Tag Archives: Phone

Researchers discover Android apps spying on users’ screens

The good news, according to academic researchers, is that your phone most likely isn’t secretly listening to your conversations. The bad news is that fears of Android apps spying on users aren’t totally unfounded.

Computer science researchers at Northeastern University in Boston conducted a massive study of 17,260 Android apps from the Google Play store, as well as third-party marketplaces AppChina, Mi.com and Anzhi. The study, which was published this week in a research paper titled “Panoptispy: Characterizing Audio and Video Exfiltration from Android Applications,” found no evidence that apps were secretly enabling device microphones to record and exfiltrate audio data. However, the research team did find evidence of “several” Android apps spying on users by recording video and images of users’ screens.

“Our study reveals several alarming privacy risks in the Android app ecosystem, including apps that over-provision their media permissions and apps that share image and video data with other parties in unexpected ways, without user knowledge or consent,” the researchers wrote. “We also identify a previously unreported privacy risk that arises from third-party libraries that record and upload screenshots and videos of the screen without informing the user and without requiring any permissions.”

The research team, which used a combination of static and dynamic code analysis, didn’t specify the number of Android apps found spying on users, but the paper did say it was “few” compared to the total number of apps reviewed. “On the one hand, this is good news: a very large fraction of apps are not abusing the ability to record media,” the researchers wrote. “On the other hand, it could also indicate that our analysis missed other cases of media leaks.”

The Northeastern University team cited several examples of popular apps that engaged in unauthorized recording of users’ screens, including GoPuff, a food delivery app. The researchers discovered the app sent captured video via the internet to a domain belonging to web analytics firm Appsee, and that the video recording could include personally identifiable information such as ZIP codes. The researchers said that Appsee’s software required no permissions to record the video and did not issue notifications to users.

The researchers noted that GoPuff was notified of the issue and has since removed the Appsee SDK from its iOS and Android apps and revised its privacy policy, which previously did not disclose any recording or exfiltration of video. The researchers also notified Google, which, according to the paper, said it “took the appropriate actions.” Google Play’s privacy policy requires that app developers disclose to users how their data is collected, shared and used.

Northeastern University’s “Panoptispy” research comes as Google has increased its efforts to curb potential Android app spying. The company previewed the security features of Android P, the newest version of the mobile OS, at the Google I/O conference in May. Android P will only grant access to device sensors such as microphones and cameras to apps in the foreground, preventing potentially harmful apps from running covertly in the background and using sensors to spy on users. However, that particular feature wouldn’t prevent apps like GoPuff from performing unauthorized video exfiltration.

In other news

  • A former employee of NSO Group Technologies, an Israeli company that specializes in spyware and iPhone hacking tools, has reportedly landed in hot water. According to an indictment, Israeli authorities claim an unnamed NSO employee stole the company’s Pegasus spyware product and tried to sell it for $50 million in cryptocurrency. According to reports, the indictment states the disgruntled employee began working for NSO last year as a senior programmer and was granted access to the company’s source code. The indictment also claims the employee posed as a hacker and tried to sell the Pegasus code to other hackers on the dark web; one potential buyer notified NSO of the matter, which investigated the individual with the assistance of law enforcement.
  • Computer scientists from the University of California, Irvine, published research regarding a new attack technique they call “Thermanator,” which records thermal residue on keyboard keys to determine users’ passwords and other sensitive information such as PINs. According to the researchers, a midrange thermal imaging camera could allow threat actors to observe and record keystroke. “Results show that entire sets of key-presses can be recovered by non-expert users as late as 30 seconds after initial password entry, while partial sets can be recovered as late as 1 minute after entry,” the research paper states. While attackers would need to have a clear view of a target’s keyboard, the researchers say the Thermanator attack shows that “using external keyboards to enter (already much-maligned) passwords is even less secure than previously recognized.”
  • A newly discovered update of malware descended from an old Trojan is now equipped with a downloader that can decide whether to mine cryptocurrencies or encrypt files for ransom on victim systems. Kaspersky Lab researchers Egor Vasilenko and Orkhan Mamedov wrote that the new version of the malware, which is related to the Rakhni family of ransomware that Kaspersky Lab uncovered in 2013, checks system attributes before downloading its malicious payload, specifically looking at whether there is a folder named %AppData%Bitcoin. If the folder is present, then the downloader selects the ransomware cryptor; “If the folder doesn’t exist and the machine has more than two logical processors, the miner will be downloaded. If there’s no folder and just one logical processor, the downloader jumps to its worm component,” to continue propagating the malware locally, the researchers wrote. The cryptomining malware mines for the Monero, Monero Original and Dashcoin cryptocurrencies.

Free phone service could boost Dialpad’s UCaaS status

Unified-communications-as-a-service provider Dialpad has released a free version of its cloud business phone system for small organizations with up to five employees.

Subscribers to the service, Dialpad Free, will receive one free office phone number and up to five employees can be dialed by name or as extensions. The free phone service includes the most basic telephony features, except for E911.

The features of the Dialpad Free phone service include 100 outbound calling minutes per month, unlimited inbound calling minutes, 100 inbound and outbound text messages per month, call recording, voicemail and video calling between Dialpad users. The system also integrates with LinkedIn and Google G Suite.

“A lot of small tech startups are using Google’s G Suite for email, calendar and documents,” Nemertes Research analyst Irwin Lazar said. “Being able to use Dialpad for free, which tightly integrates into G Suite, should be attractive.”

While the Dialpad Free phone service won’t generate significant revenue for the provider, Lazar said the service could help boost Dialpad’s recognition in the competitive UCaaS market.

Organizations can download the Dialpad app onto a desktop, laptop, tablet or smartphone. There are free apps for Mac, Windows, iOS and Android. For a limited time, there will be no charge for transferring an existing phone line to the Dialpad Free service. However, there is a $3 fee for porting a number away from Dialpad Free.

Facebook partners push Workplace adoption

Talk Social to Me, a tech consulting firm, and ServiceRocket, a provider of Workplace by Facebook apps, have partnered to create an adoption program for Workplace by Facebook.

The partnership, called Elevate, will offer Workplace by Facebook support for enterprise customers with a regulated and deskless workforce. Elevate offers customers access to ServiceRocket’s Moderation and Insights apps, which provide data on how Workplace by Facebook is used in the enterprise, alongside Talk Social to Me’s consulting services.

The majority of the 30,000 organizations that have adopted Workplace by Facebook are in industries that employ deskless workers, such as healthcare, retail and manufacturing. These organizations tend to have complex working environments comprised of hourly and part-time workers.

“We know that business value is best achieved when companies concerned with HIPAA, employee unions and large hourly populations can discover and respond immediately to business and social conversations,” Talk Social to Me CEO Carrie Basham Young said.

CPaaS gains ground for embedded video

Communications platform as a service (CPaaS) is becoming the deployment model of choice for embedded video, according to a report from video conferencing vendor Vidyo, based in Hackensack, N.J. The report surveyed 166 developers in 48 countries and found more than half of developers have implemented some form of video chat.

Developers looking to embed video into enterprise apps have four deployment models to consider:

  • a full internal development where the majority of the video technology is developed in-house;
  • commercially available software that is integrated as part of the deployment;
  • open source software that is used as is or customized by the developer; and
  • CPaaS, which embeds video via an API platform.

According to the report, early adopters of embedded video prefer open source and CPaaS deployment models. CPaaS is growing in popularity as 78% of respondents plan to use CPaaS for embedded video, with nearly half planning to use CPaaS in the next 12 months.

The top considerations for deploying CPaaS include the support for various devices and operating systems, WebRTC support, high availability and the ability to sustain calls over unreliable networks.

‘Seriously, call anytime’: Microsoft loves startups – Microsoft Life

It’s 2:00 AM in Tel Aviv, Israel, and Zack Weisfeld’s phone startles him awake. It’s a call from a chief executive officer from a startup company that Weisfeld’s team has been working with. Apologetic and panicked, the CEO needs last-minute help reviewing an investor’s term sheet. They have to accept or refuse the offer in a few hours.

As the general manager of Microsoft for Startups, the company’s broad startup evangelism effort, Weisfeld loves it when entrepreneurs take him up on his offer to “seriously, call anytime.” For him, it means the growing and sometimes all-hours commitment for Microsoft to become an intimate and trusted friend to entrepreneurs is paying off.

“Ten years ago, Microsoft was not seen as relevant or in the loop with the entrepreneurial community,” said Weisfeld.

Yet that relevancy is the heart of what entrepreneurs are looking for. Because many new businesses are scouting and relying on corporations to help them launch or build their companies, anyone they team up with not only must be cutting edge, creative, and agile, but also must have startup “street cred.”

For example, say you are out there trying to peddle a disruptive, never-before-heard-of cloud service and need to find someone to help you get it off the ground. The first place you want to turn is to someone who has a record of starting cool new things, who is already well known in startup culture, and who has a massive network through which you could connect and woo investors. You want to rub elbows with the “in” members of Planet Startup who can help jettison you there, too.

And the relationship isn’t one sided. Well-established businesses benefit too—through investing in entrepreneurs and their ideas, corporations can move quickly forward into areas of disruptive technology and hang out with the next generation of talent. Microsoft has long been working with startups, but in the past 10 years, Microsoft doubled its efforts toward making deeper, lasting connections with entrepreneurs.

To do so, it had to boost its signal and send the message: Microsoft is committed to providing startups with an advantage in the marketplace.

In 2011, Weisfeld came to Microsoft with the purpose of finding a new way to work with startups. Uniquely suited to the challenge, Weisfeld had spent 27 years both as an entrepreneur (part of disrupting startups who changed the mobile handset space and eventually sold the intellectual property to Google in 2012) and as a seasoned investor in startups (with almost a decade spent working in Silicon Valley), and he had already worked at Microsoft in the past.

Weisfeld began by listening. He traveled all over, tapping into his startup network to get a feel for how people felt about Microsoft and startups. These candid conversations left him with the profound sense that Microsoft was a perfect fit for startups but that entrepreneurs just didn’t know it yet. He returned to Redmond and proposed an idea: launch an accelerator program for startups.

Accelerators, introduced to the business world just over a decade ago, help fast-track each stage of the journey for startups. For these people, who are often trying to solve a problem in an unproven way, steps must be carefully coordinated, and there’s a risk of something going wrong at every turn. Though each startup’s journey is unique, they all go through the same basic steps.

Tania Yuki (left) and Guy Kawasaki taking a selfie

Tania Yuki (left) worked with Microsoft Accelerator. “I was really astounded by [Microsoft’s] openness to new ideas and the ways in which each team embraced what we have built,” she said. “Microsoft Accelerator opened the doors to the Microsoft organization . . . and it shed light on the focus for innovation and fast iteration that is the hallmark of many of the Microsoft teams.” She is pictured here with Guy Kawasaki, a startup industry super star.

An idea is developed into a product or service that needs money to continue. The idea person—now dubbed “founder”—will then ask friends and family to invest early on. This stage is called “bootstrapping”—starting a business without official investor help.

Next is the seed stage. An entrepreneur will get the first $2–5 million from what the industry calls “angel investors”: usually business professionals who invest their own money in what might be a potentially rewarding business opportunity. This is also when many startups typically engage in an accelerator.

Then comes the Series A, B, and C stages, when the entrepreneur needs money to grow; here, big venture capital sums are being introduced. In the Series A stage, a startup makes the product the best it can be and builds a user base. Series B is when it begins to build the business around the product (like hiring sales people and investing in tools for working together). Series C is all about finding a way to grow the company’s technology and business—also called scaling the business.

Accelerators are a proven method for getting a startup off the ground. Weisfeld described it like a “super-fast MBA program, a school for entrepreneurs.” The selection process is rigorous and highly competitive, and for good reason. If a startup is accepted to an accelerator, it will likely accomplish in 12 weeks what could otherwise require years.

Hundreds of different global accelerators offer various benefits and focus on different outcomes. Startups spend a lot of time trying to find the right accelerator for their product, culture, and wherever they’re at in their entrepreneurial stage.

With an accelerator, entrepreneurs get to consort on a daily basis with industry experts and find potential mentors. They learn how to start a business cheaply and get feedback on the viability of their product.

workspace inside Microsoft Accelerator in Bangalore, India

The workspace inside Microsoft Accelerator in Bangalore, India. Microsoft has seven accelerators across the world—Bangalore, Beijing, Berlin, London, Seattle, Shanghai, and Tel Aviv—each with the express mission of meeting the needs of startups in whatever stage is needed.

Weisfeld had a vision of a Microsoft-flavored accelerator that would help startups get to know the real Microsoft—the agile, pioneering Microsoft. It would get the company in the room with startups and foster the creation of those long-term relationships, the kind where a 2:00 AM phone call is welcome. Startups would get unparalleled access to expert advice, technology tools like Azure and Office 365, and Microsoft’s global network of customers. And unlike some accelerators, Microsoft would not take an equity stake in the company.

By April 2012, Weisfeld had amassed a team of people who were on board with this idea. With approval from Satya Nadella, who was then running the Cloud and Enterprise group, the first Microsoft Accelerator pilot opened in Tel Aviv, Israel.

To the team’s surprise, more than 200 companies applied for the 11 available spots. Two months later, the team opened Microsoft Accelerators in Beijing and Bangalore at the Microsoft global research and development center. Now, five years after the first accelerator opened its doors, Microsoft has seven accelerators across the world. Almost 650 companies have graduated from the program and raised about $3 billion total in investment money. Last year, Microsoft Accelerator ranked as one of the top 10 global accelerators according to the 2016 Global Accelerator Report, and local venture capital communities in China, India, and Israel awarded Microsoft accelerators with the title of number one accelerator in their respective countries.

In the past year the program was redesigned specifically for Series A, late-stage startups and focuses on creating sales opportunities—another differentiating factor to other corporate accelerators. It hones the business side of things.

Advisors at each of the Microsoft Accelerators hold CEO dilemma sessions. The sessions are peer therapy for entrepreneurs to discuss common startup problems, such as what to do when a cofounder isn’t carrying the weight or when a technical cofounder is behind schedule with the product, worries over whether signing with a big investor will intimidate other investors away, or how to hire and compensate the first sales executives. Sometimes, the problems can be more dramatic, like CEOs realizing that they aren’t the best fit for running their own company.

“Most of these folks are first time COs or CEOs,” said Weisfeld. “In every cohort we’ve helped at least one CEO realize they weren’t the best choice to be the CEO for their own company, and that’s a very emotional conversation to have.”

The entire road from idea to company is an emotional one, in fact. Weisfeld said that Microsoft Accelerator intentionally gets emotional with startups by jumping into the trenches with them and not only holding their hand but also giving them special access to the Microsoft global network and trusted name.

Weisfeld gave an example of how this partnership comes together in terms of scaling business opportunities for the startups. “OneBridge, who went through our program, has an IOT [internet of things] solution that monitors the integrity of oil pipelines. Because we had worked closely with them, we were able to bring them in on a co-sell opportunity that resulted in a significant deal with Phillips.”

Before she joined Microsoft Accelerator, Tania Yuki, CEO of Shareablee, a social media measurement company, felt like Microsoft wasn’t the most approachable company in the world. Once she was accepted into Microsoft Accelerator, she found herself surprised.

“Going through Microsoft Accelerator opened doors to the Microsoft organization as well as many others because of being a channel partner, and it shed light on the focus for innovation and fast iteration that is the hallmark of many of the Microsoft teams.”

She was astounded by Microsoft’s openness to new ideas and the ways in which each team embraced what she and her company built, “both to help us make it better, but also to find ways that our technology and dataset could potentially be helpful to Microsoft,” said Yuki. She started Shareablee in 2013 while sitting in her living room with two friends. Now, Shareablee has more than 60 employees and tracks the social media posts and interactions for 100,000 brands.

As Microsoft continued to get more involved with startups and the company grew to understand both the needs of entrepreneurs at various stages and the opportunities around engagement for its own business, it brought all the existing programs and benefits under one banner: Microsoft for Startups.

From idea to initial public offering, Microsoft for Startups aims to help startups at every stage of their journey. Whether it’s taking an idea from inspiration to working code, gaining access to Microsoft tools, building a business, making connections with customers through Microsoft Accelerators, or getting the funds needed to really take off through Microsoft Ventures, Microsoft wants startups to know: it is here to help.

“We were chartered to win startups, and we did that being thoughtful and trying to really listen,” said Amir Pinchas, who runs operations in Microsoft for Startups.

Once the focus shifted from trying to sell technology to startups to spending time with them in order to help them with the technology they would need and use, Pinchas found that people were more open to suggestions and feedback. “It’s amazing what happens when people feel like you are really listening, especially when it comes to technology needs,” Pinchas said.

Zack Weisfeld, director of Microsoft for Startups, hangs out with several CEOs at the Microsoft Global Startup Roadshow.

Zack Weisfeld, director of Microsoft for Startups, hangs out with several CEOs at the Microsoft Global Startup Roadshow.

“I was delighted to see how Microsoft embraces innovation,” wrote Leonid Belkind, CTO of Luminate, which was part of Microsoft Accelerator in Tel Aviv.

Before attending the accelerator, Belkind wondered how Microsoft would react to innovative startup ideas, knowing that a company with such a big position in the market would have a very heavy responsibility toward its partners and customers. “Generally risks are not taken lightly,” he said.

But he got to know a Microsoft that “embraces innovation” and “focuses on being a thought leader in the IT industry.” And working with Microsoft has changed the way Belkind does business.

“Over the course of my time working with Microsoft, I have evolved from being a cautious innovator to a confident evangelist in the knowledge that Microsoft is supporting the messages I am projecting,” Belkind said. “The company truly cares about these new ideas being delivered to their customers.”

“Best of all, Microsoft acts as a facilitator in creating long-lasting, successful products and teams but at the same time allows companies to follow their own paths and stay true to their own missions and values.”

As the program has evolved, it has been a boon to both sides. “There’s just something about working with startups and entrepreneurs,” Weisfeld said. “It’s a very emotional journey, but both experiencing and helping them through those ups and downs make it a very giving experience.”

For Sale – TP-Link Archer D2 Modem Router

TP-Link Archer D2 Modem Router. For Phone Line Broadband Connection

Excellent Condition.
Easy to use and very reliable.

Used only for a few months.

Reason for sale – Moved over to Satellite.

P&P = £3.50 within UK Mainland / Or can be Collected.

TP-Link Archer D2 - Box 2.jpg

TP-Link Archer D2 - Box.jpg

TP-Link Archer D2 - Contents.jpg

Price and currency: £25
Delivery: Delivery cost is not included
Payment method: PayPal – Cash
Location: South London
Advertised elsewhere?: Advertised elsewhere
Prefer goods collected?: I have no preference

This message is automatically inserted in all classifieds forum threads.
By replying to this thread you agree to abide by the trading rules detailed here.
Please be advised, all buyers and sellers should satisfy themselves that the other party is genuine by providing the following via private conversation to each other after negotiations are complete and prior to dispatching goods and making payment:

  • Landline telephone number. Make a call to check out the area code and number are correct, too
  • Name and address including postcode
  • Valid e-mail address

DO NOT proceed with a deal until you are completely satisfied with all details being correct. It’s in your best interest to check out these details yourself.

Windows 10 SDK Preview Build 10158 Released

Today, we released a new Windows 10 SDK Preview and the associated Windows 10 Mobile emulators (Build 10158), to be used in conjunction with Windows 10 Insider Preview (Build 10158). Preview SDK Build 10158 contains bug fixes and changes to the API surface area.  You can download it from the Windows 10 Developer Tools page.

To briefly recap – with the preview releases of the Windows 10 SDK, we are matching each OS flight delivered to Windows Insiders in the Fast ring.  When running the latest preview SDK and emulator in your local development environment, your apps will be able to access the latest Windows capabilities and APIs available in the preview build. Each preview SDK release installs side by side of the official Windows 10 tooling for Visual Studio 2015. If you want to try out the newest features and have the latest bug fixes delivered in a Windows Insider Preview release, this is for you – each release is a snapshot of work in progress, so expect functionality or APIs to be impacted and that final functionality may vary.

Start developing and @wpdev would love to see what you create. If you find bugs or issues, please leverage the Windows Feedback tool or MSDN forums.

What’s New in SDK 10158

Some API types received properties and method signatures changes. New APIs were added in this SDK release, among them:

  • Windows.Devices.Perception.*
  • Windows.Devices.Perception.Provider.*
    This flight of Windows introduces two new related sets of APIs in the Windows.Devices.Perception and Windows.Devices.Perception.Providers namespaces.  The Providers APIs allow IHVs and OEMs to expose depth, infrared, and color cameras (and related metadata) for computer vision into UWP, and to designate a camera as participating in Windows Hello face authentication.  The Windows.Devices.Perception namespace contains the client APIs that allow a UWP application to access the color, depth, or infrared data of computer vision cameras.
  • Windows.Media.Capture.AdvancedCapturedPhoto
  • Windows.Media.Capture.AdvancedPhotoCapture
  • Windows.Media.Media.AdvancedPhoto*
    AdvancedCapturedPhoto and AdvancedPhoto* APIs are new photo capture APIs for Windows 10 that enable apps to capture HDR photos on supported devices. For devices that do not ship with hardware HDR capabilities but support VPS (variable photo sequence), the API will use a platform provided algorithm to generate the HDR photo.
  • Windows.Media.Import.PhotoImport*
    The Windows Photo Import API in the Windows.Media.Import namespace is a new, modern, asynchronous WinRT API enabling Windows Store and classic applications to import photos and videos from portable devices such as smart phones and digital cameras, as well as memory cards and other removable USB storage media, with an emphasis on ease of use and performance. One of the key features of the PhotoImport API is that it runs in the background so that even if your app is suspended / killed, the import keeps happening.

Types now converged

Here are just a few types we’ve heard people are interested in which have now converged. We will continue to converge types based on developer feedback.

  • Windows.Media.Capture.CameraCaptureUI
  • Windows.Security.ExchangeActiveSyncProvisioning.EasClientDeviceInformation

Moving your projects forward

After installing the new Windows 10 SDK, update your projects with the Visual Studio Release Candidate to use the new SDK.

First, update the Project file (.csproj, .jsproj, .vcxproj) by:

  1. Opening the project in Visual Studio
  2. Right clicking on the project in the Visual Studio Solution Explorer, and choose “Properties”
  3. Depending on your project type, the UI will look a little different but click on the dropdown that says “Target Version”. The below screenshot is from a C# Project. Note: If you’re using a Javascript project, open the .jsproj and find a replace the TargetPlatformVersion with 10.0.10158.0.
  4. Select Windows 10 Insider Preview (10.0; Build 10158).  * below is a sample of what you’ll be seeing


Now that you have updated the project file, find the application’s Package.appxmanifest and do the following:

  1. Open that file (it should present you with an XML Editor)
  2. Find the Element, Dependencies and its child element, TargetDeviceFamily
  3. Modify the MaxVersion Tested Attribute from “10.0.10069.0” to “10.0.10158.0”.
  4. Save and close the file.


Now you’re ready to use the new SDK. Start developing and @wpdev would love to see what you create. If you find bugs or issues, please leverage the Windows Feedback tool or MSDN forums.

Inside Interop: How Medium Now Works on Microsoft Edge

Microsoft Edge was built from the ground-up with the modern web in mind. When we decided to make a “break from the past” for Windows 10, we didn’t just spend all of our time combing through complicated standards documents and implementing esoteric algorithms (though we did a fair amount of that!); in keeping with our ongoing focus on interoperability with the modern Web, we spent a great deal of our time dissecting modern website patterns, understanding the intent behind their code, and building a browser that intimately understands the expectations of the modern Web. As a step in that process, today we are excited to announce that Microsoft Edge users are getting an improved publishing experience due to recent interop efforts.

During the development process we began investigating customer reports of issues on Medium — one of the Web’s most popular personal publishing platforms. This lead us to an article, written by the Medium staff, which enumerated a handful of issues their editing platform had with Internet Explorer 10 and 11. These issues prevented IE from having full-access to Medium’s publishing platform.

We started the Microsoft Edge journey with the goal that “the web just works,” so we promptly reached out to Medium for a better understanding of the issues, and potentially identify workarounds. Medium determined that working around the issue would require a complex architectural change for them, so we instead determined that a fix would be needed in Microsoft Edge.

Our investigation revealed that the problem Medium was encountering was due to a non-standard legacy feature involving object-selection, which shipped in Internet Explorer 5. The feature was designed to provide a consistent modern forms-editor surface for partners (PowerPoint, Visual InterDev) who were building HTML-based forms back in the IE6 days. It gave the user the option to re-size any element which had layout on first click, and on second click would allow them to edit, if the element were editable.

Demonstration of Object Select feature in Internet Explorer 11.

In Medium’s case, there was a floating div element inside a contentEditable region which we allowed to be object-selectable and re-sizeable, resulting in gripper UI over the editable section. We had similar feedback bugs reported to us in the past, but due to the complexity of removing this behavior and the risks of a long bug trail, IE11 ultimately shipped with the functionality.

For Microsoft Edge, we were able to revisit this decision with the understanding that the web continues to evolve, and serves as the foundation for numerous rich editors. We are proudly moving towards a set of interoperable API’s that help web developers advance web-based editors without having to work around legacy features. With this we decided to remove nearly 1500 lines of C++ code from the browser’s engine, as well as any dependencies. The end-state is greater interoperability with other modern browsers, and reduced-complexity in our suite of editing features.

This is a good example of how we continue to prioritize interoperability over legacy compatibility. We would like to thank the team at Medium for this collaboration, and look forward to hearing your feedback on Twitter at @MSEdgeDev.

Nirankush Panchbhai, Jonathan Sampson, Greg Whitworth
Proud members of the Microsoft Edge Team

Release Dates and Compatibility: Visual Studio 2015 and the Windows 10 SDK

July will be a big month for developers with the releases of Visual Studio 2015, Windows 10, and the Universal Windows App Development Tools, which includes the Windows 10 SDK. The purpose of this post is to make you aware of the key dates and some things to keep in mind with regard to version compatibility between the tools and SDK.

Here are the key release dates:

  • July 20: Visual Studio 2015 (“VS 2015″)
  • July 29: Windows 10, the Windows 10 SDK, and the Visual Studio Universal Windows app development tools

You’ll notice that Visual Studio 2015 will be available several days before the final version of the Windows 10 SDK and Universal Windows App Tools.  During that brief gap, the release version of VS 2015 will not work with the pre-release versions of the Windows 10 SDK and Universal Windows app tools so you won’t be able to develop a Universal Windows Platform (UWP) app.

Here is our recommended approach to bridge this gap:

If you are actively working on a UWP app (or plan to before July 29):

You are in the group that will be affected for the nine days between releases. We recommend that you wait to install VS 2015 RTM until July 29. Until that date, continue using the VS 2015 RC that you have today.

When Windows 10 becomes available on July 29, you can install Windows 10, then VS 2015 with the Universal Windows App Development Tools. You can then continue working on your Windows 10 apps and targeting he Universal Windows Platform with no interruption.

If you are not yet working on a UWP app (and don’t plan to before July 29):

You can install VS 2015 RTM with no issue. If you already have the beta Windows 10 SDK installed, you will be asked to uninstall it.vs2015preRtm1

If you then want to develop a UWP app after July 29, there will be two ways to get the applicable SDK. You will be able to use the stand-alone SDK installer (from the Windows Dev Center), or, to launch the Visual Studio installer, use the Universal Windows App Development Tools option.

vs2015postRtm2.1 vs2015postRtm1


Thanks! We are always interested in learning about your experiences,  and what you are working on. Tweet us @WPDev or leave specific product feedback and suggestions on our developer UserVoice.

An update to The New York Times Crossword app brings you more than 9,000 puzzles

A new update to The New York Times Crossword app for Windows and Windows Phone includes over 20 years worth of puzzles – that’s more than 9,000 puzzles to challenge you! The New York Times Crossword is free to download, and all users get free unlimited access to the daily puzzle and calendar archive for seven days upon downloading. After the seven days, simply subscribe to the New York Times Crossword for full access to The Crossword on your Windows devices and at NYTimes.com*.

Crossword 1 Crossword 2

A few fun features you’ll enjoy with The New York Times Crossword app for Windows and Windows Phone:

Daily Puzzle
Enjoy the same puzzle that’s printed everyday in The New York Times newspaper. All daily puzzles are available the previous day at 10PM EST with a subscription.

Mini Puzzle
Short, sweet and available without a subscription every day, get a quick crossword fix when you don’t have time for the whole thing.

If you have a Surface, you can solve the way crosswords were meant to be solved: by writing directly on the puzzle as you would in the newspaper with Surface Pen.

Past Puzzles
Subscribers also enjoy years of classic puzzles from The New York Times archives.

Modern Puzzle Features
Solve puzzles that include new tricks like rebuses, highlighted or underlined squares, and more!

Download The New York Times Crossword for free from the Windows and Windows Phone Stores today.

*Subscription to The New York Times Crossword does not include access to any other New York Times products, including but not limited to NYTimes.com or mobile news content, e-reader editions, Times Premier, NYT Now, or any other apps.

Summer arrives with awesome new updates to some of our favorite apps and games

We’re here to keep you current on the latest updates to your favorite apps and games. This week we have a great list of the fun apps and top games, like Shazam and Monument Valley that have been updated just in time for the weekend! A group of Gameloft titles also got some updates, several of which now feature Xbox Live integration – so you can start earning Xbox achievements and move up the leaderboards. Below is a list of the apps and games with cool updates you won’t want to miss:

Shazam – Windows Phone

 Shazam 1 Shazam 2

This favorite music app keeps getting better on Windows Phone. With the latest update, browse the new News Feed that keeps you updated on the latest news about top artists – curated by the Shazam Editorial Team. Create an account and share what you’ve listened to using your Facebook login. And you can now back up your entire Shazam history on the shazam.com website.

Monument Valley – Windows Phone

 monument valley 1 monument valley 2

For fans of the beautiful and the surreal, Monument Valley offers a stunning, intriguing gameplay experience. Your mission is to guide the serene, silent Princess Ida through a land of mysterious monuments and fantastical architecture you manipulate. And now, update the game to play Ida’s Dream, the longest chapter ever created for Monument Valley.

WhatsApp – Windows Phone

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Top messaging app WhatsApp received a much-anticipated update this week, adding WhatsApp Calling for Windows Phone 8.1! Now you can call your friends and family using WhatsApp for free (data charges may apply), even if they are in another country. You can also now send audio files to your friends and contacts within the app.

Asphalt 8 – Windows, Windows Phone

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In this intense driving experience, master the island of Tenerife, from its tropical beaches to its breathtaking mountains and untamed wilderness. Four challenging new tracks, eight new cars, thrilling time-limited events and exclusive decals make Asphalt 8 even faster and more exciting. Now with Xbox Live achievements.

Despicable Me – Windows, Windows Phone

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New levels, minions and mini-games come to this game of jumping, flying and dodging. And if you’re mischievous enough, you just might capture the title “Minion of the Year”! Now with Xbox Live achievements and more.

Dragon Mania Legends – Windows, Windows Phone

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Give life to your dragons and prepare them for legendary battles in a game that starts with you raising fire-breathers from birth to warrior status. Newly updated with more habitats, 12 different leagues, 7 unique dragons to win, a new player island and multi-wave combat, Dragon Mania Legends gives you thrills every time you play. Now with Xbox Live achievements.

Dungeon Hunter 5 – Windows, Windows Phone

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Now there’s even greater excitement and intensity in this legendary series. Bounty Hunters, prepare for new battles in the treacherous Far East Xinkashi lands. Fight in daily events in a Stronghold room designed by the wicked Xinkashi builders, and get five more Stronghold rooms to build up with five vicious new traps. Now with Xbox Live achievements.

Ice Age Adventures – Windows, Windows Phone

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So many new experiences await you in the world of Scrat and friends. Restore Mount Scratmore to unlock a new volcanic village, spice up your town with steamy habitats and decorations, and continue the adventure with two new archipelagos and fan-requested animals just waiting to be rescued.

Plague Inc. – WindowsWindows Phone

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You have a new virus at your disposal in your quest to infect the planet. The mind-controlling Neurax Worm burrows deep in to the brains of its hosts, then takes over their thoughts and actions. And it’s in your arsenal as you send pathogens into the world.

Get these latest updates today from the Windows and Windows Phone Stores!

Announcing Windows 10 Mobile Insider Preview Build 10149

Hi everyone, we have a new Windows 10 Mobile Insider Preview build for Windows Insiders on the Fast ring today – Build 10149. Those of you who chose to stay on Build 10080 and not go back to Windows Phone 8.1 to get Build 10136 will be happy to know that you’ll be able to upgrade directly to this build – so you won’t need to flash your phones back to Windows Phone 8.1.

SUPER IMPORTANT TO READ THIS (again): The post-upgrade migration status screen is still missing after upgrading to this build which normally shows you the progress of the post-upgrade migration. After upgrading, the Lock screen will appear frozen without the date and time for up to 10 minutes. Please be patient and let it sit – eventually the date and time will appear and it will allow you to unlock your phone. If you get impatient and restart or mess with locking/unlocking your phone, you’ll wind up in a funky state – so just relax and let it do its thing.

Here is what is new

Microsoft Edge: The first thing that you’ll notice in this build is that the Microsoft Edge branding is now included in this build. This build also has the address bar at the bottom – this is a change that we made based on feedback we heard from Windows Insiders. The option to view websites in mobile view or desktop view is also included in this build as well.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The result of the naming switch from “Project Spartan” to Microsoft Edge means that the Microsoft Edge app has a new app ID. This will cause any favorites, cookies, history and Reading list items that you had saved in the Project Spartan app to be lost after upgrading from a previous Windows 10 Mobile Insider Preview build.

General UX improvements and refinement: You’ll see a lot of UX improvements and refinement in this build. We’ve fixed an issue where many Live tiles pinned to Start would appear blurry – so your Start screen looks much more clear and crisp. You’ll also see a lot more refinement of controls with updated icons and visuals (such as the volume controls). Overall, you’ll find the OS more responsive to use. We’ve got more work to do here but we’re happy about great progress made in this build.

Improvements to Cortana: Cortana’s Notebook is in its final stage with a combined Profile and Settings experience now. You also now set up Quiet Hours in Cortana’s Notebook as well. You should also try sending an e-mail with Cortana – we enabled this in this build! Just say everything at once such as who you want to email (you can send to multiple people), the subject of the e-mail, and what you want your email to say and that’s it. You can even make corrections with your voice. Note – this feature requires an Internet connection and works for U.S. (English) right now.

Flashlight quick action: One of the top pieces of feedback we heard from Windows Insiders for Action Center in Window 10 Mobile was to add a Flashlight quick action so you can quickly turn your phone’s flash into a flashlight. And we’ve delivered this little feature in this build. Just open Action Center, and expand quick actions to check it out for yourself. You can customize which quick actions are always shown in Action Center without having to expand.

Check out the updated Photos app for Windows 10: We’ve published an update to the Photos app via the Windows Store Beta. This update includes general performance and reliability improvements, as well as new capabilities such as support animated GIFs (works on phones with 1GB of RAM or higher). This was a top request from Windows Insiders! And now links to your saved photos, screenshots, and camera roll are available on the Albums page.

Automatic camera upload via OneDrive: Automatic camera roll upload is now managed directly with the OneDrive app on your phone. Make sure you open the OneDrive app and go to settings to set camera upload to be turned on or off depending on which you prefer.

Update your apps: Make sure you check the Store Beta and download the latest updates for apps. Many of our first party apps such as Outlook Mail and Calendar, Music, Movies & TV, and the MSN apps (News, Weather, Sports, and Money) are updating independently of builds so we can get changes to you faster. Make sure you have the updated versions of these apps to get the best experience on your phone.

Here are some things we fixed

  • We have fixed the issue first reported with Build 10051 where Call + SMS filtering would not work after upgrade.
  • We have fixed an issue where text notifications weren’t appearing for incoming messages.
  • We have fixed an issue where the Podcast app wouldn’t work.
  • We have fixed some issues where apps were having trouble installing or updating via the Store Beta.
  • We have fixed an issue where the navigation bar couldn’t be hidden.

Here are some known issues

  • There is an issue where the Install button doesn’t respond after Build 10149 is downloaded. Make sure the battery is charged >40% and press it again.
  • Some people may encounter an 80091007 error trying to upgrade to this build from Build 10136. If you hit this error, sit tight – we’re working on a fix. Or if you want the new build right away, you can use the Windows Phone Recovery Tool to go back to Windows Phone 8.1 and then upgrade to Build 10149.
  • The Insider Hub is removed in this build. Don’t worry, it will be back in future Insider Preview builds.
  • Sometimes the PIN keypad won’t be shown after swiping up to unlock. The workaround is to swipe down to get to Action Center and try to open a notification or Settings to invoke the PIN keypad to unlock your phone.
  • There is a very rare situation where you are unable to unlock your phone after entering your PIN and it keeps letting you type even though you entered your pin correctly. If you hit this – leave the phone alone 1-2 hours before trying to unlock again. This is caused by a TPM issue that could get worse and require you to reflash if you get into this state and power off the phone.
  • If a Gmail account is set up on the phone, the Messaging app may have issues and both incoming and outgoing messages may not work. If this issue is hit, simply reboot your phone to get it working again. We are aware that the Messaging app may behave badly in this state.
  • There is a known issue where apps or games are installed as trial versions even though you have previously purchased them. In-app purchases on Windows 10 Mobile are not functional yet as we migrate the function to the new Windows Store.
  • In certain cases, the colors in some apps may appear off. For example – the titlebar in the Outlook Mail app is orange.
  • There might be some cases where notifications in Action Center appear blank.

We’ve been using this build internally for a few days and have really loved it. It is faster, more stable, and more polished overall and has been lots of fun for us to see come together. For me personally, I’ve been thrilled to see a bunch of changes get completed that you’ve been asking for. It reminds me why I’m so excited about the Windows Insider program and being able to hear your input to help us shape the product.


UPDATED: 6/25 – 4:00pm