A Very Busy Windows 8 Day

by Kevin October 16, 2012 20:10

Today was a very busy Windows 8 day for me.

First, I pre-ordered the 64GB Surface with Windows RT and the black touch cover.

Second, UCF News for Windows 8 finally passed certification and was published in the Windows Store.

UCF News in the Windows 8 Store

Finally, I submitted UCF News for Windows 8 for a chance to win a Samsung Series 7 slate in the Generation App Great Slate Giveaway.

October 26th can't come quick enough.

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Microsoft Surface | Windows 8 | Windows RT

Just Passed 50,000 Downloads of WinPhone Info Free and 100,000 Total Windows Phone App Downloads

by Kevin September 21, 2012 20:37

Total downloads of WinPhone Info Free passed 50,000 on 9/15/2012, and total downloads for all of my Windows Phone apps passed 100,000 on 9/14/2012.

It has been a great year and a half developing for Windows Phone 7 and 7.5, and I have learned many new development skills and a little money along the way. Things are only going to get better (and busier) with the release of Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8.

I am currently testing and updating my apps for Windows Phone 8 and starting a couple of projects for Windows 8 utilizing Windows Azure. 2013 should be a huge year for Microsoft and Windows developers.

WinPhone Info Free - 50,000+ Downloads

50000 Downloads of WinPhone Info Free

All Windows Phone Apps - 100,000+ Downloads

100000 Downloads of Windows Phone Apps

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Windows Phone

HTC Will NOT Be Making My Next Windows Phone

by Kevin September 19, 2012 21:59

For the first time in a long time, HTC will NOT be making my next Windows Phone.

HTC Quietly FailingMy first smartphone was an HTC Touch Pro running Windows Mobile 6.1 on Sprint. That was followed by an HTC Arrive/7 Pro running Windows Phone 7 on Sprint so I could start developing Windows Phone 7 apps. When Sprint gave up on Windows Phone for the iPhone, I gave up on Sprint and got an HTC Titan on AT&T. All three phones were great, especially the Titan. However, with the announcement of the HTC 8X and HTC 8S, I won't be getting another HTC Windows Phone.

I had big hopes for HTC when they promised they were 'Going Big' on Windows Phone 8, but after their Windows Phone 8 release event today, I was definitely disappointed. Even if you can get past the lazy reuse of the Android One X and One S names, you can't get past the fact that neither phone's features come anywhere close to those of the Nokia Lumia 920 and Samsung ATIV S. As impressive as the hardware specs on the Samsung ATIV S are, Nokia trumps it with their exclusive software and services for their Lumia line, so when the new Windows Phone 8 devices hit the market this November, I will definitely be picking up a Nokia Lumia 920. I believe the majority of Windows Phone 8 purchasers will get the Nokia Lumia 920, as well. This is bad news for HTC, who is already losing to Samsung in the Android market.

Maybe HTC can capture the lion's share of the Firefox Mobile OS market, but it looks like they are going to have to get behind ZTE.

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Windows Phone

Life Goals Free - Now Available in the Marketplace

by Kevin May 16, 2012 19:02

Life GoalsLife Goals Free is now available in the Marketplace. This is my first app to use the Model-View-ViewModel (MVVM) design, so it was a great learning experience.

It is also my first app to use the Telerik RadControls for Windows Phone. I love how easy they were to implement and wire up with my data. I used the ContextMenu, DataBoundListBox, JumpList, and Transition controls, and I was amazed at how much less code they took to implement than the similar controls from the Silverlight for Windows Phone Toolkit. I am now working on adding some of the controls that are unique to the Telerik RadControls for Windows Phone, including the Calendar control, to Bill Reminder.

I want to say a big THANK YOU to Atley Hunter, who ran a contest for the Telerik RadControls for Windows Phone at Orlando Code Camp 2012. Atley is a Microsoft MVP, as well as one of the most prolific Windows Phone app developers in the Marketplace. You can read his blog and get some great ideas at http://www.atleyhunter.com.

Click here for more screenshots and a link to download the app in the Marketplace.

 

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Windows Phone

Orlando Windows Phone User Group - Coming Soon

by Kevin April 20, 2012 20:22

Orlando Windows Phone User Group LogoI'm really excited that the Orlando Windows Phone User Group is finally coming together. The first group meeting should be in May. Thanks Shayne for getting the ball rolling.

If you would like to join or get more information, you can sign up here.

You can also follow the group on Twitter at @OrlandoWPUG or Shayne at @spboyer.

 

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Windows Phone

Bill Reminder Featured in the Windows Phone Marketplace in February

by Kevin February 21, 2012 16:16

The paid version of Bill Reminder was featured during February as one of the winners of the [Your App Here] Advertising Campaign from Windows Phone & Nokia that features innovative Windows Phone 7.5 apps that use the Metro interface design and Live Tiles.

After being featured in the Marketplace for 1 full day on the 18th, Bill Reminder jumped to the #1 spot in the Personal Finance category.

Bill Reminder #1

My Appy New Year Prize - A Nokia Lumia 800 in Black

by Kevin February 8, 2012 21:08

The paid version of WinPhone Info got me a free Nokia Lumia 800 from Microsoft by being one of the first 500 apps released in the U.S. marketplace in the New Year.

Nokia Lumia 800

I received the phone last night, and I am really impressed. The build quality is excellent, and the curved 3.7" ClearBlack AMOLED screen is beautiful. Another cool feature is Nokia's custom blue theme. It's a small touch, but looks much nicer than the default pale blue theme from Microsoft. I wish more manufacturers would use the custom theme slot - HTC's green would look really cool.

The model I received is the European version, but it does work on AT&T and supports HSPA. I'm tempted to use it as my primary phone, but I just can't switch to a 3.7" screen after getting used to my HTC Titan's 4.7" screen. It does however make me consider picking up the Lumia 900 when it comes out later this year on AT&T with a 4.3" screen and LTE.

Click here to see the details on Nokia's web site.

 

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Windows Phone

Metro - Icons or Buttons

by Kevin January 12, 2012 20:33

I decided to put a quick update out for WinPhone Info to correct the pin and favorite buttons, because I didn't include the circle in the image. It may seem like a small detail that could easily be ignored, but I feel that strictly adhering to the Metro design guidelines helps to make my apps more aesthetically pleasing and easier to use.

        

If you are interested in learning more about the difference between icons and buttons in Metro, see this article - Why do we have circles around icons in the Windows Phone app bar?

 

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Windows Phone

WinPhone Info Redesign

by Kevin December 23, 2011 09:30

After my big Bill Reminder update, instead of taking a much-needed break, I decided to turn WinPhone Info into a full-featured app with an all new interface... 3 weeks and about 200 hours of coding and debugging later, it is almost ready.

Besides all of the new features, I really wanted to switch the main page from Pivot to Panorama style, because the Panorama style provides a more professional look and feel, and it really showcases the simple beauty of the Metro UI. However, it does present a lot of challenges for a design-challenged developer like me - splash screens, background images, hub tile images, UI responsiveness, etc.

Here is a link to an excellent article on the proper use of the Metro UI - When Metro design falls off the tracks.

Click here to learn more about the current version of WinPhone Info and for a link to download it in the Marketplace.

Here is a preview of the new interface:

WinPhone Info Beta Screenshot 1 WinPhone Info Beta Screenshot 2 WinPhone Info Beta Screenshot 3

 

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Windows Phone

Is It 12/23/2011 or 23/12/2011?

by Kevin December 23, 2011 08:39

In my rush to get the Live Tile and pop-up reminder update out for Bill Reminder, I overlooked testing different date/time formats for the pop-up reminder scheduler. Result? DateTime.Parse error, and no way to get to the main page.

Maybe jumping to an error page to report an exception wasn't such a great idea. I'll be rewriting the error handling in a future update.

As for the bug at hand, I just needed to specify the culture that the date/time was originally stored in and let the DateTime.Parse function handle the conversion. The code looks like this and should be available for download in a few days:

reminder.BeginTime = DateTime.Parse(popUpReminderTime, new CultureInfo("en-US");

Apologies to my international users, and thanks to Mathieu for reporting it and helping to find a fix.

 

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Windows Phone

About the author

me

I work on .NET development by day; Windows PC & Windows Phone development by night.

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