Review Category : Microsoft

Breaking: Microsoft announces quarterly dividend increase of 22% and up to $40 billion share repurchase program. Story is still developing, we’ll update accordingly. Stock is up about 1% currently. This sounds similar to a program Microsoft had in 2008. Update: Microsoft Corp. announced on Tuesday that its board of directors declared a quarterly dividend of $0.28 per share, reflecting a 5 cent or 22 percent increase over the previous quarter’s dividend. The dividend is payable Dec. 12, 2013, to shareholders of record on Nov. 21, 2013. The ex-dividend date will be Nov. 19, 2013. The board of directors also approved a new share repurchase program authorizing up to $40 billion in share repurchases. The new share repurchase program, which has no expiration date, replaces the previous $40 billion share repurchase program that was set to expire Sept. 30, 2013. “These actions reflect a continued commitment to returning cash to our ...

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Along with the announcement about new logo, Microsoft also announced a new modern interface for the Bing search experience. Microsoft redesigned Bing.com with a beautiful new, modern design focused on simplicity, speed and visual appeal to give people a better search experience regardless of the device customers will be using. With this release we’ve created a modern Bing.com experience – one that is faster, cleaner and more visually appealing. We believe that search can be beautiful as well as functional and efficient. With that as our goal, we evaluated fonts, spacing, color, visual scan patterns, the search box and even the underlying code.   Last year, Bing introduced Snapshot and Sidebar to improve the search experience with factual information and human perspective. In their new design, they have combined these two sources of knowledge to provide people with all the supporting context they’ll need for any given query. This combined ...

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Microsoft today announced a new refreshed logo for Bing search platform. With principles and frameworks in hand, we looked at the art. We revisited the current logo and diagnosed what wasn’t working. We looked at the new Microsoft identity and we did hundreds of studies to look at motion, font, color, size and form. We built out mock ads, localized product examples for China and fictitious billboards to see what was working. From simple evolutions to ridiculous explorations, we learned something in each one. In the end, our new logo was created to be simple, real and direct. Source: Bing ...

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Artists have released songs as ITunes exclusives for many years now and it looks like Microsoft is starting to play the game too.  For the next 14 days “A LIGHT THAT NEVER COMES,” by Linkin Park will stream exclusively for 14 days on Xbox Music.  Microsoft explained the collaboration in further detail on the Xbox Wire. The catalyst for this relationship was gaming.  Years ago, our band had legendary Xbox tournaments on our tour bus playing “Halo”—competitions which often included fans and other bands.  As our career has progressed, we have always been attached to gaming, and eventually got opportunities to participate in the space.  We’ve enjoyed partnerships with “Medal Of Honor” and EA over the years, and even released games on our own (this month, we’ve released a new free-to-play Facebook game entitled RECHARGE.) Gaming and Xbox, however, were just the introduction; it wasn’t the thing that got me interested ...

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In an unsurprising move Mozilla has decided to delay the release of Metro Firefox to January 2014.  The company cited “slower than expected progress” as the primary reason. “The goal of the Metro Preview Release is to gather feedback and defects from the larger Aurora community,” Mozilla said in notes published on its website from a planning meeting last Wednesday. “Whether or not the Metro Preview Release will graduate from Aurora to Beta and Release channels is still to be determined. At a minimum, it should significantly increase the number of testers and feedback.”  “The decrease in average team velocity over the two previous iterations positions Metro for a Firefox 27 release on January 21, 2014,” the meeting notes stated. The release of Metro Firefox has already been delayed a number of times and has now been in development for over a year.  I suspect I’ll be writing a post ...

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Microsoft Bing.com today announced their partnership with Fox News Channel once again to bring real-time online polling during various news programs. REDMOND, Wash., Sept. 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Bing.com and FOX News Channel (FNC) are teaming up on the Bing Pulse online voting tool, enabling viewers to share their opinions and reactions to news commentary in real time online at http://Bing.com/politics. With the new feature, viewers will have the opportunity to interact with the panel segment on FNC’s “Special Report with Bret Baier” (weeknights at 6 p.m. ET) to offer their feedback instantaneously. “This is a first for evening news,” said Josh Gottheimer, general manager of Strategic and Special Projects at Microsoft Corp. “With the Bing Pulse, viewers get a seat at the table to weigh in on the discussion. It’s the perfect marriage of the Internet, Bing’s big data technology and television news programming.” Earlier this year, Bing and ...

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Microsoft released updated OneNote app for Android devices back in July 1st. Today they expanded the experience to people in 60 additional markets. These are the new markets: Albania Angola Antigua &Barbuda Armenia Aruba Azerbaijan Bahamas Bangladesh Belarus Belize Benin Bosnia and Her. Botswana Bulgaria Burkina Faso Cambodia Cameroon Cape Verde Cote D’Ivoire Croatia Estonia Fiji Gabon Ghana Guinea-Bissau Haiti Iceland Kazakhstan Kenya Kyrgyzstan Laos Latvia Lithuania Macedonia Malaysia Mali Malta Mauritius Rep. of Moldova Mozambique Namibia Netherlands Antilles Nigeria Papua New Guinea Romania Rwanda Senegal Serbia Slovakia Slovenia Sri Lanka Tajikistan Tanzania Togo Turkmenistan Uganda Ukraine Uzbekistan Zambia Zimbabwe   You can download OneNote via Google Play or download it directly here: OneNote for Android. Source: Office blog ...

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Statcounter’s latest number show Windows XP only has 20.58% marketshare worldwide, while Windows 7 has 52.73% and Windows 8 3.3%.  As Windows XP approaches end-of-life in 7 months, I suspect we’ll see these numbers change somewhat.  While in North America Windows XP only holds ~15% marketshare, there are a number of eight countries where XP is the top used operating system: China – 54.79% Cook Islands – 72.14% Cuba – 52.93% Eritrea – 58.25% North Korea – 61.47% Morocco – 44.66% Norfolk Island – 70.18% Vietnam – 44.33% Here are countries where Windows XP hold over 30% marketshare: •Albania – 44.64% • Algeria – 38.11% • Argentina – 30.9% • Belarus – 37.39% • Benin – 43.37% • Bolivia – 32.71% • Bosnia and Herzegovina – 42.97% • Bulgaria – 36.76% • Cameroon – 42.65% • Cote d’Ivoire – 34.79% • Dominican Republic – 46.29% • Eygpt – 41.68% • ...

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This is a story by the NYDailyNews, I’m simply going to posts some excerpts without any commentary: How do global terrorists keep in touch on the Internet? They use Gmail, just like a lot of other people on the planet. Michael Hayden, former director of both the CIA and the National Security Agency, said the free email service offered by Google is the most popular communication method among radical insurgents across the world. “Gmail is the preferred Internet service provider of terrorists worldwide,” Hayden said Sunday during a speech at St. John’s Episcopal Church, across the street from the White House. “I don’t think you’re going to see that in a Google commercial, but it’s free, it’s ubiquitous, so of course it is.” Hayden’s comments were in defense of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, under which U.S. intelligence agents spied on private emails and Internet chatter around the world. The ...

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With the Surface 2 launch event only a week away, Microsoft is looking to clear old inventory of the SurfaceRT.  A number of great deals have appeared on ebay, and you can get a SurfaceRT 32GB w/ a Touch Cover for only $250 and the same bundle w/ 64GB for $280.  This is not as great as the $200 deal we saw a few weeks back, but still great savings.  Typically a 32GB SurfaceRT bundle w/ Touch Covers costs $399, so this $150 savings, and even greater $220 savings for the 64GB bundle. Ebay – SurfaceRT 32GB w/ Black Touch Cover – $250 Ebay – SurfaceRT 64GB w/ Black Touch Cover – $280 Please read our previous coverage of Surface leaks including: Surface RT 2 Details Revealed: Tegra 4, Full HD 1080p, White & Black Options, & More Surface 2 Specs Leak: Haswell, New Kickstand, More RAM, Launches Next Month ...

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  Microsoft is officially launching its next generation console Xbox One on Nov 22nd in 13 launch countries. Pre-orders are going on in full swing and Microsoft even announced that the pre-order numbers are more than double that of Xbox 360 during the same period. Microsoft’s head of Xbox Live programming Larry Hryb @ Major Nelson posted a photo of the first retail Xbox One unit coming off the assembly line. As you can see in the image above, the packaging will be green in color. If you have ordered Day One edition, then the packaging will be in shiny black. Source: Major Nelson ...

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New reports emerged today saying that Microsoft is cutting the number of contractors who work at MSN. The move was as a result of the reorganization within Microsoft which was announced in July. Microsoft confirmed that MSN full-time employees are not affected and in fact they are planning to increase the FTE count at MSN. There are “lots of increased investments going on,” said Brian MacDonald, corporate vice president of Microsoft’s Apps, Media and Publishing group, which includes MSN and Bing Apps. “We are increasing the full time staffing and permanent spend by converting some vendor dollars. “Total dollars spent in the Puget Sound area is increasing on MSN and the Bing apps,” he said. “This is a line item budget shift but absolutely not a spend reduction for cost savings.” There is no clear information on how many full-time employees are to be recruited and how many contractors who worked at MSN ...

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When Windows 8 was launched last year by Microsoft, there were very few touch PCs in retail for customers to try and buy. Also the sales of non-touch devices lead to poor customer adoption of Windows 8’s modern UI and Windows Store. Microsoft and Intel are now looking to change the situation this holiday season with number of touch based and 2in1 Windows 8 form factors hitting the market. At IDF, Intel executive Kirk Skaugen revealed that 70% of the current Ultrabooks on sale are touch enabled. And Intel is focusing on increasing the number to 100% by making touch screen as a mandatory spec to be a next generation Ultrabook. Though ultrabooks are still a minor share of total Windows PC sales, there has been a recent jump in the growth of touch laptops, according to Stephen Baker, vice president of industry analysis at the NPD Group. “Touch has been doing much ...

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Microsoft today announced their next version of PlayReady digital rights management system. PlayReady is the most widely deployed DRM technology in the world, and this new version will enable content companies to make their content available across devices in a secured way. Microsoft is also releasing client SDK for iOS and Android platforms. More details and specifications on PlayReady and its support for MPEG-DASH and HTML5 can be found in Microsoft’s new white paper at http://www.microsoft.com/playready. Read full press release below. AMSTERDAM, Sept. 13, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — At the International Broadcasters Conference (IBC) today, Microsoft Corp. announced a host of new features to be included in the next version of its digital rights management system, PlayReady, when it is released later this year. This new version of PlayReady will support industry standards including HTML5, Encrypted Media Extensions (EME) and the MPEG-DASH streaming format as well as provide software development kits ...

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Microsoft yesterday announced that Xbox 360 maintained its lead in the U.S. console market during August. This is the thirty-second consecutive month for Xbox on maintaining its No.1 spot in US console market. The NPD Group revealed that over 96,000 Xbox 360 units were sold during August. August highlights from The NPD Group include: · Total retail spend on the Xbox 360 platform, including hardware, software and accessories, reached $213 million, the most for any console in the U.S. · Xbox 360 held six of the top 10 console game titles including: “Saints Row IV,” “Madden NFL 25,” “Payday 2,” “Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell: Blacklist,” “Minecraft” and “Disney Infinity.” Microsoft is planning to launch their next generation console Xbox One from Nov. 22 in 13 markets – Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, New Zealand, Spain, the United Kingdom and the U.S. After 12 weeks on the market, preorder sales of ...

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Microsoft always tests new features in Bing with a small set of users, observe usage behavior and then roll out to larger group of users with any needed changes. Today, I got a new feature in the Bing search results page. It is not anything revolutionary, but some users will find it very useful. When you search something on Bing, you will now find a small icon along the sides of each of the search result. You just need to click it once to save it to your personal collection. And, you can access the saved links by clicking the similar icon which is placed next to your profile name link.  Once you click that, you will be taken to the saved link page as above where you can see all your saved links. Another cool little thing is that, you can access the saved links by going to aka.ms/mysites from your ...

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