Internet Explorer Dev Channel and more for the week of June 16, 2014

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

The Kindle App for Windows 8 Updates with 2-Column View

Kindle for Windows 8

The popular ebook reader by Amazon, Kindle, has a major update for Windows 8 users. One of the biggest feature is the now 2-column view. Here’s the full details:

Release Notes:

– Improved page turn performance
– Increased book storage
– Added 2-column reading on ARM devices
– Disabled device dimming in reading mode
– Performance improvements and other enhancements throughout

Please note: After upgrading, an Internet connection is needed to complete the app update when opening the app for the first time.


Read Kindle books on a beautiful, easy-to-use Windows 8 application. You’ll have access to over 1 million* books in the Kindle Store, including best sellers and new releases. Amazon’s Whispersync technology automatically syncs your furthest page read, bookmarks, notes, and highlights across all your devices that have the Kindle app installed and across any Kindle device. That means you can start reading on one device and pick up where you left off on another device.


Buy once, read everywhere. Sign in with an Amazon account, and sync Kindle books across all your devices that have the Kindle app installed across any Kindle device.
Pin Kindle books from your Kindle library to the Windows Start screen for instant access to your favorites.
Start reading in seconds. Your Kindle book downloads while you read.
Shop the Kindle Store for over 1 million* Kindle books, including new releases and best sellers. Over 600,000 Kindle books are $4.99 or less, and over 1 million books are $9.99 or less.*
Customize your reading experience by choosing the background color, font size, and number of reading columns.
Highlight, take notes, and add bookmarks in any book. Look up word definitions and listen to how they are pronounced.
* Selection and price of Kindle books in the Kindle Store vary by country.
Source: Kindle

The Much Awaited Amazon App is now in the Store!


At last! The Amazon App is now in the Windows Store! Wow, the really took their time coming. EBay and Newegg have been rocking the Store since Jove knows when, now Amazon joins the hustle. As you can see the App already garnered 98 ratings at almost 4 Stars. I wonder who are those people who rated it, as those are not the public, the App is just out! Probably those are Microsoft internal users and testers who were testing for Microsoft and Amazon as they need to get this right the first time.


I have just installed the App, I just simply said Wow! when I first opened it. It is beautiful, it is comprehensive, to use my favorite term, it comes with kitchen and sink. Yes, it is worth the wait.

Once you login, the App lights up with your history and purchases, there are recommendations for you based on your search and buy pattern, they have columns for everything that might interest you. Can’t place screenshots here else you’ll be privy to my weird collections of Barbie pops Smile. But seriously, you’ll have to see this App for yourselves. Here is how Amazon (or is it MS, wink wink, nudge nudge) described it from the Store:

The Amazon app allows you to quickly make purchases, search, compare prices, read reviews, and share products with friends using a simple yet elegant interface. Shop just as you do on the web.
You can access any of Amazon’s sites around the world from a single app by simply selecting your desired Amazon country store or shipping destination. You have full access to your existing cart and wish lists.
Search for products using the Amazon app, and easily add them to your shopping cart to purchase. (Note: the app uses the Amazon search engine, which is a non-Microsoft commerce engine.) All purchases made on Amazon are routed through our secure servers just as they are on the web.

View popular products and recommendations
Quickly search for products
Read product descriptions and reviews
Add any product to your Shopping Cart and/or Wish List
Purchase products
Access any of Amazon’s sites around the world


I can tell you for fact right now that these screenshots didn’t do justice to the App. You need to download it and login to see the App light-up with your Amazon universe. So what are you waiting for, it doesn’t cost you a dime. So go right ahead and download via the Source link.

Source: Windows Store

P.S. You didn’t think for once that the Barbie pop collection joke was true did you? Smile

Nook – We’ve Got an App for That


At the launch of Windows today in New York, Microsoft confirmed what most of us watchers have been suspecting. The Nook App is coming to the Windows Store! It has been a long rumor coming, but the writing was all over the wall given the No-Shoot Joint Agreement Microsoft had with Barnes and Noble earlier this year. We were all asking if MS was going to do a Nook Surface or better still if B&N will follow Amazon footsteps and create an App for Surface a ’la Kindle. Well the answer is there for whole world to see, there is definitely no doubt anymore. “We can has Nook App”. Smile

Now watching the Store like a hawk when the App is going to drop. Trust us to be all over it when it happens. In the meantime go enjoy “Our Precious” your Surface if you’ve ordered one, or got one from Microsoft today.

Official eBay App Arrives for Windows 8!


Yay! The Wait Is Over! Now we can start shopping on eBay from our Windows 8 devices! The eBay app is beautifully implemented in Metro. All the usual eBay features are now available as tiles, and there in infinite panning of Daily Deals and Searches. You can share your purchases and watch lists with family and friends so people know your wish lists. You can keep an eye on your biddings in the Snapped View while you work on that important Worksheet. The following is eBay Inc.’s description of the App from the Store:

The eBay app lets you search, increase existing bids & watch items from the world's largest marketplace!

Once you've signed in you get an overview of all your watching, buying & selling activities.

Search and filter through products on the world's largest marketplace.

The eBay app lets you search

The eBay app for Windows 8™ lets you to tap into the world’s largest marketplace anywhere you are. It is a free app built with eBay users in mind that will help you get more out of your buying and selling activity.
Never miss a deal with the eBay app for Windows 8™ with instant alerts when outbid or auctions are ending. You can customize even more alerts so you stay on top of your shopping.
The eBay app lets you search, increase existing bids & watch items from the world’s largest marketplace! This app integrates eBay Search, My eBay at-a-glance, Daily Deals and more to help you manage all your shopping activity.

Receive notifications about important eBay updates to your buying and selling activities.
Find great eBay deals by pinning the eBay Deals Tile to your Window 8™ Start Screen.
Share your eBay purchases and favourite items with friends and family through the Windows 8™ Share Charm.
Keep an eye on your eBay activity while doing other tasks using the Windows 8™ Snap View.

Now that eBay releases this App for Windows 8 Release Preview, we are assuming the Amazon App will also not take that far to drop (Amazon App is already in the store. Sorry), Let the competition begin!
You can download the app now in the Store via the following link:

Will Books Exist 10 to 20 Years From Now?

My sister loves to collect books. She aspires dedicating a significant portion of her room to create her personal library, where she would put her books, old and new, and create an environment of wisdom and peace. It is, then, no wonder she gets upset when I remind her that books are a dying media. Actually, books are far from dying, but, rather, books in its physical form is dying.
Books as physical entities are what we have been using for the past thousands of years. It still shocks me that such a old and established form of media suddenly stands in the face of death. But what’s more surprising is that how astonishing digital media and the internet is; so astonishing that it is able to kill the physical form of books that has been the dominating form from the very beginning. WIthin the last ten years, an incredible amount of physical texts have been converted to digital form. Furthermore, old texts that are in the public domain is being digitized by Google anti-bot system called reCAPTCHA. reCAPTCHA disfigured words that we need to type when, say, creating an account. One of the two words we type is a word from an old book while the other is a word that the computer randomly asks us to type. When we type these words correctly, we not only verify ourselves as humans but also help digitize old books!
Now the question is, just because books exists in digital form, why would they threaten the physical form? The answer to this is that their mere existence in the digital form isn’t what is causing the physical material to die. Rather, the cause lies in the benefits and the convenience of the digital form of books. Texts in digital form can be used to do things perceived as magical only a few decades ago! In its most simple form, digital texts are flexible and portable. I can take virtually unlimited number of books with me in small location. Devices like the Kindle Fire lets anyone carry all the books they need in their pocket! When digital, people can tap a word, topic, image, etc and get definitions, encyclopedia articles, maps, videos, and a lot more instantly!
But the part that really amazes me is that digital books and the internet redefines how we perceive a book. Now, books can no longer be texts, diagrams, and images. They can be much more than that! Back in 2001, when I watched the first Harry Potter movie, I was amazed to see moving pictures in the wizarding world news papers! It was so magical! But now, online newspapers have videos embedded in them, and it is nothing out of the ordinary to see someone reading a newspaper article with a video playing on it in their smart phone! Yet, it has only been 10 years! Now, videos are simple to be included in books. How about a chemistry textbook that allows the reader to manipulate the molecules or rotate 3D diagrams for a better understanding? Why can we not have audio clips and interviews in a biography! All this is possible with digital books and the power of the internet.
Apple recently released the iBooks 2, which now includes textbooks that are interactive. This is a huge example of where education is headed as well as textbooks themselves. Houghton Mifflin, McGraw Hill, and Pearson have all joined apple to sell digital, interactive textbooks in the iTunes store! To compliment the iBooks 2, Apple also released the Authoring tool, a free app for the Mac, that lets anyone create textbooks (interactive or static) and distribute (free or paid) the in the iTunes Store. More companies are bound to follow, and soon enough, digital books will become the norm and a necessity!
Are books dying, no, but their physical form doesn’t have much of a future. Perhaps the physical form will remain for those enthusiast collectors and be more expensive as demand drops. This would be analogous today to record players. My sister loves the smell of old books (I do too), and they will always have a place in the future. But as far as mainstream is concerned, we are going digital!