What’s New in Windows Phone 8 (6 out of 8)–Location services and maps

November 6, 2012

Windows Phone 8 brings long awaited updates to location services and brand new map control (with associated services) which is based on Nokia maps. Location services So what’s new in location services. First of all – the new WinRT API which is shared with Windows 8. To use location services application must declare the following capability in application manifest: <Capability Name="ID_CAP_LOCATION" /> The “main” class – Geolocator – belongs to Windows.Devices.Geolocation namespace and enables location tracking in good old “events” way and also new async model as follows: ...

What’s New in Windows Phone 8 (5 out of 8)–Quick tip: creating hybrid applications

November 5, 2012

One important feature in Windows Phone 8 is ability to develop high performance applications using Direct3D graphics and C++. While this feature clearly targets game developers, many applications could also gain performance combining native code with C++ components. Moreover, even when developing XAML/C# applications, it is possible to fully leverage modern GPU in Windows Phone 8 device by mixing XAML flexibility with Direct3D graphics. Note: Pure native development using Direct3D are not covered in this post. Let’s overview two other options: first is to use Direct3D graphics is XAML/C# application. Windows Phone 8 SDK provides very...

What’s New in Windows Phone 8 (4 out of 8)–Protocol handler and file extensions

November 2, 2012

This post is dedicated to new extensibility feature – ability to associate file extension and protocol type to automatically launch your app when another app launches a specific file type or URI. When launched, a deep link URI is used to send the file (a reference to the file) or URI to application. You can also use the association launching API to launch another app in the same way. File type association is useful when your app need automatically launch on invoking specific file type from email attachment, NFC tag, text message, another application. Protocol association is...

What’s New in Windows Phone 8 (3 out of 8)–Voice Recognition

November 1, 2012

This post dedicated to additional interesting feature in Windows Phone 8 – voice recognition and speech synthesizing. Speech synthesizing Let’s start from speech synthesizing. The functionality localized in Windows.Phone.Speech.Synthesis namespace. Using classes in this namespace you can create text-to-speech (TTS) scenarios in your application. The functionality enables read some document identified by URI, string of text with SSML markup or plain text. My sample focuses on plain text scenario. Class responsible for speech synthesizing is SpeechSynthesizer. To speak plain text use code snippet below: SpeechSynthesizer synth =...

What’s New in Windows Phone 8 (2 out of 8)–Lock Screen

October 31, 2012

In previous post I described how to enrich user experience by customizing application tiles. In this post I will show how to enable your application to present some information on phone’s lock screen. In Windows Phone 8 applications could provide 3 pieces of info on lock screen: application’s icon, count and text. On screenshot below my sample application provides icon, count and some text: If application selected by user, the lock screen could show app icon defined in app manifest, count and text pulled directly from the application's primary tile. The secondary tiles does not...

What’s New in Windows Phone 8 (1 out of 8)–Tiles

October 30, 2012

One of the most noticeable feature of Windows Phone 8 is change of main screen with 3 different tile types: Each tile could be one out from 3 types available sizes – small, normal and wide. Also, each type could be form 3 different types – Iconic, Flip and Cycle. All 3 sizes and all 3 types are available for 3rd party developers. Let’s see how to use this interesting feature in the application. So what are the sizes? The sizes are: Small Medium Wide ...

Windows Phone 8 SDK available

Just announced at BUILD keynotes – Windows Phone 8 SDK available now! It includes Visual Studio Express 2012 edition for Windows Phone (which also works as add-on for paid versions of Visual Studio 2012), new Hyper-V based Windows Phone emulator and Expression Blend. It could be downloaded from the following location: http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=261873   Stay tuned for more exciting news to come, Alex

Working with NFC–Take 2

October 24, 2012

Some time ago (I’ve blogged about working with proximity devices – NFC – in Windows 8 Consumer preview: http://blogs.microsoft.co.il/blogs/alex_golesh/archive/2012/02/29/windows-8-consumer-preview-and-visual-studio-11-beta-working-with-proximity-device-part-2-11.aspx). Then I’ve talked about a simple way performing NFC communication – using pub/sub communication pattern which is good for exchanging simple messages using PublishMessage and PublishBinaryMessage functions on ProximityDevice class. Few days ago my client asked me to prepare a demo which uses proximity communication to transfer custom “Items” between two instances of the app (and also Windows Phone 8 version of this app). The app uses complex “items” which includes many textual fields, undefined number of attached images,...

I’m Microsoft MVP for another year!

July 1, 2012

About 10 minutes ago, I received an email presenting me with the Microsoft MVP Award in Silverlight! I am very honored to receive an MVP Award for the fourth time in row and I will continue contributing to the online and offline developer community worldwide. This is a great opportunity and place to thank quite a few people who helped me to win this Award again: My wife and daughter for having so much patience and providing the best support I could only dream about! My current...

Windows 8 Release Preview

May 31, 2012

Windows 8 Release Preview (RP) was published and can be downloaded by anyone who want to try this great preview of upcoming OS! More info about it here: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-8/release-preview Download the version to try from here: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-8/download For those, who want to grab ISO images links could be found at the following location: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-8/iso (this link also provides the product key to use)   Developers, developers, developers! Updated version version of Visual Studio 2012 Express RC for Windows 8 can be downloaded from the following lcoation: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/apps/br229516.aspx...