By Cody Lee on Mar 7, 2014
Good news Xbox One owners, Microsoft has posted an update to its iOS SmartGlass client for the console this morning, bringing the app to version 2.3. The update includes a number of improvements, as well as a dedicated hub for clips you make with Game DVR.
The dedicated hub for Game DVR clips is a nice addition, as it allows you to view all of your gameplay clips in one spot. Want to show a friend that sweet kill you had in Call of Duty last night, or show them that awesome volley you had in FIFA? It’s all right there… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Mar 6, 2014
Sunrise Calendar [review], a free iOS calendar alternative, has finally introduced long-expected support for Microsoft Exchange accounts for corporate calendars, making it on par with the stock iOS Calendar app.
Now available free in the App Store, this much-expected feature in the new Sunrise Calendar version 2.2 makes it easy to connect your Exchange account directly in the app to access your work-related tasks and events on the iPhone and iPad.
Support for Exchange accounts is in addition to the existing iCloud and Google calendar integration. Before linking your Exchange calendars with Sunrise, you must first add an Exchange account to your device in iOS Settings under Mail, Contacts, Calendars… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Mar 3, 2014
Software maker Microsoft last November released its companion free SmartGlass app on the App Store, giving Xbox One owners a way to connect to their console to browse the web, navigate the dashboard control content, access achievements and more, all from their iPhone and iPad devices.
But Microsoft isn’t standing still.
According to a new report by The Verge, the Redmond giant is now looking to push the Xbox Live service cross-platform “in a big way” soon. For months now, Microsoft has been offering tools allowing third-party iOS and Android developers to integrate Xbox Live functionality into their apps and games.
But as games developers balked at Microsoft’s required certification process, the company is now looking to “win back” their support by making Xbox Live “a lot easier” to integrate into apps and games… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Mar 3, 2014
The Windows giant Microsoft will be introducing its upcoming Windows Phone 8.1 update at the Build conference next month.
With it comes Cortana, a Microsoft-branded personal digital assistant that includes functionality provided by Apple’s Siri and Google’s Google Now voice-activated assistants.
It also has a few nice features not provided by Apple so perhaps competition from Microsoft (and Google) will prompt the iPhone maker to roll out new Siri features sooner than later. The Verge has an exclusive look at Cortana’s interface and some of its features, here are the highlights… Read More
By Cody Lee on Feb 24, 2014
Microsoft has updated its mobile Bing client for iOS today, bringing the app to version 4.4. The update brings about a number of new features and improvements that both current Bing and potential future Bing users might find worth checking out.
Perhaps most interesting of the additions is a new shake-to-discover feature, which allows you to shake your iPhone about to discover random ‘Trending’ news topics. Microsoft also added the ability to copy URLs and open URLs in mobile Safari… Read More
By Oliver Haslam on Feb 24, 2014
As part of Microsoft’s rebranding of its SkyDrive cloud storage solution to the arguably much better “OneDrive,” the Redmond firm has set about something of a charm offensive. In an attempt to try and take users away from the hugely awesome Dropbox, Microsoft has already given away 100GB of free storage to the first 100,000 people to sign into the new OneDrive, but if you weren’t in on that action then fear not, because you can also snag 3GB of space for absolutely nothing. And that’s on top of the 7GB that they offer up right out of the gate.
In order to get your slice of the free cloud-based pie, all you need to do is install one of Microsoft’s OneDrive mobile apps – the iOS one, preferably – and enable one little feature. In all honesty it’s a feature you’re going to want to enable anyway, because Microsoft is giving away 3GB of free storage to anyone that turns on automatic uploading of their Camera Roll.
Now you may be saying the same thing that we said. Why would you want to do that if you already use Dropbox? Well, here’s why… Read More
By Cody Lee on Feb 24, 2014
So the rumors were true. Despite being a long-time parter of Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform, and despite being outright purchased by the Redmond company last fall, Nokia has been working on an Android strategy. And tonight, it unveiled that strategy to the world.
At its Mobile World Congress press event in Barcelona, the Finnish handset-maker introduced not one, but three new Android phones: the X, X+ and XL. The X and X+ both have 4-inch displays, and similar specs, and as you’d imagine the XL has a larger 5-inch display… Read More
By Cody Lee on Feb 23, 2014
In an effort to stave off competition from Apple, Google and others, Microsoft is said to be cutting the cost of Windows 8.1 by as much as 70%. Now it sounds like this is for manufacturers only, who pre-install Windows on their devices, but it should still eventually turn into savings for consumers.
You see, Microsoft is hoping that by cutting the cost for manufacturers to install Windows on products less than $250, it’ll entice PC makers to create and sell more cheaper models. It’s also cutting the requirement for <$250 devices to complete logo certification in an effort to speed up their releases…
By Cody Lee on Feb 19, 2014
Microsoft announced a few weeks ago that it would be changing the name of its SkyDrive cloud service to OneDrive, and this morning the full rebrand went into effect. This doesn’t mean much, as existing apps will continue to work with the service.
In fact, the iOS app has already been rebranded, and it looks like Windows, Mac and Android apps will be updated today with the new name. But there are a few changes being made that are worth noting, like the new Dropbbox-like referral bonuses… Read More
By Cody Lee on Feb 14, 2014
The long rumored ‘Office for iPad’ project isn’t dead, according to a new report from ZDNet. In fact, the outlet believes that it’s likely to make it to market sooner than most people think—ahead of Microsoft’s touch-first version of Office.
For years, Microsoft has been said to be working on an iPad version of its popular Office suite, but those rumors have yet to materialize. An iPhone Office app appeared last summer for the iPhone, but it offers limited editing functionality… Read More
By Cody Lee on Feb 4, 2014
It’s been a pretty big day for Microsoft. Following the news earlier today that Satya Nadella has been named the company’s new CEO, and Bill Gates would be stepping down as chairman, comes word that the Windows maker has made a sizable investment in Foursquare.
The deal, which has been confirmed by both parties, is said to be worth $15 million, and it will give Microsoft access to Forsquare’s mountain of mobile data. The company plans to utilize the data in its Bing mapping software and various other Windows Phone applications… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 4, 2014
The search for a new Microsoft CEO following Steve Ballmer’s August 2013 announcement of his retirement is finally over as the Windows maker on Tuesday announced major executive changes at the top. Insider Satya Nadella has become the new Microsoft boss and a board member.
He previously held the position of Executive Vice President of Microsoft’s Cloud and Enterprise group and is the third Microsoft CEO since the company’s inception. Also important, Bill Gates will be stepping down as Chairman but will retain a board seat serving as an adviser. Lead independent director John Thompson would succeed Gates as Chairman, the software giant said… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jan 29, 2014
Microsoft launched Bing Rewards in September 2010 in a desperate attempt to get people search the web with Bing. Bing Rewards provides credits to users of major desktop browsers through regular Bing searches and special promotions.
Today, Bing Rewards is going mobile as the program has just been extended to owners of iOS and Android smartphones and tablets.
Rather surprisingly, the Windows maker said that Bing Rewards was “coming soon” to Windows Phone devices. Bing Rewards replaced Microsoft’s similarly conceived initiatives, SearchPerks! and Bing Cashback… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jan 27, 2014
Microsoft’s multi-platform cloud storage service SkyDrive has just been rechristened and shall be known henceforth as OneDrive. The rebranding comes following last June’s ruling in a trademark case involving Microsoft and British TV broadcaster BSkyB.
As the television broadcaster trademarked the term ‘Sky,’ the court ordered that Microsoft concede the ‘SkyDrive’ trademark to BSkyB.
One of the largest pay-TV providers in Europe, BSkyB offers video streaming and has its own online storage service called Sky Store & Share… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jan 23, 2014
After reading a Forbes article two days ago highlighting 24 countries where Windows Phones outsells the iPhone – which disregards the fact that Microsoft is gaining traction in markets where the iPhone doesn’t compete because Windows Phone sales are most in the low-end – I wanted to write a reality check type of an article.
Today, both Nokia and Microsoft were served a reality check after the struggling Finnish handset maker reported a whopping 29 percent lower handset revenue in the Christmas quarter. Worse, sales are decelerating at an alarming clip: Nokia said it sold 8.2 million phones during the Christmas quarter versus Wall Street consensus of ten million units. And they only sold 30 million handsets during 2013.
The company has now scheduled a press conference at the upcoming Mobile World Congress in February amid persisting rumors of a budget Android phone with the Nokia logo on it, the ambitious project apparently code-named Normandy… Read More
By Cody Lee on Dec 24, 2013
In 2011, Apple teamed up with a number of tech companies including Microsoft and BlackBerry to form what many called the ‘Rockstar consortium’ to purchase a collection of over 4,000 patents from Nortel, a communications company that went bankrupt in 2009.
Bloomberg is now reporting that the consortium is currently holding discussion regarding a potential sale of a portion of the patents—which it paid in upwards of $4.5 billion for—after several attempts to land large licensing deals from other companies have failed… Read More
By Cody Lee on Dec 7, 2013
Microsoft has posted a significant update for Bing for iPad this evening, bringing the app to version 2.0. The update includes a number of improvements, including an all-new design for iOS 7 and new SkyDrive bookmarks.
The new design features flat images and text, and a lot of open space (good news though, it’s not all white). And with the new bookmarks feature, you can now save bookmarks and images, and access them via SkyDrive… Read More
By Cody Lee on Dec 5, 2013
Microsoft has updated its iOS Skype client today, bringing the app to version 4.1.5. The update brings about a number of improvements including a redesigned sign-in screen, performance enhancements and bug fixes.
The new sign-in screen was designed to reduce startup time so you can start chatting quicker. And it accomplishes this by making it much easier for folks to login to the service with their Skype ID or Microsoft account… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Nov 26, 2013
In what’s now become a recurring theme, Windows maker Microsoft just fired the latest salvo of television commercials that predictably portray Apple’s iPad as a lesser tablet. Posted on the official Surface blog, a pair of holiday-themed advertisements highlight one hardware and one software feature of the Microsoft tablet: a built-in kickstand and multi-account support.
The Redmond giant doesn’t shy away from mentioning the iPad brand name in the videos. “Free apps on the iPad don’t offer the same hands-free technology,” says the voiceover in the first ad that highlights a Food & Drink app which come preloaded with Windows 8.1. The other ad lambasts Apple’s device because it “doesn’t allow for multiple accounts and does not have the ability to monitor usage”… Read More
By Cody Lee on Nov 25, 2013
Microsoft has built up quite the library of iPad-bashing TV spots. And now that it’s buying out Nokia’s mobile hardware business, it’s getting them in on the gag. Today, Nokia launched a new TV commercial taking potshots at Apple’s popular tablet.
The ad is supposed to be about Nokia’s new Lumia 2520 slate, which launched last week, but you only see it for about 5 seconds at the very end of the 1 minute and 18 second-long video. For the other 72 seconds, it shows a user defending his iPad…