In an effort to bolster its volume of Windows Phone 8 apps, Microsoft has introduced a web-based front end to help prospective app developers fasttrack their application development. The Windows Phone App Studio offers beginners a selection of templates to hit the ground running. Slightly more experienced users can start from a (nearly) blank slate. Point-and-click setup allows you to link your application with several pre-defined data sources like HTML5, static content, streaming web content, RSS feeds, and Bing content. Application design is as easy as selecting a color pallet and background images from either a selection of delivered options or your own images from your local system or SkyDrive. In the rest of this article, I’ll introduce some of the features and provide some of my impressions.
I never thought I would be called “old fashioned” — at least, not THIS soon — but that’s pretty much what happened. In a time when a small monthly fee can get you access to stream countless audio files with Spotify and the like, I suppose it could seem a bit old fashioned to have an extensive MP3 library sitting in your living room. My old fashioned-ness seems especially egregious considering that my phone, a Nokia 920, is limited to just 32 gigs of data. I can only enjoy a small fraction of that library when I am on the go. But the Plex Media Server is putting an end to all that by creating my own personal media cloud.
It’s been about three months since I released my original App Hit List — a cursory look at whether the apps I had become accustomed to on the iPhone exist (or have replacements) in the Windows Phone 8 ecosystem. At the time, I was a bit surprised to find that many of the apps that I found to be critical had identical or good replacements. After three months, I want to revisit the list to see how things have changed.
As you may know, I have already taken the plunge into the world of Windows Phone 8 with a recent purchase of a new Nokia Lumia 920. After a few solid weeks of use, I have made a small list of
gripes areas for improvement regarding the Windows Phone 8 OS (and none of them are related to app availability).
As I have previously reported, I made the jump to Windows Phone with the recent purchase of a Lumia 920 on AT&T. One of the major criticisms of the WP8 platform is, of course, the availability of Apps. Admittedly, I am not an App power user, but I still have needs, you know. But to help me track expectations, I have decided to catalog all the iPhone apps that I currently use on a weekly basis. Along side this list, I will track the similar/replacement WP8 apps. Read on for the details.
UPDATE (8/8): In the past few weeks, a number of apps were released on WP8, one of which is for my family’s main bank. This app appears to bring all the functionality of its iOS cousin including mobile check deposit. This is a major win. Thought it was not listed below, an app for the FitBit device was also released. This brings a bit more convenience to the FitBit reporting which, otherwise, is accessible on the web. Double-score. All of this goes to my point that the WP8 ecosystem is constantly evolving and improving on a day-to-day basis. Continue reading From iphone to Windows Phone 8: The App Hit List
I am now in the possession of a new Nokia Lumia 920. After about 6 years of iPhone ownership, I decided to take the plunge into the world of Windows Phone 8. And so far? I’m very pleased. Read on for more first impressions on the hardware and software.
Continue reading From iphone to Windows Phone 8: The Plunge
In a previous post, I detailed the reasons why I am tempted to switch from my iphone to a Windows Phone 8 device. What I am discovering, however, is that it is a very frustrating time to be in the market for such a phone. Continue reading for a few thoughts on the current state of my WP8 search.
UPDATE: The Samsung event has come and gone. While some interesting tablets and AIO PCs were announced, there is no ATIV Windows Phone. Opportunity #1 is gone.
UPDATE 2: The MS Build 2013 conference is into its last day, but I am going to go ahead and call this ‘Missed Opportunity #2’. Unfortunately, it sounds like the Windows Phone developers attending the conference will be disappointed as well, since the expected WP 8.1 update was not even a footnote. I guess Windows 8.1 stole the show.
UPDATE 3 (7/11/13): Much to nobody’s surprise, Nokia unveiled a new 41-megapixel Windows Phone this morning. Also not surprising is that it will be available in the US exclusively on AT&T. While I don’t consider myself a ‘shutter bug’, this would mostly likely be my next phone if I decided to jump ship from Verizon to AT&T. I’m still maintaining my holding pattern for the time being.
Like most people, my mobile communications history can be split into two segments: before iphone and after iphone. I purchase a first generation iphone back in 2007, soon after it was released. I’m not typically an early adopter, but that device fit perfectly. At the time, I was traveling for work every week and needed a device that could not only help me stay in touch but also provide internet access and serve up music and videos while sitting for hours on the plane. It certainly made my previous Sony-Ericsson “smart phone” look pretty dumb.
Fast forward to 2013. I am now on my third iphone, a Verizon supported iphone 4. While I am still happy with the phone — a very capable device — I am not feeling any desire to upgrade to the iphone 5. Every day, it’s looking more and more like the rest of the mobile communications companies have finally caught up to Apple — and I’m sure some would even say “surpassed”. Last year, I decided that it’s time to finally start looking around to see if there’s a better fit out there.