App Roadmap

A few people have asked about plans around Live Tile Browser, App Aid, Live Tile News and related Apps so I thought I would take this opportunity to create an outline of current and future plans.

Live Tile News

This kicked off the whole ‘ChApp’ (Charity App) concept with all the developer proceeds from the two versions (ad and donation) going to charity.7

Windows Phone (available now)

  • Free Advertising Supported, full featured version
  • Donation Supported, full featured, no Ads

New version featuring improved (‘in place’) Live Tile selection currently on its way through ‘ingestion’ to the marketplace.

Next version features include personalised news live tiles (beyond the existing BBC categorisations)

Windows 8

A version is in simultaneous development for Windows 8 and will be available soon.  All the developer proceeds will also go to charity.

NB More information around Live Tile News is available here

App Aid

App Aid is a banner under which existing or new App developers who already or wish to donate a portion of their proceeds can come together and take advantage of pooled resources and promotion opportunities.

Plans for App Aid are outlined here and including a timetable for the rest of 2012.  If there is enough interest around the concept it is planned to bring it to other platforms.

Live Tile Browser

One of the most compelling features of Windows Phone is Live Tiles yet there is no single place where they are discoverable.  LTB represents the first step in making it easier for users to discover live tile based apps that might be of interest to them.


Windows Phone

A version for Windows phone was made available this week here.  More details about the app can be found here

Windows (Desktop)

A Silverlight 5 version of LTB is available here  (an HTML5 version is under development)

Windows 8 (Metro)

A metro based version is under development for Windows 8 with initial deliverable expected 1st quarter this year (2012).





News in Pictures, Live Tile Sports (I & II)


With the same great content as Live Tile News, News in Pictures focuses on maximising the benefit of photographs in quickly discerning the relevance of new news stories.  You can then go deep on the story reading the full article from the BBC web site.

Up t 8 Live Tiles featuring news related photography can be added to the users home screen based on subject topics of interest.

News in pictures is available here



Sport in Tiles 1 & 2 both give you the latest news on top sporting activities with up to 8 Live Tiles pin-able to your home page.

The latest pending updates allow you to pin tiles using a gesture on the list of tiles matching each sport.  A future upgrade is planned to allow you to enter a sport not already covered in the App (Feb timeframe)

Sport in Tiles I

Sport in Tiles II

Top Sports Top Sports
Football Athletics
Rugby Union Snooker
Rugby League Horse Racing
Tennis Cycling
Golf Disability Sport
Motorsport Other Sports
Boxing Olympics 2012

NB If it makes sense further down the line these apps will also make their way over to Windows 8 (with tablet use in mind)

Windows Phone Downloads mentioned in this article:

Announcing the launch of “App Aid”

Well, the saying goes that from small acorns … so begins “App Aid” (Hopefully the name speaks for itself.) 

Currently App Aid only represents a contribution of income from my own apps, so that is where I will start. The hope is that this could mushroom into something supported by other developers and platforms.

My first contribution towards App Aid comes in the form of “Live Tile News”, the innovative new news App that features up to 8 ‘Live tiles’ of topic based news as well as a novel panorama based UI with multiple layered icons.

I am giving all the proceeds (sales and advertising income) from this app to charity. 

I also have a monthly timetable planned for 2012 whereby a percentage of the sales from designated Apps for each month will also go to charity. 

At the moment the timetable for 2012 looks like this:

  Month App Percentage of income dontated
Jan “Live Tile News”
”Live Tile News (Premium)”
100% *
Feb “Apple Watch” 50%
Mar “Orchestrator” 50%
Apr “Gadget Watch” 50%
May “The King’s Speech” 50%
Jun “Ultimate Fart” 50%
Jul “Torch / Flashlight” 50%
Aug “Live Tile Sports” 50%
Sep Nokia Watch 50%
Oct “Live Tile Sports II” 50%
Nov “Ambient Soundscape” 50%
Dec “Snap”


* On-going Forever

Please be as supportive as you can, Tweet and Facebook this message to your followers (see buttons below) and download Live Tile News (Free) or Live Tile News (Donation) to your Windows Phone.

Thank You!


With all the interest in the partnership with Microsoft over Windows Phone 7 it seems opportune to have the ability to quickly and conveniently monitor the Finnish giant.

Get the lowdown on Nokia’s plans and get an insight into the all important question “What new features might Nokia decide to bring to WP7?”

Or maybe you are just like me, had numerous Nokia devices in the past and want to see what they are up to now and what people are saying about them.

Version 1.5 now available, includes additional news options, Facebook and Twitter integration, Video feed and achievement unlocking.





Nokia watch is available in the marketplace here (99c)

Shortage of C#, SQL and .Net skills as IT vacancies rise


So sayeth Jenny Williams from Computer Weekly* today:

I have to be honest and say that I have really enjoyed the last 18 months myself.  After doing solid (back to back) contract work for more than 10 years I decided I would take a slightly different approach to work. The end result is that I have been  interspersing contract work (which I still enjoy) with some home based development – in the main targeting Windows Phone 7.  As Steve Balmer noted in todays UKTECHDAYS event in London “I see more opportunity for software development now than at any time in history” paraphrasing my own experience which I could perhaps best sum up as  “There has never been a better time to be a software developer”. 

I hit a milestone yesterday with a Birthday bringing me to the ripe old age of 30 (mental) and 50 (physical).  My brain shows no sign of not wanting to lap up new technologies and the challenges of new development remains a very enjoyable experience for me. 

Am I normal?  No, I am a geek!


* or perhaps more accurately the source: The Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC) and E-Skills UK

Company Startup

With the fruits of my labour over the last few months poised to go live ( I am now returning back to reality by nurturing a new Company (to be know as ‘Web Services UK’) to enable me to explore the commercial possibilities of WPF/Silverlight/Azure et al.  With my architectural scope widened I will be continuing my partnership with the private sector, as well as pursuing opportunities arrising from the development of ‘Wipe Away The Years’.
Wish me well …