Review Category : Microsoft

Microsoft recently made a legally required filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)  which lists some interesting information on where Steven Sinofsky can and cannot work until the end of 2013.  You may recall Sinofsky and Microsoft parted ways last November, shortly after the launch of Windows 8.  The seven companies Sinofsky cannot work for currently are Amazon, Apple, EMC, Facebook, Google, Oracle, and VMWare.  The list shows some insight into what companies Microsoft considers its biggest threats. It’s in Sinofsky’s best interest to follow this agreement with Microsoft as he is set to receive a $14 million retirement package from the company.  It will be interesting to watch where Sinofsky ends up working in 2014.  Parts of retirement agreement with Microsoft extend to 2017.  We may have to wait a few more years until learning the full story behind Microsoft’s and Sinofsky’s divorce. Source: SEC via GigaOM ...

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Microsoft has released “Office Mobile for Office 365″ for Android 4.0 and up, excluding tablets. The Android version of the Office Suite is similar to its counterpart on iOS. You will need an Office 365 subscription to edit and view documents. Microsoft currently recommends using the Office Web Apps on android tablets. Source: Google Play store via The Verge ...

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Update: Microsoft will be forced to rename SkyDrive worldwide. Microsoft has reached a settlement with BSkyB over the SkyDrive trademark dispute.  Most likely the SkyDrive name will have to be changed in all of Europe.  Here is what Omar Shahine, Group Program Manager of SkyDrive, said on the issue just yesterday: Mona and I work on the engineering team, so we’re not really equipped to answer this question. We want to deliver a killer experience, and unfortunately we don’t have any additional info at this time. British Sky Broadcasting and Microsoft Reach Settlement in Trade Mark Case Sky allows Microsoft temporary use of SkyDrive name during transition period following trade mark infringement judgement – while Microsoft agree to forego planned appeal British Sky Broadcasting Group plc (“Sky”) and Microsoft Corporation (“Microsoft”) have today announced the settlement of trade mark infringement proceedings in the European Union brought by Sky against Microsoft ...

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Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz was a mathematician, contemporaneous with Newton. It turns out Leibniz was also a philosopher, and there is something called the Leibniz Principle that equates to data conflation. In colloquial terms, the Leibniz Principle says, ‘If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, chances are it’s a duck.’ That principle is the basis of Microsoft’s new Leibniz Platform. Currently search engines are thought of as tools to find text but Ashok Chandra, Microsoft distinguished scientist and general manager of the Interaction and Intent Group at Microsoft Research Silicon Valley, believes people soon will think of search engines as “task engines.” “Search technology began with words,” says Chandra.  “We built a whole search infrastructure around words. But in this new era of search, we are working with entities, because people think in terms of them, such as a hotel, a movie, an event, a ...

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Microsoft submitted their Form 10-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission today and it revealed some interesting information about Surface. Microsoft Surface totally generated a revenue of $853 million. This is not so encouraging number for Microsoft because it equates to poor sales of the Surface units. If you roughly calculate the $853 million for $500 per Surface unit, you end up with just 1.7 million Surface units sold number. Recently, Microsoft announced a $900 million charge to reflect a $150 price drop in the Surface RT device, attempting to clear inventory due to poor sales. Source: SEC via: Geekwire ...

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Omar Shahine and Mona Akmal from the SkyDrive team held an AMA on reddit answering user questions.  We’ll be sharing any interesting tidbits. Shahine commented on increasing the 2GB file size limit on Skydrive This is a good one that we’d like to improve on. I can’t comment about specifics here, but it’s something we are looking at. The reason we don’t support 2 GB is that when we designed the system 7 years ago we thought 2 GB was really big. Turns out it’s not. It looks like some significant backend changes will need to be made before they can increase the file size limimt. Shahine also discussed the possibility of adding purchasing option of greater than a 100GB total storage  We are always looking at adding additional storage options. Can’t comment on when this might change. Source: Reddit ...

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Omar Shahine and Mona Akmal from the SkyDrive team held an AMA on reddit answering user questions.  We’ll be sharing any interesting tidbits. A HTML5 music player had been built for Skydrive by interns about two years ago but there were never any plans to actually put it into the final product. Omar Shahine: That is correct. About 2 years ago we had a bunch of interns here and one of the projects they came up with was building an HTML5 music player in SkyDrive. We never actually released this and have no plans to do so at this time, but that’s why you saw the rumor about us doing a music player. Like many groups at Microsoft, we have ongoing conversations with the Xbox music team about their experiences, and as you probably know they just launched a new web Xbox music web experience which we think is pretty awesome ...

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We previously reported on SkyDrive’s update that includes expanded photo management features and support for high DPI screens. There is now also a built-in text editor which supports many types of code files. It has line numbering, syntax highlighting and completion suggestions, even control-space is there. It’s not TFS, but it is a very handy way to work with code files that are available from all your PC’s and to share them with friends, even giving them editing ability. Greg Edmiston from the SkyDrive gives a demo of the new txt editor with Channel 9. For a complete list of new features, see the SkyDrive blog. ...

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Microsoft today blogged about the upcoming next generation matchmaking technology called Smart Match in Xbox One. Microsoft highlights three main features of Smart Match. First, it matches players based on skill, language, age and more. Second, you can do other things while Xbox One is finding match using Smart Match. Third, Smart Match will notify you once the matching is done with a toast notification. Smart Match Finds the Perfect Players for the Perfect game Smart Match on Xbox One is completely reengineered for a new generation of gaming – using advanced algorithms to pair players based on skill, language, and now reputation. It’s smarter, faster and optimized to help you play with exactly the people you want, when you want. The advanced party system goes far beyond the beacons of Xbox 360, which was limited to people you already knew. Helping you discover and connect easily with players is ...

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We have seen many rumors and reports in the past that Microsoft will enable WinRT apps to run on Xbox One. It is almost confirmed today by the code leak by SuperDaE. The image above shows the supposedly leaked copy of Homefront 2 for Xbox One source code file list. As you can see, it has AppxManifest.xml file that indicates us that it is a WinRT app. Windows 8 apps in Windows Store has similar file arrangement. And DurangoConfig.xml and DurangoLauncher.exe could be the files used by Xbox One to launch these kind of new apps. Microsoft is still maintaining the silence about the details on the 3rd party app/games development in Xbox One. But they last week confirmed that self publishing is coming to Xbox One. Our vision is that every person can be a creator. That every Xbox One can be used for development. That every game and experience can take advantage ...

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Microsoft today released Windows 8.1 Enterprise Preview for its enterprise customers. The new preview adds features around mobility, security, management and virtualization that satisfies the needs of today’s enterprise. Here are the features that will be offered to customers as a part of the Windows 8.1 Enterprise edition: Windows To Go Creator: IT organizations can create a fully manageable corporate Windows 8.1 desktop on a bootable external USB drive. The drive can be used to support Bring Your Own Device scenarios or be given to contingent staff to access the corporate environment without compromising security. Start Screen Control: IT departments can now control the layout of the Start screen on company-issued devices to ensure key apps are easily accessible. IT departments can also prevent users from customizing their Start screen to ensure consistency across individual workgroups or the entire company. DirectAccess: Users can seamlessly access resources inside a corporate network remotely ...

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  Asus CEO Jonney Shih has told AllThingsD that they are not happy with the Windows RT growth so far. He told that “The result is not very promising,” referring to both Microsoft’s Surface and Asus VivoTab RT. However, Asus is not stopping the developement of new Windows RT products. But they are putting all of their time and energy into devices that use Intel chips, since lots of people still prefers them. He also noted that Microsoft also made their mistakes such as removing the Start button and menu completely, etc,. But Shih isn’t giving up on Windows products. The company recently introduced the Transformer Book Trio, which runs both Windows and Android, and the company is evaluating building smaller 10-inch and eight-inch Windows tablets. “My personal opinion is the 10-inch may make more sense,” Shih said. Read more from the link below. Source: ATD ...

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Microsoft today announced a bunch of new features for SkyDrive.com. The new features includes the support for new file formats like GIF, new sharing options, new shared view and more. File Format Support: So now, SkyDrive.com supports these high DPI displays by measuring the DPI scale of your device. When your screen supports it, we show higher resolution photos and thumbnails. So you see more of your real photo instead of a thumbnail that gets up-scaled (note: not all browsers support high DPI yet). If you’ve ever seen an animated GIF (pronounced “jif”) on the Interwebs (and probably laughed), you were probably disappointed to find out that when you saved and shared that same animated GIF on SkyDrive, it wasn’t animated. Well now you can view your favorite animated GIFs in all their glory! Sorting and management: You can now rotate photos on SkyDrive.com. A few months ago, we introduced ...

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Yammer, which was bought by Microsoft a year ago for $1 billion, has released a browser extension which adds a Yammer tab to your browser menu, and lets you quickly share any web page you’re viewing  – just click on the Yammer icon, choose which Group you’d like to post your message into, and share your own comments with a link to the page.  In addition, as you’re browsing the web, the browser extension will notify you if there’s an existing Yammer conversation about the page. If you see a red notification number on the Yammer icon, that means that your coworkers are already having a discussion on Yammer about that page – simply click on the Yammer icon to pull out a separate viewing pane where you can view the conversation, all while remaining on the web page. You can  join in the discussion and post from within this pane. ...

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Microsoft recently took nearly a billion dollar charge and reduced the price of the SurfaceRT to $350.  It appears the price point has helped move some units of the SurfaceRT with Walmart now out of stock of the device.  Walmart expects to have more units on hand within the week. Directions on Microsoft analyst Michael Cherry notes: The $900 million write-down also included parts and accessories, Cherry noted. And many forget that Apple is the master of tying up critical elements of components the company needs in order to build an adequate supply of consumer electronics. “When Microsoft decided to step into the world of building tablets I wondered how this differed from what they already built (mice, keyboards, and Xboxes),” said Cherry. “I assumed that a lot of money went into: a) buying parts; b) buying time in a plant; and c) building sub-components such as milling the metal ...

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Microsoft has launched a pilot project in the rural Limpopo province of South Africa that aims to deliver high-speed and affordable broadband to underserved communities using so-called “white spaces” technology.  The focus of the pilot will be to prove that TV white spaces can be used to meet the South African government’s goals of providing low-cost access for a majority of South Africans by 2020.  The pilot is a joint effort between Microsoft, the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, the University of Limpopo and local network builder Multisource. It will use TV white spaces and solar-powered base stations to provide low-cost wireless broadband access to five secondary schools in remote parts of the Limpopo province.  The project will use the University of Limpopo as a hub for a white space network deployment that will provide nearby schools in local communities with wireless connectivity. The project will also provide each of ...

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