Back in July 2017, I reviewed Flights Radar UWP, aiming to show all the aircraft in the sky around you, and then I covered a new version here, back in November 2017, with lots of improvements. Well, almost a year on, today sees another big upgrade, to v1.0.20, bringing Fluent Design, a Favourites list, a much bigger Cockpit view, and more. Why am I making this a News item? Because this is a (potentially) very high profile UWP app, competing with the likes of FlightRadar24 on other platforms. It's not perfect yet, but we have some special giveaway codes below to help soften the blow if you fancy being an intensive tester!
Recent News - Services
People think of Windows 10 Mobile being dead. Not yet. We're still looking at over a year of support in terms of monthly patches and fixes for Windows 10 Mobile 'Fall Creators Update'. And build 15254.530 (from .527) is fresh out today, so go grab it for all phones currently on the 'Fall Creators Update'. And with similar patches and fixes for other Windows 10 Mobile branches.
Twitter's push to take more and more control of its own service culminated a few weeks ago with the unwelcome closure of several APIs, partly reported on here. The changes have yet to be fully addressed by third party clients, but the news isn't good. Tweetium is the first client to respond, with an update that references the changes, but which also explicitly gets rid of push notifications, even for Direct Messages. Given that the official Twitter client on Windows 10 Mobile is a PWA which also can't deliver notifications, AAWP readers are somewhat screwed by Twitter here.
AAWP's very own Universal Windows Platform app, 'AAWP Universal', has been updated again, with attention paid to formatting and reliability. In fairness to Joe, the developer, much of this has been driven by past downtime and link errors on AAWP itself, i.e. it wan't the application's fault. So, to go along with the app update, we've done a few improvements to AAWP itself. Hooray!
The story so far. Microsoft's Maps product, built into all Windows 10 devices (including phones), had been using out of date (2016) maps from HERE, pending a major platform update in terms of how Microsoft massage and process the raw map data. Prompting complaints from users and a response from the Bing Maps team. Happily, I can reveal that the new data went live overnight for much of the world, with my 'canary roads' in the UK now present and correct. Phew!
After my story a fortnight ago on why it didn't need updating to match the iOS and Android versions because they were just playing catch-up, effectively, it turns out there was an update coming to the News UWP app for Windows 10 Mobile, but it's out now and it's fairly minor. But worth screenshotting.
This is news from Microsoft itself, though it's a bit of stuff and nonsense in terms of branding and partnerships at the end of the day. Still, with all the 'iOS & Android' prose in the original story, I wanted to emphasise that the 'new' Microsoft News is also just as much part of Windows 10 Mobile, even if it's not called out explicitly. Because... of course. It's Windows 10.
Last featured here back in November 2017, Whatsapp is a stalwart Windows Phone 8.1 application that has been continually updated month after month, year after year. And, on the whole, keeping parity with the versions of this messaging tool on iOS and Android. Below, I attempt a changelog summary of everything added so far in 2018.
Last covered here, a month ago, Twitter's new PWA app status on many platforms has meant that the company has been able to roll out updates server-side. And a big one hit last night, with the Explore 'tab' now much expanded and with Twitter's 'Moments' now scrolling vertically, which is more intuitive and consistent. All good, though the big downside of using PWA tech for the Windows 10 UWP app is that there are no push notifications (anymore).
The world of Internet services moves at a pace and it's not surprising that older platforms don't get on fully with the latest services and APIs. In this case it's the official Twitter client for Windows Phone 8.1 that has stopped working - we did know that this might happen at the start of June, according to Twitter's own announcements. You'll remember that they replaced their (also quite old) UWP application with an all-encompassing PWA in the Store a few months ago? Don't panic if you're on 8.1 though, third party clients come to the rescue.