Hands-On With The Revamped Facebook Beta App For Windows Phone 8

In the days of Mango, Windows Phone was the best platform for fans of Facebook. WP8 improved upon WP7’s integration with the social network, but with the release of Facebook Home for Android and Facebook 6.0 for iOS, the WP8 app started to look pretty primitive. Fortunately, Microsoft has taken note of the issue, and has decided to release a revamped version of the official Facebook app for WP8 soon. However, to make sure the new app is absolutely perfect, the MS guys have decided to employ Windows Phone users as the app’s beta testers. Facebook Beta won’t show up in the WP Store search results for now to avoid confusion, but anyone can download the app for free and check out the future of Facebook on WP8. Read More

Fidelity Investments Just Might Be The Best Stock Market App For WP8

Fidelity Investments is among the biggest names in the market when it comes to financial services. A lot of big players in the stock exchange rely on data acquired from Fidelity to conduct their businesses and make investments. You can stay in touch with your Fidelity Investments account using its web version of course, but it is always nice to get on-the-go access for any service in form of dedicated mobile apps. If you work in the finance indistry and own a Windows Phone, the service’s WP8 app can prove to be an asset. It supports account login but even if you are not a registered Fidelity Investments user, you can use the app to keep an eye on the stock market, read latest news stories related to companies of your interest, and get detailed exchange stats for any particular stock. Read More

Indigo Is An Android & WP8 Voice Assistant Capable Of Casual Conversation

It is no secret that Windows Phone does not have as many alternatives to Siri as Android, and even the personal assistants that are available in the WP Store have their shortcomings. Speaktoit Assistant is good for having a fun chat every once in a while and has a very customizable UI, but you can’t get it to perform a plethora of useful tasks. Ask Ziggy, on the other hand, has often been accused of being a little too simplistic. So it is nice to see a new talking personal assistant that has been released at the same time for both Android and WP8. Indigo is a voice-controlled personal assistant that can entertain you while having the basic purpose of making your life easier. Read More

Discover Content & Create Posts With The Official Tumblr App For WP8

It has become pretty much the norm for Windows Phone versions of apps to be quite different from their iOS and Android counterparts. WP has a unique interface featuring live tiles instead of icons, along with side-scrolling screens that focus on content rather than the UI elements themselves, and many developers feel compelled to take full advantage of these features. Recently though, the trend has started shifting and we saw that the official LinkedIn app got updated with a new interface that makes the app look similar to its other mobile versions. The Tumblr app for Windows Phone has just been released today, and it looks a lot like the iPhone version of the service as well. A few things are missing from Tumblr for WP8 but overall, the app gives a pretty good account of itself. Read More

Overlay Weather & Location Info On Photos In Windows Phone With Ciel

To varying extents, all photos capture the essence of the moment when they were snapped, but there are times when you need to add some written information to the image in order to ensure that anyone who views it can gauge the environment in which the photo was taken. iOS has apps like InstaPlace and InstaWeather for this purpose, while Android has CamWeather. These type of apps usually offer certain templates that let you overlay real-time weather and location info on your photos. Ciel does the same for Windows Phone users, but the number of templates it offers make the app more than a match for similar apps on other platforms. Ciel has readymade overlay effects that deal with weather, location, lifestyle or a mixture of all of these. The sharing options are pretty good as well, while the app's integration with Foursquare ensures availability of data on all nearby places. Read More

Ding Is A Vibrant, Gesture-Based Alarm Clock App For Windows Phone

In the past, we haven’t covered a lot of alarm apps for Windows Phone, or any other platform, for that matter. Most people aren’t in a particularly rosy mood when they get up in the morning, and a feature-laden alarm clock app is likely to annoy you more than anything. While apps like 627.AM and Clever Alarm are useful in some situations, you are likely to prefer a more run-of-the-mill app in your daily routine. Ding for WP7 and WP8 doesn’t come with a host of customizable features, but it looks good and is very convenient to use as well. It reflects the accent color you have chosen for your phone, fitting right in with the overall theme, and sports a unique gesture-based UI for quicker, easier setting of alarms. Read More

Face Retouching App Perfect365 Makes Its Way To Windows Phone 8

Perfect365 started off as a desktop application, and has had a mobile presence for quite a while now as well. The service has pretty decent apps for iOS and Android, but a few Windows Phone users started anticipating the app’s arrival on Microsoft’s mobile platform when Perfect365 for Windows 8 came out. The anticipation wasn't unfounded at all, it seems, since the app is now available in the WP Store. Having used most Perfect365 apps, I must say that the WP8 app is actually better than other mobile appsof the service. The interface is really neat, making the process of configuring the editing points on the face quite easy. In addition, you can also make any face look prettier by applying one of the predefined filters available in Perfect365. Read More

LinkedIn For Windows Phone Gets Live Tiles, Voice Controls & Dynamic Lock Screen Support

A month shy of its first release anniversary, LinkedIn for Windows Phone has received a major update. Windows Phone has native integration with the world’s largest professional network since WP7, but you do need to have a decent app if you want to properly go through your updates, message someone or explore new jobs. The previous version of the official LinkedIn client for Windows Phone was pretty decent, but it did not take full advantage of all the awesome new possibilities added to the mix by WP8. With LinkedIn 1.5 however, you get to control many aspects of the app using WP8’s native voice commands; resizable live tiles are supported now, and it is possible to configure your lock screen to automatically cycle through images taken from the LinkedIn Today section of the app. Read More

NBC News Comes To WP8 With Full Shows, Narrated Articles & Video Clips

For some reason, the WP Store has a particularly strong news category. Windows Phone still can’t compete against iOS or Android if you are looking at photo editors or games, but almost all major news services have released their WP7 and WP8 clients. Last month, Al Jazeera became the latest big name to join the ranks of WP8 news apps, and now we have an even bigger release in the Store. The NBC network already had some Windows Phone presence, thanks to its Breaking News and Nightly News apps, but with NBC News, there is now a proper WP8 app of the news giant that takes full advantage of the features available in the OS. Read More

Play Any Game Boy Or GB Color Title On Windows Phone With VGBC8

VGBC8 for WP8 might not support as many platforms as RetroArch for Android, and those it does support are nowhere near as high-end as what PSSP emulates on iOS, but this Game Boy emulator does everything it is supposed to do in a really efficient and lag-free manner. The app is capable of running any Game Boy or Game Boy Color ROM, offering full controls and game saving options. VGBC8 is not the first emulator of this kind for Windows Phone, as the developer of this app has previously released a Game Boy Advance emulator in the WP Store as well. The new app works flawlessly, and loading new ROMs is really easy. Any game’s save state is uploaded to SkyDrive so that your progress doesn't get lost even if the app is uninstalled, and you start playing it right where you left even on another device. Read More

Track Debts & Borrowed Items Across PC, Mac, Android & iOS With I Owe You

If you forget your phone at home or can't remember where you put the car keys, chances are you're the only one inconvenienced by your forgetfulness. Now imagine you promised to pay someone back some money you borrowed; not only does it make for an awkward situation when you are reminded of the pending debt, but it might also leave a bad impression of you on the other person. I Owe You is a web service with apps available for Mac, Windows, Android, iOS, and Windows Phone that lets you keep track of money or items that you've borrowed from someone, along with things or money that others have borrowed from you. The debts you enter can be one-time or recurring. A debt can easily be divided between several people (like a restaurant tab paid for all by one). I Owe You will send you notifications for overdue debts as well as for debts that are soon due. You can easily choose the type of notifications you receive. Read More

Use Native WP8 Voice Commands To Get Directions To Any Location

The fact that Microsoft hasn’t given Windows Phone’s voice control feature a proper name in WP8 (it used to be TellMe until Mango) might have contributed towards it remaining a bit underrated. The fact remains though that WP8 supports some decent voice commands, letting you launch apps, perform searches, and even control some internal aspects of a few apps (like creating reminders). Having said that, some recent releases in the WP Store have demonstrated that there is even more to voice controls in WP8 than you might imagine. We all know that Windows Phone’s integration with HERE Maps, and Nokia Drive makes it a good platform of choice for people who rely on their smartphones for driving or walking directions. With the newly released Go To app, the WP8 navigation experience might just feel complete. The app lets you use WP8’s native voice commands to get driving, walking or public transit directions for any place you want. Read More

Get Galaxy S4’s Dual Camera Photo Capture On Windows Phone 8

The importance of front-facing cameras in smartphones has increased manifolds due to apps like Tango and Skype, but there are other perks of having cameras on both sides of your phone. Front cameras make sure you don’t have to hand your device to strangers when you want to take a picture of yourself, or even use the front cam as a handy mirror every once in a while. Despite all these advantages though, there are some things that even two cameras can’t accomplish. While taking a group photo, there always has to be one person who is forced to assume the responsibilities of a photographer and is left out of the picture. iOS and Android already have a few apps that can solve this problem by simultaneously activating front and rear cams to take a photo with both views. Signature Camera is a perfect example of this, while eyeReport is based on the same principle as well. It is good to see that a similar app is now finally available for Windows Phone. With Dual Cam Photo, users can easily add a shot from the front camera every time they take a picture from the rear one. Read More

Camera360 Comes To WP8 With Live Photo Filters & Great Interface

Among the crowd of photo editors available for iOS and Android, Camera360 has been among the best for a long time. The app is so good that it even made its way into our list of top ten Android photo editors. Windows Phone has been getting a lot of big apps lately, but no one expected Camera360 to pop up in the WP Store out of the blue. Yet, the app is here in all its simplistic glory, bringing with it all the great image effects you can expect from a photo editor of this class. Camera360 for WP8 lets you apply filters to a scene in front of you, even before the picture is snapped. The app also lets you view your entire image collection in the form of a calendar, or sort photos based on the exact time they were snapped. Read More

Viber For Windows Phone 8 Gets HD Voice Calls & Better Live Tiles

When we first covered Viber for Windows Phone a year ago, the app was quite disappointing. For some reason, the team behind the famous messenger didn’t add VoIP calling options to the WP7 client, and even when the calling capabilities did come, they were limited to Nokia devices. On Android and iOS, Viber is used almost exclusively for its free calls, since a lot of other text messengers (like WhatsApp) are already more popular. So, it is nice to see that after a considerable wait, Viber has properly arrived on Windows Phone. The app’s WP8 version has just been updated with several new features, and the most important among them are voice calls (that too in HD quality). Apart from free VoIP calling, the update makes better use of the WP8 Start screen by letting users pin individual conversations as live tiles. Read More

Unification Is A Combined Notification Center For Windows Phone & Windows

Since the days of Windows Phone 7, Microsoft has been claiming that the ‘Me’ section of the People hub is fully capable of serving as the notifications area of your phone, but most users haven't been satisfied with the somewhat limited functionality the Me tile offers. The People hub is enough if you are only interested in social media updates, but what about all the notifications you might miss from third-party apps just because the device was in your pocket when the toast notification showed up? Unification is a new app that has the potential to act like a notification repository for all the apps you use on your Windows Phone. The app has been released only on WP8 at present, but it is slated to arrive for Windows Phone 7 and Windows 8 pretty soon, which is sure to make it a truly universal notification center for the entire Microsoft ecosystem. Read More

Stretch A Wallpaper Across Windows Phone 8 Lock Screen & Kid’s Corner

Even though Windows Phone 8 has been out for quite a while now, I can’t help but feel that Microsoft might have marketed ‘Kid’s Corner’ better by giving it a name like ‘Guest Account’, since the current name leads users to believe the feature has very limited usefulness, and that too for children only. Despite the name, it’s good to see that more and more people have started using Kid’s Corner in recent months. There are already a few apps in the WP Store aimed specifically at enhancing the Kid’s Corner. The app we are about to show you, however, doesn't deal much with the inner workings of Kid’s Corner. In fact, we won’t even go past the Kid’s Corner Welcome screen in discussing it. Has it ever bothered you that the Kid’s Corner - and the real lock screen of your device - must have different wallpapers despite being connected to each other? After all, you can stretch wallpapers easily for desktop devices if you are using multiple monitors. Dual Lock Crop does pretty much the same thing for WP8 lock screen. Now you can stretch any wallpaper across the real lock screen and Kid’s Corner, and that too without much effort. Read More

Evernote For Windows Phone Gets Checklists, Note Tiles & Improved UI

Thanks to OneNote and Windows Phone’s seamless integration with SkyDrive, a lot of people didn't think that Evernote for WP7 (and later for WP8) would gain a lot of popularity. Existing users of Evernote, however, are not likely to switch to a new service just because it has better integration with their smartphones. This has kept Evernote quite relevant for Windows Phone so far. Another contributing factor in the app's rise to fame in the WP Store is its Modern UI and regular updates. Despite all that, a few small but important features have been missing from the app's WP client so far. Evernote's latest update doesn't make it perfect, but it does bring some much-needed features to the mix. You can now pin notes to the app's main screen, browse through tags more conveniently, view your account's basic information in one place, and add checklists to your notes. Read More

Get Lock Screen Widgets & Dynamic Wallpapers On Windows Phone 8

Lock screen widgets were available only for developer-unlocked devices in the days of WP7, but before releasing Windows Phone 8, Microsoft realized the true potential of an information-rich lock screen. WP8 supports automatically changing lock screen backgrounds, and widgets that shows real-time data. While there are a few very good apps that make your lock screen dynamic, not much work has been done on the widgets front. As has often been the case, the famed Windows Phone developer Jaxbot has come to the rescue. His newly released Lock Widgets app lets you set up a dynamic lock screen, and also offers real-time widgets for battery status and weather information. Thanks to this great app, users can set up dynamic wallpapers by using Bing or NASA images as sources. If you want to use the app only for its widgets, that can be done too. Read More

[Ask The Readers] What’s The Size Of Your Smartphone’s Display?

Smartphone displays seem to be getting bigger and bigger lately, don’t they? Consider Samsung’s flagship smartphone series – the Galaxy S: it started out in 2010 at 4-inches, expanded to a reasonable 4.3-inches in 2011 with the Galaxy S II, blew up to a massive 4.8-inches in 2012 with the Galaxy S III, before settling on a 5-inch full HD display that dominates the front of the recently announced Galaxy S4. Apart from this, there's also the Galaxy Note 'phablet' line that started in late 2011 with a 5.3" screen, which was bumped up to 5.5" in 2012 with the Note II. Read More