Whether you are after the latest paid for or free Windows Phone apps for your HTC or Nokia smartphone, here's T3's monthly pick of Windows Marketplace essentials you need to download
Life after Windows Mobile has been a good one thanks to Microsoft Windows Phone 7 and more recently Windows Phone 8 with its slick tiled display, unified user interface and Xbox LIVE integration amongst other features primed to challenge Android and Apple smartphone dominance.
If Microsoft has won you over with its polished more multimedia-friendly mobile operating system and you are looking to pack it with the finest app offerings from the Windows Marketplace, each month T3's app experts will bring you the very best free and paid for Windows Phone apps available right now. Here's what delights we have discovered this month.
Want more of the best apps? Check out the T3 App Chart for all the latest apps across platforms.
Sharing similarities with the Pulse New Android and iOS app, this equally beautiful mosaic style app will give you your instant news fix with customisable feeds, Google Reader integration and the ability to save content offline. Pin it to your live tiles and you can see instant updates straight on your home screen.
Price: £0.99 | Download Fuse Windows Phone app
Tell Spout what you what you're interested in, and it will cut out the nonsense and deliver news, Facebook posts and tweets that are important to you in a pool of words with Facebook, Twitter and Google Reader support in tow and the ability to add Spout as one of your primary live tiles.
Price: £0.99 | Download Spout Windows Phone app
Perfectly timed for festive food prepping, this handy app will calculate the ideal oven temperature to cook your entire meal to perfection and without burning. Input the ideal temperature and cooking times for each item and an alarm will sound when you need to put the spuds in.
Price: Free | Download Timed2Perfection Windows Phone app
If Instagram is not giving you that satisfying retro photo feeling, this photo editing app equally offers enough filters, borders and lighting effects to give your amateur snaps or more artistic feel and increase its chances of getting more than one Like on Facebook.
Price: Free | Download Lomogram Windows Phone app
Inspired by the browser version, fans of the Parisian electronic Dj outfit can create their own versions of Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger and Technologic with a soundboard that contains over 100 sound samples from the Daft Punk tracks. We challenge you not get a little bit addicted to this.
Price: Free | Download iDaft Windows Phone app
The Spanish Primark's latest range is available through this digi-catalogue. Find something you like, and you can buy it directly through the app.
Price: Free | Platform: Windows Phone 7.5 | Download Zara Windows Phone app
Time Out City Guides
The going-out bible has guides for 60 cities worldwide, so whether you're looking for a bite to eat or something to do, you'll always have knowledge.
Price: Free | Platform: Windows Phone 7.5 | Download Time Out City Guides Windows Phone app
A mechanised tentacle armada has destroyed your home world. Fight back, by commanding up to 30 ships at once. Involves multitasking.
Price: £2.29 | Platform: Windows 7.5 | Download Shoot 1UP Windows Phone app
Free text messaging to other Talkbox users, plus a cool push-to-talk function that lets you use your Windows phone like a walkie talkie.
Price: Free | Platform: Windows Phone 7.5 | Download Talkbox Windows Phone app
If you can't help tinkering with your phone, use this app to give it an MOT-style look over to check on speed, battery power, display and other info on your handset hardware.
Price: £0.79 | Platform: Windows Phone 7.5 | Download Bench Windows Phone app
Not uttered a word of French since your GCSE oral exam? Bing's Translator app should help jog your memory. Simply type or speak words into your phone to increase your linguistic skills or additionally use point your phone camera at words that used to mean something to you a long, long time ago
Price: Free | Translator Windows Phone 7 review
Now Windows Phone owners can do practically everything you can on thetrainline.com from searching scheduled train times, and buying tickets that can be sent to you or collected at the station while the GPS support means you can find the nearest station to find your quickest route out of the sticks.
Price: Free | thetrainline.com Windows Phone 7 review
An essential camera app download for Windows Phone users, Turbo Camera delivers a burst mode taking pictures at 14-16 frames per second which means you increase the chances of snapping the perfect pic. Users can also turn images into a .gif file making it prime tool for viral notoriety.
Price: £0.79 | Download Turbo Camera Windows Phone 7 app
We've all fallen victim to it. The discovery of a real beauty, a view that's got the 'Wow' factor - but alas, our camera lens is simply not wide enough to capture the magic. No more. Photosynth is a panorama app like no other - it is able to capture 360 degrees horizontally and vertically, which Microsoft says creates a perfect 'sphere'.
Price: Free | Photosynth Windows Phone 7 review
Mixtapes is a platform game where you play as a giraffe, Raffey, in a quest to get to the top of the tree to munch on them sweet, sweet leaves. No, it's not. It's an app (based on 8tracks.com) where you can listen to mixtapes compiled by other humans/giraffes just like you.
Price: Free | Mixtapes Windows Phone 7 review
1. Bejeweled LIVE
The puzzler that shows up on most mobile platforms out there now arrives for Windows Phone 7. Swap, move and match multiple gems for dazzling, high-carat fun. Show off your Bejeweled prowess by earning special Xbox Live achievements and climb up global Xbox Live leaderboards.
The iconic puzzler unsurprisingly makes its way onto the Windows Marketplace, ready to soak up hours of your commuting time. There's Marathon mode plus up to 12 Tetris variations. It is of course, integrated with Xbox Live, so you'll be able to let the world know of your brick-laying prowess.
The mobile weather app from Europe's weather specialists features 7-day forecasts and weather reports for over 2,000,000 locations worldwide. A simple, but nonetheless essential app to store on your smartphone.
4. Rocket Riot
Giving us a taste of what we can expect from the Windows Phone 7 Xbox Live integration, this side view shooter game is one of the first games to be ported from the Marketplace. Taking out jet-pack wearing villains with a bazooka is the simple aim, and the good news is that you can try it before you buy it, should you be put off by the steep app price.
The micro-blogging site squeezes its way onto the Windows Marketplace letting you Tweet, do real-time searches, see trending topics, Tweet share photos and pretty much anything else that you'd expect to do on the social networking site.
The online auction site now has a Window Phone 7 app presence, bringing with it search, bid and activity checking functions. It's also quite handy for keeping an eye on your sales when you can't reach for your computer.
The social networking beast gives you full reign of the usual Facebook features, so you can post status updates, check your news feed, upload badly taken photos and of course indulge in some mild stalking of your friends activities.
8. Tube Companion
With strikes becoming more of a regular occurrence these days, it's always handy to have some help to negotiate your way to work hassle-free. Tube Companion gives you live status reports on all tube lines, a live departure board, and weekend closure, so you can quickly decide whether you need to pop onto a Boris bike.
9. Train Times
If the tube lets you down, you may have to turn your attention to the overground. You can plan your future journeys to help avoid delays, see the nearest stations in your current location and remembers the most recently used stations, if for some reason you forget how to get home.
10. The Harvest
The success of Windows Phone 7 could lie with its gaming capability, with this visually impressive sci-fi RPG a fitting example of what gamers can look forward to on the platform. Set in a future Earth years after the fallout of a destructive alien invasion, your job is to fight off waves of The Harvester horde and take out end level enemy bosses. You can see The Harvest Windows Phone 7 video here to see what it's all about.