Review Category : Microsoft

Readers may recall an episode of Modern Family which rotated around acquiring an iPad. Microsoft appears to have purchased a similar level of marketing and product placement for the Microsoft Surface, which not only starred prominently in the show in multiple scenes, but also managed to get a nice feature run down during the show also. Are our readers impressed at Microsoft’s level of spending? Let us know below. Thanks Bugbog for the tip. ...

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Major Nelson and Gear Box Software have just made a free Golden Key available for Borderlands 2 on the Xbox 360. The SHiFT code will only last a few hours, so it would be a good idea to use it pretty snappily. To redeem a code, select "Extras" on the main menu of Borderlands 2 and choose "SHiFT Codes" then follow the on-screen instructions. SHiFT requires Xbox LIVE Gold and the account user must be at least 18 years of age. For further details about what a Golden Key is and how/where to redeem is, hit the Gearbox forums Read more at MajorNelson.com here. ...

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We all know that Microsoft is having a game studio in Vancouver, Canada. Now Microsoft has revealed more info about its new game studio. It has been named as Black Tusk Studios and working on next generation AAA titles. Here is the info from their shiny new website, Black Tusk has assembled a team of seasoned game industry veterans who are united in their passion to create emotionally engaging AAA gaming experiences. We hire the best talent from Vancouver and around the world, and our global recruiting effort is reflected in the diversity of cultures and backgrounds on our team. It leverages human and technical resources from various other Microsoft Studios in addition to hiring local and global talent. Being a first-party studio at Microsoft means having both the mandate and the opportunity to think and act big. All of Microsoft’s studios share the same commitment to innovation and quality, along with support ...

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Microsoft Security Essentials, the free virus and malware protection software from Microsoft failed to pass the recent AV-TEST. In Windows 8, Microsoft has replaced the Security Essentials with Windows Defender which will be turned on by default for all the users. According to recent AV-Test,  the effectiveness of Security Essentials in finding zero-day malware attacks, viruses, worms, and Trojan horses dropped from 69% to 64%, compared to industry average of 89%. It also had a 90% detection rate for malware and it is also below the 97% for the industry average. In order to get “AV-Test Certified”, protection suite should pass 11 out of 18 available tests and in the Sep-Oct study Security Essentials failed to pass it. I hope Microsoft improves its security situation soon. via: Infoweek ...

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Microsoft is offering a free trial of Xbox Live Gold this weekend. The Gold subscription level is required to play multi-player console games, and access features such as Netflix and IE9 on Xbox 360. The free trial will be available from now till the 2nd December for players in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Hong Kong, India, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore, Taiwan and the United States. The free trial was announced by Major Nelson, who said “All Xbox owners in these regions, regardless of their current subscription, will have access to online multiplayer gaming, Internet Explorer, Video Kinect and our entire catalogue of entertainment apps, during that time period. Have fun.” Via Cinemablend.com ...

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Yesterday, Microsoft revealed the pricing and availability of Microsoft Surface for Windows Pro. This new Microsoft Surface Pro is an Ultrabook/MacBook Air competitor than a Tablet/iPad competitor. Surface Pro will be on sale in January 2013 starting from $899. The device will run on latest generation Intel Core i5 processor with 4GB of RAM and it weighs under 1Kg. When Surface twitter account tweeted that Surface Pro will have battery life half of that of Surface RT, some of the tech bloggers have gone crazy about it. FYI, the closest competitor for Surface Pro which is MacBook Air 11inch also provides the same level of battery life. via: ZDNet ...

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MSNerd, well known leaker of Microsoft secrets, has posted the following tip: MSFT switch to Snapdragon for 8.6" Surface RT2, Temash for 11.6" Pro 2 & Haswell for 14.6" Surface Book. The Snapdragon processor for the next Surface RT of course makes a lot of sense, given that it is generally felt Qualcomm’s processors are more performant than NVidia’s. The Temash processor for the Surface Pro 2 however does not make as much sense. The chip is an X86 unit by AMD with two cores and a GPU cut at 28 nm and therefore very low power.  The issue is of course not the processor specs, but whether Microsoft would further jeopardize their relationship with Intel by using an AMD processor in their own-branded device. Lastly we do have an Intel chip for the intriguingly named Surface book, which has a 14.6 inch screen and is powered by an Intel ...

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Citing the usual “people familiar with the company’s plans”, Bloomberg has confirmed Microsoft is planning to release a follow-up to the popular Xbox 360 console by Black Friday next year. They did not expand on the features of the new console, but earlier leaks suggests the device will have a newer version of the Kinect sensor and the ability to play Blu-ray disks. Apparently Microsoft is still deciding between whether to announce the console at E3 or in a separate event. Bloomberg did not comment on rumours of the so-called Xbox Mini, which would be more streaming media and less games orientated. Read more at Bloomberg here. Via the Verge.com ...

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While we have reports from the NPD and elsewhere of slow Windows 8 sales, it seems Black Friday (23rd November) had a pretty distinct effect on the installed base of Windows 8 PCs, as can be seen from the above StatCounter data shows. While the days leading up to Black Friday had Windows 8 running below 1% US net usage, Thanks Giving and Black Friday saw a large number of new Windows 8 PCs hitting the market, taking its US share above 2%. While the number reduced over the next week,indicating that Windows 8 users are mainly at home rather than at work, it returned to 2.12% yesterday, indicating the new level was real and not just an artefact of increased usage over the holiday break. The stats mean that for every 25 Windows 7 users there is one Windows 8 user, and similarly for every 7 Windows XP and ...

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  Windows 8 has an interesting way to unlock your device called Picture Password. Instead of typing regular passwords and pin numbers, picture passwords will allow you to unlock your PC in simple and secure manner. This is how Picture Password works, At its core, your picture password is comprised of two complimentary parts. There is a picture from your picture collection and a set of gestures that you draw upon it. Instead of having you pick from a canned set of Microsoft images, you provide the picture, because it increases both the security and the memorability of the password. You get to decide the content of the picture and the portions that are important to you. Plus, you get to see a picture that is important to you just like many people do on their phone lock screen. Now, Microsoft is trying to patent this feature and below is the ...

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Here’s a quick comparison of Microsoft Surface with Windows Pro and Apple MacBook Air. Both the devices have almost identical internals with a major difference of Surface being a Touch device with detachable keyboards. Spec Microsoft Surface Apple MacBook Air Image Size 10.81 x 6.81 x 0.53in 11.8 x 7.56 x 0.68in Weight Less than 2lbs 1.08 kg (2.38 pounds) Display 1920×1080 1366 x 768 Touch Screen Support 10-point multi-touch No Pen Input Supported and Included Not supported CPU 3rd Gen Intel Core i5 Processor 3rd Gen Intel Core i5 Processor Memory 4GB RAM 4GB RAM Storage 64GB, 128GB 64GB, 128GB Wireless Wi-Fi (802.11a/b/g/n) Bluetooth 4.0 technology Wi-Fi (802.11a/b/g/n) Bluetooth 4.0 technology Battery 42 W-h 35 W-h Cameras Two 720p HD cameras, front-facing and rear-facing 720p Front camera Ports Full-size USB 3.0 microSDXC card slot  Mini DisplayPort 2 Full-size USB 3.0 Thunderbolt Port Mini DisplayPort Sensors Ambient light sensor Accelerometer ...

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  One of the common complaints every analysts reported about Windows 8 sales is the lack of new Windows 8 PCs in retail stores. Best Buy, one of the leading retailers in US had only few models of new Windows 8 PCs. Jason Bonfig, Best Buy’s vice president of merchant computing have told Time in an interview that there were several reasons for the lack of many new PCs in stores. One of them is that PC makers haven’t been able to deliver their tablets and  hybrids in time for Windows 8′s launch due to issues with manufacturing. Many  Windows 8 tablets use touchscreens larger than 10 inches, which has been the  standard for Android tablets from companies like Samsung, Asus and Acer.  Production is still ramping up for the larger screens, Bonfig said, and while  the manufacturing process for 10-inch panels has been refined over several  years, the process for ...

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Microsoft today shared the details about the Surface with Windows Pro pricing and availability. The device pricing will start from $899 and will be shipping in Jan 2013. Today, I want to share a bit more detail about the growing Surface family of products and Surface with Windows 8 Pro, specifically around pricing. In January, Surface with Windows 8 Pro will be available in two versions and pricing will start at $899: · 64GB standalone version at $899 · 128GB standalone version at $999 Both versions will both include a Surface pen with Palm Block technology and include the ability to use a Touch Cover or Type Cover (sold separately). Surface with Windows 8 Pro uses the same familiar elegant design principles as Surface with Windows RT including the Dark Titanium VaporMg casing, dual 2×2 MIMO antennas designed specifically for Surface and of course the kickstand. Surface with Windows 8 ...

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Microsoft today posted an interesting video to promote its Internet Explorer web browser. This ad is focused on the IE haters who generally have a bad impression on IE however good it is. The latest version of Internet Explorer 10 is one of the most standard complaint web browser and has full hardware acceleration which makes the browsing experience smooth and fast. Enjoy the video above and download IE 10 here.   ...

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VLC Player, one of the most popular Windows desktop software may be coming to Windows Store soon as a Metro app. The developers behind this app is now planning to raise money through Kickstarter program to aid rapid development. From their blog, We want to allow users to get access to VLC from the Start screen and Metro experience too. To run in Metro, important parts of VLC need to be re-written or ported and an entirely new interface needs to be created. This is very time-consuming and considering our current Windows design, we need professional designers to adapt the interface to Metro. Additionally, we would like to have it in the hands of our Windows 8 users as soon as possible. Porting VLC to Metro by relying on volunteers during their spare time would take a long time, just as how VLC for Android has. This is why we ...

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  Market research firm NPD today released their data on hardware sales in US market. Sales of Windows based devices in the last month are down by 21% compared to the same period a year ago in US. Sales of laptops running Windows declined by 24% and Windows Desktop devices sales were down by 9%. NPD also mentioned that Windows 8 tablet sales “have been almost non-existent. NPD commented the following on Windows 8 sales, “After just four weeks on the market, it’s still early to place blame on Windows 8 for the ongoing weakness in the PC market,” writes Stephen Baker, vice president of industry analysis at NPD. “We still have the whole holiday selling season ahead of us, but clearly Windows 8 did not prove to be the impetus for a sales turnaround some had hoped for.” Read more about it from the source link below. Source: NPD ...

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