I played with a build of Windows 10 for Phones using only a keyboard and mouse interface. I had no touch screen available to me at my disposal. During the process, I noticed some interesting things. Here’s a video demonstration of Windows 10 Mobile with just a mouse and keyboard. Continue reading
The purpose of this post needs to be made very clear. I am not ranting or complaining about buggy software or Microsoft. I am writing this article for two main reasons. One, I want to provide Microsoft with feedback so that they can track down the issues I and others are having. Two, I want to remind all of our readers that Windows 10 for phones is not finished and is very buggy. I do not recommend installing it unless you are ready to troubleshoot your phone and are aware that your phone may stop working for any reason. Okay, with that out of the way, let’s get on to the subject at hand.
Microsoft released a preview build of Windows 10 for Phones (Build 10051) on Friday, April 10, 2015. I installed it on three phones. The Nokia Lumia 830, Nokia Lumia 928, and Nokia Lumia 520. All these phones were previously running Windows Phone 8.1 Update 1. The Nokia Lumia 830 upgraded to Windows 10 preview without a hitch. However, the upgrade for the Lumia 928 and Lumia 520 was a disaster.
It is as if one went to surgery and came out with a missing lung, kidney, and open wounds. This is how I would describe the upgrade of the Lumia 520 and the Lumia 928. Let’s start with the Lumia 520. after the upgrade was complete, things appeared to be normal at a first glance. All the tiles were where they were supposed to be. I could see some new apps and upgraded ones. However, as soon as I tapped on the “All Settings” tile on the Action Center, I noticed that nothing happened. So, I decided to open settings from the All apps view. But I was in for an epic surprise. Continue reading
I have just received an update to my Nokia Lumia 830, and it is Windows Phone 8.1 Update 2. This happened on the same day that Microsoft released Windows 10 for phones. As such, I made a video walkthrough of Windows Phone 8.1 Update 2 before upgrading my phone to Windows 10, and I am eager to share with you the video. So let’s dive in!
The video demonstrates visually what’s new in Windows Phone 8.1 Update 2. The one thing I was unable to demonstrate, unfortunately, is the ability to use external Bluetooth keyboard with the Windows Phone because I do not have one. But Windows Central has a great video demoing this, so I’ll have a link for that below. Continue reading
After seeing a note on an MSDN article, we are assuming that the change in the Windows 10’s kernel version number of 10.0 is, indeed, real. I learned of this through Neowin’s post. Basically, until now, the NT kernel version number of Windows 10 was 6.4. Now, Microsoft is changing it to 10.0. Here’s why I think this is the case. Continue reading
Internet Explorer Dev Channel and more for the week of June 16, 2014
A lot happened this week. Microsoft releases Internet Explorer Developer Channel. Facebook Beta for Windows Phone gets a big update. Surface Pro 3 is now on sale. Amazon announces a phone about which I couldn’t care less. Let’s get to it! Continue reading
With Windows Phone (WP) 8.1, many of the built-in apps are now updatable from within the Windows Phone Store. Unlike on previous WP versions, the built-in apps do not need to wait for the next OS update to be updated. These apps now can and do update regularly just like other apps you install from the Store. I have already seen many of them being updated recently, and WPCentral documented today that the Games app has been updated. To compliment this, these apps now have their dedicated Windows Phone Store landing page just like any other apps you find in the store. Continue reading
With the introduction of Windows Store gift cards, you can now put money in your Microsoft account balance and use it to get paid apps in games in Windows Store, Windows Phone Store, or the Xbox Store. Well, did you know that Microsoft is giving everyone FREE gift cards? It’s True! All you have to do is use Bing search!
Every time you search on Bing, you will get points. These points rack up, and you can use them to get gift cards that you can use to get paid apps and games from the Windows Store, Windows Phone Store, and Xbox Store (both for the Xbox 360 and Xbox One). You will see various gift cards. But the good news is that redeeming these gift cards puts money in your Microsoft Account that you can use to get apps and games from any and all stores. For example, if you get a Windows Phone gift card, you can use that card for Windows Phone apps or even Xbox One Games. Conversely, you can use your Xbox Gift Card to buy Windows 8 apps! You can also mix and match.
You have to first enable Bing Rewards. Once you do, you will start earning points for searching. If you are a new user, you can do some starter quests to get lots of points quickly.
Please note: If you click the link to bing rewards above, I may get a one-time bonous of some bing points. This post is NOT an advertisement of any sort.
You can install Windows Phone Update 3 right now! There is no need to wait for carrier approval or device manufacturer optimizations. I blogged yesterday about the fact that something really exciting would be happening for Windows Phone updates, and it did! We are now able to get the latest Windows Phone update on the day of release.
Please not, however, that Microsoft says that installing the update early may void your warranty. To get started, follow the instructions below:
Instructions on Getting the Latest Windows Phone Update Now
Step 1: If you have a Windows Phone developer account or you have signed up for the Windows Phone App Studio, then please skip Step 2 and proceed to Step 3.
Step 2: Get a free Windows Phone App Studio account by visiting this website (http://apps.windowsstore.com/). Once there, click the “Get Started” button and log in with your Microsoft Account. (Create on if you don’t have one.)
Step 3: Download and install this app (http://www.windowsphone.com/en-us/store/app/preview-for-developers/178ac8a1-6519-4a0b-960c-038393741e96) on your phone and sign in with your Microsoft Account inside the app (the same on with which you have signed up as a Windows Phone developer or on Windows Phone App Studio).
Step 4: Follow the instructions on the app to enroll your device to get early updates.
Step 5: Go the Settings, then “Phone Update” on your phone. Check for, download, and install the update.
Enjoy the latest and greatest update to your Windows Phone!
This post was originally published on McAkins Online.
- Introducing Windows Phone Preview for Developers (blogs.windows.com)
- Microsoft Pushes Windows Phone into Phablet Market (windowsitpro.com)
- Microsoft takes wraps off new Windows Phone update, developer program (zdnet.com)
- Get GDR3 today: Microsoft announces Windows Phone Preview for Developers (wpcentral.com)
This may sound like a dream but comments from Paul Thurott suggests that the days of waiting months for Windows Phone updates to be rolled out is over. Now, Mr. Thurott is not saying exactly what it is, probably due to NDA, but he hinted at some very interesting thing.
There are three hints from the Microsoft watcher that should be noted. First is a comment on his blog in response to people blaming AT&T for the delay of Windows Phone GDR3 update on devices such as Lumia 920. Earlier, Microsoft MVP Richard Hay suggested that the delay was not due to AT&T blocking the update but a technical glitch on the update itself, which Microsoft had to fix. Thurott confirms this in the following comments in response to people blaming AT&T for the delay:
“No one is to blame. An unexpected problem came up. It was fixed. It was tested. And then it was released.”
“AT&T wasn’t at fault for this delay and had no way of knowing when the problem would be fixed. It delivered the updates as soon as it got a fixed version of GDR2.”
Now here’s the second, more interesting, comment from Paul Thurott, on the same article. He responds to this reader comment:
“Now we can go ahead and prepare early for complaining about GDR3. :)”
Mr. Thurott responds: “No need for that. Stay tuned.”.
Finally, we have the best hint that suggests that something is really changing in the Windows Phone update front. Mr. Thurott, on What The Tech, responds to the following question by Andrew Zarian. The conversation starts at 20:40 minute mark and ends at 21:27 mark:
Andrew Zarian: “When the next release (GDR3) comes out, would it be coming on [Lumia 520]?
Paul Thurott: “Yes. I can’t say much about that right now, but there’s going to be some good news there….[the lack of updates] aren’t going to be an issue going forward. I’ll talk more about that next week. But that won’t be a problem.”
This quick conversation seems to suggest that something is drastically changing for Windows Phone updates that may put an end to the long delays on getting updates. Paul Thurott says he can talk more about this next week, suggesting that Microsoft might have something to announce along this line!
What are your thoughts on this. I am very excited to see what exactly happens, but if what Thurott alludes to is correct, we might be in for a treat!
This article was first posted on McAkins Online.
I honestly don’t know what took Microsoft so long, but believe it or not, until now Microsoft did not officially provide a way to search the Windows 8 App Store from your web browser. It is in contrast to every other app store model, including Microsoft’s own Windows Phone Store! But you can finally browse the Windows Store from your browser. Visit this site to get started.
You could browse and search the iOS, Android, Blackberry, and Windows Phone app stores directly from your web browser. But in the case of Windows Store, you had to use the Store app from Windows 8. If you didn’t have Windows 8, well, then you are out of luck. Of course, there are third party sites that attempt to solve this issue, such as MetroStoreScanner.
Frustratingly, Microsoft still does not provide a way to browse the Windows Store from the web browser. You can only search as of now. But it is a start. I thank Allah (God), and Microsoft, that it finally arrived.
Okay, so here it is. Visit this page and you will be able to search for apps in the Windows Store by typing their name or keywords. If the query doesn’t yield apps, make sure “Apps” is selected on the left sidebar, and not “This Site”.
Microsoft really wants developers to build apps for Windows Phone and Windows 8’s modern environment. To that end, the company has launched what they are calling “App Builder Rewards”. It is an initiative for developers to earn points by doing actions relating to making apps for Windows and Windows Phone. These actions can vary from following Microsoft Developers twitter account, filling out developer info, to actually submitting an app. Rewards vary from Xbox games, a year worth of Windows Store Developer account, to a free Windows upgrade. Here is what they state
As part of the Windows Store, App Builder brings together the tools and resources you need to build, publish and market your Windows app.
We’re excited to announce the launch of App Builder Rewards. This program is designed to help you get acquainted with the tools and resources for building a Windows app and have fun while you code to your heart’s content. For a limited time, you can earn points for completing quests, like coding apps, attending events, and of course publishing apps to the Windows Store and Windows Phone Store. Use the points to get cool stuff like a Windows Store developer account, Xbox games or a copy of Windows 8.
From start to finish, App Builder provides the tools and support you need to get your app in the store.
If you are or are thinking of building apps for Microsoft’s platforms, it would be good idea to rack up some points while you are at it. Go here to get started.
Play cross-platform with users on both Windows 8 and Windows Phone.
Create games with players from around the world, or call out for a game to your friends.In a hurry? Pass and play with a friend or hone your skills by playing against yourself.Earn Xbox achievements and compete against friends for the top position in the leaderboard.Enjoy a skill match? The AlphaJax rating system provides lasting achievement as you progress up the leaderboards and means you are always guaranteed an enjoyable and challenging game.Please note, only English language and dictionary support at present time.
- Play puzzles on-line with friends or against random opponents.
- Earn Xbox achievements and compete against friends for the top position in the leaderboard.
- No need to wait for an opponent; play with a friend next to you, on the Pass & Play game mode.
- Succesful AlphaJaxers earn Elo rating for each victory. Can you reach a rating of 2,000?
- From the Rematch menu, you can start new games with any worthy opponents you played against.
- Learn from your past games by consulting any previously completed games.
If you love the endless running game Temple Run on iOS, Android, and Windows Phone, and you also love the Disney movie Brave, then check out this game for Windows 8! Temple Run Brave. This is a version of the classic Temple Run game with the characters and settings of the Disney movie Brave. Here’s the description.
From Imangi, the makers of Temple Run, and Disney comes a new take on the most exhilarating app in the App Store. Join Merida from Disney/Pixar Brave as you run, slide, jump, turn and shoot your way across the wilds of Scotland on an endless running adventure!
New features just for Temple Run: Brave – • Introducing ARCHERY – tap targets to shoot a bullseye and earn extra coins • New, amazing visuals. It looks better than ever! • All new environments inspired by Disney/Pixar Brave and the wilds of Scotland • Play as Merida from Disney/Pixar Brave • Outrun Mordu, the demon bear, to earn running glory
• Simple swipe and tilt control that are easy to use and just feel right
• Level up your character and use crazy power-ups
• Endless play!
- Trial mode contains the entire game experience with a single species. Purchase the full version to unlock the other two.
- Experience the thrill of cinematic cloud-rendered battles.
- Play anywhere –battle your friends in online asynchronous multiplayer across Windows 8 and Windows Phone 7
- Choose from three different species, each with a unique look and arsenal.
- Scan your opponent’s ships and research new technology to take advantage of any weaknesses.
- Multiple win conditions bring depth to the strategy layer.
- Hours of training missions and single-player scenarios to teach you the ropes and put your skills to the test.
- Personalize the look of your fleet with color selections and decals.
- · Fast-paced arcade-inspired blend of arcade action and turn-based strategy!
- · Meet & recruit magical animal monks, power up your army to imposing war demons, and conquer the samurai afterlife!
- · Play 20 levels of hand-painted, story-driven single player campaign mode.
- · Play anywhere! Eat your friends’ skulls in online asynchronous multiplayer across Xbox 360, Windows 8 and Windows Phone 7
- · Battle up to 4 players at once on custom multiplayer maps, both locally and online (asynchronously)
- · Play, save and resume your game across resume across all three platforms.