Windows RT


One screenshot illustrates all that is wrong with the Windows 8 app store

flappybird_win8_20140224

I’ve made peace, more-or-less, with Windows after the 8.1 update became available. But, this screenshot from Feb. 24, 2014 (today as I type this) illustrates one of the big problems with the Windows 8.x app store: Flappy Bird clones? Really? And, so many of them…

Microsoft
Windows RT

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MobileViews Podcast 67 & ComicsViews Podcast 43: iOS 7, Windows RT 8.1, Arrow, Agents of SHIELD

This special combined MobileViews and ComicsViews podcast let Todd Ogasawara, Jay Stone, and Emil Reyes catch up on iOS 7, Windows RT 81, Arrow (CW TV show) and Agents of Shield (ABC) in one podcast.

Apple
iPad
iPhone
Mobile Devices
podcast
Windows RT

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Amazon Cloud Player: No app needed for Windows RT

Amazon Cloud Player in Windows RT IE10

Amazon Cloud Player in Windows RT IE10

Earlier today Amazon announced their free CD AutoRip service that places some of the CDs you’ve bought over the years automatically in the Amazon Cloud for streaming to your desktop or mobile device. If you have an Android or iOS device, you can download a free player to play these automatically ripped songs. But, what if you have a Windows RT tablet like the Surface?

In that case, just open up the IE10 browser and point it to the Amazon Cloud Player just as you would on a desktop or notebook computer. The IE10 browser will play it just fine on the Microsoft Surface tablet running Windows RT.

Microsoft
Windows RT

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Featured Windows RT App: Bento news reader

Bento for Windows 8/RT.

Bento for Windows 8/RT.

News Bento for Windows 8/RT is a simple news aggregation app that is easy to navigate and presents news items from a variety of sources in a clean view. And, yes, it is free.

Bento lets you select news feeds from a variety of well-known news sources and blogs. The app can also draw any or all the RSS feeds you might collect in Google Reader to let you personalize the news collection even more. While it does not have a way to deal with your Facebook, Google+, or Twitter sources, it is as close you can get to a Flipboard experience on a Windows 8 or RT device. I don’t think it is a stretch to say it may be one of the most useful third party apps available for the Metro UI on Windows 8 or RT.

Microsoft
Windows RT

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Featured Windows 8/RT WebApp: MSN for Windows 8

MSN for Windows 8

MSN for Windows 8

Microsoft launched a version of its MSN website optimized for IE10 on Windows 8/RT today (Jan. 8, 2013). Most site redesigns are ho-hum at best. But, this version specifically for Windows 8 is a marked improvement over what we see in other versions of Windows and IE.

The most notable aspect of this redesigned site, however, is that it does NOT use the awful horizontal scrolling used by almost every other site and app for Windows 8. This Metro design affectation works fine for Windows Phone where the horizontal scrolling permits a sliding view into a larger window. But, this is completely unnecessary on a device like a tablet or notebook PC that actually has a relatively large display. Fortunately, MSN.com scrolls vertically Windows 8/RT. This makes for a pleasant navigation experience on a nice clean site design.

Microsoft
Windows RT

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Featured Windows RT App: Netflix

Netflix for Windows RT

Netflix for Windows RT

I’ve been using my Microsoft Surface with Windows RT daily since getting it in October. So, I’m no Windows RT hater. But, I will readily admit that the Windows RT app story is terrible. There aren’t very many apps for the platform. And, many of the ones that are available are terrible. This is even the case for some major developers who have produced very good apps for other mobile platforms like iOS and Android. However, I’ll return to these offenders (*cough* Evernote *cough* comiXology *cough*) in a future post.

This first featured Windows RT app, however, is a pretty good one. It is the free Netflix app. The user interface (UI) for the Windows RT version is usable and nearly as good as the apps for iOS and Android. It does, however, have two relatively minor issues:

1. It sometimes stutters during playback where the iOS and Android versions do not (same network)
2. Starting or resuming a video consistently results in the audio starting before video is visible

These issues aside, the app deserves the 4-star user rating (out of possible 5) given it by 48061 users (as of Jan. 7, 2013).

Microsoft
Windows RT

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