Review Category : Microsoft

Microsoft has released their first Xbox game Wordament with Xbox Live Achievements support for Android devices. Similar to Windows Phone and iOS versions, this game can be downloaded for free. Game Description: “Why play against one person in a turn when you can play against thousands at once? Wordament® is a real-time continuous word tournament. Players compete on the same board with everyone at once. Rounds offer challenges such as two- and three-letter tiles, themed words, speed rounds and more. You can be a champion in many ways: find the most words possible, earn the best score, find the longest words, best your Frenemies, or beat your top score. How you win is up to you. Wordament tracks your progress by maintaining rich statistics about your gameplay including your best word found, total score, best word count, first place finishes and more. Xbox Leaderboards show you who’s rocking it for ...

Read More →

If you look at the above image, you may think it is a screenshot of Google’s Chrome OS. But the truth is, it is the new Google Chrome Web Browser for Windows 8 devices. Google has released an update for Chrome browser in the dev channel which brings the above UI. When you launch Chrome in Windows 8 mode, you will be presented with the above UI. You will have Chrome OS like task bar with pinned apps, app list button, time, etc. Also you have Window management within this UI, you have close, minimize, maximize button as well. You can open two three windows and place then side by side if you want. Essentially, Google is trying to mimic Chrome OS inside Windows 8. Should Microsoft delist Chrome from Windows Store? What do you think? Source: Google Chrome ...

Read More →

  There were reports in the past few weeks that Microsoft could use the next generation Kinect in Xbox One to target ads. For example, Kinect can guess your age, sex, etc, by body recognition, etc,. Albert Penello , MS Director of Product Planning at Xbox clearly denied these reports. He told that no one at Microsoft is working on such things and if something like that ever happened, you can be sure it wouldn’t happen without the user having control over it. He also revealed that Microsoft is working on some cool things that make use of Kinect console. He also cited few examples of how Microsoft deals with privacy in Xbox One, Two examples of how we deal with similar things today: First, Kinect can recognize your face and log you in automatically. There could be some cool features we could enable if we stored that data in the cloud, like ...

Read More →

Windows Azure AD is the Microsoft’s Active Directory in the cloud. It offers enterprise class identity services in the cloud with support for multi-factor authentication and more. Microsoft yesterday announced no.of new features and stats about Azure AD yesterday. As of yesterday, we have processed over 430 Billion user authentications in Azure AD, up 43% from June. And last week was the first time that we processed more than 10 Billion authentications in a seven day period. This is a real testament to the level of scale we can handle! You might also be interested to learn that more than 1.4 million business, schools, government agencies and non-profits are now using Azure AD in conjunction with their Microsoft cloud service subscriptions, an increase of 100% since July. And maybe even more amazing is that we now have over 240 million user accounts in Azure AD from companies and organizations in ...

Read More →

Microsoft Bing was started as a search engine competitor against Google and it is no longer just a search engine from Microsoft. Bing is now powering no.of apps within Microsoft and some 3rd party apps as well. Bing has now become a platform on which different kinds of apps are built. Windows 8/Windows Phone apps like News, Weather, Finance, Sports, Cooking app, Health app are powered by Bing. Beyond these apps, Bing powers Translation apps with OCR functionality, and more. Microsoft posted the above video when the announced the new logo last month. If some of you missed it, do watch it. With Bing, search isn’t something that only happens in a box. It can happen whenever and wherever you need it.  Access the information you want from inside an app or on any device including your phone, tablet or even Xbox. ...

Read More →

In a blog post talking about technological improvements that were made in Skype to improve the overall experience over the last year, Skype team revealed that they are bringing synchronized chat message status across all of your devices. I assume with this new feature, you will be able to continue your conversation with someone exactly the same way across the devices at any points. Your unread messages, past conversations, etc, will all be synced. Along with introducing support for Microsoft account in October last year, the Skype cloud also added the ability to queue and deliver chat messages even if the intended recipient is offline – so you can be ‘always reachable’ to the people who matter most. With Windows Phone 8 (and soon across other Skype mobile clients), this technology enables you to receive notifications when new messages arrive regardless of whether the Skype app is running. We also ...

Read More →

Acer has announced some new all-in-ones coming for the new holiday season.  We do not have all the details at this point in time.  Acer owns Gateway, but they are still keeping the brand alive. Acer Aspire ZC-605 Series This Acer features a 19.5” screen ideal for games, USB 3.0 ideal for connecting to peripheral devices, and a 1 terabyte hard drive.  The chassis tilts from 10-30 degrees. The Acer Aspire ZC-605 Series will be priced starting at $599.99. Gateway One ZX4270 Priced very affordably starting at $399. This Gateway boasts a 19.5” screen in a compact body.  The Gateway will be available this month starting at $399. Source: Windows Blog ...

Read More →

Reuters today reported that Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates and retiring Chief Executive Steve Ballmer are standing for re-election to Microsoft board of directors. Even though this is not a surprise news for lot of us, the investors who are trying to reduce the influence of Gates and Ballmer in the company won’t be happy to hear this news. Ballmer announced last August about his plan to retire within 12 months in August and Microsoft’s board is searching for a new CEO from both inside and external candidates. Reuters also reported that it is highly likely both Gates and Ballmer will be re-elected by shareholders at the annual meeting on November 19. Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer still own a significant share of Microsoft. While Bill Gates remains the company’s largest individual shareholder, with a 4.5 percent stake, Steve Ballmer is not far behind with 4 percent. If Bill Gates continues to sell shares of ...

Read More →

The modern mail app that was shipped as part of Windows 8 was not up to the mark. It was experiencing performance issues until Microsoft delivered an update 6 months later. Even after all the updates, the mail app remained as one of the weak points. Microsoft was aware of it and they delivered an much improved Outlook Mail app for Windows 8.1 devices. All Windows 8.1 devices will have this mail app pre-installed and it is the best email experience on any tablet. In a world of mobile devices like tablets, there’s an increasingly narrow distinction between your “work computer” and your “personal computer.” More and more people are bringing their personal tablets to work, and their work laptops home. Windows 8.1 is designed for this world, equally suited for your work life and your personal life. The Mail app is no exception—it’s designed to be great for your ...

Read More →

Microsoft’s current CEO Steve Ballmer got only 79% of his total eligible bonus set for him by the board due to the slow growth in Windows 8 and Surface RT write off. The information was revealed in the proxy statement filed by Microsoft yesterday. The fiscal 2013 proxy statement gave the following reason on Ballmer’s bonus: “The company faced challenges due to weakness in the consumer PC market. While the launch of Windows 8 in October 2012 resulted in over 100 million licenses sold, the challenging PC market coupled with the significant product launch costs for Windows 8 and Surface resulted in an 18% decline in Windows Division operating income. Slower than anticipated sales of Surface RT devices and the decision to reduce prices to accelerate sales resulted in a $900 million inventory charge.” Steve Ballmer received a total of $1.26 million in fiscal 2013 which includes a base salary ...

Read More →

The IE team along with independent developer Dan Church and Pixel Labs have created a web version of the classic Windows 95 game Hover.  The IE team hopes this demostrates the full capabilities of IE11 and creates more possibilities for web developers. Like the original version, Hover works with a keyboard – but it’s even more exciting with the touch controls we’ve added, especially on a tablet running Windows 8.1. IE11 was designed from the ground up for touch – giving it extremely accurate touch responsiveness and optimization and providing you with a fluid and immersive experience. Its stick to your finger responsiveness makes touch fast and easy to use, making the game even more fun to play! The game has been updated slightly with some new features Dan personally built all the game play while taking special care to keep the feel of the original game in the updated ...

Read More →

I think Playstation is going to seriously regret not bundling their version of Kinect with the PS4.  Maybe they knew it would not be as good as Kinect 2.0 anyways. Cyrus Bamji, Microsoft partner hardware architect for Microsoft’s Silicon Valley-based Architecture and Silicon Management group, and members of his team were trying to incorporate a time-of-flight camera into Xbox One.  A time-of-flight camera emits light signals and then measures how long it takes them to return. That needs to be accurate to 1/10,000,000,000 of a second; the speed of light. With such measurements, the camera is able to differentiate light reflecting from objects in a room and the surrounding environment. That provides an accurate depth estimation that enables the shape of those objects to be computed. That speed-of-light capability would be a major advancement for the Kinect sensor portion of Xbox One, being released to 13 launch markets next month. ...

Read More →

Microsoft has been a longtime advocate of unregulated spectrum and white spaces.  It appears the company will now get its chance to show what it can do with them.  UK regulator Ofcom has named Microsoft to test WiFi-like services to underserved Glasgow, while Click4internet will assess rural broadband in remote or tricky locations.  Google has signed on as a potential database provider.  Ofcom hope  to have everything running by next year. How White Spaces work: These new services will utilise the gaps, or ‘white spaces’, that sit in the frequency band used to broadcast digital terrestrial TV. Some of these gaps may be used by other applications, such as wireless microphones, but only at certain times. White space devices would access the spaces at times when they are vacant, by communicating their locations to a database designed to minimise the risk of interference with any existing users. This is a ...

Read More →

In an interview with USA Today Ford CEO Alan Mulally reufsed to directly answer the question if he is actively seeking the role of becoming Microsoft’s next CEO. “I love serving Ford and have nothing new to add to (my) plans to continue serving Ford,” Alan Mulally The mainstream tech press continues to push the narrative  that Alan Mulally will become Microsoft’s next CEO.  However, I continue to hear this is simply not the case. Source: USA Today ...

Read More →

Ian Ayres is a Yale professor and co-founder of Stickk.com. You may recall he found himself in a bit of a controversy in 2007 after it was found that he had plagiarized some passages in book he had published.  He has published a paper challenging the claims of the “Bing It On” challenge, where Bing claims that most people prefer Bing 2:1.  The Bing team published a rather vicious post, rebuking Ayres’ claims: Ian Ayres posted an article on Freakonomics yesterday challenging the claims that have been used on the Bing It On website. A couple of notes are important before I talk about Ayres’ claims. There are two separate claims that have been used with the Bing It On challenge. The first is “People chose Bing web search results over Google nearly 2:1 in blind comparison tests”. We blogged about the method here and it was used back in 2012. ...

Read More →

  Microsoft had a long tradition of delivering pre-show keynote at CES. Surprisingly, Microsoft last year said that it is not taking part in the CES with the following reason, We’ll continue to participate in CES as a great place to connect with partners and customers across the PC, phone and entertainment industries, but we won’t have a keynote or booth after this year because our product news milestones generally don’t align with the show’s January timing. It seems Microsoft has reversed their decision and returning to CES again this year. BBC reported today that Gary Shapiro, president of the Consumer Electronics Association revealed this information at London. “Microsoft is officially back in the International CES,” “They are taking out significant space in meeting rooms – it’s actually a larger presence than I believe they have ever had. “Microsoft will have to make the decision who the rooms are open ...

Read More →