Sometimes you can find the greatest little games on the Marketplace that you just keep coming back to on your Windows Phone. Permutile 2 (that's Permutile Squared, not Permutile Two) is one of those titles, and over the last week it's gone from 'nice icon, let's download it', to 'must be pinned to my tiles'.
Recent Reviews - General - Page 19
Although there are a number of smartphones with capable speakers (Nokia 5800/X6/N8 all come to mind), many have loudspeakers which are rather weedy if we're honest. Making podcasting listening around the house somewhat of an ear-straining experience and making music playback almost a no-no. Which is where portable speakers come into their own, especially the Bluetooth variety, giving maximum volume without messing around with wires. I'm reviewing several over the next month, starting with the Jawbone Jambox.
With the loss of MetroTube, a number of services and mobile applications have stepped up to fill the gap. Some of them continue to poke around the edges of the YouTube API, while others bring you great video content but from other services (such as Vimeo and their official Windows Phone client). Next up in my applications list is Vevo, and it's one for music fans.
For the record, calling this application "Board Game Clock" and not "Chess Clock" was a smart move. I would suspect that 99.999% of Windows Phone users would have no need for a clock to play chess - but there are far more people who need a timer to keep an eye on two different things, even if they don't know it yet.
The internet has a lot of news out there, and while there are many single sources of news that have created their own applications for Windows Phone (let's point out our reviews of The Guardian and Sky News apps). News360 is different - it's an aggregator, looking at the headlines, stories and popularity, all over the web, and serves them up in this Windows Phone application.
My first impressions of Monster's headphone style weren't good, with some outlandish cyan over-ear cans shown off by the Monster CEO at last year's Nokia World. Happily, the reviewed in-ear equivalents are a hundred times less garish, especially since they're black. There's plenty of photos and comment below, but in short the audio quality is superlative - depending on the playback device. Balancing this, device compatibility is distinctly spotty and the price is.... rather high. Review added to Dec 2012.
Power hungry smartphones are always looking for a recharge. So a car charger is going to be high on the priority for a lot of people. But which one should you get? One option is Nokia's DC-20 unit, which initially draws the eye with its twin USB charging ports. And while USB car chargers are never going to generate much excitement, the Nokia DC-20 is a diamond amongst the rough competition.
Of the two approaches to instrument tuning using phones, Accurate Tuner Pro takes the more technical by far. Never mind generating tones and tuning by 'ear' (the other approach, which this app does too if you pony up for the full version), here we have a chromatic (sampling) tuner on steroids, able to tune just about any instrument in any tuning, in any temperament, in any transposition. Impressive. But is it over the top?
There's a certain delight in going far too fast, even in a simple smartphone game. Descent (no, not that one) brings you that 'past the red line' experience to Windows Phone, asking you to zoom through a never ending tunnel peppered with obstacles, fuel, and power-ups. Stripped down to the basics, this is an impressive little graphical tour de force for Windows Phone. And it's fun as well.
Every smartphone platform has its star applications, the big names that everyone looks for. On the music side of Windows Phone, you'd have to put Spotify on that A-list, and there's a strong argument for Last.FM to be included (if Pandora ever makes it, it can go straight in as well). But many times it's in the B-list that you find the applications that people take to their hearts and defend with a passion. That's where you'll find 8tracks.