Martin Brinkmann

Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Thirty-fifth in a series.  Microsoft has released the preview of the upcoming Windows 8.1. With it came many changes to the operating system, application management and the store.

Some, like the ability to use smaller or larger tile sizes or the option to uninstall multiple apps at once, have been on the feature request list of many Windows 8 users.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Thirty-fourth in a series.  The total apps growth this week jumped over the 3,000 new apps mark again after having hit that threshold for the first time two weeks ago.

The total app count in the US Windows 8 Store rose to 63,756 free and paid apps up 3,034 apps from 60,722 the week before.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Thirty-third in a series. This has been another strong week for Microsoft's Windows Store as apps surged past the 60,000 app mark in the US store for the first time.

A total of  60,722 apps are listed in store at the time of writing, 2,711 more than last week. Free apps have increased by 2,129 to a total of 47,034 apps in the last seven days, while paid apps have seen a moderate growth by 582 apps to 13,688 in total.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Thirty-second in a series. Windows Store has seen one of the largest growths in its history this week breaking the 3,000 apps mark for the first time this year. A total of 3,033 apps were released, raising the total app count of the US Windows Store to 58,011 apps.

44,905 of those apps are listed as free in the store, an increase of 2,413 apps this week alone. Paid apps increased by 616 apps this week to a total of 13,106.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Thirty-first in a series. Yesterday Microsoft confirmed information about the upcoming Windows 8.1 update that it plans to release later this year. The update will introduce several improvements to the start screen and Windows Store that improve the usability of that part of Windows 8.

While I do not want to rehash what Wayne already mentioned in yesterday's article, I'd like to point out a couple of key changes in Windows 8.1. One of the biggest changes is the introduction of new tile sizes. To be precise, Windows 8.1 users will have access to a smaller and one larger size.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Thirtieth in a series. Several stock apps were updated this week. The Xbox Music app supports the import of iTunes playlists in its latest version, and users of the video app benefit from the improved accessibility of actor and director information.

The official Major League Soccer app for Windows 8, MLS MatchDay, has been improved as well featuring "exclusive content and this season’s schedule, standings, highlights, play-by-play, roster lineups, game stats, goals, cards and substitutions" as Alan notes.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Twenty-ninth in a series. The US Windows 8 apps store crossed the 50,000 apps mark for the first time today; a total of 50,156 apps are listed in the store, with the majority of them free to download and use.

That's an increase of 1,639 apps in the past seven days, a sharp drop over last week's increase of nearly 2400 apps.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Twenty-eighth in a series. Several popular apps received updates this week. A new version of the ESPN app was uploaded to the store adding tennis coverage to it and fixing a couple of bugs related to the live scoring tile feature and the display of select sports when they are snapped on to the side of the screen.

Toolbox, an app offering access to custom tools that you can display next to each other on the screen received its first commercial in-app upgrade. Users can add a Twitter client to the app for a one-time payment of $4.99.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Twenty-seventh in a series. Growth remained stable but below the 2,000 new apps mark this week. The overall app count is now at 46,143 in the U.S. Windows Store, an increase by 1,788 apps in total. The store features 36,164 free apps, an increase of 1,362 apps, and 9,979 paid applications, which increased by 426 apps this week.

Several core apps were updated this week. The OneNote application for Windows 8 received an update that adds finger drawing support to it. To use the new feature, tap on the screen and select draw from the radial menu that opens up when you do.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Twenty-sixth in a series. Windows Store app growth has slowed down a bit in the past two weeks. The overall increase dropped below 2,000 new apps in both periods. The overall app count increased by 1,877 this week to 44,355 apps in the US Windows Store. Free apps increased by 1,372 to a total of 34,802, and paid & trial apps by 505 to 9553 apps.

The Windows 8 news app received an update this week that added support for RSS feeds to it. To add an RSS feed click on the Add a source link after you have opened the news app and add the RSS URL at the top of the source field on the page that opens up. You should not expect "Google Reader"-like controls but if you follow a couple of sites, you can add them here to do so using the news app.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Twenty-fifth in a series. The increase of new apps slowed down a little bit, falling under the 2,000 apps per week mark that was passed in the last three weeks. A total of 1,928 new apps found their way into the store this week. The total number of apps in the U.S. store is now 42,478, made up of 33,430 free apps and 9,048 paid ones. Free apps increased by 1,447 this week and paid ones by 481.

The core Bing apps received updates a couple of days ago. I won't rehash all that we previously reporting, only this much: Bing News supports custom RSS feeds now that you can add to the app so that you can add your own news sources to it. News also supports keyword-based news that you can add easily to the application.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Twenty-fourth in a series. Welcome to another greatest Windows 8 apps of the week. I'd like to use the introduction this week to address Windows Store issues that are getting out of hand. First, an increasing number of unofficial apps for popular services get released to Windows Store. You find Gmail, IMDB or Wikipedia apps that look and feel like official apps. The issue here is not trademark violations, at least not for end users, but potential security and privacy issues associated with those apps.

One of the apps, Gmail Touch, is no longer listed in the store. It is not clear if Microsoft, Google or another party is responsible for the removal of the app or why.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Twenty-third in a series. The app count in Windows Store made a huge jump this week from 35,631 apps last week to 38,113 apps, an increase of 2,482 apps in total. The majority of new apps fall once again in the free category, with 2,044 new ones released this week for a total of 29,840. Paid apps increased by 439 this week to 8,273 in total. It appears as if Windows Store is picking up pace in regards to apps releases. The chart above highlights the progression in the last five weeks.

As far as updates go: the Skype app for Windows 8 bumped up to version 1.6, adding better options to block contacts in the communication app.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week (Easter Edition)

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Twenty-second in a series. It has been a busy week filled with announcements and updates regarding Windows Store. The core applications Windows 8 Mail, Calendar and People got updated. Calendar users were in for a surprise if they used to sync their data with Google Calendar, as that does not work anymore after the update. The Mail app received significant improvements, including the ability to create, rename and delete folders inside the application and options to flag emails as important.

The People app got a new feature that lets you post messages to the Facebook Wall of friends, and the Calendar app received an interface makeover. Microsoft updated Xbox Music, too -- a new volume control option now acts independently from system volume and there are several other features, including the ability to make songs added to Xbox Music available on all compatible devices.

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Best Windows 8 apps this week

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Twenty-first in a series. Several things happened in the past seven days with regards to Windows 8 and its apps. Microsoft launched a temporary program that rewards developers with money for apps they produce for the operating system. If you have followed this weekly series you know that the app growths is relatively stable. A monetary incentive may convince some developers to spend some of their resources on the production of apps for Windows 8 or Windows Phone.

Several apps received updates this week, including the OneNote app for Windows 8. It ships with pen and ink improvements, and support for Office 365 notebooks.

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