Recent Features - Software

When the 'app gap' really isn't... and when it is!

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We hear a lot about Windows Phone and then Windows 10 Mobile having 'an app gap', but this glib phrase, often tied into the apparent failure of the OS commercially, doesn't really tell the whole story. With examples below, I explore when it does and - interestingly - when it doesn't apply...

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Highlighting Windows 10 on phones in 2017

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The very idea seems ridiculous to the world at large in late 2017. Who on earth would buy or hang onto a smartphone running Windows anymore? Yet, despite obvious market share metrics in a world where iOS and Android dominate new phone sales, there are still major USPs that appeal to me - and which I document below in video form...

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How to: get transit information within Windows 10 Maps

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Back in the day on Windows Phone, HERE Transit was part of the built-in apps suite and effectively did route planning around urban public transport systems. In theory, the same is available in Windows 10 Maps, but there are some functionality holes, one of which just got filled. You can now plan from transit stops and stations directly, in a version of Maps that has just hit (or is about to hit*) your Windows 10 Mobile smartphone. Here's how it works.

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Windows 10 Mobile 'Not Quite As Good', despite the USPs?

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For all my protestations that Windows 10 Mobile still has relevance in the mobile world of 2017 - and it does, albeit not across the board, with genuine USPs - and despite some more unique selling points for some of the hardware (Lumia 950 imaging, Elite x3 durability, IDOL 4 Pro speakers), it has to be acknowledged that there's an element of 'Not Quite As Good' across the board in terms of the actual interface with real world users. Let me explain...

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Shock, horror: Windows 10 Mobile is far better for work than play

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In the spirit of throwing myself wholly into living the road warrior life, I tried out 24 hours with only Windows 10 Mobile - no cheats, no laptops, no Android backups. Just W10M for everything, on the Lumia 950 XL, for work, personal stuff, entertainment. As at mid-July 2017, who is the OS best suited for? My findings match Microsoft's own projections for the OS. I still don't agree with stopping making the 950 range, but the withdrawal from consumers in favour of business and enterprise is... probably for the best, if my experience is anything to go by.

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Waze is STILL your best real-time navigator on Windows 10 Mobile in 2017

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What's this? An application last updated in 2014 that's still better than the first party solution from Microsoft? Well, yes, somewhat interestingly, for anyone else who has been frustrated by the limited real time traffic routing in Windows 10 Maps, I was determined to find out how well the old Waze solution worked on the latest W10M Creators Update. Turns out rather well, with only a few caveats.

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How to: Install an officially withdrawn application that you'd previously installed

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With more and more of the 'old' Windows Phone 7.x/8.0/8.1 Silverlight-based applications starting to be no longer officially supported (by the company or developer), a common scenario now is that you try to reinstall a favourite app on a new Windows 10 Mobile phone (or one that's been newly reset) and you see that it's no longer in the Store. Don't panic though, as in most cases you can still get this app 'back'...

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