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Praise the lord, WhatsApp users on Windows phone 8!!

Just when I was losing all the faith from Windows phone 8, I got two updates promised to restore the faith back on!

After a week of the much needed update of Facebook, windows phone users got another reason to rejoice! There was literally no day, over a past couple of weeks where I went to google to check as to when the WhatsApp would be getting some decent update on Windows Phone 8 platform! And finally, Today was the day!

As a windows phone user, and a avid whatsapp user, I dreaded the past experience of WhatsApp. I received notifications and messages after half an hour, kept getting the notifications even after I read the messages, no background music as well, slow and seriously not steady performance. It was actually a diasaster!

Seems like now after some time, windows phone is taking the user reviews and complaints seriously. We saw an update to Facebook, which was like a breath of fresh air, as it took the user experience to somewhere close to Android’s or iOS’ facebook. And after months of wait, we got an much needed and long overdue update of WhatsApp.

So what are we getting from the new and a fresh WhatsApp? Well if you’re a windows phone user, you probably would know that WhatsApp relied on audio API to keep the notifications coming and the application running. The outcome was the quick drain of battery ( andfor a lumia 520, that’s just harsh and cruel!). Well finally windows have sorted it and took it to the background notification list. You can go settings and then to the background tasks, and will see WhatsApp there.

The update also brings ‘Fast Resume’, which as the name suggests resumes the application quickly on clicking the oncoming toast notifications. This was much needed as it was quite slow and lagged most of the time previously.

We also got to see the new larger and number of new range of smileys and emoticons brought straight to the regular WhatsApp keyboard. Now users could pin WhatsApp on the start screen as a wide tile, which were only limited to small and medium sizes. With the new update, the incoming or outgoing  pictures are bright and way larger (thank god for that ;)).

The larger images, the new emoticons and now WhatsApp is on background tasks list!

The larger images, the new emoticons and now WhatsApp is on background tasks list!

WhatsApp can now be pinned on the start screen as a wide tile

WhatsApp can now be pinned on the start screen as a wide tile

And last but surely not the least, now the users could voice call from within the app. This was a much needed and a good feature (when you are really pissed off at the other person, and typing the curses just doesn’t work!!)

But there is still one feature which WhatsApp lacks on Windows platform. The feature to send media files like music or videos which are stored in the phone, is still lacking.

I updated WhatsApp on my lumia 520 this morning, and boy was I surprised! Notifications did not come smooth, and ‘fast resume’ was not at all fast and smooth. I received messages after 12-20 minutes after the other person originally sent it. This is not what you promised me Windows! If you would check the user review on the windows store, you would surely find some users who have similar problems regarding the notifications. Faith in windows phone losing in 3,2,1..!!

So it’s safe to say, that the updated WhatsApp is not at all close to the WhatsApp of other OS like Android and  iOS, and it needs some more serious updates, so that Windows get at least one point where they would get close enough to Android or iOS. If you’re a windows phone user, I suggest you don’t need the update! It’s still feels like a beta version of the app and won’t give you anything new to rejoice. The only good thing I got after updating is that now I could listen to music and resume it again, which I couldn’t after using the app for sometime. Thanks windows! Thanks for making me waste 6 MB off my precious data pack

Diagon Alley of Harry Potter franchise now on Google Street!!

Harry Potter fans, rejoice. The diagon alley also known as the choomantar gali you saw and always wanted to visit is now open for you(at least virtually). Google Street view, which brings the most amazing places and spots on the earth right on our computer screens, have brought something which I wanted to visit after I read the harry potter books.

Diagon Alley which was introduced first in the J.K. Rowling’s famous teen-adult novel Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, is a alley which harry visited to buy his essentials for the Hogwarts school of witchcraft and wizardry. It is a street which is only open for wizards and witches and is hidden for muggles(yes, you and me, unless you’re a wizard yourself!).

Diagon Alley, as shown in Harry Potter franchise

Diagon Alley, as shown in Harry Potter franchise

The Diagon Alley set, has Gringotts Bank, Ollivander’s Wand shop, Weasleys’ Wizarding Wheezes joke shop and many other shops can be seen and peeked from outside by the street view.

The Ollivendar's Wand Shop

The Ollivendar’s Wand Shop

The Gringott's bank for Wizards!

The Gringott’s bank for Wizards!

If you also want to experience the magic. Visit this link on google street view and feel the magic!

According to dailymail.co.uk, the diagon alley street view images are part of Google’s wider business project where companies let them take 360-degree photographs of their offices.

This is not the only interesting place you can find on google street view. You can view the infamous(actually famous) Bran Castle of Romania, the home of the Dracula

 

 

The Home of the Dracula,  Bran Castle, Romania.

The Home of the Dracula,
Bran Castle, Romania.

You can view insides of Colosseum of Rome, the amphitheatre, where gladiator meetings were held.

Inside the Colosseum

Inside the Colosseum

One of the most visited places in the world, The Stonehenge.

The Stonehenge

The Stonehenge

And probably the best of all, NASA’s Kennedy Space Center.

NASA's Kennedy Space Center.

NASA’s Kennedy Space Center.

Google Street View is a technology featured in Google Maps and Google Earth that provides panoramic views from positions along many streets in the world. It was launched on May 25, 2007, in several cities in the United States, and has since expanded to include cities and rural areas worldwide. On April 5, 2013, Google street view came to India for the first time In Banglore, but was soon banned..

If movie sets are going to be on google street view. Then the set of the Lord of the Rings and Hogwarts School are the two sets i am waiting to view!!