Recent News - Links of Interest

The HP Pro x3, an unreleased W10M mid-ranger reviewed

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At the end of last week, fellow Brit Zac Bowden published his take on an unreleased Windows 10 Mobile phone from HP from 2017 - the Pro x3, a cheaper consumer alternative to the enterprise-focussed Elite x3. See below for some review quotes and my thoughts, along with a more complete comparison table. Could the Pro x3 have 'moved the needle' for W10M? I doubt it. But the prototype's certainly of interest.

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BBC iPlayer changes mean a degraded experience on Windows 10 Mobile

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BBC iPlayer has been quite useable in Edge (and other browsers) under Windows 10 Mobile for the last three years, since the dropping of support to Windows Phone 8.1 in 2015. OK, so DRM-ed downloads weren't possible, but you could still stream videos seamlessly. With a change last week to its streams - and with no sign of Windows 10 Mobile or Edge in its compatibility page - the watching experience just took a step backwards. Programmes now play in a smaller, offset window. And it's clearly not intentional, since the rest of the UI uses the whole screen. Sigh.

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Nokia X71: this probably IS the PureView phone you're looking for...

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After the disappointment of the oddball 'Nokia 9 PureView', compared recently here to the Nokia 808 and Lumia 1020 (etc), Nokia (at least the new Nokia brand under HMD) has now announced another contender, this time with a more conventional PureView 48MP f/1.8 sensor - phew! The X71 is only just shown in China and will probably arrive in Europe as the 'Nokia 8.1 Plus', in a few months time. But with 3.5mm jack, expandable storage and capacitive fingerprint sensor (all missing in the '9') as well, plus the single large sensor configuration (plus wide-angle), this possibly is the PureView phone you're looking to move to?

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Introducing Appscope, a top notch PWA 'app store'

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Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) are a way to extend Windows 10 Mobile (and other platforms) by running in the web browser. Edge, in the case of W10M. They can be packaged (i.e. in the native device Store) or, more usually, simply accessed via URL, e.g. from a browser favourite or pinned Start tile. But for the latter, how do you find out about new PWAs? Enter Appscope, a new and super-polished PWA discovery 'store'.

# Posted by Steve in News || Comments

Nokia Drive now available for free to all Windows Phone 8 users*

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Starting today, as expected, Microsoft and Nokia are making the beta of Nokia Drive+ available for free to all Windows Phone 8 customers - (explaining the asterisk in the headline above) at least, in the United States, United Kingdom and Canada. Nokia Drive+ had previously been a Nokia exclusive title on its Lumia range, but the legalities and finances have presumably all been worked out to bring full turn by turn navigation to all Windows Phone 8 users, again presumably with a roll out around the rest of the world in due course.

# Posted by Steve in News || Comments

Digia to acquire Qt from Nokia

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Big software house Digia has announced that it has 'signed an agreement to acquire Qt software technologies and Qt business from Nokia'. Once the acquisition is completed, Digia will become responsible for all the Qt activities formerly carried out by Nokia, including product development, licensing and service. Digia 'plans to quickly enable Qt on the Android, iOS and Windows 8 platforms'. As part of the transaction, a maximum of 125 people from Nokia will transfer to Digia, mostly based in Oslo, Norway and Berlin, Germany.

# Posted by Rafe, Steve in News || Comments

Worldwide phone and smartphone stats, Q4, 2011

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Most of the numbers are now in for Q4, 2011 and, while some are estimates, we now have a pretty good idea of the state of the mobile industry for the last quarter. Phones grew 6% year on year, smartphones by a whopping 63%, with the latter now at 36% of the overall market. The top three companies were the same by either metric - Apple, Samsung and Nokia are way ahead of the rest.

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