Skype for Symbian now available in Nokia’s Ovi Store

Skype for Windows Mobile may be “dead” but this won’t stop loyal Nokia user from enjoying it. Nokia & Skype have announced today that the IP Calling application is now available to more than 200 Million Symbian users via the Nokia Ovi Store.

Skype for Symbian enables Nokia smartphone users to:
- Make free Skype-to-Skype calls to other Skype users anywhere in the world*
- Save money on calls and texts (SMS) to phones abroad
- Send and receive instant messages to and from individuals or groups
- Share pictures, videos and other files
- Receive calls to their existing online number
- See when Skype contacts are online and available to call or IM
- Easily import names and numbers from the phone’s address book

Source: Skype

Silverlight & .NET developers unit. Windows Phone 7 Series needs you

Well all know by now that Silverlight and .Net (XNA & Visual Studio 2010) are going to be the main development tools used for developing applications on Windows Phone 7 Series. Independent .Net developer, Jim Wightman, posted his thoughts in a blog post:

Bring on the .NET developers…

Yep, the success of WP7 rests at least partially on our shoulders. We need to write bigger, better, faster apps and games and I can see Microsoft extending their excellent record of community support to really drive development on this new platform. The clever part of course is that many of us have been using the technologies we need for many years already…so Microsoft have not only given us the best chance possible to reuse our skills on a new platform, they have pretty much guaranteed that their version of an ‘app store’ will be a resounding success.

I feel confident in making that last statement based upon the hundreds of incredibly talented Silverlight/.NET programmers I know personally – and since of course they only represent a fraction of the programming talent in the industry, I know that the creation of WP7 apps is in safe hands.

Don’t forget also that many existing applications, if they have been written ‘correctly’, will be relatively easy to convert for use on WP7.

Another important point to consider is how Silverlight is such a delight to develop for and use that even if you’ve never touched XAML or used the SDK before, you’ll pick it up in literally hours. And Silverlight is available today, right now, and so is .NET. If you haven’t used either technology before, you can start learning now. By Holidays 2010, with a little effort, you could have written the ‘killer app’ for this amazing new mobile platform…

I personally feel exactly the same. Now is MS chance to build a rich library of mobile application and everybody .NET / Silverlight developer can be part of it.

Head over here to read the full post.

Apple vs HTC: Why not sue Samsung & LG ? Is it good news for Microsoft?

One thing that everybody seems to agree with is that Apple is probably trying to attack Google (Android) via the patent infringements suite filed against HTC yesterday. Most of Apple’s complaints are aimed at HTC’s Sense UI which sits on top of the Android (and Windows Mobile) operation system and what’s interesting to me here is Microsoft‘s new position in this case. One thing that HTC isn’t happy about lately is the fact that they can’t add their Sense UI on top of the newly announced Windows Phone 7 Series OS but this could be a “good thing” for them in the long run if Apple manages to stop them from selling devices featuring Sense (in the US). The most logical “solution” for them would be to develop Windows Phone 7 Series handsets (no Sense or any other OEM UI on there). Unless Apple decides to go against Microsoft this is a win-win situation for the software giant. Microsoft can now say to OEMs all over the world that if they don’t want to get in trouble with “sue-happy” Apple they should use WP7on their smartphones and ditch Android.

Another question on peoples mind is: “Why doesn’t Apple sue Samsung, LG and other Android OEMs? ”

Well, because they are Apple’s partners! Samsung supplies the memory chips in the iPhones/iPods (and countless other products), they also supply the ARM chipset, the LCD panel in some cases (LG is also a provider of LCD and digitizer panels). Apple isn’t going to commit suicide and sue the companies that help them build their own products, that’s why they decided to attack a company that is in no way related to them.

Microsoft plans $ 1B investment in Windows Mobile R&D

2009 Windows Mobile OPEX

According to Microsoft‘s investor relations manager, Bill Koefoed, The company is planning to invest $1B in reseach & developement for Windows Mobile this year. Microsoft is going to spend $9b in total R&D this year and last year’s Windows Mobile OPEX was $0.9B (R&D, sales and marketing) so I expect this year’s OPEX to be around $1.4B.

Via: Forbes

Microsoft signs licensing agreement with Navizon for geolocalisation on mobile phones

In an attempt to close the gap between Bing Maps & Google Maps, Microsoft is announcing today that they have signed a licensing agreement with Navizon under which the Redmond company will use Navizon’s global location database to provide an enhanced experience to its mobile users.

“This agreement with Microsoft validates the power of Navizon’s crowd-sourcing technology,” said Cyril Houri, founder and CEO of Navizon, Inc. “We are excited to see Microsoft join our fast-growing list of customers who have chosen Navizon for geo-positioning”.

Navizon, a software-only hybrid wireless positioning system, helps users navigate in most major cities across the globe. Navizon works by triangulating signals broadcasted from Wi-Fi access points and cellular towers,

Microsoft mapping service still lacks several essential features (like traffic info, cellular/wifi localisation, POIs etc..) compared to Google Maps so this licensing agreement will hopefully translate in a more feature rich experience for the non-US users of Bing Maps on Windows Phone 7 Series later this year. It should also be noted that Yahoo Mobile signed a similar agreement a few months ago.

Source: Navizon