Windows Phone 8 SDK released: Direct 3D features detailled

I just finished watching the BUILD Keynotes after coming back home from work and came to the conclusion that Steve Ballmer has become the best demo guy for Microsoft. I highly suggest you take the time to watch his keynote to because I think that it’s the best one he has ever done so far. Anyway, let’s talk about Windows Phone 8. Microsoft has finally released the final public version of the WP8 SDK today which you can download from the source link below and start using to develop Windows Phone 7.X and Windows Phone 8 applications (no surprises here, it’s quite similar to the Leaked version I showed you this summer). Microsoft has also announced that developer registration to submit apps to the Windows Store will only cost $8 instead of $99 for the next 8 Days. So hurry up and start building amazing stuff.

As an added incentive, for the next 8 days individual developers can register for a Dev Center account for just $8 (a 92 percent savings). Please note because this is a very limited time offer. You’ll be charged $99 USD or equivalent in your local currency, and we’ll refund the difference in the next 30 to 45 days. Watch for more details on Dev Center soon.

Those of you who are still wondering what is the exact Direct3D feature set supported by Windows Phone 8 should take look after the break as MS’s Shawn Hargreaves has posted an great deal of info today about this:

Continue reading Windows Phone 8 SDK released: Direct 3D features detailled →

HTC Windows Phone 8X hands on

The relatively good surprise of last night’s Windows Phone 8 launch event was my hands on experience with HTC’s new flagship handset the Windows Phone 8X. Contrary to what most people assumed the devices’ build quality is nearly perfect and on par with Nokia’s Lumias. But the most striking feature is in my opinion the handset’s weight (130g) and overall in hand feeling. Like I said earlier the Nokia Lumia 920 is heavy, especially when you compare it to the 8X and ATIV S.

Continue reading HTC Windows Phone 8X hands on →

Nokia Lumia 920 hands on video

The Nokia Lumia 920 heavy. Now that we got this out of the way let’s focus on what makes this phone great: worldwide LTE support, inductive wireless charging, gorgeous PureMotionHD+ 1280×768 screen and exceptional camera with OIS. Did I mention the perfect build quality? Well there you have it. Sounds like the perfect phone right? Unfortunately nothing is perfect and the Lumia 920 really is a heavy handset especially when you have handled the Samsung ATIV S and the Windows Phone 8X by HTC just a few minutes later. This is not to say that I won’t be getting one but I definitely understand people complaining about the 920′s bulkiness. I for example wouldn’t recommend it to my wife but then again she really love Nokia Drive so..decision will have to be made between Nokia’s flagship and HTC’s surprisingly nice Windows Phone 8X.

Anyway, check out my short hands-on video after the break:

Continue reading Nokia Lumia 920 hands on video →

Gameloft announces 12 new games for Windows Phone 8: Modern Combat 4, Spider Man and more

Gameloft has just issued a press release announcing 12 new high end 3D games for Windows Phone 8. Among them are several big names that are already out on iOS and Android but also the new installment of the companies Call of Duty like franchise: Modern Combat 4. Here’s the full list of WP8 goodies coming out in the coming months:

- Ice Age Village
- N.O.V.A. 3: Near Orbit Vanguard Alliance
- Modern Combat 4: Zero Hour
- Shark Dash
- Asphalt 7: Heat
- The Dark Knight Rises
- UNO™ & Friends
- Order & Chaos Online
- The Amazing Spider-Man
- Fashion Icon
- Poker for Prizes
- Real Soccer 2013

Check out the full press release after the break and hope for more AAA game announcements in the weeks to come:

Continue reading Gameloft announces 12 new games for Windows Phone 8: Modern Combat 4, Spider Man and more →

Windows Phone 8 launches with new features, Skype and new apps

Most of you have probably already seen the full Windows Phone 8 event that was live streamed earlier today so I won’t write an essay about everything that was shown. Instead let’s do a quick recap on what was new or simply not yet officially unveiled since Windows Phone 8′s initial announcement a few months ago.

First of all Microsoft announced the newest version of Skype for Windows Phone 8. This new version of the app will fully integrate into the OS and allow seamless VOIP calling through the phone dialer and more features like background notifications and lock-screen integration. What’s new here (for Windows Phone) is that the Skype service will constantly be running in the background even if the app wasn’t triggered by the user. this means that calls or other notifications like messages will arrive as if they were regular phone calls or SMS. Most of the functionality of the UI and People/contact integration of the WP8 app are similar to the windows 8 version that was released just 2 days ago. Checkout the video below for a quick demo:

Continue reading Windows Phone 8 launches with new features, Skype and new apps →

Samsung ATIV S Hands On

I finally had the chance to handle the first ever Windows Phone 8 handset announced which is also the one that nobody ever saw in the flesh since its first unveiling back in the summer: the Samsung ATIV S. As you probably all already know the ATIV S for the most part the Windows Phone 8 variant of the Samsung Galaxy S3 with a fresh new design and what looks like a slightly better screen. I admit that I’m definitely not sure of this but the 4.8″ 720P Supper AMOLED panel doesn’t seem to have the same PenTile sub-pixel array as the S3 and is closer to the one found on the new Galaxy Note 2. The screen really has the best viewing angles of any phone I have ever handled but as its usual the case with Samsung the color calibration seems to be totally off.

Continue reading Samsung ATIV S Hands On →

Windows Phone 8 syncing app for Windows 8 released

 

Microsoft has just released the Windows Phone 8 syncing application for Windows 8 today a few hours ahead of the OS launch event taking place in San Fancisco. As previously revealed this application is only meant to work with WP8 handsets and not older generation devices who will have to still use the Zune software on Windows 8/7.  I will be on Twitter later today live blogging the event as I’m going to be hanging around with the folks at Microsoft France and Nokia locally here in Paris. Check out the application description after the break:

Continue reading Windows Phone 8 syncing app for Windows 8 released →

Nokia Lumia 920 and 820 unlocked prices and accessories

As we are getting closer to the retail availability of the first Windows Phone 8 handsets here’s the recommend European retail prices of Nokia’s upcoming offerings; the unlocked Lumia 920 and 820 and all of their accessories:

- Nokia Lumia 920: 649€
- Nokia Lumia 820: 499€
- Horizontal Inductive charger DT-900: 69.90€
- Vertical Inductive charger with NFC DT-910: 79.90€
- Fatboy pillow with horizontal inductive charger DT-901: 89.90€
- JBL Play Up speaker with NFC MD-51W: 189€
- JBL Power Up speaker with inductive charging and NFC: 389€
- Nokia Lumia 820 back-cover with Inductive charging and NFC: 29.90€
- Nokia Lumia 820 back-cover with NFC: 24.90
- Nokia Purity Pro headset by Monster BH-900: 299€

Continue reading Nokia Lumia 920 and 820 unlocked prices and accessories →

AT&T to start taking pre-orders for the Nokia Lumia 920 and HTC Windows Phone 8X on October 21st

Only a few days left before US citizens can start pre-ordering Nokia’s latest and greatest Lumia 920 and HTC’s stylish Windows Phone 8X on AT&T’s network. That’s at least what the latest rumors are claiming. October21st is apparently the date. Just 8 days ahead of the official Windows Phone 8 launch so the carrier is expecting you to lay down your hard earned money on a device before even knowing all of the OS’s features. Sounds a bit ridiculous but Microsoft is the only one to blame here unfortunately. Don’t worry though; Amazon will probably have some pretty good deals on that day similar to the free Nokia Lumia 900 offer a few months ago.

Continue reading AT&T to start taking pre-orders for the Nokia Lumia 920 and HTC Windows Phone 8X on October 21st →

Samsung ATIV S hands on video

GSMArena has accidentally posted a short hands on video of the first Windows Phone 8 handset announced; the Samsung ATIV S. The video is now private but a lower-resolution copy of it it already up on YouTube which you can watch after the break. There isn’t much news in it besides a short demo of Windows Phone 8‘s Kid’s Corner feature which will allow users to setup up specific features, content (games, videos, music, pictures) to be accessible by children. Once the whole thing is activated the phone will have to lock-screens: the regular one which should be password protected and a second one accessible by a finger swipe to the left.

Continue reading Samsung ATIV S hands on video →

Nokia Lumia 810 announced: Exclusive to T-Mobile in the US

Nokia has made a surprise announcement today of their third Windows Phone 8 handset; the Nokia Lumia 810. The phone will be available exclusively on T-Mobile’s network in the US this November and seems to have similar hardware specifications as the Lumia 820. I say “seems” because Nokia has yet to release the full details on the phone but what we know for sure for now is that it feature a 1.2MP wide-angle Skype HD certified front-facing camera instead of the poor VGA (640×480) FF cam of the 820. IT also packs a bigger 1800mah battery. The 810′s design is also different (imo better) and is a uni-body with interchangeable cyan and black back-covers featuring wireless charging as an option but it’s not know yet if NFC are part of the game. Check out the full press release after the break:
Continue reading Nokia Lumia 810 announced: Exclusive to T-Mobile in the US →

Angry Birds Star Wars coming to Windows Phone on November 8th

Angry Birds developer Rovio hasn’t been a big supporter of the Windows Phone in the past. The original Angry Birds release took ages to see the light of the day, has only been updated once (and still doesn’t support fast application switching..) and none of the sequel or other versions have ever been ported to Microsoft’s mobile platform. Thankfully things are about to change (thanks to Nokia) with the upcoming release of Angry Birds Star Wars on November 8th (alongside the iOS, Android, Mac, PC, Win8 version). Check out the teaser video and press release after the break:

Continue reading Angry Birds Star Wars coming to Windows Phone on November 8th →

Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 launch events announced: October 25th and October 29th


Microsoft has confirmed today the dates of the upcoming Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 launch events that are set to take place in NYC and San Fransisco later this month. The Windows 8 party is scheduled to take place in NYC on October 25 staring at 10AM EST. Microsoft will also host a Surface launch party on this day at the same venue. Windows Phone 8 is set to be launched on the west coast four days later on October 29th in San Fransisco as previously speculated. Microsoft will ,without a doubt, finally unveil all of WP8′s features during this event.

Continue reading Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 launch events announced: October 25th and October 29th →

Nokia Lumia 920 coming exclusively to AT&T in November alongside Lumia 820. Cyan color confirmed

AT&T has officially announced what was far from being a mystery today: The Nokia Lumia 920 will launch exclusively on the AT&T’s network this November alongside the Nokia Lumia 820 (which will also be available on other US carriers). This is definitely not a shocker but the good surprise is that a Cyan color version of the Lumia 920 does indeed exist as seen in the picture above, and will available alongside the previously announced red, yellow, gray, white and black versions. Unfortunately no price was announce at all. Check out the full press release and video after the break:

Continue reading Nokia Lumia 920 coming exclusively to AT&T in November alongside Lumia 820. Cyan color confirmed →

Nokia Xpress cloud based browser for Lumia handsets released

Everybody knows by now that all of the current Windows Phone 7.X handsets on the market won’t be upgradeable to Windows Phone 8 and thus won’t have access to many of the new features packed in the OS. One of them is the Cloud/server based page compression that will be available as an option in IE10 to help users reduce their monthly data usage by compressing web content on Microsoft’s servers and pushing-it down to the handsets similar to what Opera introduced with Opera Mini many years ago and whet Microsoft developed for Windows Mobile 5.X as an R&D project named Deepfish back in 2007.

Today Nokia is releasing the beta version of a similar concept via an new application named Nokia Xpress for all Nokia Lumia handsets. Instead of enumerating of all the features I’ll leave with the promotional video embedded after the break and a shortlist of notable functionalities.

Continue reading Nokia Xpress cloud based browser for Lumia handsets released →

First Nokia Lumia 920 promotional video takes a dig at iPhone 5 buyers

Looks like the first promotional video for the Nokia Lumia 920 has official been released through Nokia’s YouTube channel today in hopes to generate some much needed buzz prior to the device’s launch earlier next months. This short video’s principal goal is to get people talking given that it directly takes a jab at all the new and future iPhone 5 owners and barely shows/talks about the Lumia 920 at all. The main them here is: more colors = better choice and differentiation for the end users. Not sure that this would be effective though.. Anyway just hit the break to watch it in its HD glory.

Continue reading First Nokia Lumia 920 promotional video takes a dig at iPhone 5 buyers →

HTC Windows Phone 8X promotional video released

The wait for Windows Phone 8 is undoubtedly long for those of us who are eager to buy a new handset before the years end so anything is better than nothing I guess. Today HTC uploaded the first promotional video of the Windows Phone 8X. Ok, there’s  nothing out of the ordinary or exceptional right here but if you need you daily WP8 fix just head of to the break to watch the 1:30 minutes long teaser:

Continue reading HTC Windows Phone 8X promotional video released →