Verizon has announced today that the Lumia 735 – the smartphone built for selfies and Skype – will be available online starting today and available in stores next month. The Lumia 735 will be available on Verizon Edge for $8 a month for 24 months; 0% APR (full retail price $192). For a limited time, if you bring your number over to Verizon, you’ll receive a $100 bill credit within 2-3 bill cycles for each new smartphone activated on Verizon Edge. The Lumia 735 comes also with wireless charging capability right out of the box and a variety of wireless charging back covers will also be available for purchase ($24.99) – in orange, green, white, red, and cyan.
The Lumia 735 is built for selfies and Skype because of its wide angle, 5-megapixel front-facing camera. Not only does more of what’s going on behind you fit into your shots, the shots look clear and crisp too. And the Lumia 735 also has a 6.7-megapixel auto-focus, rear facing camera with ZEISS optics. It comes with a 4.7-inch AMOLED HD display with ClearBlack technology. And it’s powered by a 1.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon 400 processor and comes with 16GB of internal storage with the ability to add up to 128GB of additional storage via a microSD card. The Lumia 735 also comes XLTE-ready.
The Lumia 735 comes with Windows Phone 8.1 (Lumia Denim Update) which includes Cortana, Action Center, Word Flow, and more. It will also be upgradeable to Windows 10 Mobile too when its released.
For more information on the Lumia 735 at Verizon – click here.
AT&T announced today that the Lumia 640 XL will be available in AT&T stores and online starting Friday, June 26th. The Lumia 640 XL will be available in matte black and matte white. Pricing starts at just $.99 with a two-year contract ($249.99 no-contract). You can also purchase the Lumia 640 XL for $0 down on an AT&T Next plan, paying $8.34 per month with 30 device payments on Next 24, $10.42 per month at 24 payments on Next 18, or $12.50 per month at 20 payments on Next 12.
I had a chance to use a pre-production version of the Lumia 640 XL a few months ago and loved it. First off – it’s 5.7-inch ClearBlack IPS LCD HD display is quite nice. After living with a 6-inch Lumia 1520 for a while now, I’ve grown accustom to having a larger phone. The Lumia 640 XL is only a tad bit smaller than the Lumia 1520. The Lumia 640 XL isn’t a slouch either – it comes powered by a 1.2GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor. For storage, you get 8GB of internal storage and the ability to add up to 128GB of additional storage via a microSD card. However, it’s the camera on the Lumia 640 XL that really hooked me. It has 13-megapixel rear-facing camera that includes auto-focus, ZEISS optics and an LED flash. Oh yeah and if you’re into selfies, it has a nice a 5-megapixel wide-angle front-facing camera too.
The Lumia 640 XL comes with Windows Phone 8.1 (Lumia Denim Update) which includes Cortana, Action Center, Word Flow, and more. It will also be upgradeable to Windows 10 Mobile too when its released.
I would highly recommend the Lumia 640 XL if you’re on the market for a new phone with some great features at an affordable price. I’ll be hitting up my local AT&T store on June 26th to pick mine up!
For more information on the Lumia 640 XL at AT&T, click here.
Starting today, you can now access your personal music collection from OneDrive across your Windows devices with the Xbox Music app for free! Just upload your music files to your new “Music” folder in OneDrive and that music will appear in the Xbox Music apps for Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1 as well as on your Xbox 360 and Xbox One. You can even listen to your music from OneDrive on the web too. No Xbox Music Pass required. However, if you do have an Xbox Music Pass (like me!), we’ll give you an extra 100GB of storage on OneDrive for free for all your music.
For me, I have a bunch of music I purchased from various online services over the years. I’ve put all that music on OneDrive and whether I’m at home on my Xbox One, or at work on my XPS 13, or in my car connected via Bluetooth to my Lumia 1520 – I can listen to all this music. You can even create playlists with this music too and they work on all your devices. Because I have an Xbox Music Pass, I’ve even created playlists that combine my music from OneDrive as well as music from my Xbox Music Pass subscription. To the Xbox Music app – it just sees one big happy music collection.
Windows Phone users take note: If you do not have an Xbox Live account and never used the Xbox Live service before – you may need to sign up for an Xbox Live account here in order to have your music from OneDrive show up in the Xbox Music app for Windows Phone 8.1. We recognize this experience isn’t ideal and are working on a fix to make it better.
Today at the renewed Windows Hardware Engineering Community (WinHEC) summit in Shenzhen, China, I had the honor of speaking about Windows 10 and the innovation and opportunity it offers our valued partners. China is a global epicenter for innovation and we’re excited to be working with the area’s leading hardware and software companies to develop ground-breaking devices and consumer experiences that will help shape the future of Windows 10.
We continue to make great development progress and shared today that Windows 10 will be available this summer in 190 countries and 111 languages. Windows has always been global with more than 1.5 billion users around the world and here in China hundreds of millions of PCs operate Windows today. That’s why it was particularly fun to show our latest global innovation, Windows Hello, on stage for the first time, and to feature a number of Windows 10 customizations for the China market, such as Cortana in Mandarin.
Upgrading Millions of Customers with Lenovo, Tencent and Qihu 360
A key way we will make the upgrade experience to Windows 10 easy is through strong partnerships with technology leaders. Today, we shared new partnerships with several world-leading companies to deliver a seamless Windows 10 upgrade experience to our customers in China. Strategic partnerships with Lenovo, Tencent and Qihu 360 will help Windows 10 reach hundreds of millions of customers in China and spur adoption of Windows 10 worldwide.
Lenovo, one of the world’s leading PC manufacturers, announced they will offer Windows 10 upgrade services at 2,500 service centers and select retail stores in China when the Windows 10 upgrade is available. This will help customers quickly and easily upgrade their new or existing Windows devices to Windows 10. Lenovo also announced their commitment to build Windows phones, to be available in mid-year 2015 via China Mobile.
Tencent, the leading social networking and gaming services company in China, announced it will offer Windows 10 as a free upgrade to its customers on Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 in China, and include QQ, Tencent Video and Tencent PC Manager in the Windows 10 free upgrade pack. Tencent will create a Windows 10 universal app for their flagship QQ app, which has over 800 million customers in China, and bring their most popular PC games, such as “League of Legends,” “Cross Fire” and “Dungeon & Fighter” to Windows 10 and the new Windows store.
Qihu 360, a leading internet security company in China, announced it will bring Windows 10 for free to their customers in China through seamless upgrades. Qihu 360, with over 500 million customers on Windows PCs, will enable the Windows 10 upgrade with just a few clicks with accelerated download speeds.
Through a new program with Xiaomi, one of the top smartphone distributors in the world, a select group of Xiaomi Mi 4 power users will be invited to help test Windows 10 and contribute to its future release later this year. These power users will have the opportunity to download the Windows 10 Technical Preview – installing it and providing their feedback to Microsoft.
Hardware Innovations Enabled by Windows 10
One of the predominant goals of WinHEC is to showcase opportunities Windows 10 presents to hardware and device manufacturers. Windows Hello is one of the new innovations that I was excited to show onstage for the first time.
Windows Hello* will make Windows 10 more personal by providing instant access to your devices through biometric authentication – using your face, iris or fingerprint to unlock your devices – with technology that is significantly safer than traditional passwords. We’re working closely with our hardware partners to deliver Windows Hello-capable devices that will ship with Windows 10. We are thrilled that all OEM systems incorporating the Intel RealSense F200 sensor will fully support Windows Hello, including automatic sign-in to Windows. You can read more about Windows Hello here.
Today, we also shared how Windows 10 will support today’s maker boards, enabling makers to do amazing things with Windows in the fast-growing Internet of Things space.
For the first time, a new version of Windows for small footprint IoT devices will be available – for free – when Windows 10 launches. Windows 10 will offer versions of Windows for a diverse set of IoT devices, ranging from powerful devices like ATMs and ultrasound machines, to resource constrained devices like gateways. Through key partnerships with the Raspberry Pi Foundation, Intel, Qualcomm and others, we will provide great options for commercial devices builders, hobbyists and students.
We also introduced the Qualcomm DragonBoard 410C to the Windows 10 device family. The Qualcomm DragonBoard 410C is the first Windows 10 developer board with integrated Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS, and a smartphone-class Snapdragon 410 chipset.
Windows 10 is the only platform that supports innovation across such a broad family of hardware and we are committed to investing in the success of our partners and supporting their development activities.
I can’t wait to see how amazing companies around the world will continue to innovate with devices running Windows 10. Working together I know we can create some incredible experiences with Windows 10 that will truly delight our customers.
* Windows Hello requires specialized hardware, including fingerprint reader, illuminated IR sensor or other biometric sensors.
The Flipboard app is one of my favorite Windows apps. It’s like my very own my personal magazine that lets me read up on all the latest things that are of interest to me. These interests are based on sources I choose. And it’s getting better! Today, Flipboard has released an update for their Windows Phone app that introduces topics.
After you’ve received the update for the Flipboard app on your Windows Phone, you’ll be able to select topics you want to follow. You’ll be able to search to find a topic – topics like Microsoft, Technology, Marvel, DC Comics, Star Trek, Space, etc. You can also tap on topic tags shown on articles. It’s easy to follow any topic: tap the “follow” button to have stories from that topic—and from magazines the Flipboard community is curating (like mine called Nerd Things) about that topic—added to your Flipboard. For more information on topics in Flipboard, read this blog post on the Flipboard Blog.
NOTE: The new topic picker is only available for Windows Phone 8.1 users in the U.S., U.K. or India.
Today at Mobile World Congress, we announced two new, affordable Lumia phones that are designed to give people the flexibility to do more anywhere, and at any time – the Lumia 640 and Lumia 640 XL.
Lumia 640 XL
The Lumia 640 has a 5-inch HD (1280×720) IPS LCD display while the Lumia 640 XL has a 5.7-inch IPS LCD display. Both come with Corning Gorilla Glass 3. The Lumia 640 has an 8-megapixel camera while the Lumia 640 XL has a 13-megapixel camera and Carl Zeiss optics. Both are powered by 1.2 GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, 1GB of RAM, and have 8GB of internal storage that can be further expanded with up to 128GB with a microSD card (plus 30GB of free OneDrive online storage). Both also offer long lasting battery and fast LTE connectivity. The Lumia 640 and Lumia 640 XL will come with the Windows Phone 8.1 and the Lumia Denim update and will be upgradable to Windows 10 when it becomes available later this year.
For more information on the Lumia 640 and Lumia 640 XL, check out this blog post from Stephen Elop – Executive Vice President of the Microsoft Devices Group. Stephen also talks a little more about Windows 10 and Lumia phones and delivering devices at the flagship level later this year.
Just when you thought this awesome game couldn’t get any sweeter, we’ve got some exciting news for all you Candy Crush Saga players! Candy Crush Saga for Windows Phone* received a nice update today bringing you 268 new levels, new obstacles and new challenges. Match your way through gorgeous graphics in tasty environments like Nougat Noir, Candy Calaboose and Charming Carnival.
The Liquid M220 has a textured surface design with a fabric inspired pattern – making it easy to grip that helps prevent the smartphone from slipping out of your hand. It looks pretty good too with its silver middle frame that has an interesting square pyramid design. It’s 4-inch display packs 233 pixels per inch (PPI) and it has a 5MP rear (main) camera and 2MP front camera. Its rear camera has an 89-degree wide-angle lens so you can fit more of the scene into photos you’re taking.
European mobile brand KAZAM has announced 3 new Windows tablets and 2 new Windows Phones today building up to Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain next week.
The new KAZAM L7 (7-inch), L8 (8-inch), and L10 (10.1-inch) tablets come with Windows 8.1 offering a familiar Windows experience. These new KAZAM Windows tablets feature a lightweight, robust and sleek design with 1280×800 IPS LCD displays and powered by Intel Atom quad-core processors. They also come with 2-megapixel front and rear cameras which are great for taking photos or making video calls with Skype. The KAZAM L7 comes with 16GB of onboard storage, while the KAZAM L8 comes with either 16GB or 32GB of onboard storage, and the KAZAM L10 comes with 32GB of onboard storage. All 3 KAZAM Windows tablets support expandable storage up to 32GB with a SD memory card.
The KAZAM Thunder 450W and 450WL are KAZAM’s two new Windows Phone 8.1 smartphones. They both have a 5-inch IPS LCD display (720×1280), 8-megapixel front-facing cameras, and expandable storage up to 32GB with an SD memory card.
All of KAZAM’s Windows devices being announced today come with Microsoft services like OneNote and OneDrive so you can sync all your files across your devices.
The Twitter app for Windows Phone 8.1 is receiving a nice update today that adds a couple of new features. With this update, you can now use Cortana to launch a new Tweet in the Twitter app by saying something like “Cortana, Twitter new Tweet I love Twitter”. You can also now share websites from Internet Explorer on your Windows Phone to the Twitter app. If you don’t have the Twitter app installed, you can download it here from the Windows Phone Store.
There is a bug in older builds of Windows Phone 8.1 that prevents the Twitter app from launching when you tap on the tile. You will want to make sure you are running the latest available update for your Windows Phone (or from the Preview for Developers if you are running a preview build) before installing this update. If you do encounter this issue, there are a few steps you can take to get the Twitter app working again: you can go to Settings > Backup > apps + settings and choose “Backup now”. Alternatively you could try to uninstall and reinstall the app.