IDC today released worldwide tablet plus 2-in-1 shipments number. Total shipment is now down to 50.4 million units in the Q1 2014, this is decline of -35.7% from the holiday quarter and just 3.9% growth over the same period a year ago. IDC expects even more challenging year ahead for this category. So, What’s going wrong for tablets? There are two main factors. First, there is a huge rise in Phablet form factor which serves both as a phone and tablet to users. Second, the upgrade cycle for tablet owners are longer than expected. Tom Mainelli, IDC Program Vice President, Devices and Displays said, “In addition, commercial growth has not been robust enough to offset the slowing of consumer shipments.” Apple maintained its lead in the worldwide tablet plus 2-in-1 market, shipping 16.4 million units. That’s down from 26.0 million units in the previous quarter and well below its total ...

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With the Nokia/Microsoft deal officially closed last week on April 25, Stephen Elop has made his triumphant return to Microsoft. Elop is now the executive vice president (EVP) of the Microsoft Devices Group overseeing an expanded devices business that includes Lumia smartphones and tablets, Nokia mobile phones, Xbox hardware, Surface, Perceptive Pixel products, and accessories. Stephen Elop was paid 24.2 million euros ($33.4 million) in cash and shares after he left Nokia, thanks to rising Nokia share prices, he got more than what he was entitled to get. Elop himself is returning to the software giant after the deal closed on Friday, and based on Nokia’s share price in September he had been in line to get around 18.8 million euros for the early termination of his contract. Elop, whose severance payment includes just over 4 million euros in cash, stood down as Nokia chief executive in September and led the phone unit ...

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  For all qualifying Xbox Live Gold members, Microsoft is giving away two free Xbox 360 games each month for the rest of the year as part of Games with Gold program. Each game will be available to download only for a limited time, so grab them before they’re gone and keep them no matter what. This month, the following games will be available for free.   “Saints Row: The Third” ($19.99 ERP): Available from May 16-31 - And of course, if you’re in for something a little bit grittier, Volition’s critically acclaimed “Saints Row: The Third” might be just the kind of raw, hilarious, and over-the-top open-world adventure you need, when it blows into town (or at least, Games with Gold) on May 16. As the leader of the Third Street Saints, it’s up to you to lead your gang to victory in the crime-ridden city of Steelport, get rich, ...

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Microsoft today announced that they are bringing improvements to Bing Smart Search in Windows 8.1 devices. Bing Smart Search allows you to swipe or type from the start screen to find what you need – whether it’s a document on your PC, a photo album in the cloud, your favorite app, or a website. Today, Microsoft is adding natural language capabilities to this search experience. For example, when you search for ‘install a printer’, you will have related Device Settings in the search results. Search More Naturally Have you ever tried to get something done on your device but you weren’t exactly sure what you were looking for? For instance, how do I take a screenshot or how do set-up a printer? Based on the most common tasks people perform on Windows 8, we are taking steps to allow Smart Search to showcase results based on natural language understanding. Now ...

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In U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, Google is facing a privacy lawsuit for its data-mining practices of students email in its Google Apps for Education program. Even though the ads are not served for Google Apps for Education users, Google itself admitted that it scanned emails sent and received by students who attend schools that use Apps for Education. Google is using the data to build a profile that could be used for ad targeting outside Google Apps. The data-mining practices behind Google’s Gmail electronic-messaging service violate federal and state wiretap and privacy laws. Gmail is a key feature of Google Apps for Education, which has 30 million users worldwide and is provided by the company for free to thousands of educational institutions in the United States. Student-data-privacy experts contend that the latter claim is contradicted by Google’s own court filings in the California suit. They ...

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Last week, Nate Silver posted a blog from the survey data collected from people in the US showing how much major US cities differ in terms of when they arrive at work. Inspired by this experiment, Microsoft Bing team today posted an infographic by using Bing usage as a proxy for when people get online, start work or otherwise wake up. Check out out below. How did we come up this? We calculated the time at which we receive 50% of daily peak traffic from each metro area in their local time zones. The 25 cities follow the same general curve across all seven days of the week. While the patterns are the same, we did see a 43 minute shift between the earliest risers and the late risers. Based on this, the metro area that wakes up earliest is San Francisco, reaching 50% of traffic at 6:43AM and on ...

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Microsoft reported its latest financial quarter results last week and it was better than what many analysts expected. As Microsoft is transforming into a Devices and Services unit, the results of the newly formed Devices unit is an important one. As per the recent SEC filing by Microsoft, Microsoft is still losing money on every Surface device sold. The sales of the tablet has not hit the volume to make it profitable. For the quarter ended on March 31st, Microsoft lost about $45 million in Surface sales and about $300 million for the nine months ended March 31, 2014. Three months ended March 31, 2014 compared with three months ended March 31, 2013: Surface revenue was $494 million for the three months ended March 31, 2014. Surface revenue increased due to a higher number of units sold. Surface cost of revenue was $539 million for the three months ended March ...

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In an interview to GigaOM, Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth praised Microsoft’s Cloud service Azure for treating Linux as a first class citizen in the product. Also, he pointed out that Microsoft Azure might be the service that might give Amazon Web Services a run for its money in the future. “I have never had an experience engaging with the Microsoft cloud guys where I felt that they saw Linux as a second-class citizen. I think they have an undeniable institutional prerogative to make Windows a great experience and to convince people that it’s going to be the right platform for themselves. But I think the Azure team saw straightforwardly that if they wanted people to trust them in moving their data centers into Microsoft’s data center, then they had to be able to move everything — and a lot of that was going to be Linux.” And, he added, “The ...

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Microsoft today announced that they are launching Xbox One in China in September. Thanks to the partnership with BesTV, Xbox One will also be the first system of its kind to launch in China. Launching Xbox One in China is a significant milestone both Microsoft and for the industry. Today marks a monumental day for Xbox, as together with our partner BesTV New Media Co., we announced we will bring Xbox One to China in September of this year. This is a historic moment in our partnership as we work toward the first official Xbox launch in China. Xbox One will also be the first system of its kind to launch in China. The culture of games and entertainment is rapidly growing in China, with nearly half a billion people playing games – roughly a third of the country’s population and more than the entire population of North America. The ...

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Just after a month of its release, Microsoft has updated Office for iPad apps today with several new features. One of the most requested feature by users since its release was printing support, Microsoft has added that now. Also, they have added Smart Guides in PowerPoint and more. Your top request is here! You can now print Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, and PowerPoint presentations to an AirPrintTM printer. In Word for iPad, you can choose to print a document with or without markup. In Excel, print a selected range, a single worksheet or an entire spreadsheet. Of course, you can select the pages or slides you want to print. SmartGuides in PowerPoint help you align pictures, shapes, and textboxes as you move them around on a slide. With very little effort, your presentations will look beautifully designed. AutoFit in Excel now lets you adjust the width of multiple rows or ...

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CNBC today posted a list of people called CNBC’s First 25. They have ranked list of the 25 people we judge to have had the most profound impact on business and finance since 1989, the year CNBC went live. They have disrupted industries, sparked change and exercised an influence far beyond their own companies. Microsoft founder Bill Gates was ranked 2nd among the list and Apple founder Steve Jobs topped the list. Even though the author claims that the ranks are arguable, they have chosen based on the inputs from the panelists. Jobs at No. 1 and Gates at No. 2? Or should it be the other way around? After all, there hardly would have been a personal computer revolution without Gates. Yes, you say, but if he hadn’t propagated an operating system, somebody else would have. True, but Gates did it. And even if IBM handed him the ball, ...

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Last month, OneNote launched the initial version of their API. The first set of features were focused on scenarios for creating pages in OneNote: mobile app scanners, hardware scanners, save-it-for-later for newsreaders, etc. The team listed of the capabilities and features that OneNote is planning to deliver over the next 3 to 6 months. Among them, PDF Rendering was on the top of the list. In the current API, you can create a page with a PDF attachment, but it cannot be rendered onto the page directly. This feature will enable a PDF to be rendered onto the page, making it usable directly on the OneNote page. Since PDF is by far the most popular scan format, this is particularly important to scanner scenarios. I’m happy to announce that we’re keeping up on our promise to deliver from our backlog as frequently as possible. Just a few weeks after releasing ...

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Microsoft Store US is now offering great discounts on Surface devices for students. Microsoft Stores have been offering 10% discount to students already. In addition to that, they are now offering $100 discounts on orders. Surface Pro 2 can be now ordered for as low as $709 for 64GB model. 64GB $709.10 128GB $799.10 256GB $1069.10 512GB $1519.10 How to get Surface Pro 2 for above prices? Go to this Microsoft Store education page and sign in by providing details on your school Go to Microsoft Surface Pro 2 page here and add to your cart. Use promo code GRADUATION to get $100 Off. Find the offers from Microsoft here. ...

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Last week, Microsoft posted a promotional video for Microsoft Surface 2 tablet. The video shown involved the founder of Sweet Loren’s Ready-to-Bake Desserts, Loren Brill, uses one device for everything in her life – Surface 2. She used Surface 2 for her productive work on the go by using Office 2013, Skype calls and more. Today, Microsoft posted another marketing video. This time, Surface 2 is being used by a wedding planner. Ashlee is a wedding planner and someone who pretty much helps turn people’s dreams into reality. Being a wedding planner she plans and executes one of the most important days in a person’s life, and she’s using Surface 2 as her one device to fulfill her passion for helping people write their love stories. Ashlee spends a lot of time on the go and out on location. On a given afternoon she might be out testing cakes or ...

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With the Nokia/Microsoft deal officially closing  on April 25, Stephen Elop has made his triumphant return to Microsoft. Elop is now the executive vice president (EVP) of the Microsoft Devices Group overseeing an expanded devices business that includes Lumia smartphones and tablets, Nokia mobile phones, Xbox hardware, Surface, Perceptive Pixel products, and accessories.  Other Nokia executives joining Microsoft include Jo Harlow, Juha Putkiranta, Timo Toikkanen, and Chris Weber. They will report to Elop for the time being. Elop will be part of Nadella’s senior leadership team which includes Terry Myerson, Qi Lu, Amy Hood, Lisa Brummel, Chris Capossela, Scott Guthrie, Mark Penn, Eric Rudder, Harry Shum, Brad Smith, Kirill Tatarinov, and Kevin Turner. Here is part of the bio: Elop rejoined Microsoft in April 2014 following the company’s acquisition of the Nokia Devices and Services business. As Nokia’s president and chief executive officer from 2010 to 2013, Elop led the company through a ...

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Today, Microsoft released an update (2961887) for Internet Explorer 10 on Windows 8, Windows Server 2012, and Windows RT, and for Internet Explorer 11 on Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2012 R2, and Windows RT 8.1. The update addresses the vulnerabilities described in Adobe Security bulletin APSB14-13. For more information about this update, including download links, see Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 2961887. The following files are available for download from the Microsoft Download Center: Update for Internet Explorer Flash Player for Windows 8.1 (KB2961887) Download the Windows8.1-KB2961887-x86.msu package now.  Update for Internet Explorer Flash Player for Windows 8.1 x64-based systems (KB2961887) Download the Windows8.1-KB2961887-x64.msu package now. Update for Internet Explorer Flash Player for Windows 8 (KB2961887) Download the Windows8-RT-KB2961887-x86.msu package now. Update for Internet Explorer Flash Player for Windows 8 x64-based systems (KB2961887) Download the Windows8-RT-KB2961887-x64.msu package now. Update for Internet Explorer Flash Player for Windows Server 2012 R2 (KB2961887) Download ...

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