Having spent most of yesterday's podcast with Jason chatting about how today's services, applications and content are largely cross-platform and independent of specific hardware, operating systems and interfaces, a very good question pops up: if all the aforementioned don't matter much anymore, then why use a Windows phone at all? Why not use an iPhone or one running Android?
Recent Features - Software
(By popular demand) I've been playing with photography options on that hardy perennial, the Lumia 1020. Yes, it's not the speediest phone in the world under the Creators Update (here's how to get it there), but most things works very well still, plus you get a 41MP camera phone with Xenon flash - and that's still a massive USP even in the phone world of 2017. But which UWP camera applications to use on the latest Microsoft OS?
One somewhat mysterious application has been in the Creators Update for months and I suspect that many of us have steered well clear, being unsure exactly what to do with it. There's nothing to be afraid of, as it turns out, 'View 3D Preview' does exactly what it sounds like it does. It lets you - ahem - view 3D models. And Microsoft hasn't finished fiddling with it yet, hence the 'Preview' bit. Here's how it all works, anyway.
Following on from AAWP's rather handy guide to the very best general applications and best camera/media apps for Windows Phone 8.1 and Windows 10 Mobile, here's an updated (three months on) version of our similar crowd-sourced guide the very best one percent of games on the platform. Enjoy!
1Shot was always the camera application for Windows Phone that got you closer to the sensor in your phone camera than any other application - what you see on screen is what you get, with no post processing, no lossy digital zoom, no effects. Uniquely, this also means that it's the perfect app to deliver truly lossless zoom on Windows 10 Mobile, with only a slight adjustment to your own mindset about resolution.
For long and complicated logistics reasons ('Rafe, I broke the site's CMS again!'), we've had to split our latest applications directory for Windows Phone and Windows 10 Mobile into two, with a natural spin-off section being anything to do with imaging, camera, media and music/voice. The original applications directory excludes these categories.
With another update for April 2017, here's our directory of the very best of the Windows Phone and Windows 10 Mobile world, now split into two for logistics reasons. On this page are general, news, productivity, travel, time, and more. See this page for anything related to imaging or consuming media of any kind.
'Google on Microsoft' should work as well as 'Microsoft on Google', in terms of accessing services on smartphones, and yet it doesn't. Microsoft's applications are uniformly excellent and available on Google's Android OS, yet there are almost no Google applications available for Windows Phone and Windows 10 Mobile. For anyone trying to keep 'in' with both ecosystems, what are the options in terms of accessing Google-hosted content on Microsoft's OS?
A trifle and alarmist for a headline, admittedly, but there is a time sensitive element to this. Two weeks ago, Opera Software took the Windows logo off their 'mobile' information page. Odd, I thought. A couple of days ago, Opera Mini, their headline Windows Phone 8.1 browser, stopped appearing in Store search results. It doesn't take Sherlock Holmes to spot what you might like to do next...
Here's how to plan a multi-destination route in Windows 10 Maps - this feature had only been available to 'Slow' ring Insiders until now, but as of today I can exclusively reveal that 'Fast' ring Insiders get it too. [Update: now Release Preview users too.] And in a few weeks all production Windows 10 Mobile users will get it, as part of the rollout. So here's how the new feature works!