For the Love of Mobile MS Apps on Windows 10

It is weekend, which means I have a few minutes to rant about my frustration on the direction MS is going concerning Mobile Apps (the so called Metro/Modern/Universal Apps) and Windows 10.

As you may recall, Microsoft put out the news this week they will nix their Lync Metro App in preference of the Desktop Skype App. Of course all the yuppies were clapping and shouting “giddy on” to Microsoft without considering the consequences and the trend this is setting.

The trend I see at the moment is the rejuvenation of the Desktop, a complete reversal of Microsoft from its mobile-first strategy of two or three years ago. Put bluntly, the Desktop people have won at Microsoft. Fine and good you say, but it didn’t address the reason why MS went full mobile a few years ago.

Yes, Microsoft is doubling down on the Desktop at the moment, but to what end? There’s a complete new generation of users out there that are growing up on mobile applications, yes, on touch only devices and applications. MS may be winning the desktop strategy right now, but where will it be in 20yrs time. That is why we had the mobile madness of two years ago that is being thrown out the windows right now. Yes, pun intended.

So, MS is focusing on Desktop apps right now to the detriment of Mobile apps. They threw out the Lync Mobile app, every one should install the Desktop Skype App. Take a look at the OneNote Mobile App on Windows 10, it is a joke compared to the Windows 8.1 and iPad versions. You can’t even change the Font, not to talk of full formatting UX. If you look at the twitter stream of the OneNote team, it is all about the Desktop OneNote App. And so may examples of Mobile Apps of Microsoft collecting dust in the Store.

Fine and good. So what happens now to Modern apps from Microsoft on Mobile devices? I and a number of you have Microsoft’s SurfaceRT, how does MS want us to run Lync/Skype on this device now they’re shutting down the Lync mobile app? Windows 10 Mobile is coming out shortly on less than 8″ devices without Desktop, how does MS want users to run core Mobile apps on these devices if they nix all their mobile apps? Yes, Lync mobile is now down and out, which mobile app are they nixing next?

Meanwhile the competition are preparing the next generation of users to work exclusively with mobile or touch apps. So MS is expecting this to die and collapse like for iPad loosing traction? You bet mobile apps are not going to die, they will continue to evolve and eat into MS core sectors. So what is MS going to do about it? Stick its head deeper in the sand and pretend problem doesn’t exist there?

Yes, there are some of us that are protesting Microsoft killed Windows 8.1 too soon. It is a good OS on a Touch device. All the people that were complaining before buying a Touch device with Win8 come to a change of mind after using the OS on a touch device. I’ve seen a few examples here in family & friends circles. MS should not have listened to the yuppie Tech bloggers slamming Win8, but should have watched the trend on use-case shown in Telemetry and on steady monthly climb of Win8 on Stats sites like StatCounter etc.

So, you may be cheering Microsoft for killing the Lync mobile App for the Desktop App, I am not cheering at all. I want MS to be present and continue to innovate on the Touch-only world, not cling to the mouse and keyboard world alone. I like the direction of Windows 10, bridging Touch and Mouse/Keyboard world, I think we are making progress there, that is then why I don’t get the need to kill mobile Apps at this point in time. I say keep developing Apps in both environments. When I am on my mobile device, I DON’T want too use desktop Apps, period!

Remember MS, these tech-yuppies cheering you on are ALL on iOS for their mobile device usage, they only blog on the desktop. They don’t represent your complete user-base. Just food for thought there.

Rants out here, now your turn.

Understanding Windows 10 TP Battery Performance on Mobile Devices

I’ll give you the poison pill straight away: Windows 10 cannot and will not be as Power-efficient compared to Windows 8! Not on an x86 device. On ARM, it’s another ball game. This is why MS is having issues with ARM devices and Desktop for Windows 10 generally.

See, the reason here is simple, since the rejection of Windows 8 platform by the masses who doesn’t understand the OS, Microsoft’s hand has been forced to abandon all the progress made on re-writing Windows from the ground up for a great mobile experience, and concentrate on the Keyboard & Mouse world to make Windows 10 acceptable to Desktop huggers and the Enterprise in general. Continue reading

Viber for Windows 8 is here!

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Viber for Windows 8 is here ladies and gentlemen. They took their time coming, but they are finally here. Viber is the de-facto Skype competition at this moment, and it is a good thing Microsoft allows them into the Store.  Sometimes I wonder how much of Skype tech is in this App. But they differ from Skype in one big aspect, they connect Users via Phone numbers, so they present a coherent telephony profile if you ask me. When you think about Viber you don’t think Social App, but a phone calling app. How about that. Continue reading

Seriously Compromised with SurfacePro – A Public Plea to Microsoft

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This week, Microsoft announced the pricing of the SurfacePro to the whole wide world, and reception of the news has been mixed to put it mildly. Its not even the price that broke the deal for me, I don’t mind the price since its work/play device. What broke it for me is the Battery Life of the device. I must confess I am seriously compromised right now in my decision for this device. What were you thinking Microsoft, 4Hrs battery life these days is just not acceptable on a Tablet device. I know it’s a Core i5 device, don’t get me wrong, I can see the need for power for some people, but seriously?

Look, I already have a Core i5 tablet that came with Windows 7, that was announced for 4Hrs battery life when I got it, but actually was pulling 2.5Hrs max in reality. Installed it with Windows 8 DP and my battery life jumped to 3hrs, now with Windows 8 RTM I am getting average of 3.5Hrs on this awesome device. So here I am waiting patiently for SurfacePro in January, and MS announced 4Hrs battery, sorry, but that is disappointing. I was expecting something that will match SurfaceRT battery life if not surpass it. Core i5 with 4Hrs battery life is almost what I have right now with my current Win7/Win8 tablet, I don’t see what’s the improvement, that extra 30 minutes doesn’t cut it for me; not for $1000 price point.

When MS announced 3-months-later for SurfacePro, I was actually hoping that they did that to get the latest and greatest CPU from Intel to capture the same battery life as SurfaceRT, as all kinks with CloverTrail would then have been ironed out etc etc. Ok, they said 3rd generation core i5 CPU, whatever that means, I don’t see its effect if it slurps the battery empty in 4hrs.

So, this is my plea to Microsoft: Please, please, make a third option for SurfacePro with CloverTrail Atom CPU! If HP and Dell could promise 9Hrs on their CloverTrail devices right now, it is a shame for Microsoft to come in the year of the Lord 2013 with a meager 4Hrs battery life device. You know, I have this Core i5 device right now, I am not doing any monster work on it, I am not doing video editing, not installing it with Photoshop or AutoCAD software even if I could. All those are on my Desktop where the power is when I need it. I have chosen this device to be my companion device, I need it to be always available when I need it, not to be looking for the next plugin socket each time. I use it lightly, that is the intention the whole time, the need to be able to run standard desktop apps and be highly mobile. That is the promise of CloverTrail, that is why we wait, so why should we end up with something in January that I can have now; that I have now?!

So, either you come with an announcement before the mid of December Microsoft, else I’ll be forced to shop at HP and Dell for my next CloverTrail device with a Pen. Thanks for listening as always Microsoft.

[Update: Corrected OakTrail to CloverTrail in the post. Sorry people, getting old here Smile. Thanks Voleheart buddy!]

Your buddy,

Denny McAkins

WP Marketplace Deals App is in the Store

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My apologies I should have informed you about this tool earlier. It has been in the Store now for a number of days. If you are a user of Windows Phone this App is right in your alley. WP Market Deals is exactly what is says, shows you apps dynamics in Windows Phone Marketplace, Apps that have gone Free, or lowered in Price. Keeps you up to date with high-profile apps for which price have temporarily reduced by Vendor so the app can gain popularity. The following is the description of the App by LuviSoft in the Store:

Get the most downloaded apps in the Marketplace at a discount price

Download apps FOR FREE while offers last

Adjust settings to your likings

Description:
Find out about the best deals on the Windows Phone Marketplace, and get your favorite apps at a discounted price.

Features:
Automatically shows new deals when they are available
Filter apps by popular (most downloaded), top rated, apps gone free, Xbox Live (Deal of the Week),
Share deals

Download this tool for your Windows Phone via this link: http://apps.microsoft.com/webpdp/app/31a0584a-626c-4d02-a5bb-45bdb86c0836

Chuck’s Challenge: Play and Create Mind-Blowing Obstacle Courses!

 

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Let’s talk about something fun! Today, I want to discuss a game called “Chuck’s Challenge”. It’s neat casual game with lot to offer. The big characteristic of a casual game, as noted by this “Tech Stuff” podcast from HowStuffWorks, is that they have a simple mechanic that make up a fun and addicting gameplay. Plus, they allow us to pick up the game, play for a bit, and leave off, at anytime. This is the reason causal gaming has done so well in adaption, especially in mobile devices.

Continue reading

Will Upgrading to “Windows 9″ be Free?

Recently, a thought came to my mind. I pondered if Microsoft will be likely to give away upgrade versions of Windows for free for Windows versions following Windows 8. Windows has been relatively much more expensive compared to other operating systems on the market. Even to upgrade from one version to the next, on would have to buy a boxed “upgrade” copy or download the installer from online for nearly a hundred dollars if not more. Competitors, like Linux were free while Mac OSX cost around 30 dollars to upgrade. However, Windows has been so well used and a stable operating system, people would put up with the high upgrade costs. Given that this has been like so for at least 20 years or so, does it make any sense to believe that Microsoft might start giving away upgrade versions of Windows 8’s successors? Though this would be completely unlike Microsoft’s Windows business strategies, it does make sense to give away Windows “9” and future upgrades for free, and here’s why. Continue reading

iPhone 3GS Review from the beaches of Destin, FL

Earlier Wednesday, I had the chance to complete my iPhone 3GS Review from Destin, FL. This would be the first time Techtronica had any event recorded beach-side. Play the video to see the full review.

Twitter Provides Tweets via. Phone for Egyptians

We have just received word via. Twitter that Google has reported that Twitter has launched a service for their users in Egypt to send Twitter messages and “tweets” by dialing a phone number. Another way to rebel against the blockage of Internet in Egypt. This was announced about 30 minutes ago.

Google also released this statement from their blog earlier this afternoon:

“Like many people we’ve been glued to the news unfolding in Egypt and thinking of what we could do to help people on the ground. Over the weekend we came up with the idea of a speak-to-tweet service—the ability for anyone to tweet using just a voice connection.

We worked with a small team of engineers from Twitter, Google and SayNow, a company we acquired last week, to make this idea a reality. It’s already live and anyone can tweet by simply leaving a voicemail on one of these international phone numbers (+16504194196 or +390662207294 or +97316199855) and the service will instantly tweet the message using the hashtag #egypt. No Internet connection is required. People can listen to the messages by dialing the same phone numbers or going to twitter.com/speak2tweet.

We hope that this will go some way to helping people in Egypt stay connected at this very difficult time. Our thoughts are with everyone there.”