VLC Update is now Live in the Windows Store

Our friend Thomas Nigro (@ThomasNigro) just tweeted that the new and overhauled VLC Player is now in the Windows Store. This is a major update to the player bringing performance and UI improvements. Go get it now at: VLC for Windows 8 – http://apps.microsoft.com/webpdp/app/c527ff2d-b5d0-45b6-bfc3-92fb7357ef72

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Microsoft is rolling out Worldwide Alternative Billing for Apps

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Microsoft is adding easier billing methods in Developing Countries where Creditcard usage is much less than the Western world. It has always been a  problem for users in these countries like Mexico, Indonesia etc to buy Apps in the Store. Most of them just use the Freemium apps and Devs are compensated via ADs revenue. But this is not always a good plan for some apps, therefore this new initiative from Microsoft will go a long way. Now users can get billed via their telephone service providers when they buy an App. Here is the full statement below: Continue reading

Microsoft’s Project Siena App hits the Store!

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Via @WinObs and @Surfacegeeks the news reached us a few minutes ago, that the much anticipated Project Siena is rearing its head in the Store. You ask what is this all about? It is Microsoft’s take on popular App designer sites like Ideanotion’s “IdeaPress”. Where you can just put some few modules together and voila you have a Windows 8 App! No code, no night after nights of learning a GUI layout principles. Just like Lego, you take all individual parts, stitch them together, add some data component at the background and you have a fully functioning Windows 8 app. Continue reading

Hurrah! Windows 8.1 Web Store has gone Live!–Updated!

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Yesterday we broke the news about Microsoft now making the Windows Store Searchable from the web, today we are glad to announce that the Windows 8.1 themed Webstore has gone live. The former web access in the Win8.0 timeframe only gives you limited information and the experience was limited. Now you have a web access that is full, rich and informative. It is on-par with the MX Store App.

Please note that this is not the full Store experience. You can’t purchase apps from the webstore, and you can’t just open this web access, you have to approach it via an App link. For example after searching for an app like we showed you yesterday, clicking on any of the apps will bring you to this new Webstore.  For example, seaching for and clicking on WebAccess App brings you to this new web store.

Well Microsoft is on the roll lately on all front, so this comes as no surprise. Which company is most innovative right now? Yes, you guessed it right. Go Microsoft!

UPDATE:

Unfortunately, Microsoft has pulled the site, so there is no way for you to verify we broke this story. Luckily I have the full screenshot in IE MX shown below. Hopefully the new WebStore will be back. We are keeping an eye on this for you as usual.

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The Sims™ Medieval (GAME) FOR IOS FREE FOR A LIMITED TIME!

This week, the App Store has turned five years old, and to celebrate, EA is giving away some of their popular paid games for iPhone, iPod, and iPad. Here’s a goodie! We have The Sims Medieval on the list. This is the latest in the series of Sims game by EA/Maxis that allows users to simulate a family of their dream.

Download The Sims Medieval for iPhone and iPod Touch

Download for the iPad

Description

GET MEDIEVAL WITH THE SIMS™! Your favorite lighthearted Sims universe is going old-school – back to the times of castles, kings, jesters and knights!

DELVE INTO A MAGIC STORY-DRIVEN WORLD
Create your hero and determine your Sim’s destiny in this new fantasy. From serf and squire to Lady and Lord, role-play even as a Vampire! Immerse yourself in a dramatic adventure where the possibilities are endless.

QUEST YOUR WAY TO DESTINY
Complete quests to propel your Sims onward. Master skills and make wizardly potions like a death potion – or a love potion. Join parties across a richly detailed medieval realm, or test your skills with features like combat and fishing.

LONG LIVE THE SIMS MEDIEVAL™ ON iPHONE & iPOD TOUCH
View all the feuding, feasting and frivolity with the visual glory of the Retina Display.
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** DON’T MISS OUR OTHER EXCITING GAMES! ** SCRABBLE, The Sims™ 3, TETRIS®, MONOPOLY, Madden NFL 12 by EA Sports™, Pogo Games FREE, Liqua Pop, Ghost Harvest, ROCK BAND® Reloaded, Need for Speed™ Hot Pursuit & Surviving High School FREE

GIFT THIS APP: Click the “Buy App” arrow on the iTunes® App Store

Be the first to know! Get inside EA info on great deals, plus the latest game updates, tips & more…
VISIT US: ea.com/iphone
FOLLOW US: twitter.com/eamobile
LIKE US: facebook.com/eamobile
WATCH US: youtube.com/eamobilegames

Thanks to Chris Pirillo for the tip!

Flight Control (GAME) FOR IOS FREE FOR A LIMITED TIME!

This week, the App Store has turned five years old, and to celebrate, EA is giving away some of their popular paid games for iPhone, iPod, and iPad. Check out Flight Control, a popular game that made it into the selection.

Download Flight Control for iOS

Description

✈ NEW: STORM AIRFIELD! ✈ REWIND FEATURE! ✈
Flight Control is a must-have App Store classic. It’s the incredibly simple, yet insanely addictive worldwide #1 game from Firemint that invented the “line drawing” genre. Over 4,000,000 copies sold – don’t miss out, play all six unique maps in the original and best today!
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✈ Macworld awarded Flight Control an extremely rare 5 out of 5 mice: “The unique gameplay is perfectly suited to the device, and I am hopelessly addicted.”
✈ Pocket Gamer: “Flight Control is one of those essential games that you’ll continually return to and will remain on your iPhone forever”
✈ Touch Arcade: “the winning balance of easy pick-up gameplay, ramping difficulty and tickling the need to try ‘just one more time’”
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Air traffic control is the world’s most stressful job, but not for you. You don’t need heading angles, flight rules or meteorological reports, you’re a natural! A prodigy! A born controller!

✔ Incredibly easy to learn! Just touch and drag the aircraft to their landing zones and avoid collisions.
✔ Insanely addictive – it only takes a minute to get started, but it’s impossible to stop!
✔ NEW MAP – Storm Airfield! A thunderstorm is wreaking havoc, striking aircraft with lightning – zapped aircraft cannot be redirected for a short time!
✔ NEW FEATURE – Rewind! Purchase rewinds to turn back time – revert disaster and earn higher scores
✔ Fly solo, or share landing duties with a friend – online via Game Center on iOS4.2, over local Wi-Fi network or Bluetooth
✔ Turn on the voice chat option to talk with the other controller when in online multiplayer mode (off by default)
✔ Aim for a new personal best or compete against other Flight Controllers in online leaderboards
✔ Earn achievements when you complete challenges, including the new ‘Thunderstruck’ achievement for the Storm Airfield
✔ Visit all 6 airfields including Beach, Original, Windy, Australian Outback, Aircraft Carrier and the new Storm Airfield each with unique characteristics and challenges!
✔ Featuring 10 aircraft types including jets, helicopters and seaplanes!
—————————————-
So welcome aboard, please sit back, fasten your seatbelt and enjoy the mayhem – treat yourself and buy Flight Control now, or surprise a friend and Gift This App!
—————————————-
ⓘ For the latest inside info from Firemint, join us on our site, Facebook or Twitter! Please report bugs on our support site so we can assist you – visit http://www.firemint.com for links and details.

Thanks to Chris Pirillo for the tip!

AppSwitch–That Awesome App for Platform Switchers just got better.

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Wow! An awesome update just dropped in the Store for AppSwitch. For those of you that doesn’t know, AppSwith is the app to make you switching to Microsoft platform from competing platforms as painless as possible. the App suggests easy replacements for your dearly beloved Apps on iOS and Android platforms. Have you already switched, and you’ve found some awesome replacement in the Store, you can also suggest in this current version to app developers.

This update includes GUI improvements to make features easily accessible. Visual cues everywhere to aid discoverability. In-app Store, better Snapped View support, better Search Charm support etc etc. The improvements are just too much to mention here. What’s more, the app is still free despite these awesomeness but you need to bear with non-intrusive Ads of course.

Use the main menu to browse matches and featured apps.

Browse latest, popular and top rated.

Found a great replacement? Why not share it?

Help to make this app greater by suggesting  your discovery to the Devs.

Download now in the store via the source link below.

Source: Windows Store

AppSoft brings you the Store Stats with AppCounter

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As most of you know we were keeping track of Apps Count in the Metro Store here on McAkins Online, but then the number of Apps got to a point in which it is humanly impossible to track, at which point we decided to stop. Well we are glad some genius Devs have taken over the baton and continue with the Store Stats. AppSoft brings you by the way of this AppCounter App the latest Store Stats refreshed once a day. They provided a Tile that shows you latest info at a glance. We are glad for their effort and we encourage you to go ahead and download this app and keep track of the Store with us.

Here the excerpts from the Store:

Description
Did you always want to keep up with the progress of the Windows Store? Do you want to have info about the total number of apps on your start screen? Are you interested to see more statistics on the number of new/updated apps per day?
This app tries to provide you the most recent numbers.
Currently the data on the Windows Store is refreshed once a day.

Features
Overview presenting the total number of apps and the number of new apps per day for the last 30 days.
Chart presenting the stats for recent days.
Live tile providing info about total number of apps, new/updated apps.
Line chart – toal apps
Bar chart – app categories
Bar chart – countries (with highest number of apps)
Number of free apps

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Download the app now FoC via the following link:

Source: Windows Store

AppSwitch is back with a vengeance for Mobile OS Switchers

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A long while back I ran treatise on an App that debuted in the Store that allows Switchers from other Mobile OSes to feel at home on Windows 8. Since then AppSwitch has grown to become the first app a Switcher should download on moving to Windows 8. There has been improvements to the app down the line, and recently the Publisher has released an extensive update to the app in terms of UI improvements and database updates. You can now easily find any apps you were hooked on in iOS and Android on Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8. There are columns presenting the topmost apps, the “Top 50 Apps” like Microsoft like to call them. View top rated, view Reviews, Search by Category etc. I believe Microsoft should have done something like this actually with the release of their Mobile OSes, but we are glad an independent Vendor has taken up this challenge. Here are the updated features and screenshots from the Store:

Description
If you’ve recently moved to Windows 8 but can’t find your favorite apps, then use AppSwitch to find Windows 8 replacements for all of your favorite Google Android and Apple iOS apps!
Just type in the name of an Android/Apple app, browse a list of replacement apps (without having to leave AppSwitch) and download the one you think is the best fit for you.
Also browse latest, popular and top rated matches, add favorites, rate matches to help other users and share your discoveries in a fluid and functional app.
Don’t worry if the exact app isn’t available! You might find an even better one!
App discovery just got easy.
If you have any feedback, good or bad, then please email us:
support@appswitch.co.uk
Find us on Twitter:
@app_switch

Features
Find Windows 8 apps that similar to apps on iOS and Android
Search the Windows/Apple/Google app stores
Browse latest, popular and top rated matches

 

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This is the app that will make your switchover to Microsoft’s platform less of a pain trust me. You need to go get the app right now if you a new Windows 8 user coming from Apple or  Google’s platforms; what’s more, it’s free for what I can see for now. Download now via the source link below.

Source: Windows Store

Total App Count 2012-11-25

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[Data per  2012-11-25]

Current Total App Count in Windows 8 RTM Store = 13783
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App Stats:
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App Class:
Total Paid Apps: –
Total Free Apps: –
Total Desktop Apps: –

Localization:
Total English Apps: –
Total Localized Apps: –

Accessibility:
Accessible Apps: –
Non-Accessible Apps: –

Store News:

Hello All, welcome to this iteration of the News from the Store. I did it again, I know. Dropped the ball twice now, I couldn’t publish last weekend again. Just bear with me people as I am going through some personal tough times at work and private life. You’ll indeed notice my inconsistency also online these past period. And given this pressure and realization that the Store has grown to such a point that it is humanly impossible to cover every App that drop in the Store, and to make sure you guys are not missing out, I have reached out to some friends online that I know are as passionate as I am about Windows 8 and the Windows Store to share this burden with me. So you’ll be seeing posts on this site from these people. Naz (Nazmus S Khandaker) has bitten off the spit last week, you’ve seen a couple of posts from him, the last that is making a lot of wave is about the Un-Official Steam App in the Store.

I will not be talking much about Apps and Categories this week as I have again a list of Apps that I think is of worth for your attention. I have a point in my mind I want to make about the App Store that I will dedicate this week’s discussion to. I have people complaining about me reporting incorrect number of Apps, that my figures are way lower than what other trackers in the Store are reporting. I stated it in the past, that the figure I report are not some esoteric figures from the Store that cannot be verified. What I report is what a typical User will see in the Store when you turn off Localization in the Store. I am aware that WinAppUpdate is reporting 20000+ Apps in the Store, but this is inclusive Apps that typical user will not see because they are in the Store accreditation pipeline.

I have enjoyed the acquaintance of Wes Miller that runs the site, we agree on certain points, but like adults we disagree on certain points about the Store. He gave the explanation of his discovery process in this post, and I think should check it out. He uses a process that is external to the Store client, which retrieves all apps submitted to Microsoft. But not Apps submitted are immediately available, they have to go through certain qualification process that takes time before they are published to the general public to be available for download. I agree with him that searching by asterisks [*] has its drawback, but at least it gives what is publicly available to end-users. My retrieval process adds an extra salt to public query structure using the published Windows Store Protocol, but it doesn’t differ much from the standard query process, so it ensures everyone will see almost everything I see depending on your location in the world and Cloud data propagation. I do not agree with Wes that querying the store from the GUI will not retrieve all Apps from other Locales, I mean, I do retrieve French, Spanish, Chinese apps in my list, it all depends on your Store Localization settings.

I agree with Wes Miller on one point though, that the success of Windows 8 and its Store is not dependent on the number of Apps in its Store, but the number of Quality Apps in the Store. After the Store reached the 10,000 mark, I also lost interest in counting the number of Store Apps because most of them are chaffs anyway. “Its all about Quality Apps Stupid” like they say. So I am seriously thinking of stopping this weekly reporting of number of apps in the Store. Those of you that follow me know I do break the news of Quality Apps arriving in the Store here on this Blog. So, you’ll not be missing much really if you follow this blog and me and my friends’ Twitter accounts. So just like Wes Miller did, I will also be taking the turn here by not actively reporting weekly the number Apps anymore, but I will be updating the count when major Milestones are reached. I am thinking of maybe to report each 10K Milestone.

I know for most of you, it is just the news of quality apps that is important to you, we’ve got you covered there on this site. So please be dropping in once in a while on this Total Count report to see if its updated. I will of course tweet it when its updated, so if you follow me on Twitter, you won’t miss any news. I will move the “News from the Windows Store” portion to normal posts of the same title, and I will try to do this weekly. Please comment below if you think this new turn is OK or NOT. My apologies for this long post, but I think it is necessary to make things clear so you may understand where I am heading. I hope most of you are OK with this development.

So, as you can see, the exponential growth of the Windows Store is still continuing. Remarkable is the sharp drop in the delta of Books & Reference category. The most quality apps we found these past two weeks have been blogged already on this site. I have tweeted a lot of App updates too. Below is the list of Apps that I think you should check out if you feel like it.

Notable Apps:

Users Recommendations:

  • Chess Wars – Check out this great Chess App from a buddy of mine who wrote the  Air Soccer Fever App
  • Tube Downloader – I raved wrote about a YouTube downloader somewhere on this site, but this one is even better; paid app though.
  • Craigslist+ – Also this unofficial Craiglist client is even more awesome that the ones we’ve seen before.

So, this is it for this week. This is the last you’ll be seeing in this format, I’ll be back next week with “News from the Windows Store” as a Standalone post. This tally count will be updated somewhere down the line when the Store reaches another milestone. Thanks for your audience thus far, and have a great week ahead.

[Got a tip for me? Or noticed anything out of place? Wrong URL maybe? Hit me on Twitter (@McAkins) to let me know. You can follow Naz on @Nazmuslabs  Thanks already.]

- Denny McAkins

Related:

 Source: Windows Store

Disclaimer:
All data and Information provided in this report is provided AS-IS! It does not warrant any commitment neither from me nor from Microsoft. The data is tallied from the information Microsoft made visible to the outside world, and is subject to change at any time. Applications are constantly being submitted and pulled from Store, and also subject to Store Cloud propagation, which means the data you see here may not be current at any time, and possibly different from your part of the world. Errors in this report are mine  and not Microsoft’s and does not constitute any binding agreement.

AppSwitch is here for Switchers to Windows 8

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[Update 2012-10-11: The Developers of this App (AppSwitch) wants your help to make this app better by proposing App Matches on their site: http://www.appswitch.co.uk. So if you are a user of other platforms and you’ve come across a similar or better replacement in the Store, you now have the opportunity to let the world know. Also if you are an App Developer and you’ve created something to blow the similar apps on other platforms away, you now have the opportunity to submit your app name to AppSwitch site. You will need to provide the 300×300 Logo of your app for proper display in AppSwitch. So come on people, lets make the Windows platform a welcoming platform by helping our Switchers with good apps recommendations.]

Are you a fervent user of iOS or Android devices and is being captivated by our Precious Microsoft Surface? Here is something to get you started and kill your nostalgia dead on their tracks. AppSwitch is to help you identify equivalents of your favorite programs on those other platforms in Windows 8. Looking for a replacement for TweetDeck? We’ve got FlipToast or TweeTRO. Looking for replacement for Splashtop on iOS, we’ve got Splashtop too for Win8, and so on, and so forth. Here’s according to AppSwitch in the Store:

Description
Have you recently moved to a Windows 8 device but can’t find your favorite apps? Use AppSwitch to find Windows 8 replacements for all of your favorite apps on Google Android or Apple iOS.
Browse  latest, popular and top rated matches or search for your favorite app and see if it’s available. Don’t worry if it’s not as you might find an even better app!
App discovery just got easy.
Visit the AppSwitch website for more info!

Features
Find Windows 8 apps that similar to apps on iOS and Android
Browse latest, popular and top rated matches

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So, now you know. Your switchover doesn’t have to be a pain. You’ve got a friend with AppSwitch, and we from the Community of Windows 8 Super Users have your back definitely!

Curious? Download the app right via the Source link here below.

Source: Windows Store

Intel AppUp Center App is in Windows Store

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Intel AppUp Center has joined the Metro Craze. Intel created the AppUp Center as an answer to Apple’s AppStore then, to create a central place for PC users to find and install apps for the PC and Windows platform. This was a pre-cursor to Microsoft’s own Windows Store that we have for Windows 8 today. So now that Windows Store hosts both Metro and Desktop Apps, the question that begs to be asked is, is there any need then for AppUp Center from Intel? Time will tell.

In the meantime, you can enjoy this Hub-in-a-hub, but its mostly about Desktop Apps. If you have a lot invested in Intel’s AppUp, then go get this app via the Source link.

Source: Windows Store.