Augmented Reality Accelerometer Development Kit for Windows Phone 7 Released

 

Tasos and Nikos a Tainicom have finally released the Augmented Reality Accelerometer Development Kit for Windows Phone 7 that was unveiled earlier this week. As I described previously ,this kit will enable you to simulate the use of a WP7 device accelerometer with a cut-out paper and a Webcam. You check check out Nikos’s blog post here and download the whole package from here. The kit is fully compatible with the newly released Final SDK.

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Windows Phone 7 Developer tools are final and available

As promised last month, Microsoft has just released the Final Windows Phone 7 developer tools. All the most important controls are now included and ready to use ( Panorama, Pivot, Bing Maps etc.;). Remember that you will have to uses them (the official controls) if you don’t want to have your application rejected. All apps developed with the Beta SDK with have to be recompiled with the final before submission to the Marketplace in early October. Also note that if you currently have a development handset the app compiled with the final sdk won’t deploy to the device (I guess that a firmware update is going to be pushed)

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Microsoft releases Advertising SDK for Windows Phone 7

This came out of nowhere. While everybody was waiting for the Final Windows Phone 7 SDK ,Microsoft has silently released an Advertising SDK for Windows Phone 7 which will help developers monetize their applications:

Increase your application revenues with the new Microsoft Advertising SDK for Windows Phone 7. The SDK allow easy integration of text and banner ads into your application, and consumes ads served by Microsoft’s mobile Ad Exchange, the first bidded ad exchange for mobile. The exchange includes multiple advertiser sales channels competing in real-time to purchase your ad inventory, incuding Microsoft’s national sales force and adCenter’s significant market footprint. Microsoft’s best-in-class ad targeting solution means better click through rates and better monetization, and the new SDK is integrated with Microsoft pubCenter to give you actionable reporting of how ads are performing in your applications

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Augmented Reality Accelerometer Development Kit for Windows Phone 7

Here’s a nice trick for all of the Windows Phone 7 developers out there building applications that use the accelerometer but don’t have a device or can’t test their apps on a real one. An Augmented Reality Accelerometer Kit is going to be released very soon and will enable developers to use a simple paper cutout in front of a camera to simulate the use of a real device. Check out the 2 videos demonstrations of the software in action below:

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Windows Phone 7 development chat

Microsoft’s Channel 9 has just be update with a new episode of The Knowledge Chamber dedicated to Windows Phone 7. The 20 minutes long video is a chat with Mike Harsh who is Program Manager of the Silverlight application platform on Windows Phone 7. The main topic discussed is the the use of the development tools to code silverlight and XNA applications and you will also get to see a in-house MSDN WP7 application that aggregates all of Microsoft’s developer site and features video playback of the video keynotes directly on the phone (with the use of IIS Smooth Streaming on the server side):

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GPS Simulator for Windows Phone 7 development

If you are a Windows Phone 7 developer who wishes to build an application that uses the on-board GPS you will definitely find yourself in need for a development handset. Unfortunately Microsoft doesn’t have enough of them so KeyboardP just came to the rescue and developed a application to simulate the GPS and sent the coordinates to the emulated phone:

So, what is it? Simple – A locally hosted server displaying Bing maps and a client (e.g. your WP7 app) consuming those coordinates. As you move your mouse along the map, the GPS coordinates are retrieved and sent to the phone. This opens up quite a few possibilities. For example, you could store the coordinates every X seconds in a list to generate a ‘path’ that simulates someone driving from one point to another. If you need to know exact coordinates for your application, you can also extend the app so that you can press a key whenever you want to store a particular coordinate.

You can check out the app in action in the video below:

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Developing for Windows Phone 7 vs Android

Mishkin from the Dirty Developer blog has posted a nice article comparing the main differences and similarity between the Windows Phone 7 and Android development platforms. He build a simple unit converter for WP7 and Android 2.2 to show you exactly how things look like on the inside:

The Android Platform and Windows Phone 7 share a lot of commonalities. It will take a while to get used to migrating from Android + Eclipse to Windows Phone 7 + Microsoft Visual Studio + Expression Blend but in the end it is a much smoother development experience. The tools which Microsoft provide add a wealth of ease to the lives of us developers.

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Android NDK r3 release: OpenGL ES 2.0 support


Google released the r3 version of the Android NDK yesterday finally bringing OpenGL ES 2.0 support for developers (OGL ES 2.0 is only avaialable on the SnapDrgaon and TI OMAP 3XXX chipsets).

Toolchain improvement
The toolchain binaries have been refreshed for this release with GCC 4.4.0, which should generate slightly more compact and efficient machine code than the previous one (4.2.1).

Note that the GCC 4.4.0 C++ frontend is more pedantic, and may refuse to compile certain rare and invalid template declarations that were accepted by 4.2.1. To alleviate the problem, this NDK still provides the 4.2.1 binaries, which can optionally be used to build your machine code.

OpenGL ES 2.0 support
Applications targeting Android 2.0 (API level 5) or higher can now directly access OpenGL ES 2.0 features. This brings the ability to control graphics rendering through vertex and fragment shader programs, using the GLSL shading language.

A new trivial sample, named “hello-gl2″, demonstrates how to render a simple triangle using both shader types.

Name simplification
This NDK release is just called “r3″, for “Revision 3″, to indicate that it is not limited to a specific Android platform/API level. Some developers thought that the previous release’s name (1.6_r1) was confusing and indicated that it could only be used to target Android 1.6, which was not true.

With Microsoft pushing mobile gaming as one of the main Windows Phone 7 Series it will be intersting to see Google’s (and its OEMs) answer. Head over to the Android dev blog for mor info.

Microsoft pulls Windows Mobile 6.5 SDK


Remember the Windows Mobile 6.5 SDK posted only 2 days ago? According to Microsoft’s Windows Mobile Dev team the whole thing wasn’t supposed to be released and was posted by mistake. They took it down and plan to re-release it later on:

With regards to 6.5 SDK, we prematurely released an untested SDK which was not ready. We pulled it so proper testing can be completed…. we’ll def make an official announce when the SDK is ready to go. Those responsible have been sent to the dungeons for execution. ;)

Source: Twitter

Windows Mobile 6.5 SDK updated with 6.5.3 support


Microsoft has released an updated Windows Mobile 6.5 SDK with WM 6.5.3 support yesterday shortly after Garmin-Asus announced the first WM6.5.3 device (the M10). Accroding to Pocketnow the OS was RTM back in December which means that we can expect quite a few handsets running it in a few weeks/months. You can download it here and check out a a quick overview here

Source: Microsoft via Pocketnow

Android 2.0 Source Code available

Android eclair
A few weeks after releasing the SDK the Android 2.0 source code has finally been pushed out last night through the Android Open Source Project site. It is also reported that the infamous Android Modder Cyanogen has already gotten the lastest 2.0 code running on an HTC G1.

lockscreeng1
Source: Android Open Source Project via MobileCrunch

Google announces Android 2.0 support in the SDK

Android eclairWell the jump from 1.6 to 2.0 was rather quick! Today Google is proudly announcing that the Android SDK now supports Android 2.0 (also known as Eclair). The first Android 2.0 device will be the Motorola Droid which is set to be unvieled by Verizon tomorrow.

Android 2.0 brings new developer APIs for sync, Bluetooth, and a few other areas. Using the new sync, account manager and contacts APIs, you can write applications to enable users to sync their devices to various contact sources. You can also give users a faster way to communicate with others by embedding Quick Contact within your application. With the new Bluetooth API, you can now easily add peer-to-peer connectivity or gaming to your applications. To get a more complete list of the new capabilities you can add to your applications, please go to the Android 2.0 highlights page.

Current developers can use the SDK Manager to add Android 2.0 support to their SDK as well as update their SDK Tools to revision 3. New developers can download the Android SDK from the download site. After the download, Android platforms must be added using the SDK Manager

Make sure that your apps work when using the WVGA (800×480) & FWVGA (854×480) emulator skins. We expect devices with these types of screen, running Android 2.0 to be launched soon.

No shi…Droid maybe? ;)

The new Android 2.0 platform highlights can be found here

Contacts and accounts

•Multiple accounts can be added to a device for email and contact synchronization, including Exchange accounts. (Handset manufacturers can choose whether to include Exchange support in their devices.)
•Developers can create sync adapters that provide synchronization with additional data sources.
•Quick Contact for Android provides instant access to a contact’s information and communication modes. For example, a user can tap a contact photo and select to call, SMS, or email the person. Other applications such as Email, Messaging, and Calendar can also reveal the Quick Contact widget when you touch a contact photo or status icon.

Email

•Exchange support.
•Combined inbox to browse email from multiple accounts in one page.

Messaging

•Search functionality for all saved SMS and MMS messages.
•Auto delete the oldest messages in a conversation when a defined limit is reached.

Camera

•Built-in flash support
•Digital zoom
•Scene mode
•White balance
•Color effect
•Macro focus

Android virtual keyboard

•An improved keyboard layout to makes it easier to hit the correct characters and improve typing speed.
•The framework’s multi-touch support ensures that key presses aren’t missed while typing rapidly with two fingers.
•A smarter dictionary learns from word usage and automatically includes contact names as suggestions.

Browser

•Refreshed UI with actionable browser URL bar enables users to directly tap the address bar for instant searches and navigation.
•Bookmarks with web page thumbnails.
•Support for double-tap zoom.
•Support for HTML5:

-Database API support, for client-side databases using SQL.
-Application cache support, for offline applications.
-Geolocation API support, to provide location information about the device.
-

Calendar

•Agenda view provides infinite scrolling.
•Events indicate the attending status for each invitee.
•Invite new guests to events.
New Platform TechnologiesMedia Framework
Revamped graphics architecture for improved performance that enables better hardware acceleration.

Bluetooth
•Bluetooth 2.1
•New BT profiles: Object Push Profile (OPP) and Phone Book Access Profile (PBAP)

Source: Android Dev Blog

Samsung releases Digital Compass API for Windows Mobile devices

samsung~logo
Here’s some more news coming out of Samsung this weekend. As we have reported earlier,the Samsung Omnia II has “hidden” Digital Compass, but this fearure wasn’t exposed by any API. Today the south Korea phone maker is releasing an update version of their WinMo SDK for Windows Mobile 6.5. The new SDK exposes the Digital Compass with the new 3D Orientation API:

Updated SDK supports the new Windows Mobile operating system; allows users to develop enhanced applications for Samsung phones

Samsung Mobile Innovator, Samsung Electronics’ support center for mobile application developers, today announced the availability of the latest release of the popular Samsung Software Developer Kit (SDK) which now supports the new Windows Mobile operating system. The SDK, which is available for download on http://innovator.samsungmobile.com, allows developers to utilize advanced features on Samsung phones running the Windows Mobile 6.5 OS. This latest release provides access to the 3D Orientation (compass) and proximity sensor APIs, enabling developers to bring further innovation to Samsung mobiles. The localized SDK 2.0 release for China will be available in late October.

Currently, the SDK allows users to develop applications that utilize features such as the accelerometer, the camera, haptics and LED technology among many others. To date, developers have used the SDK to develop applications to enhance games, develop music applications and create social networking solutions with enhanced usability and features.

Currently, the number one downloaded application available at the recently launched Samsung Applications Store (www.samsungapps.com) is Omniano, a virtual piano playing application developed by Sean Kwon, which puts a grand piano in the users’ hands.

“We have been actively working with developers to understand their needs and provide the functionality and usability that make developing applications a unique and fun process,” said Martin Tannerfors, Director, Samsung Mobile Innovator. “It’s exciting to see how Samsung Mobile Innovator has created a place for developers to collaborate and share new and innovative ideas and openly discuss how we can help develop enhanced SDK tools.”

The following phones are supported in the latest release of the SDK:
GT-I8000 Omnia II
GT-B7300 Omnia LITE
GT-B7330 Omnia PRO B7330
SPH-i350 Intrepid
GT-B7620 Armani
The full list of phones and APIs supported is available at http://innovator.samsungmobile.com.

It’s not known if the all the devices listed here have a Digital Compass (I gues that yes though). The other known Windows Phone with a Digital Compass is the HTC HD2. Now let’s see some nice Augmented Reality apps on WinMo please.

Source: Samsung via MSMobiles

Samsung updates their Mobile Innovator Windows Mobile SDK

samsung~logo
Samsung has released the 1.2 version of their Windows Mobile SDK. In addition to Microsoft’s APIs the Mobile Innovator SDKs adds access to APIs unique to Samsung phones like GPS, accelerometer and numerous other sensors. The 1.2 version adds new APIs for FM Radio and dual camera functionality and includes support for 3 new phones: the GT-C6625 Valencia, the SCH-m490/m495 T*Omnia and the GT-I8000 Omnia II.

Head over here to download it