A minimum of 256Mb of ram is required to record and playback HD Video on a Windows Phone 7 device

As I’ve already pointed out several times in the past weeks there’s no way to natively playback HD videos on Windows Phone 7 devices unless it’s a HD video (720P) directly capture by the phone’s camera. Every-time you want to copy / sync an HD video to your Windows Phone 7 handset  (via the Zune desktop software) the file will be automaticaly transcoded to a 800×480 file  for played back on the phone. On the other hand, if you capture an HD video with the device the video will normally played back without any problem on it (it will obviously be downscaled to fit the WVGA screen, but this is done on the fly by the hardware scaler and doesn’t affect the video file). Microsoft has now officially noted that only devices with a minimum of 256Mb of Ram will be capable to this. Thankfully there isn’t a single WP7 handset with less that 256MB of Ram so there’s no reason to be worried.

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Updated Windows Phone 7 Codecs list

With the release of the final developer tools Microsoft has also updated the list of supported media codecs in Windows Phone 7 . This new list is a lot more detailed than the previous one and is a must read for all developers building multimedia applications. As you can see below only the WMV Simple and Main-Profile video codecs iare supported in the Emulator so you will definitely have to test your application on a real device before submitting it to the Marketplace. Check the full list below:

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Video playback on Windows Phone 7: Nice and simple

I know that many of you are still questioning Windows Phone7′s video playback capabilities especially after I posted about the currently supported codecs list a couple of days ago. I was working on an app I’m currently building and things weren’t working as planned on the device so I had to check out the video capabilities of the hardware to make sure that the problem wasn’t on my side. So here’s some early impressions about the platform’s video experience. Nothing fancy at all, just basic stuff to see how things work and play. Also remember that this is all based on Beta software and OS and non retail hardware.

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Windows Phone 7 photography features discussed in 1 hour long video chat

The Windows Phone 7 team had a one hour long live chat / Webcast about WP7′s photography features on the official Microsoft website. There’s a lot of mumbo jumbo PR talk in there and you won’t learn a whole lot at all. Here’s a short break down of the the most “interesting stuff”:

1- Some talk about the SkyDrive / Facebook etc upload and sharing feature

2- No HD video playback: Yup he kinda tries to dodge the question here. The base video specs in WP7 is apparently VGA/WVGA and he basically admits that to playback HD videos you’ll have to go through the Zune software (and Windows Live Movie maker) which re-encodes the videos to a lower resolution (the Windows Phone encoding profile in new beta WLMM is actually 800×600 compared to the Zune HD’s 720P profile….) OEMS will have the ability to have camera sensors capable of capturing in 720P video, but there doesn’t seem to be anyway to playback in HD on the device (wtf?). It is not clear if OEMS can bypass the OS’s video limitation yet. I’ve posted the full Windows Phone 7 codecs specs here.

3- Windows Live Sync / Photo Mail HTMH email

4- Compression of pictures: Pictures uploaded to Windows Live / FaceBook will be compressed (not in mails thouhh)

5- No HDMI out in chassis specs.

6- Etc…

check the video after the break:

Continue reading Windows Phone 7 photography features discussed in 1 hour long video chat →

Windows Phone 7 codecs support: No HD video playback, no DivX either

Remember a few months back I posted the list of media codecs supported in Windows Phone 7 and was really happy to see that things like DivX and VC-1 were natively supported. Well, bad news folks, I’ve just discovered that Microsoft has recently updated the list with more information and the first thing you will notice is that DivX is no longer on the list but there’s even worst; the maximum video playback resolution is 800×600 at 30fps. That’s right, Windows Phone 7 won’t support HD video playback even though the competition does it now without a problem (iPhone, Android, Symbian etc..) and the hardware supports it. What I don’t understand is that you can apparently encode MPEG-4 Part 2 – Simple Profile videos in 720P (if the device’s camera supports it) but can’t playback at 720P (remember that encoding takes more resources than playback, so WTF?). Check out the full list after the break:

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Samsung Wave & Samsung Galaxy S are the first DivX HD certified handsets


Samsung, in collaboration with DivX arre announcing that the Samsung Wave and the recently unveiled Samsung Galaxy S will be the first DivX HD certified handsets. Samsung has historically  supported Divx playback on its mid-high-end devices by licensing Nextreaming Player. I also wouldn’t be surprised if HTC licensed the same tech for the upcoming DivX/720p HTC Deisre update. Check ou the full Press Release:
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Windows Phone 7 Series Codecs support: DivX and MP4 High Profile


Here’s the full list of Codecs natively supported by Windows Phone 7 Series straight from the development documents on MSDN:

Codec Type Decoder Support Container
Audio WAV (PCM, MSADPCM, IMAADPCM, G.711) WAV
Audio MP3 MP3
Audio WMA Lossless ASF (WMA)
Audio WMA Pro ASF (WMA)
Audio WMA Standard v9 ASF (WMA)
Audio AAC-LC (Low Complexity) 3GP, 3G2, MP4, M4A
Audio HE-AAC v1 (AAC+) 3GP, 3G2, MP4, M4A
Audio HE-AAC v2 (eAAC+) 3GP, 3G2, MP4, M4A
Audio Adaptive Multi-Rate Narrow Band (AMR-NB) 3GP, 3G2, MP4
Audio Adaptive Multi-Rate ide Band (AMR-WB) 3GP, 3G2, MP4
Audio Qcelp 3GP, 3G2, MP4
Video WMV (VC-1) – Simple Profile ASF (WMV)
Video WMV (VC-1) – Main Profile ASF (WMV)
Video WMV (VC-1) – Advanced Profile ASF (WMV)
Video WMV v9 ASF (WMV)
Video MPEG-4 Part 2 – Simple Profile 3GP, 3G2, MP4, AVI
Video MPEG-4 Part 2 – Advanced Simple Profile AVI, MP4
Video DivX 4.x/5.x/6.x AVI
Video MPEG-4 Part 10 (MPEG-4 AVC, H.264) – Baseline Profile 3GP, 3G2, MP4, M4V
Video MPEG-4 Part 10 (MPEG-4 AVC, H.264) – Main Profile 3GP, 3G2, MP4, M4V
Video MPEG-4 Part 10 (MPEG-4 AVC, H.264) – High Profile 3GP, 3G2, MP4, M4V
Video H.263 3GP, 3G2
Images JPEG JPG
Images PNG PNG
Images GIF (both GIF87a and GIF89a) GIF

As you can see DivX (4/5/6) is finally supported same for HD video formats (something that was severely lacking in WM6.X).