Nokia announces Exclusive applications and games for Lumia handsets and other Windows Phones: Angry Birds Space, EA Mobile games, Groupon, Paypal,

Nokia is all in with Windows Phone and today’s software partnership announcement is one more proof of this. The company has announced several partnership that will net Nokia Lumia owners with exclusive applications in the coming weeks and months plus the birth of a new development team at Rovio in Finland (makers of Angry Birds) to develop and port all of theirs games to Nokia Lumia handsets and even other Windows Phone devices. Nice isn’t it? Here’s a  list of what coming:

PGA TOUR – The PGA TOUR app will be available exclusively to Nokia Lumia owners from June 2012. Developed in partnership with Nokia, the app provides scores and player information and also interactive, augmented coverage of the action from the events on a hole-by-hole basis.

ESPN – The exclusive ESPN Sports Hub will receive a number of updates over current months, bringing greater personalisation options, such as panoramas dedicated to your favourite teams. A Windows Phone version of the ESPN Fantasy Football app will launch exclusively on Lumia this autumn.

EA Mobile: FIFA, Madden, NBA Jam, Tiger Woods, Mirror’s Edge and Yahtzee coming to the Windows Phone platform (not exclusive to Lumias apparently)

Rovio – The company is building a dedicated development team to create titles for Nokia Lumia and the wider Windows Phone ecosystem, with the goal of publishing all future Rovio titles – including Angry Birds Space – on the platform as quickly as possible.

“Nokia is one of our longest-standing partners, and Windows Phone and Lumia are of strategic importance to Rovio. We are very committed to bring our games to Lumia devices, and are looking forward to delighting our fans on the Windows Phone platform,” said Mikael Hed, CEO of Rovio.

Groupon – Groupon is working on an extensive upgrade of its Windows Phone app, bringing a new augmented reality deal-finder function. It will be exclusive to Lumia owners for six months following its launch in Summer 2012.

TripDots – This is a an app that helps motorists optimise their fuel efficiency, awarding achievements as well as cost-savings in a wider social game while maintaining people’s privacy.

PayPal – Nokia and PayPal are working together to create a Windows Phone app to allow secure, fast and easy payments through PayPal wherever you may be.

AOL Entertainment HubExclusive to Nokia Lumia owners for six months from launch, this AOL app brings the cream of AOL’s content to Nokia Lumia owners. That includes the ability to play any of its 55,000 SHOUTcast radio stations, streaming albums with Listening Party. movie trailers and more.

TIME – the world’s largest weekly circulation magazine comes to Windows Phone. The app will deliver content from Time.com to mobile making full use of the UI’s possibilities, such as alerts for breaking news, the ability to share news items with your contacts in the People Hub and Live Tiles.

NewsWeek – NewsWeek is creating a Windows Phone version of The Daily Beast, its digital content partner. Designed for consuming the latest news while you’re on the move, the app allows you to access the latest stories in seconds. It also includes access to The Cheat Sheet – a one-stop shop for leading stories across the globe.

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Nokia City Lens Augmented Reality browser released for Lumia phones

Nokia has just release the beta version of the Nokia City Lens Augmented Reality browser exclusively for the Lumia line of Windows Phones (the app is already available on the Symbian). If you don’t know what City Lens is then the simple answer would be to say that it’s Nokia’s own versions of Wikitude or Layar (or even ScanSeach on the LG Optimus 7 / Quantum Windows Phones). Nothing really groundbreaking here but the upside here is the software polish that we have come to expect from Nokia’s latest software and services. It simply works (even though it’s still in Beta) and nicely integrates with Nokia Maps to give you walking, driving or transport directions to the places you are looking at (similar to Nokia Transport / Transit). You can download directly to you Lumia handset by scanning the QR Code after the break and also checking out the video introduction of the app below:

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Nokia Lumia 800 1750.805.8773.12140 Tango update coming soon

Photo courtesy of MJ Foley

Quick word of advise to all the Nokia Lumia 800 users out there who are eagerly waiting for the Tango update to reach their handset and finally bring Internet Sharing and improved camera settings: please be patient. The Chinese variant 1750.805.8773.12140 firmware has finally reached Nokia Care’s servers a few ours ago but shouldn’t be of any use to most users outside of China given that it lacks Facebook and Twitter integration in the People Hub and includes several features and customization specifically aimed at the Asian market. This update does indeed enabled internet sharing and also include the new camera settings that have been missing from the previous updates (panorama, smart group shot etc video quality settings and improved still shot quality..) and a Nokia Branded Marketplace Icon/tile.

The international / European variant of the 1750.805.8773.12140 update shouldn’t be to far off so don’t rush waste our time flashing you perfectly functional handset right now ans simply wait a little for the real deal. If you are really bothered by the Audio Volume bug simply flash the 12072 FW for now.


Samsung launches the Samsung Focus 2 Windows Phone with LTE support. World still wonders why

Still trying to figure out if there’s any logic behind Microsoft’s Windows Phone endeavor? Well, today’s launch of the Samsung Focus 2 isn’t going to make things clearer to the masses. The Samsung Focus 2 Windows Phone handset is launching on AT&T’s network in the US later this month on May 20th for the relatively interesting price of $49.99 with the 2year contract. Nice, right? Unfortunately not very much given that the Focus 2 is nothing more than a Samsung Focus / Omnia 7 with 1.4GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon APQ8055 + MDM9200 LTE modem instead of the older QSD8250. That’s right folks…nothing interesting to see here especially when you take into account that the Nokia Lumia 900 with its better hardware is priced exactly the same on the same network and with double the amount of on-board storage (16Gb on Lumia 900 vs 8Gb on the Focus 2).

Once again this doesn’t make much sense at all in this day and age when Windows Phone 8 is getting close to release and may or probably may not be offered as an update to the current Windows Phone 7 handsets on the market. The only good thing to come out if this announcement is the fact that it squashes the ridiculous rumors that have been flying around about a the Samsung Focus 2 being the Windows Phone variant of the Samsung Galaxy S III. Nothing to see here folks….

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