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Xamarin for everyone

On March 18th, 2016, Microsoft’s acquisition of Xamarin officially closed.

We love C# and we want every developer to be able to take advantage of the power of .NET in every app, on every device. Being part of Microsoft makes it possible for us to do some incredible things, and today we are announcing several big changes to the way we ship our products.

Visual Studio now includes Xamarin
As of today, we are including Xamarin in Visual Studio at no extra cost.

Xamarin will be in every edition of Visual Studio, including the widely-available Visual Studio Community Edition, which is free for individual developers, open source projects, academic research, education, and small professional teams. Develop and publish native apps for iOS and Android with C# or F# from directly within Visual Studio with no limits on app size.

For developers on the Mac, Xamarin Studio is now available as a benefit of your Visual Studio Professional or Enterprise subscription. Developers can use the newly-created Xamarin Studio Community Edition for free.

To begin developing iOS and Android apps with the full power of Xamarin and C#, download Xamarin Studio or Xamarin for Visual Studio today.

We love open source
And we know you do too.

So we are announcing today that we have contributed the Mono Project to the .NET Foundation, including some previously-proprietary mobile-specific improvements to the Mono runtime. Mono will also be re-released under the MIT License, to enable an even broader set of uses for everyone. In addition, to help clarify users’ rights to Mono under Microsoft patents, Microsoft has issued a broad patent promise for Mono. Miguel has posted more details to the Mono Project blog.

These changes to Mono remove all barriers to adopting a modern, performant .NET runtime in any software product, embedded device, or game engine, and open the door to easily integrate C# with apps and games on iOS, Android, Mac, and Windows, as well as PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and any emerging platforms developers want to target in the future

But wait, there’s more!

In addition to these important steps, we are announcing today our commitment to open source the Xamarin SDKs for Android, iOS, and Mac under the MIT license in the coming months. This includes native API bindings and the basic command-line tools necessary to develop mobile apps. It also includes our popular cross-platform native UI toolkit, Xamarin.Forms.

With these changes, .NET is now open source and native on every single device, from mobile to desktop to cloud. This is a proud moment for all of us who have invested years into making .NET the best platform, and we know that this change will make it even easier for developers to invest their own time into building great software in C#.

We look forward to building a true open source community around Xamarin, and eagerly await the first pull requests.

Xamarin Insights is joining HockeyApp
Xamarin Insights delivers incredible value to mobile .NET developers by helping find and debug issues in your apps. Now we are ready to bring that experience to an even wider audience.

Over the next few months, Xamarin Insights will merge with HockeyApp bringing experiences that made Xamarin Insights so great into HockeyApp.

During this transition, current Xamarin Insights customers will be supported through existing contracts and Xamarin developers can still freely integrate Xamarin Insights into their apps. For more information, please see the FAQ.

Xamarin Test Cloud
This morning at the BUILD conference Scott Guthrie showed how Slack and Pinterest are using Xamarin Test Cloud and our 2,300-device test lab to make sure their apps work everywhere. We will continue to provide Xamarin Test Cloud as a standalone product, and we will be investing heavily in its future.

Xamarin University
On the Xamarin University front, we’re working with other teams within Microsoft to expand our content to cover mobile development with more Microsoft products. We’ve also launched a free self-guided class designed to get you up to speed on Xamarin quickly, and it even counts toward Xamarin Developer Certification! Start learning today.

To our customers
Our commitment to your success in mobile is stronger than ever. We want to continue to be your trusted partner, and you should hold us to the highest standards in the quality of our products and support.

If you have additional questions, visit our FAQ or reach out at hello@xamarin.com. We would love to hear from you.

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Saving Data – Myth Buster

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A data usage myth exists about “saving data”, this concept far beyond defeats logic, we can rather term it as a comforter of thoughts if at all anything.

There’s an increase in the number of people who believe that once you turn off ? the mobile data on your device that there is immediate saving benefit of using data. Now I have tried to understand this from various sides (1) of the consumer, (2) my own, (3) the truth (or rather logic).

Continue reading Saving Data – Myth Buster

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Introducing Windows 10 Editions

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Windows 10 is coming this summer in 190 countries and 111 languages. Today, we are excited to share more details on the Windows 10 Editions.

We designed Windows 10 to deliver a more personal computing experience across a range of devices. An experience optimized for each device type, but familiar to all. Windows 10 will power an incredibly broad range of devices – everything from PCs, tablets, phones, Xbox One, Microsoft HoloLens and Surface Hub. It will also power the world around us, core to devices making up the Internet of Things, everything from elevators to ATMs to heart rate monitors to wearables. No matter which Windows 10 device our customers use, the experience will feel comfortable, and there will be a single, universal Windows Store where they can find, try and buy Universal Windows apps.

Introducing Windows 10 Editions
As in the past, we will offer different Windows editions that are tailored for various device families and uses. These different editions address specific needs of our various customers, from consumers to small businesses to the largest enterprises.

Windows 10 Home is the consumer-focused desktop edition. It offers a familiar and personal experience for PCs, tablets and 2-in-1s. Windows 10 Home will help people do great things, both big and small. With it, they will be more productive and have more fun thanks to a long list of new innovations: Cortana, the world’s most personal digital assistant; the new Microsoft Edge web browser; Continuum tablet mode for touch-capable devices; Windows Hello face-recognition, iris and fingerprint login; and right out of the box, a broad range of universal Windows apps like Photos, Maps, Mail, Calendar, Music and Video*.

We are also bringing the Xbox gaming experience to Windows 10, giving games and gamers access to the Xbox Live gaming community, enabling the capture and share of gameplay and giving Xbox One owners the ability to play their Xbox One games from any Windows 10 PC in their home.

Windows 10 Mobile is designed to deliver the best user experience on smaller, mobile, touch-centric devices like smartphones and small tablets. It boasts the same, new universal Windows apps that are included in Windows 10 Home, as well as the new touch-optimized version of Office. Windows 10 Mobile offers great productivity, security and management capabilities for customers who use their personal devices at work. In addition, Windows 10 Mobile will enable some new devices to take advantage of Continuum for phone, so people can use their phone like a PC when connected to a larger screen.

Windows 10 Pro is a desktop edition for PCs, tablets and 2-in-1s. Building upon both the familiar and innovative features of Windows 10 Home, it has many extra features to meet the diverse needs of small businesses. Windows 10 Pro helps to effectively and efficiently manage their devices and apps, protect their sensitive business data, support remote and mobile productivity scenarios and take advantage of cloud technologies. Windows 10 Pro devices are a great choice for organizations supporting Choose Your Own Device (CYOD) programs and prosumer customers. Windows 10 Pro also lets customers take advantage of the new Windows Update for Business, which will reduce management costs, provide controls over update deployment, offer quicker access to security updates and provide access to the latest innovation from Microsoft on an ongoing basis.

As we announced earlier this year, for the first time ever, we are offering the full versions of Windows 10 Home, Windows 10 Mobile and Windows 10 Pro as a free and easy upgrade for qualifying Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1 devices that upgrade in the first year after launch.** Once you upgrade, you have Windows 10 for free on that device.

Windows 10 Enterprise builds on Windows 10 Pro, adding advanced features designed to meet the demands of medium and large sized organizations. It provides advanced capabilities to help protect against the ever-growing range of modern security threats targeted at devices, identities, applications and sensitive company information. Windows 10 Enterprise also supports the broadest range of options for operating system deployment and comprehensive device and app management. It will be available to our Volume Licensing customers, so they can take advantage of the latest innovation and security updates on an ongoing basis. At the same time, they will be able to choose the pace at which they adopt new technology, including the option to use the new Windows Update for Business. With Windows 10, Enterprise customers will also have access to the Long Term Servicing Branch as a deployment option for their mission critical devices and environments. And as with prior versions of Windows, Active Software Assurance customers in Volume Licensing can upgrade to Windows 10 Enterprise as part of their existing Software Assurance benefits.

Windows 10 Education builds on Windows 10 Enterprise, and is designed to meet the needs of schools – staff, administrators, teachers and students. This edition will be available through academic Volume Licensing, and there will be paths for schools and students using Windows 10 Home and Windows 10 Pro devices to upgrade to Windows 10 Education.

Windows 10 Mobile Enterprise is designed to deliver the best customer experience to business customers on smartphones and small tablets. It will be available to our Volume Licensing customers. It offers the great productivity, security and mobile device management capabilities that Windows 10 Mobile provides, and adds flexible ways for businesses to manage updates. In addition, Windows 10 Mobile Enterprise will incorporate the latest security and innovation features as soon as they are available.

There will also be versions of Windows 10 Enterprise and Windows 10 Mobile Enterprise for industry devices like ATMs, retail point of sale, handheld terminals and industrial robotics and Windows 10 IoT Core for small footprint, low cost devices like gateways.

Moving forward
We are making strong progress with Windows 10, and we are on track to make it available this summer. And because we have built Windows 10 to be delivered as a service, this milestone is just the beginning of the new generation of Windows. Starting this fall, customers can expect ongoing innovation and security updates for their Windows 10 devices, including more advanced security and management capabilities for businesses.

Customers will continue to help us create Windows 10 even after this summer’s initial release, thanks to the 3.9 million and growing Windows Insiders who are helping us build and test Windows 10. We are grateful for this invaluable feedback that is helping us offer the best Windows ever – for businesses and consumers – across all devices. You, too, can join the Windows Insider Program today and begin experiencing Windows 10.

We are incredibly excited about the innovation in Windows 10 that will be delivered through these editions. Please watch for more information at Windows.com as we move even closer to launch.

Article by Tony Prophet on http://blogs.windows.com/bloggingwindows/2015/05/13/introducing-windows-10-editions/

* Cortana will be available on Windows 10 at launch in select markets. Windows Hello requires a specialized, illuminated infrared camera for facial recognition or iris detection or a finger print reader which supports the Windows Biometric Framework. Apps and services may vary by market.

** More information about the free upgrade offer can be found at Windows.com.

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Samsung’s second Galaxy Gear may arrive running the company’s own Tizen OS

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It is being widely reported that, in addition to announcing a new flagship smartphone, Samsung will also be taking the wraps off of a second-generation smartwatch based around the original Galaxy Gear.

By themselves the reports are not unusual. Samsung has promised to do better with regards to their smartwatch product, saying that they will be working to correct the problems that plagued the original device. What is strange is that the report that started all of this speculation has said that Samsung will be avoiding Android is favour of something a bit more in-house – the company’s Tizen operating system.

Samsung is reportedly concerned that the Android OS isn’t quite as flexible as it needs to be in order to make the smartwatch work as intended and they are also looking to have more control over what the second Galaxy Gear is capable of doing. We’d assume this means that they want to make updating the device a simpler affair, in addition to other reasons.

The Galaxy Gear announcement is expected to take place at MWC next week, we’ll probably be able to put these rumours to rest then.

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Five Samsung smartphones to get KitKat updates this month

According to a leaked document purportedly originating at Samsung India, the Korean company is going to release Android 4.4 KitKat updates for five smartphones before the end of this month.
The handsets in question are the Galaxy S4 Mini, the Galaxy Grand 2 Duos, the Galaxy Mega 5.8 Duos, the Galaxy Mega 6.3, and the Galaxy Note 3 Neo.

 

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Apple Introduces iOS 8

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Last year, Apple revealed the biggest change to-date of iOS, the mobile operating system that many of us have been using for years. Now, the true evolution begins. Jony Ive and the iOS team have had plenty of time to listen to feedback and dig deeper into features introduced before Ive ever took control of software. And finally, iOS 8 is here.

We’ve been expecting a new Healthbook application, a broken out iTunes Radio app to stand on its own, and maybe even split-screen multitasking on the iPad. Will all these dreams come true?

Let’s find out together.

We’ll be updating this article as more and more is announced, so please refresh as the story is still developing.

A few big overviews they showed off first:

Notifications Center is quite a bit different. It includes a new interactive notifications feature to let you swipe down to reply immediately to a message, and that extends all the way out to the lockscreen. It looks a lot like the interactive notifications from OS X Mavericks.

You can also find your favorite contacts by double-tapping to multitask. This gives you quick access to the people you talk to the most.

In Safari, you can get to tab view by clicking the “Tab View” button in the top right corner on the iPad, which comes direct from the new Yosemite version of OS X.

Plus, there are new Mail features which let you use gestures to go directly from a message you’re composing to your inbox, by simply swiping down. This lets you check things out while you’re in the middle of a draft, and then you can pop right back in to the message you were drafting by tapping at the bottom of the screen.

QuickType is a new version of the keyboard in iOS 8. The keyboard finally supports keyword auto-suggestions to let you autofill quickly. It’s context-sensitive, so it offers up words based on what you’ve already typed.

Plus, it also knows who you’re talking to, which is crazy. By knowing who you’re talking to, it will send up predictions that are right for the type of conversation you have with that particular person. It makes a big difference if you’re texting with your boss or your boyfriend.

Continuity is a new part of Apple’s entire software ecosystem, extending beyond iOS to OS X Yosemite. The phone, iPad and computer will be aware of each other, and while you’re in the middle of a task, you can switch from one device to the next with a simple prompt.

iPhone 5s | Fly or Die

While composing an email on your computer, a small icon will come up on the lower left hand side of the iPhone. Swiping up, as you would to open up the camera quickly, you can get directly into that same email draft on your iPhone. The same extends from iPhone to Mac.

You could be composing a text message on your phone, and an Apple computer running Yosemite would automatically add an icon to the dock, prompting you to complete the message on the computer.

Perhaps the most exciting part is that Continuity extends to phone calls, meaning that you can have your phone plugged in on the other side of the house and pick up a phone call on your Mac, using it as a speakerphone. You can place calls from the Mac, too.

iMessage is the most used app on the iPhone, hands down. So they’ve spent some time working on the way we message each other.

With Group Messages, you can name the thread, add and remove people, and set Do Not Disturb on a per-person basis within a thread.

Apple has also added audio messages, which you can send by swiping left on a little beacon on the right of the typing window. You can also respond to a message in the notification center with an audio message simply by raising the phone to your ear. The same beacon offers video messaging and location sharing.

Most importantly, you can set up these audio messages and video messages to self destruct after a certain number of minutes, going head to head with Snapchat in an exciting way. Ephemerality is here. For good, it seems.

Enterprise is also a big focus for Apple, and so iOS has improved iCloud Drive, as well as Device Enrollment and even parts of the Mail app, which will now let you turn on VIP threads, rather than just assigning VIP status to contacts.

Health is something we knew that Apple would focus on, but we didn’t know that “Health” would be the actual name of the app. Just as expected, it’s a centralized place where many health apps can plug in on the back end so that users can have a single hub for all their health data and services.

On the backend, Apple is calling it HealthKit. But it’s not just developers who can build into HealthKit, but health providers and medical institutions.

Family Sharing is a new feature in iOS 8 that lets you sync up all the devices in a single family (must be tied to one credit card) to automatically share media, calendars, reminders, or find my friends. You can also locate people’s devices, which could come in handy for parents with forgetful kids. Or vice versa.

The most crucial part of iOS 8 Family Sharing is that it will help with children who rack up crazy bills are their parents accounts. Now, when a kid tries to make a purchase on iTunes or in the App Store, the parent will get a notification asking for permission. Problem solved.

Photos!

So far, Apple’s Photo Stream has only allowed for 1,000 photos to be stored at a time, requiring that at some point you back everything up to your Mac. Now Apple is offering storage for all your photos and videos in the cloud with access to them from any device, similar to the way that iTunes holds all your music and movies.

And not only do these devices sync edits, photos, and devices, but they have new Smart Editing features that let you do some pretty amazing edits to both Photos and Videos.

And of course, with more photos you need better search. Apple has added a more advanced search within the Photos app that includes auto-suggestions from more recently taken photos, recently viewed, etc.

More broadly, the Photos app generally looks quite different than it has, with more space between photos not unlike the look of Yosemite.

Siri is the closer for iOS 8, and it’s a pretty big one. You can now activate Siri without touching the phone, which I have actually been praying for since she arrived, by simply saying “Hey Siri.” Siri also now has Shazam integration, the ability to purchase content from iTunes, streaming voice recognition, and comes in 22 new dictation languages.

Developers:

There is a lot at the fingertips of developers this year. TouchID is being opened up to third-party developers, and keyboard builders are now allowed to submit to the App Store, meaning Swype may finally be available on the iPhone. They’re also providing APIs for Cameras which gives more manual controls to third-party apps.

And perhaps most exciting, HomeKit. HomeKit is going to be Apple’s smart home platform, letting developers build something central to iOS. Expect to see an even bigger boom in IoT equipment in the home. Once developers get cracking at this, with the help of Siri, you’ll be able to ask your phone to “Get ready for bed,” and simultaneously turn off the lights, turn down the temperature, etc.

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Update for iOS 7.0.6 (iPads and iPhones)

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iOS 7.0.6

Data Security

Available for: iPhone 4 and later, iPod touch (5th generation), iPad 2 and later

Impact: An attacker with a privileged network position may capture or modify data in sessions protected by SSL/TLS

Description: Secure Transport failed to validate the authenticity of the connection. This issue was addressed by restoring missing validation steps.