Windows Phone trounces iPhone 4, Android in browser benchmark test [video]

By on April 14, 2011 at 7:00 PM.

Windows Phone trounces iPhone 4, Android in browser benchmark test [video]

During Microsoft’s MIX conference in Las Vegas, Windows Phone director Joe Belfiore took the stage to demonstrate how well Microsoft’s new Internet Explorer 9 mobile browser can render HTML5 websites. He fired up a device running Microsoft’s new Windows Phone “Mango” update with IE9 installed and hardware acceleration, and then started an HTML5 speed test pitting the Mango device against the iPhone 4 and the Google Nexus S. Belfiore was so confident in the new browser that he gave the iPhone 4 a head start. Nonetheless, IE9 loaded the demo faster and came out on top, having displayed the test at 20 frames per second. It was followed by the Android browser on the Nexus S, which rendered the same demo at 11 frames per second, and then the iPhone 4 at 2 frames per second. This wasn’t exactly an independent test given that it was preformed by Microsoft and likely under optimal conditions, but we are definitely still impressed with what we’ve seen so far — let’s just hope the update to Mango goes a bit smoother than NoDo. Hit the jump for the video comparison. More →

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Microsoft boosts Windows Phone hardware requirements [video]

By on April 14, 2011 at 3:36 PM.

Microsoft boosts Windows Phone hardware requirements [video]

During its MIX11 conference in Las Vegas, Microsoft discussed the new minimum requirements that manufacturers will have to meet in order to run the Windows Phone operating system on a phone. The biggest change is that OEMs must now choose to include a Qualcomm MSM7x30 or MSM8x55 Snapdragon processor, as opposed to the original 1GHz Qualcomm MSM8x50 chip. The newer 8×55 chip supports CPU speeds up to 1.4GHz, and also has the more recent Adreno 205 graphics processor. The MSM7x30 supports CPU speeds between 800MHz and 1GHz and also supports 720p HD video and enhanced graphics rendering. Aside from also requiring support for a gyroscope, Microsoft’s other requirements are the same. The screen must have an 800 x 480-pixel resolution with 4 or more contact points, the phone must offer at least a 5-megapixel camera, and it must also have at least 256MB of RAM and 8GB of Flash storage, among other requirements. Hit the jump for a video from MIX11 from Channel 9 that details some of the other architecture and chassis changes. More →

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Angry Birds for Windows Phone 7 taking off on May 25th

By on April 14, 2011 at 1:59 AM.

Angry Birds for Windows Phone 7 taking off on May 25th

During a meeting with Microsoft VP Joe Belfiore, AllThingsD was able to confirm that Rovio’s smash hit Angry Birds game will be available for Windows Phone 7 devices beginning on May 25th. That will leave BlackBerry OS as the last modern operating system to lack support for the title. Belfiore didn’t comment on how much the game would cost, but we hope it’s in the free to $0.99 range. Rovio has launched a number of seasonal updates to Angry Birds and most recently published Angry Birds Rio. It remains unclear which version will hit the Windows Marketplace. More →

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Microsoft Windows Phone 'Mango' details emerge, available this fall

By on April 13, 2011 at 2:14 PM.

Microsoft Windows Phone 'Mango' details emerge, available this fall

AllThingsD had a chance to sit down with Microsoft VP Joe Belfiore to discuss the new Windows Phone 7 “Mango” update, which the Redmond-based firm is discussing during the MIX 11 conference in Las Vegas today. Belfiore confirmed that Mango will offer a new browsing experience using Internet Explorer 9, and noted that it will have integrated Twitter features. Similarly, Mango will allow users to run multiple programs at the same time – complete with background audio support. That means you could theoretically stream music from Slacker Radio while firing off an email. Microsoft will also allow developers to tap into a phone’s gyroscope and camera, which it hopes will help spur more augmented reality applications. Speaking of apps, Belfiore confirmed that Layar, Skype, Spotify, and Angry Birds, are on their way to the Windows Marketplace. Belfiore confirmed that Mango will launch this fall. More →

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Apple, Android see continued growth in U.S. smartphone market share

By on April 1, 2011 at 6:58 PM.

Apple, Android see continued growth in U.S. smartphone market share

ComScore has released its latest report on the U.S. smartphone market, and it suggests that Apple’s share of the U.S. OEM market is growing, while Android is continuing to dominate the U.S. operating system market. Samsung remains the top mobile OEM in the United States with a 24.8% marketshare, up 0.3 percentage points from the period prior. It’s followed by LG (20.9%, no change), Motorola (16.1 percent, down .9 percentage points), RIM (8.6 percent, down .2 percentage points), and Apple (7.5%, up .9 percentage points). Given the dominance by Samsung, LG, and Motorola, it comes as no surprise that Android now has a 33% grip on the U.S. smartphone operating system market — that’s up 7 percentage points from the last report. RIM’s BlackBerry OS dropped 4.6 percentage points to a 28.9% share of the market. It’s followed by Apple’s iOS (25.2%), Microsoft’s Windows Phone (7.7%), and Palm’s webOS (2.8%). The report also found that 68.7% of mobile users use their phone for text messaging. Hit the jump for the full release. More →

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Windows Phone 7 ‘Mango’ update possibly spotted on film [video]

By on March 31, 2011 at 5:44 PM.

Windows Phone 7 ‘Mango’ update possibly spotted on film [video]

This feels like a bit of a stretch to us, but Windows Phone Secrets believes it caught a glimpse of Microsoft’s upcoming “Mango” update for Windows Phone 7. During a YouTube user’s NoDo update walkthrough video, right around the 2:48 mark, the cameraman pans his shooter to a second Windows Phone 7 smartphone for just a few seconds. Oddly enough, that smartphone has a feature we’ve never seen before in current builds of Microsoft’s mobile operating system. Inside the main menu, there’s a search button clearly visible. Is this Mango? We’re not sure, but we do know that it’s an option that’s not currently available in the latest NoDo update. That hints that Microsoft either has another minor update up its sleeves, or that this is a feature due out in the bigger Mango update. Microsoft is expected to launch Mango later this year, and it should deliver Internet Explorer 9 along with the Trident 5 rendering engine, HTML 5 and Silverlight, and gesture support to Windows Phone users. A release date is not yet known. Hit the link for the video. More →

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HTC to reveal new products on April 12th

By on March 31, 2011 at 10:55 AM.

HTC to reveal new products on April 12th

HTC put on a big show during CTIA Wireless 2011, and it looks like it’s taking the show on the road. On Thursday HTC began sending out invites to European press urging them to come “see what’s next” on April 12th at 1:30p.m. GMT in London. We’re not sure what HTC has in store for the event, but we wouldn’t be surprised to see it lift the curtain on a European model of the EVO 3D, which is launching on Sprint in the United States. Most every other new announcement during CTIA, including the Flyer, was already revealed during Mobile World Congress. Perhaps we’ll see a brand new device — HTC Pyramid? A new Windows Phone 7 handset? Stay tuned on April 12th for our coverage of all the action as it unfolds. More →

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Status of ‘NoDo’ update for AT&T Windows Phone customers improves

By on March 31, 2011 at 5:57 AM.

Status of ‘NoDo’ update for AT&T Windows Phone customers improves

If you’re the owner of a Samsung Focus, HTC Surround, or LG Quantum, and are still feeling a little dejected by our last NoDo-update report, cheer up. It looks like the status of the first major Windows Phone update for AT&T users has been updated with a more specific time frame. Previously, the NoDo upgrade for the aforementioned trio of handsets was tagged listed as being in the “Testing” phase. Microsoft explains that in this stage, the code is “undergoing mobile operator network and quality tests” — a software update black hole, of sorts. Recently, Microsoft amended its official Windows Update page to let AT&T Windows Phone users know that the three handsets will likely exit testing in “early April 2011.” After the testing stage is complete, handsets move to the scheduling phase — which typically takes less than 10 business days — and after that, the update begins flowing to handsets. So cheer up AT&T Windows Phone users, your update is — fingers crossed — on the way. More →

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NoDo Windows Phone 7 update rolling out to Dell Venue Pro today

By on March 30, 2011 at 9:19 AM.

NoDo Windows Phone 7 update rolling out to Dell Venue Pro today

Lionel Menchaca, a writer on Dell’s Direct2Dell blog, confirmed via his Twitter account that Dell will begin rolling out the “NoDo” Windows Phone update to Venue Pro owners today. NoDo will add copy/paste functionality to the Venue Pro, and user should also see speed improvements within applications — thanks to some smaller performance tweaks. Menchaca said that Dell will update its Direct2Dell blog later today with a post about the NoDo rollout. Venue Pro owners, let us know if you see the update. More →

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T-Mobile’s HTC HD7 may receive ‘NoDo’ Windows Phone update today

By on March 29, 2011 at 12:12 PM.

T-Mobile’s HTC HD7 may receive ‘NoDo’ Windows Phone update today

According to several, leaked internal screen shots obtained by TmoNews, the highly-anticipated NoDo Windows Phone 7 update could begin rolling out to owners of the T-Mobile HTC HD7 smartphone as soon as Today. Users should start seeing a pop-up notification alerting them of the update, at which point they’ll need to connect their phones to a computer and install the update through Microsoft’s Zune Player software. NoDo will bring copy/paste functionality, improvements to Wi-Fi and the camera, along with several speed and performance enhancements. For now this is just a rumor, but it’s entirely possible given that Microsoft began pushing out the NoDo update in Europe last week. We’ll be sure to keep you updated if we hear more on NoDo being deployed to the HD7 today. More →

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Best of CTIA Wireless 2011

By on March 24, 2011 at 10:36 AM.

Best of CTIA Wireless 2011

Mickey Mouse and pals stepped aside this week in sunny Orlando, Florida to make way for the latest and greatest gear wireless companies had to offer. After a killer Consumer Electronics Show in January and an action-packed Mobile World Congress in February, we wondered if our favorite brands had enough juice left in the tank for CTIA Wireless 2011 this week. While there weren’t quite as many announcements as in other shows this year, we definitely saw some exciting new devices showcased by companies like Sprint, HTC, Samsung and more. Hit the break for a rundown of all the biggest announcements from this year’s show. More →

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Second hands on with AT&T’s HTC HD7S [video]

By on March 23, 2011 at 5:20 PM.

Second hands on with AT&T’s HTC HD7S [video]

After our initial caffeine-fueled lap around the Orange County Connection Center, we made the rounds one more time to collect some videos for your scrutiny. One device on our hit-list was the HTC HD7S, AT&T’s third Windows Phone 7 smartphone. If you’re a Windows Phone fan, this one is sure to be up your alley. Its 4.3-inch screen was bright and its build was solid thanks to thick plastic and metal accents. We do feel the design is getting a bit stale, though, given that it has a body that’s very similar to the HD7 on T-Mobile and the EVO 4G on Sprint. It even features the same kickstand, which is good if you want to watch movies and set the device in landscape mode on your desk, but it also adds some bulk. The HD7S would be our top choice of Windows Phone 7 devices on AT&T too, because it has the latest NoDo update that includes copy/paste functionality. Hit the jump to see what the HD7S is all about, and check out our photo gallery as well.

More →

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Microsoft begins rollout of ‘NoDo’ update for Windows Phone 7

By on March 22, 2011 at 7:41 PM.

Microsoft begins rollout of ‘NoDo’ update for Windows Phone 7

Microsoft on Tuesday confirmed that its first major update for the Windows Phone 7 platform is now being rolled out to users. Internally referred to as “NoDo” — which is said to be short for “No Donuts,” mocking Google’s first Android update dubbed “Donut” — the update adds much sought after copy/paste functionality to Windows Phone 7 devices. It also adds support for “tombstoning,” improves Marketplace searches, fixes a variety of bugs and adds support for CDMA devices. “We’ve begun to gradually roll out the Copy & Paste update, starting small with open market phone customers in parts of Europe this week,” a Microsoft spokesperson told BGR in an email, adding, “More to come.” Sprint’s HTC Arrive was the first device to feature NoDo when it launched this past Sunday with the update pre-installed. Microsoft has not yet detailed its plans for a U.S. rollout, so we are unsure when other U.S. carrier-branded devices will begin receiving NoDo. Users will receive notifications on their devices once the update becomes available, and they will need to connect to PCs in order to install it.

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