IT News, Tech Information and Analysis Microsoft

New Photos App & One Handed Mode: Windows 10 Phones

The latest update (Windows 10 Mobile Insider Preview Build 10536) for the Windows Insiders have brought in a new updated Photos App for the Windows 10 Phone users. This update introduces a folder view that makes it easy for you to see your OneDrive and PC folders in the Photos app. On your phone, you can also see folders on your SD card.

This update also brings faster photo viewing and context menus. Specifically, for phones, zoom and panning is faster, and you now have an option to mark an image as a favourite. This update is not available for PCs at this moment; an update will be rolled out soon.

windows-10-phone-updateMicrosoft had introduced one-handed mode for larger phones sometime ago. In this build, they have also enabled the ability to use one-handed mode on all Windows phones. 

This can be enabled by pressing and holding the Start button. When you do this, your screen will slide down so you can reach items at the top of your screen. To slide the screen back up, tap the black space at the top of the screen, or press and hold the Start button again. One-handed use will also naturally time out after several seconds and return to your regular view

General Microsoft

I was featured on ‘Blown Away by Lumia’ – Nokia Challenge

Nokia India has launched an aggressive viral campaign ‘Blown Away by Lumia’ comparing the Lumia with other rivals such as Samsung Galaxy, Blackberry, iPhones, BADA phones etc. to revive in the Indian smartphone market which is currently dominated by phones running on Google Android platform. The Nokia Lumia line of devices run on Windows Phone Operating System.

This YouTube campaign shows short clips of Lumia experts challenging consumers with rival smartphones in terms of internet and social networking quickness and experience. When Lumia wins, the other consumer holds high a banner saying, ‘My phone just got blown away by the Nokia Lumia’ and when the consumer wins, he walks with a Rs.1000 note.

I was a part of this campaign, when it happened in Mantri Mall, Bangalore. I was the Lumia expert and I had over 30 challengers who wanted to take part. It was a fun and a wonderful Experience.

Nokia India has released these 2 videos so far on its official YouTube channel. Hoping for more in days to come!

Check out the other videos here on the Nokia India YouTube Channel.

Events Microsoft

Microsoft Outlines Opportunity in the Cloud and on Devices at PDC10

Today at the Microsoft Professional Developers Conference (PDC), Microsoft Corp. showcased how developers can build applications in the cloud to power rich, immersive device experiences. In addition to the developers in attendance at the company’s corporate campus in Redmond, Wash., the event was broadcast live over the Web, and reached more than 20,000 developers at over 200 PDC events held around the world.

During the keynote address, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and Server and Tools Business President Bob Muglia showed how the company is advancing the Microsoft platform, spanning the PC, phone and cloud. Microsoft specifically highlighted the momentum of Windows Azure, Windows 7, Internet Explorer 9 and Windows Phone 7 and the opportunity for developers today and in the future.

“Microsoft is combining the power and reach of the cloud with both Web and local device experiences,” Ballmer said. “There has never been a better time for developers to bet on Microsoft.”

Microsoft also highlighted that over 70 partners — including Twitter, Facebook, and, representing more than two-thirds of active Web traffic are building on the capabilities in Internet Explorer 9 and HTML5. Since the launch of Internet Explorer 9 beta in September, there have been more than 10 million downloads, making it the fastest-adopted version of an Internet Explorer beta ever. The company also highlighted a growing list of companies that are betting on Windows Phone 7, including PopCap Games Inc., Intuit Inc., and Facebook. Further, Microsoft announced that the Windows Phone Marketplace will launch with more than 1,000 quality games and applications that extend the unique user interface and functionality of Windows Phone 7. The Windows Phone Marketplace will be open for application submission on Nov. 3.

With the capabilities in Windows Azure, Muglia showed how developers can apply their existing skills to build new types of business applications, consumer Web applications and commercial ISV offerings.

“Only Windows Azure delivers general-purpose PaaS, which gives developers the breadth of services needed to allow them to focus on their applications and not the underlying infrastructure or virtualizing machines,” Muglia said. “Imagine having all of the IT infrastructure, hardware, OS and tools you need to support an app just a few mouse clicks away — it opens up so many possibilities for developers worldwide. We are looking forward to seeing the amazing things our customers will build on our PaaS offering.”

Moving Applications to the Cloud

For existing applications, one option for customers is to move workloads to the cloud, using virtual machines to help lower traditional cost and management burdens. This can be done by cloud computing with quite easily. Today Muglia announced two new Microsoft capabilities for Windows Azure to enable customers to get on the path to platform as a service (PaaS): Windows Azure Virtual Machine Role and Server Application Virtualization. Windows Azure Virtual Machine Role gives customers the ability to run an instance of Windows Server 2008 R2 running in Microsoft’s cloud, making it easier for developers to move applications to the cloud. Server Application Virtualization gives developers the ability to transfer application images to Windows Azure, harnessing the underlying management capabilities of the platform.

Enhancing and Transforming Applications in the Cloud

Microsoft announced a number of Windows Azure services that also help developers create rich cloud applications that open up new business opportunities. To enable this, Microsoft introduced the Windows Azure AppFabric Composition Model to speed the process of assembling services by providing critical application deployment and management capabilities. To better connect developers to customers, Microsoft announced the Windows Azure Marketplace including the new DataMarket (formerly “Project Dallas”), offering premium and public demographic, financial, mapping, and entertainment data and other content. Commercially available today, the marketplace features more than 35 providers currently offering data subscriptions.

Windows Azure scales to projects and businesses both large and small, including mobile applications that require an easier and lower-cost means to experiment and build prototypes. As part of Windows Azure enhancements unveiled today, Microsoft made available the Extra Small Windows Azure Instance that eases the process of development, testing and trial. Priced at $0.05 per compute hour, this new offering lowers the barrier to entry for developers who want to run smaller applications on Windows Azure.

Read more complete information about the Windows Azure road map announced at PDC, including new features and capabilities!

Delivering Cloud Connected Device Experiences With Windows 7, Internet Explorer 9 and Windows Phone 7

Ultimately, a primary role of the cloud is to deliver the best end-user experiences that span multiple devices, form factors and screens, regardless of whether people are at work, at home or at play. Microsoft gives developers the ability to treat both cloud and client applications as first-class citizens and deliver great device experiences that love the cloud. The rapid adoption of Windows 7 and Internet Explorer 9 creates new opportunities for Windows developers, especially considering that Web browsing is the No. 1 activity people do on Windows 7. The opportunity for developers to build applications for Windows has never been greater. Windows 7 topped 240 million licenses in its first year, and developers will drive a wave of new Windows applications that span different platforms through HTML and JavaScript, and run on cloud platforms such as Windows Azure.

At the PDC, Microsoft underscored its continued commitment to HTML5 and showed how developers can fuse the full hardware acceleration and site-centric design in Internet Explorer 9 to tap into the power of PC hardware, transforming their websites to feel more like native Windows applications. As part of the ongoing commitment to standards and “same mark-up” on Internet Explorer 9, the company also announced the availability of Windows Internet Explorer 9 Platform Preview 6, available for download today.

The increasing power and accessibility of rich devices, combined with the ease of application development on Windows Phone 7, has driven more than half a million downloads of the free Windows Phone Developer Tools to date. Many of the same skills, languages and tools used to develop cloud applications on Windows Azure have come to Windows Phone for apps and games.

Developers tuning into the PDC online and at PDC events around the world will have access to over 100 hours of live and on-demand technical sessions and Channel 9 interviews, covering Microsoft technologies such as Windows Azure, Windows Phone 7, SharePoint, Internet Explorer 9 and Visual Studio as well as industry languages and technologies such as PHP and HTML5. PDC keynote addresses and technical sessions can be accessed at

General Microsoft

Microsoft Announced Windows Phone 7 Availability

Microsoft Corp. today joined its partners in revealing nine new Windows Phone 7 handsets that will be available this holiday season from leading mobile operators in Europe, North America and Asia Pacific. With more than 60 mobile operators in over 30 countries worldwide committed to bringing Windows Phones to market, the millions of people around the world looking for a phone that plays as hard as it works will have a variety of phones from leading device-makers to choose from.

Windows Phone 7 will be available beginning October 21 in Europe and Asia, and November 8 in North America from a variety of different carriers. You can check with the mobile operator or device manufacturer for more information on which carriers and devices will be available.

“We have a beautiful lineup in this first wave of Windows Phone 7 handsets,” said Steve Ballmer, chief executive officer at Microsoft. “Microsoft and its partners are delivering a different kind of mobile phone and experience — one that makes everyday tasks faster by getting more done in fewer steps and providing timely information in a ‘glance and go’ format.”

Microsoft and its partners have worked together closely to create a different kind of phone with new experiences that bring together what people care about most. Windows Phone 7 will be available in a variety of sleek form factors from device-makers such as Dell, HTC Corp., LG and Samsung, and from mobile operators including América Móvil, AT&T, Deutsche Telekom AG, Movistar, O2, Orange, SFR, SingTel, Telstra, TELUS, T-Mobile USA and Vodafone. All Windows Phone 7 phones will include the high-performance Snapdragon™ processor from Qualcomm. A broad selection of phones will begin shipping in holiday 2010 with more arriving in 2011, including phones from Sprint and Verizon Wireless. In addition, select models will be available at Microsoft Store locations and from Amazon.

Windows Phone 7, Glance and Go

In today’s busy world we are spending more time heads-down on our phones than interacting with the people we’re sitting next to and missing out on important life moments. Windows Phone 7 was designed to deliver a mobile experience that has the phone working better for people, bringing together the things they care about most and helping them to get things done faster.

Windows Phone 7 breaks the current smartphone convention to help people quickly and easily find and consume data, information and services from the Web and applications. The new phones are distinguished by unique design and integrated experiences built from Microsoft’s deep portfolio such as Xbox LIVE, Microsoft Office Mobile, Zune, Windows Live, Bing and more.

For example, the customizable Start screen with Live Tiles is a personal experience, showing people their own content. The Live Tiles come to life with real-time updates from the Web such as news, appointments or the status of friends. New Live Tiles can be easily created from whatever content a consumer wants, such as applications, websites and music.

For Developing applications for Windows Phone, check these Documentation and Softwares.

Fueling New Experiences

Windows Phone 7 marks a new era in mobile gaming as the first phone to put the power of Xbox LIVE into the palm of people’s hands with a blockbuster lineup of game titles from award-winning publishers. In addition to the titles already announced earlier this year, Electronic Arts Inc. (EA) today announced the first wave of EA games coming to Windows Phone 7 this fall. As part of Microsoft’s managed portfolio of Xbox LIVE titles, all EA games for Windows Phone 7 will be Xbox LIVE-enabled. EA will deliver a portfolio of titles that offers something for every mobile gamer, from casual to core, including “Need for Speed™ Undercover,” “Tetris®” and “The Sims™ 3.”

Windows Phone 7 is also the first to offer the Zune music experience on a phone: People can play their music collection, synced wirelessly from their PC, or stream or download new tunes from Windows Marketplace. An optional Zune Pass subscription is available.

Search is made easier with a dedicated button to help people find what they need, whether in contacts, in Marketplace, in e-mail or on the Web. From the Start screen, the Search button delivers Bing for mobile, delivering Web results, local information, maps, directions and more.

The Windows Live solution helps people manage pictures, Windows Live calendar, Office OneNote Mobile and more. The free Find My Phone service new on Windows Live can remotely ring, lock, erase and show the location of your phone on a map. Complete information about Windows Phone 7 features and capabilities can be found at

This Document provides the certification policies and technical requirements that a Windows Phone 7 Application or Game must meet to pass certification and to be eligible for listing in Windows Phone Marketplace.

New Windows Phones Expected –

The following devices will come to North America, Europe and Asia Pacific in the holiday 2010 timeframe. The new Windows Phone 7 arrives in stores starting Monday, November 8. However, there is still no news on its availability for India yet.

In North America:


• HTC Surround, United States
• Samsung Focus, United States
• LG Quantum, United States

T-Mobile USA

• HTC HD7, United States
• Dell Venue Pro, United States


•HTC 7 Surround, Canada
•LG Optimus 7, Canada

América Móvil

• LG Optimus 7, Mexico

In Europe:


• HTC HD7, United Kingdom, Germany


• HTC 7 Mozart, including France, United Kingdom
• Samsung OMNIA 7, including France, United Kingdom


• HTC 7 Trophy, France
• Samsung OMNIA 7, France


• LG Optimus 7, Spain
• HTC HD7, Spain
• Samsung OMNIA 7, Spain

Deutsche Telekom AG

• HTC 7 Mozart, Germany
• Samsung OMNIA 7, Germany


• HTC 7 Trophy, including Germany, Spain, United Kingdom
• LG Optimus 7, including Germany, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom

In Asia Pacific:


• HTC HD 7, Singapore
• LG Optimus 7, Singapore


• HTC 7 Mozart, Australia
• LG Optimus 7Q, Australia


• HTC 7 Trophy, including Australia

General Microsoft

Microsoft and AT&T Windows Phone 7 Press Conference – Live Streaming

On October 11, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and Ralph de la Vega, President & CEO of AT&T Mobility and Consumer Markets, will host a joint press conference in New York to discuss the latest developments for Windows Phone 7 and its availability.

View this live webcast here on Monday at 9:30 a.m. EDT.

Windows Phones are designed for life in motion, so you don’t miss a moment. This newsroom provides the latest product news, articles and reviews, event resources, and other press materials about Windows Phones.

For Developing applications for Windows Phone, check these Documentation and Softwares. Key Highlights of Windows Phone would be,

1. Office Integration

Office Integration

2. People – Windows Phone, has a new way of representing contacts, which has an excellent integration with Social Media.

People - Contacts on Windows Phone

3. Market Place – This Document provides the certification policies and technical requirements that a Windows Phone 7 Application or Game must meet to pass certification and to be eligible for listing in Windows Phone Marketplace.

4. Music + Video Portal

Music Video PortalPictures MenuFor Windows Phone 7 Highlights and the Apps – Check these videos

How-to Microsoft

Windows Phone 7 – Application Submission and Certification Process

When your application is developed and ready for publication, it must go through the certification process before it is eligible for listing in the Windows Phone Marketplace.

The certification process involves static validation and automated testing of the application to verify that it meets all the policies and requirements. A Simplified Illustration of the Windows Phone 7 Application Submission and Certification Process is shown below.

This Document provides the policies and technical requirements that a Windows Phone 7 Application or Game must meet to pass certification and to be eligible for listing in Windows Phone Marketplace.

For further information on Documentation and Softwares for Developing for Windows Phone 7 Series, Read this article

General How-to Microsoft Tools

Documentation and Softwares – Developing for Windows Phone 7 Series

Windows Phone 7 Series is expected to hit the town in about 5 months from now. Microsoft has already released the Phone SDK which you can make use of to build your apps and keep it ready for the market by the time the device arrives!

All set to start developing your first application for Windows Phone?

Download Windows Phone 7 Developer Training Kit: This Training Kit below will give you a jumpstart into the new Windows Phone world by providing you with a step-by-step explanation of the tools to use and some key concepts for programming Windows Phones. This training kit is geared for beginners who want to get started with developing applications for the latest Windows Phone operating system. Even if you don’t know Silverlight or XNA Framework, you’ll find this Training Kit useful. More seasoned Silverlight developers should also find this kit useful, as it explains some of the differences between Silverlight and Silverlight for the phone. – Download this Training Kit here

Update: 28th July, 2010 –

The UI Design and Interaction Guide for Windows Phone 7 v2.0 has been updated for beta. With additional information and a new layout we hope you will find more readable, this guide provides detailed information about UI elements and controls, UI system behaviors, and the interaction model for the touch interface based on the design system codenamed “Metro”. Designers and developers should read this guide to learn about the dos and don’ts of UI implementations for their Windows Phone applications.

The Design Templates for Windows Phone 7 are a collection of 28 layered Photoshop template files and system fonts that can be used to create pixel-perfect application layouts, to help guide UI development, or to pitch an idea. These design templates showcase many controls that are a part of the Windows Phone Developer Tools Beta. They also include examples of controls that are a part of Windows Phone, but are not available as a part of the Windows Phone Developer Tools.

Update : 30th April, 2010 –
Beginning today you can download the Windows Phone Developer Tools CTP Refresh (WPDT CTP) from, which means you can now build Windows Phone 7 apps on the final release of Visual Studio 2010 (VS2010). While this update is primarily intended to enable development using the final release of VS2010 there are a few new things here too. You can read the complete article here on the Windows Team blog!

There is a huge bulk of Windows Phone development documentation on the MSDN (Microsoft Developer Network). You do have lots of information like,

Windows Phone 7 Series

Other important documentation links include Developing Windows Phone Games and Silverlight for Windows Phone as a part of the XNA Game Studio 4.0 and Silverlight 4 RC documentation sets, respectively.

Charlez Petzold is authoring a Book called “Programming Windows Phone 7 Series”. He has already offered a draft preview of his eBook FREE of cost! – Download the ebook here (pdf document)

2/4/2010 – Update : New XNA Game Studio 4.0 samples for Windows Phone released on the Creators Club site

Yesterday, Microsoft released several samples and mini-games to help you get started using the Windows Phone Developer Tools CTP (which includes the XNA Game Studio 4.0 CTP) to create games for Windows Phone 7 Series.  Here is some additional information about the samples and where you can download them:

  • Reach graphics demo – this is the demo that Shawn Hargreaves used in his talks at GDC and MIX to show the 5 five built-in effect types provided by the XNA Framework 4.0 on Windows Phone (BasicEffect, DualTextureEffect, AlphaTestEffect, SkinnedEffect, and EnvironmentMapEffect).
  • Snow Shovel mini-game – a simple Windows Phone game that shows how draw 2D sprites using SpriteBatch and handles player input using the accelerometer. You will not be able to use accelerometer input in the Windows Phone 7 Series emulator in the Windows Phone Developer Tools CTP however.
  • Primitives sample – an updated version of an existing sample that works with the XNA Game Studio 4.0 CTP and demonstrates how to create a reusable class to draw 2D primitives (points, lines and triangles) on the screen.  The source code for the 4.0 version of this sample is available at this link.
  • Primitives3D sample – an updated version of an existing sample that works with the XNA Game Studio 4.0 CTP and demonstrates how to create a reusable class to draw 3D primitives (cubes, spheres, cylinders, torus and teapots) on the screen.  The source code for the 4.0 version of this sample is available at this link.

You can also join the discussion in the Windows Phone forums to get your queries answered.!