Recent Features

Surface Mobile Musings

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Twitter this week saw a number of very skillful CAD renders by designer David Breyer of what could be the 'Surface Mobile', ostensibly to be announced in the Spring. He based the renders on the very detailed patent filing by Microsoft a few days ago. The illustrations in the latter were such that we now have an excellent idea of what's coming, though questions remain and I'll have a go at answering them with some educated guesses below.

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How to scan old photos on your Windows 10 Mobile phone

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Now that most of us have been firmly in the digital photography domain for well over a decade, old paper prints are quite a long way in our rear view mirror. Yet, when we do go through old albums (say, pre-2005) which of us hasn't wanted to quickly get favourite snaps in digital form, to be preserved and shared? Here are some tips for doing this with your Lumia or other Windows 10 Mobile phone.

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Nokia camera 7 year challenge: Lumia 950 & Nokia 8 take on 2010's Nokia N8

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8 versus 8, etc. I've lost count of the number of times readers have asked me to pit the new Nokia 8 against its namesake, the classic Nokia N8, from 2010. However much a monster the latter was, surely 2017 technology can trump it? I'm also including the reigning champion, the Nokia-designed (and Microsoft-made) Lumia 950. This will win out overall, but it's a useful modern age benchmark for the others - I'm genuinely curious to see how a 7 year old phone does!

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Head to head: Alcatel IDOL 4 Pro vs Nokia 8

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With the Nokia 8 arriving in for review, the highest specced of the 'new Nokias' (running Android), I wondered which Windows phone to compare it to. I settled in the end for the current Alcatel IDOL 4 Pro, though the Nokia nostalgist in me had me tempted for a while to go really 'old school'. See below for my thinking. And for the full blow-by-blow device comparison.

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Windows 10 Mobile's 'hidden' landscape UI

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Now, don't get too excited, I haven't found a hack to get the Start screen to work in landscape mode (though this was planned at one point by Microsoft) - but I've made some pleasing discoveries with some built-in and third party applications. Which is as expected, really - if Windows 10 Mobile can expand and re-arrange its screen output for a large Continuum display then we should expect some sense of that when our phones are rotated and their (horizontal) screen size suddenly doubles.

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A December 2017 Start Screen Snapshot

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We're in an odd period for Windows on phones. Microsoft bought Nokia, made a couple of cracking releases and then stopped selling them, despite demand from enthusiasts. Meanwhile other licensees have come and gone, with the Alcatel IDOL 4 Pro here the currently sold 'flagship'. And I've been living (again) with the IDOL 4 Pro 24/7 for a couple of weeks with my main SIM - so how is it set-up? These articles are always popular, so here's my current Start Screen Set-up, as at December 2017.

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Windows on phones stymied by moving goalposts... just like Symbian

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The problem with the tech world is, from an operating system provider's point of view, that the goalposts keep moving. These perambulating pieces of wood killed Symbian, killed Blackberry, have almost killed Windows Phone and Windows 10 Mobile, and, one day, may even kill iOS as we know it today. With hindsight, it's all too clear, but at the time OS coders were making sensible choices. 

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Anatomy of a Lumia photo #14: Glowing Tower

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I'm cheating in several ways for this latest in the series of images and the story behind them. Not only am I not using a Lumia (it's an Alcatel IDOL 4 Pro), but the headline image wasn't even a photo. Ahem. But the story of this glowing tower clock is still worth telling...

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The difference between End Of Life and End Of Manufacturing

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No disrespect to WC's Zac Bowden, I suspect it was just a poor choice of phrase, but I heard him say on the last Windows Central podcast that "Windows 10 Mobile is End Of Life" (EOL). In the interest of clarifying the situation, I thought I'd set the record straight. And yes, anyone who has been following AAWP for the last year will already guess what I'm about to say/repeat/restate (though there's a new pretty chart to admire!) - Windows 10 Mobile is far from 'EOL', despite the utter lack of new phones in High Street shops.

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