Monthly Archives: August 2013

Foursquare: Tablet App goes to Windows First!

[8/28 @ 8p EST – Note:  I’m receiving a few emails that say the links aren’t working for the Windows 8 app in the Windows Store.  I just tested and they work…  From the Windows Experience Blog – “the app is propagating across the Windows Store servers, if this link doesn’t work keep checking!”]

imageToday, the Foursquare application has been published to the Windows Store.  This is an EXCLUSIVE, Windows 8 FIRST, Tablet app that  provides users with an immersive experience that can take advantage of devices with larger screen sizes.

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Here’s what Dennis Crowley, Co-founder and CEO of Foursquare, said about the app (credit:  Windows Experience Blog):

“People want to experience and explore the world around them, and the Foursquare for Windows 8 app helps them do that. It makes it fun to search for a place for dinner or to go out, and helps people discover new experiences. We’ve worked with Microsoft on a bunch of initiatives over the years, and this product is another example of the great things we can do together.”

Publisher Description

Foursquare for Windows 8 helps you make the most of where you are and where you are going. Keep up with your friends and discover great places and activities nearby, on all your Windows devices!

Application Features

  • Get instant suggestions when you open the app, even if you don’t have a Foursquare account
  • See places that are currently trending, recently opened, or just best nearby
  • Easily search for “Thai”, “park” or “brunch”
  • Get directions, hours, photos, and more
  • Full-screen photos viewer brings locations to life
  • Save places to your to-do list and create custom lists
  • Get tips from friends, top publications and brands
  • Like or dislike places and leave tips for friends
  • Check in without interrupting location browsing
  • We learn your tastes the more you check in

Windows App Pictures

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Download Windows 8 App

Download Link

You can also read about the application from the Foursquare blog.

Lastly, if you have a Windows Phone and haven’t done so already, download and install the Windows Phone Foursquare app from Windows Phone Apps.

Windows Phone Pictures

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Windows 8.1 has RTM’d

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Windows 8.1 has RTM’d (Released To Manufacturing).  You can read about it at Blogging Windows:  Readying Windows 8.1 for Release.

Mark October 18th, 2013 on your calendar to be able to download bits for broad adoption.

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Ballmer to retire within 12 months

I have nothing more to say on this outside of the official press announcement, except that I’m a big fan of Steve Ballmer (and Bill Gates). 

I’ve been with Microsoft for over 12.5 years.  I always viewed it was my destiny to work for this great company.  Microsoft was founded in 1975… the year I was born!

Best of luck to you and your family Mr. Ballmer.  Be proud of all the accomplishments this company has achieved.

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Instagram for Windows Phone

Well, not exactly.  Instagram still hasn’t officially published their app to the Windows Phone store, but, I think there is really good news to share… maybe even better news.  Let me explain.

imageYesterday, Rudy Huyn, published his application (6tag) to the Windows Phone store that is a FULL FEATURED Instagram App for Windows Phone.  As of today, 6tag has over 3,600 reviews and has achieved a 5 star rating.  It is a FREE application that you can download and begin using today.

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Publisher Details

6tag is the most full featured Instagram app for Windows Phone.

Upload picture and videos, apply filters, tag your friends, view posts on a map, etc…

Customize your photos with one of several gorgeous and custom built filter effects.

Share your photos and videos in a simple photo stream with friends to see – and follow your friends’ photos with the click of a single button.

  • 100% original filters: XPro-II, Earlybird, Rise, Amaro, Hudson, Lo-fi, Sutro, Toaster, Brannan, Inkwell, Walden, Hefe, Nashville, 1977, and others.
  • Video recording with cut scenes
  • Linear and Radial Tilt-Shift blur effects for extra depth of field.
  • Instant sharing to Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Tumblr and Foursquare, VK
  • Unlimited picture uploads
  • geotag your posts
  • Interact with friends through giving & receiving likes and comments
  • Front & Back camera support
  • And much much more…

Why Better?

As we all know, 1st party titles don’t necessarily mean better titles.  True, 1st party developers have access to the super secret sauce and the APIs, but the world is filled with super talented 3rd party developers.  Maybe that is the case for Instragram.

If you look at the 5 start rating that 6tag currently has based on over 3,600 reviews, that is far better than the Instagram app is receiving on the iOS platform. 

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(pic from iTunes store)

As of this writing, the official 1st party Instagram app is receiving 3 stars based on 2,300+ reviews with the haters nearly equal to the lovers of the app.

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(pic from iTunes store taken on 8/23/2013 at 8:30a EST)

If you have been waiting to adopt a Windows Phone because of Instagram, maybe you shouldn’t wait any longer.  It appears that the 6tag application will give you everything you have been wanting… and, maybe with a better experience.

You can also read another review about this app on Windows Phone Central.

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Turn ANY surface into a Touch Screen

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I first want to thank my colleague, Adam Ward, for bringing this to my attention.  I had a discussion with him earlier this week when he asked if I had seen or heard about a company, Ubi Interactive, that has a product that could turn any surface into a touch screen.  During that conversation, we were discussing the many applicable scenarios where this could come into play… manufacturing, healthcare, sales, interactive kiosks, etc.

After we concluded our call, I started to do some more investigation and I thought I would share with you my findings.  At the time of this writing, I still haven’t touched or seen this product in action (except for the video below).  But, I agree with Adam… there are many applicable use cases.  As of yesterday, I have placed my order.

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What is it?

imageUbi software with the combination of the Kinect for Windows device and a Windows 8 PC, Laptop, or Tablet can turn any surface into an interactive and natural touch display.

From Ubi’s blog, they share the countless experiences that this solution can solve, including:

  • What if business professionals could demo a product in a team meeting room by just walking up to the wall and touching it?
  • What if professors could engage their students by teaching their lesson plan in an interactive lecture hall?
  • What if shoppers could still get product information on a retail store window when it was closed?
  • What if mom’s famous chocolate chip cookie recipe was projected onto a kitchen counter?
  • What if kids could use their entire bedroom wall to play Angry Birds?

Now corporate offices can bring collaboration to an all-time high. Teachers can gauge student interest by teaching interactive material. Retailers can engage customers with their brand by using interactive in-store displays. The possibilities are truly endless.

The Ubi technology extends to all kinds of people and has implications of revolutionizing the way we live our day-to-day lives.

Here is a quick video showcase Ubi

 

Ubi Interactive Story?

Ubi was originally founded and incubated at the Technical University of Munich and the Center for Digital Technology and Management in Munich, Germany. We found a new home in Seattle when we were selected by Microsoft as one of the eleven promising companies, who were chosen from all over the world to be part of its first accelerator program. During this program we developed and perfected our technology making use of the close technical and business guidance from Microsoft.

Our unique technology has caught the world attention and has been featured in CNN, Wall Street Journal, Wired Magazine etc. Microsoft called us as the future of digital displays and featured us in the World Partner Conference 2012.

What does it cost?

As of this writing, Ubi has the current pricing model:

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Please go to their website to ensure this pricing hasn’t changed.

Additional Info

If you would like to learn more, click on one of these links:

Ubi Interactive Website

Ubi FAQs

Ubi Order

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SAP continues to move forward with Windows 8 Support

Last March, I did a post on SAP and their commitment to the Windows platform and to the Windows tablets.  At that time, SAP had published 6 apps to the Windows Store and have made a public commitment to move their sales force to the Microsoft Surface Pro for their mobility scenarios.

I want to quickly follow-up on that post as SAP continues to publish new apps for the Windows ecosystem.  I believe part of the interest and success includes native support of the rich Office Productivity applications, the ability to digitally ink (with Windows 8 Pro devices), and the security and management capabilities that enterprises struggle with as the demand for mobility increases.

For this quick update, the two new apps that are found in the Windows Store include:

SAP EMR Unwired

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Per the details:

With the SAP EMR Unwired mobile app for Windows tablets, physicians and nurses have easy, secure access to patient data right at the point of care. The app connects to clinical back-end systems, including hospital information and imaging systems (PACS), and displays the patient’s data on the Windows tablet in a clear and easy-to-read format.

You can download the app and start using it immediately.

SAP Sales Pipeline Simulator

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Per the details:

You can use the SAP Sales Pipeline Simulator mobile app for Windows tablets to check your sales pipeline anywhere and at anytime. This app accesses the SAP CRM application and allows sales reps to not only check their pipeline, but also to simulate changes to their pipeline and check how these changes affect their sales targets, right from their Windows tablet.

You can download this app as well.

Each of these apps can be downloaded and test with demo data.  So, go ahead and take a tour of these new applications from SAP.

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Delta adopts Windows Phones for 19,000 airlines attendants

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Today, Delta published a press release that “more than 19,000 Delta Airlines attendants will begin using Windows Phone 8 handsets.”  The airlines attendants will be using these devices to better serve their customers, including:

  • Near real-time credit card processing for on-board purchases, including upgrades to Delta’s popular Economy Comfort seating. On-board Economy Comfort upgrades will begin on transcontinental and international flights before being offered on flights across Delta’s system
  • Convenient eReceipts  that can be emailed to customers
  • Customer’s use of pre-paid credit cards for on-board purchases
  • Quicker transaction processing times.
  • In the near future, the ability to read coupons displayed on a customer’s mobile device.
  • More efficient service recovery

Quote from Delta

“Delta’s 19,000 in-flight professionals are there for the safety and comfort of our customers, and equipping them with innovative solutions means they can better meet our customers’ needs on board every flight,” said Joanne Smith, senior vice president – In-Flight Service. “This is yet another way we’re investing in technology to improve the customer experience.”

Additionally, Delta has a consumer Windows Phone app that you can use today.  Here is the link to install the Fly Delta app.

The Windows Phone momentum might have been slow to start, but you are seeing increased acceleration thanks to the beautiful, simple, and connected design of the software and the gorgeous devices from Nokia, HTC, and others.

More and more enterprises are adopting Windows Phones as they provide enterprises an end-to-end solution with security in mind; likewise, consumers are starting to see the real value in the devices as well.  Did you know that Windows Phone is the 2nd most widely used mobile platform in Latin America?  Here’s is the press release.

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