.

But Things haven’t turned that way. Mr. Ballmer has admitted that that people are not that enthusiastic about Windows Phone as MSFT had hoped.

Ballmer was recently caught quoting

…We haven’t sold quite as many as I would have liked in the first year…

and

…I’m not saying I love where we are but I am very optimistic on where we can be

…We’ve just got to kick this thing to the next level.

ballmer thumb Ballmer: Windows Phones arent selling very well, but were not worried

What if the world remains less-than-expected-enthusiastic towards Windows Phone? The plan is pretty simple, then it would all be Nokia’s fault. Or in Ballmer’s words

…with Nokia we have a dedicated hardware partner that is all-in on Windows Phones…

…They are not doing something on Android or [any other operating system].

Seems our suspicions were correct and the pride of Finland is soon to become the shame of Finland.

Source

Aug 212011
 

Well guess what? MSFT has blown the trumpet. It is now openly inviting webOS devs to develop for Windows Phone 7.

According to a tweet by Brandon Watson – senior director of Windows Phone 7 development at Microsoft.

Brandon-Watson-webOS-tweet

Watson is the same man who had recently bet $1,000 on Windows Phone 7 with the author of popular comic strip Dilbert.

With webOS devs hitting the panic button, MSFT will surely be luring a lot of devs to develop on the Windows Phone 7 platform.

For Watson it’s a simple approach. “Someone asked me why,” he said over Twitter. “Because every developer matters, that’s why.”

Stay tuned for more…!!!!