New numbers from Microsoft and Instagram and Vine hit Windows Phone

WMPoweruser reports the latest figures from Microsoft on the Windows Phone store.

Currently, according to Microsoft figures, there have been 3 billion downloads from the store so far since it was launched. Each day they get 10 million transactions which is a step up from the 9 million in September and 6.6 million in June.

These numbers are only around 5% of the iOS store however it shows strong growth for the platform that is quickly cementing it’s place as the third platform in the smartphone market.

Since Windows Phone 8 was released Microsoft have seen an increase of 181% in app revenue and downloads have increased by 209%.

With the release of the long anticipated Instagram and Vine, these figures are bound to grow and bring the gap between Android and iOS much closer.

Cortana: The Windows Phone personal assistant

Somehow I missed this when it was posted but I’ve just found it regardless.

Microsoft have been working on a Siri like personal assistant control with voice command. Windows Phone already has voice commands for system tasks and within apps but Cortana is said to bring even more to the experience. It is aparently backed by Microsofts “Satori” knowledge repository that also powers the Bing search engine.

Check the post below for more detail.

Cortana: Windows Phone’s Answer to Siri? | Mobile Tech | TechNewsWorld.

Nokia future of camera technology?

wmpoweruser.com has published some information relating to Nokia Growth Partners discussion on imaging technology. The publication talks about smartphone cameras that see at night, peek around objects and people, storing more information about images and flash technologies.

There is a new type of sensor by Pelican Imaging Technology developed with optical systems from Singapore based Heptagon that attempts to mimick the human eye more closely. The sensor appears to take in more information at once and looks much like an array of spier or fly eyes.

The technology is IP owned by Nokia and although most likely to stay with Nokia rather than go with the sale of it’s hardware division to Microsoft, hopefully we’ll see this in future Lumia phones.

Nokia gives some clues about its future camera innovations | WMPoweruser.

Windows Phone grows by 156% in Q3 2013

I posted previously about mobile market share and the growth of Windows Phone. A new IDC report has shown the platform has experienced high growth and is the fastest growing operating system.

The IDC data suggests that Windows Phone increased shipments of 156% year on year for the third quarter. 3.7 million handsets were moved in Q3 2012 and this year 9.5 million.

That may look small compared to Android’s 211.6 million and 33.8 million Apple handset but shows impressive growth for the platform when compared to Blackberry’s 4.5 million handsets especially.

Nokia was responsible for 93.2% of those Windows handsets sold.

More details from IDC via wpcentral:

IDC: Windows Phone experiences 156% jump in handsets shipped for Q3 2013 | Windows Phone Central.

Vine comes to Windows Phone

Vine, the popular video posting app and site allows you to capture short videos and post them online. Almost like a video version of Twitter.

Windows Phone now has the Vine app allowing you to captutre and post novel and amusing mini vodeos for others to share.

You can download the app here or scan the QR code below:

Some handy tips from Ian Padgham thanks to Nokia:

Tips for filming

Ian Padgham has some handy tips for anyone looking to go further with Vine.

Use a tripod

This is especially helpful when filming stop motion videos. There are a number of tripods available on the market that are designed to hold a smartphone. The Nokia Lumia 1020 also has a Nokia Camera Grip accessory.

Use plenty of light

Filming in the dark won’t give you the same results as filming in the light. More light means better visibility for your viewing audience.

Vine_record

Take your time

Don’t just film something and upload it instantly; take your time with it. Pause the video and take a creative break. When you’re ready, go back into Vine and carry on.

Train your tap

Don’t tab down on the screen too hard, practice doing it gently. The harder the tap, the more phone shake you’ll encounter which will certainly be noticeable in a stop motion video.

Use earphones with a built in mic for better audio

Plug earphones with a mic into your phone when making a Vine video, as audio will be included in the final video.

Review before posting

Once you’ve finished your Vine video it’s worth reviewing it before you share it with the world. This will save you having to delete it later if you realize you don’t like it.

Vine: available now for Nokia Lumia – : the official Nokia blog.

The Nokia Lumia 800 – My impressions after a couple of days use

The new Nokia Lumia phones certainly are sexy looking and seem by their weight and feel well build and solid. The weight is not noticeable being around or just under the weight of a HTC HD7.

The rounded screen looks great and the Clearblack display is hardly determinable from the boarder. The colour is strong and contrast sharp, it does look a little over tweaked though, almost as if you’ve gone and turned the saturation and contrast up a few notches. It should be noted that this is my first AMOLED screen so I’ll be comparing to the LCD of the HD7. The one thing I noticed is there is a visible mask on this screen that reminds me of the Trinitron CRT mask, this makes it seem like the screen is pixelating a little when it’s not.

The external speaker is great and being located at the bottom of the phone means your hand acts as a kind of gramophone horn. Making a call on speakerphone is surprisingly clear even out on a busy street and the caller at the other end has no idea you have them on speaker.
The sound out of the headphone jack is nice, although I’d like to have some adjustments to make it just how I like it. Unfortunately, with the case on, the headphone jack tends to push the plug out a little, well it does with my Sennheiser HD 25’s anyway, this can be quite annoying but not a problem without the case.

The camera takes some nice photos however, with a bright light in the frame the camera shows blurring and shots do not seem to reflect real colour. This may be due to the subsystem over adjusting, but it makes photos look almost like an HDR shot.

Overall it’s a nice feeling phone, even with the case it looks great and hard to tell if it is actually in the case. Will I replace my larger screen phone with this, not sure but that may be more to the size of my fingers ;P

I was disappointed by the lack of front camera and gyroscope, not sure this could be truly classed as a Gen 2 Windows Phone without those.

Score out of 10: 8.5/10 (let down by the screen mask and headphone problem as well as camera overcompensation)

Would I recommend this to someone: I would wait till the Lumia 900 comes out if you like bigger screen phones.

Technical Details:

CPU 1.4Ghz – Fast

Memory 512Mb – Fast

3D Graphics – Fast and very nice

Storage – slow

Battery – Good – 18 hours with very first charge and 2 exchange accounts using push, facebook, windows live, twitter and facebook with a few phone calls and some web browsing.

The Lumia 800 is now launched in Australia on all carriers for around $700 or I believe $40 plan.

More details and specs on the Nokia Site

Windows 8 Consumer Preview – It’s here, the next step in your PC, Tablet and Phone Experiences

“It’s Windows reimagined and reinvented from a solid core of Windows 7 speed and reliability. It’s an all-new touch interface. It’s a new Windows for new devices. And it’s your opportunity to be one of the first to try it out.”

This is a game changer, a unified platform across mobile and desktop devices, an operating systems with you as the focus. Interact with your devices like never before with the Consumer Preview (Beta) of Windows 8.

This is the desktop Consumer Preview, initial reports are that it’s quite stable. A review from me coming shortly.

Download here

via Windows 8 Consumer Preview.