In the modern smartphone world we're somewhat shielded from the realities of computer file systems. Back in the day, computing was all about files, folders, archives, and so on - and this is largely what Total Commander gives you back. Admittedly you don't need this much on the phone in 2016, aside from perhaps fiddling with things on microSD on supported phones. But Total Commander scores by also integrating (to an extent) OneDrive, Google Drive, FTP and LAN server access. In short, copy files from anywhere to anywhere. And, for a free application, this is well worth keeping on hand for a file emergency when this could well save the day.
Miracast (screen sharing over Wi-fi) adapters have been available for ages, of course - many TVs and monitors even include the necessary electronics, stating 'Miracast-compatible'. But you can never be too sure of complete compatibility, at least when it comes to the really advanced stuff, like Continuum, in this case from the Lumia 950 and 950 XL. Which is why I wanted to look at Microsoft's own, first party, adapter. It's black, it's small, it's utterly devoid of style, yet it works flawlessly. Well... sometimes.
Smashy Road: Wanted uses similar 'retro' blocky graphics to the hit Crossy Road, but this time you're driving. And on the run. And heading wherever you like, chased by police with cars and helicopters (and more), it's up to you whether you dice it out on the roads or try your luck with rougher terrain. It's all in miniature, but is great fun, and is definitely 'casual' in duration - the average game/attempt (to escape) is about a minute!
Now, don't switch off because you probably know what this application does just from the title. You'd be 100% right, of course, the idea here is to present white noise in the form of rain in order to get your brain to switch off and get to sleep. What's not obvious from the title though, is how well implemented this is, given the restrictions of running under Windows Phone and Windows 10 Mobile. I even found myself willingly paying the pound or so for the 'pro' version within ten minutes - it's done presented that well. Not perfectly, of course - as ever, I have some suggestions for the developer!
Now six months into development, I thought it high time to give Fenice for Twitter the review treatment. The bar is set high though - by Tweetium, by Aeries, and others, so any new Twitter client is going to have to really shine in order to win a recommendation. In fact, Fenice comes off as usable but quirky and buggy - and with no real advantages over the much more mature Tweetium, in particular.
Undoubtedly a very impressive piece of programming that's something of a triumph on the humble smartphone, edjing is also rather niche (as the title suggests) and also not without fault, even on the most powerful Windows 10 Mobile device, the Lumia 950 XL. Still, if you fancy producing fancy mixes for your next party then this is certainly the only game in town on this platform.
Don't switch off, cables are something we all need in the smartphone world. Moreover, at least two of these have unique features that might well have you reaching for your wallet: reversibility and indestructibility. No, really....
There's something you should know about the Display Dock and Continuum. The hardware component itself is beautifully made (think Apple Mac build quality) and the concept really, really cool. Truly your smartphone could be your entire computing experience. Except that the software that ties everything together and that should make Continuum a reality is currently (December 2015) only in early beta, at best. So what follows contains a lot of disappointment, albeit mingled with glimpses of genuine utility and hope. Appropriately, for Christmas!
Shown off at the Lumia 950/XL launch, the Mozo leather backs impressed everyone who saw them - and now they're here - or at least some varieties are. Others (fit/material/colours) will arrive over the next few months. However, we have a winner already with one of the colours here - but that's just my subjective opinion. Take a look at the photos below.
Following on from my review of the Microsoft Lumia 950 XL and Lumia 950 in each of the review parts so far ('1' for each), and from my camera head to head with the older Lumia 930 and 1020, here's the second review part, common to both devices of course, since the camera units are identical, with just some back end processing differences that I note below. Summary? With just a few caveats, these are the best imaging smartphones to come out of the Nokia/Microsoft stable yet.