About the author  ⁄ pradeep

Pradeep, a Computer Science & Engineering graduate.

Microsoft announced the Independent Developers @ Xbox Program (ID@Xbox) which allows independent developers to publish games for Xbox One. First, you have to apply for the developer program. After the application is approved, Microsoft will offer developers free development kits and access to its Xbox One toolset which includes Kinect, Cloud, etc. There is no developer application fees as well. The first set of indie games which are approved by Microsoft is expected to hit the Xbox One Store around March 2014. Speaking to The Edge, ID@Xbox’s director Chris Charla said, “I think it will be early in the New Year, in the first three months. I would say closer to the third month.”   Source: Edge via: Neowin ...

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Microsoft’s Cloud platform Windows Azure is evolving at the rate in which even industry leaders like Amazon are now within the reach in terms of feature parity. Speaking to The Channel, Microsoft’s Windows Azure president Scott Guthrie revealed some interesting information about Azure, how it is evolving, how it compares to Amazon, etc,.  He also said that Skype now runs on Windows Azure, all new storage of SkyDrive goes to Azure, part of Xbox Live is now powered by Azure and Office 365 used Azure’s identity management for authentication. Some excerpts from the interview, “We have more regions than Amazon, we have coverage in places like China that they’re not in,”. “If you want to reach the globe the most, we’re the cloud vendor to do it.” “Every Office 365 customer has a Windows Azure Active Directory login,” he said. “All authentication, all security, all access control for Office 365 ...

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US President Obama is scheduled to meet top executives from US tech companies tomorrow. The main agenda of the meeting is to discuss their concerns about America’s surveillance operations. Recently, Microsoft along with other tech companies wrote an open letter to Obama regarding their concerns about NSA Spying program and others. Obama will also talk about progress with the troubled online federal marketplace, HealthCare.gov, and ways the government and technology industry can partner to boost economic growth. The 15 executives who will meet include the following, Tim Cook, CEO, Apple Dick Costolo, CEO, Twitter Chad Dickerson, CEO, Etsy Reed Hastings, Co-Founder & CEO, Netflix Drew Houston, Founder & CEO, Dropbox Marissa Mayer, President and CEO, Yahoo! Burke Norton, Chief Legal Officer, Salesforce Mark Pincus, Founder, Chief Product Officer & Chairman, Zynga Shervin Pishevar, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Sherpa Global Brian Roberts, Chairman & CEO, Comcast Erika Rottenberg, Vice President, General Counsel and ...

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On November 22nd, as part of the Xbox One Launch celebration on Microsoft campus, there was a wonderful fireworks show. Microsoft captured the fireworks show using  a quad-copter. Xbox One’s Global Launch Party on the Redmond, WA campus November 21, 2013 – we captured the fireworks display from an HD camera mounted on a quad-copter flying 150 feet off the ground. This version has the full music mix added! Enjoy. via: istartedsomething ...

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Microsoft today announced the upcoming update for Forza Motorsport 5 that brings in lots of new features like new race modes such as drag racing and multiplayer “Tag.” Also Microsoft is making adjustments to the Forza Motorsport 5 economy, including increasing the amount of credits earned for racing and lowering the prices of the best cars in the game. Drag Racing First up, we’re adding two significant game modes to Forza 5: drag racing and multiplayer “Tag.” Drag racing in Forza Motorsport 5 is the ultimate test of car tuning, reflexes, and pure power, and you’ll be able to take your favorite drag-tuned rides to the Airfield track and test their mettle on quarter-mile, half-mile, and full-mile drag strips. Drag racing will be available in both Free Play and in Multiplayer game modes. Tag Mode The other big feature addition to Forza Motorsport 5 is the introduction of Tag. Tag ...

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Just few days back Blaise Agüera from Microsoft gave us a demo of the upcoming Photosynth technology TED. Sad news is that he has left to Google. NYTimes today reported that he has left the company to join its rival Google. Blaise and his team worked on some unknown augmented reality, wearable computing and natural user interfaces projects at Microsoft. Publicly we know that Blaise Agüera was working on Photosynth, Bing Maps and Bing Mobile. NYTimes reported that Agüera y Arcas will work on machine learning at Google. Microsoft on its part commented the following, “He was a great colleague and we wish him the best in his future endeavors.” People come and go at Microsoft all the time. But losing someone like Blaise to Google will really hurt Microsoft. Blaise today confirmed his new job on his blog with the following message, Nick Wing­field at the New York Times ...

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Microsoft today updated the Skype for Android devices to v4.5 with many new features. Skype Android application now offers a picture in picture window that lets you see your video call even when you switch away to other applications. This gives Windows 8 Snap mode like experience to Android users. So, you can multitask while you’re on Skype video calls, as well as audio calls on your Android device. Also there is a new option to quickly jump from one letter to another in your contact list. Just pinch your contact list to zoom out to an alphabet and tap on the letter (or number / symbol option) to jump to that section. In addition, version 4.5 has several bug fixes and quality improvements, including: Improved Video Instant Messaging functionality overall, including fixes on latest Samsung phones Added compatibility for the Hudl tablet Fixed crashes on the Nexus 5 Drop down filter ...

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Microsoft today confirmed about their upcoming Build 2014 conference. Build 2014 developer conference will take place April 2 to April 4 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. Registration for this event opens at 9 a.m. PT on Jan. 14 at www.buildwindows.com. Also Microsoft has teased us that they will be discussing about the future of Windows, Windows Phone, Windows Azure, Windows Server, Visual Studio and much more at the event. As always, Build is a time to bring developers together to talk about our latest products, platform advances, tools and offerings, all of which come together to create unmatched apps and scenarios. With Windows, developers can create new experiences to reach hundreds of millions of devices on peoples’ desks, in their homes, in their pockets and in their living rooms. At this year’s event, we’ll talk about what’s next for Windows, Windows Phone, Windows Azure, Windows Server, Visual Studio and ...

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Microsoft has released Office 365 Admin app for Android and iOS devices.  Office 365 Admin app enables administrators to view the service health of their Office 365 environment on-the-go. You need to have an active Office 365 subscription with administrator user rights to use this app. The Office 365 Admin mobile app empowers IT service administrators to connect to their organizations’ Office 365 service status on the go. The Office 365 Admin mobile app enables administrators to view service health information and maintenance status updates. In addition, administrators can filter information by service subscriptions and configure app data refresh interval. For Android (4.2.1 and up), download the app from Google Play.  For iOS 7, download the app from the Apple App Store.   Source: Office 365 ...

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Xbox One got sold out at most retailers in the US and it is difficult to buy one right now. It seems Amazon.com has got some more stock of Xbox One to sell and you can now order it from their website. With Xbox One, you can quickly jump from TV to movies to music to a game Only Xbox One unleashes the vast and scalable power of the cloud for your games, entertainment and apps with Xbox Live The console is driven by a powerful combination of CPU, GPU and 8GB of RAM, governed by an innovative OS architecture, to deliver power, speed and agility Kinect is included with every Xbox One. Completely reengineered to be more precise, responsive and intuitive with unparalleled voice, vision and motion technology Find it here from Amazon. ...

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Bloomberg today reported that Microsoft board is considering Qualcomm’s Chief Operating Officer Steve Mollenkopf among candidates to replace CEO Steve Ballmer. This is the first report revealing that Mollenkopf is on the list of several choices which are under serious consideration by Microsoft’s board. Mollenkopf at Qualcomm is responsible for the popular mobile processors which powers leading smartphones including Nokia Lumia 1520, Galaxy S4, etc,. Also Bloomberg once again confirmed that other people in the list also includes Microsoft executive Satya Nadella and external candidates including Ford CEO Alan Mulally. READ: Steve Mollenkopf Will NOT Become CEO of Microsoft; Made President and CEO of Qualcomm Steve’s profile from Qualcomm, Since 2008, Mollenkopf led QCT and served as executive vice president and group president of Qualcomm, driving growth and providing critical technical and operational leadership. QCT is the world’s largest wireless chip supplier and fabless semiconductor company, in terms of revenue. ...

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FIDO Alliance today announced that Microsoft has joined the Alliance as a member of the Board of Directors. FIDO Alliance develops technical specifications that define an open, scalable, interoperable set of mechanisms that reduce the reliance on passwords to authenticate users. Microsoft is committed to working with the FIDO Alliance to produce open standards that will ensure interoperability among strong authentication methods and technologies. Open FIDO specifications will support a full range of authentication technologies for operating systems, including biometrics such as fingerprint and iris scanners, voice and facial recognition, as well as existing solutions and communications standards, such as Trusted Platform Modules (TPM), USB Security Tokens, embedded Secure Elements (eSE), Smart Cards, Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), and Near Field Communication (NFC). The open specifications are being designed to be extensible and to accommodate future innovation, as well as protect existing investments. FIDO specifications allow the interaction of technologies within ...

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  I’ll admit it, I’m a big fan of Photosynth technology right from the day Microsoft revealed it. The Live Labs inside Microsoft which originally developed Photosynth is no more. However, Blaise Agüera y Arcas and a bunch of people of his team were still working on Photosynth. Even though the first generation Photosynth was cool, the consuming experience was not so smooth. Microsoft is fixing this issue in the upcoming Photosynth technology, but it comes with few constraints on how you take photos. “Where we sort of failed, I think, was that the panoramas never stitch,” Agüera y Arcas says. “When you hold the mobile phone to make the panorama, you never do a good enough job for the result to be useful for 3-D reconstruction … You can’t hold the camera still enough — you always end up with seams and things.” Rather than hammering away at this frustrating ...

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  In the last few days, there were reports that Microsoft is planning to bring back the Start Menu in Windows 8. The biggest question is, how will the Start Menu look like? And how will it function? Joseph Machalani, an UX, UI & Branding Architect blogged about his project on fixing Windows 8. In his project, he discussed about fixing the jarring difference between desktop and Metro work environment, new Windows Explorer UI with icons and more. More importantly, he brings back the Start Menu in his concept. His description of the proposed Start Menu,  If we want to separate the Desktop and Metro environment we need a way for each of them to access apps, files and basic features like search, notifications and settings. Since we need to kick out the Metro Start Screen and Charms bar from the Desktop, let’s just bring back the good ol’ Start menu that worked so good for all ...

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Microsoft added this new Bing Snapshot experience which provides direct information about the entities that you search for, e.g., people, places, and things, based on their understanding of those entities and their relationships stored in Bing’s knowledge repository called Satori. Today, Bing team has added a bunch of new entities that are now part of the Snapshot experience. The following entities are now available in Bing Snapshot experience, Discover TED Talks Listen to Famous Speeches and National Anthems Instantly Learn More with Online Courses See How Universities Stack Up Explore Scientific Concepts at a Glance A Quick View of Historic Events Explore More with Related People Animal Research Made Easy Ask Bing Luckily Find App and Software Downloads Read more about them in detail in the link below. Better read them to make Bing more useful to you. Source: Bing ...

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Microsoft’s Yammer team today announced a neat feature that will combine the email experience into Yammer. If you are the one who keeps switching between Yammer and email to communicate with everyone in your company, then this a great news for you. There are two new email features for Yammer, Loop in Non-Yammer Users and Forward Emails into Yammer. Loop in Non-Yammer Users Need someone to chime in on a Yammer conversation, but they don’t happen to be a Yammer user? No problem – now you can include anyone in your organization in a Yammer discussion. Simply begin typing their email address into the CC bar of any message, and that coworker will receive a notification email alerting them of the Yammer conversation. They’ll be able to respond to your message simply by replying to the email – their message will be posted back to the relevant Yammer discussion. Of ...

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