Finally the new Surface from Microsoft with 4G is available in the UK with 4G, 64 GB memory, Microsoft Office and so much more. It looks great, will be running on the faster NVIDIA Tegra 4 processor and has a lovely HD display with a 3.5 mega pixel front camera and a 5.0 mega pixel camera on the back. You will be getting lots of extra stuff too, such as Windows RT 8.1, unlimited minutes on Skype for a year and there is 200 GB of storage on OneDrive for two years.
For connectivity there is a microSD card reader for extra storage, a full size USB 3.0 port, video out and there is Bluetooth 4.0 too. This version of the Surface 2 comes with micro SIM slot so that it can connect even when there is no wireless connection available, it weighs in at 670 grams and comes with Office 2013 RT with Outlook pre-loaded which is great for those who use Microsoft on a daily basis. The Surface 2 64 GB 4G will be launching in May with a price tag of £540!
Source: Microsoft Store
There is not much love these days for Microsoft’s browser, Internet Explorer! It has always been there since the early days of mass internet use and yet when it comes to it, there are many people who simply cannot be asked to use it. In fact, despite all of the TV adverts, IE is still nothing to get excited about and maybe this is something that the new management at the company might want to take a closer look at!
Source: Humor Train
Spring 2014 will see the first updates coming for Microsoft’s Windows 8 PC operating system. The main focus so far is that the 8.1 update will see improvements to the way the system handles mouse and keyboard functions – mainly an issue for those who have Windows 8 devices with touchscreen capabilities.
Little else has been confirmed as of yet, but there have been a number of other leaks and rumours floating around. Here we take a look at some of them so far, though if you are a developer or IT technician who is looking to get more information about how Microsoft currently operates, there are plenty of short courses you can take such as those offered on this website to bring yourself up to speed.
Apps made pinnable to the taskbar
The Metro interface of Windows 8 increased the number of clicks that users had to make to access the apps or content they wanted to get to. However, it’s rumoured that this update will bring the potential to lock favourite apps onto a taskbar at the bottom of the home screen, rather than having to go into the infamous Metro interface every single time. It’s possible that Microsoft will allow those running Windows 8.1 to run the apps straight from the desktop to cut out this process altogether if they wish.
Metro apps have a title bar
Another strong yet unconfirmed rumour is that the Metro screen applications will have a title bar across the top of them. This will allows users with a mouse to minimise or close them if they no longer need them there, and also provides the option to group sets of apps together.
Shutting Metro apps
The Microsoft apps which are specifically opened from the Metro interface (Photo Editor, Skype, Videos etc.) will all now have a more ‘desktop-like’ close function, where users will be able to click on the icon in the top corner to shut the programme. This will be in addition to the current method of closing with a specific touch gesture, or by using the keyboard function.
It’s not just going to be visible changes – there will be some ‘behind the scenes’ changes which will tweak the way Windows 8 operates and functions. In the main this will be more noticeable on tablets and phones, rather than the desktop version of the operating system. Further rumours suggest that in order for Windows to keep up with Android in the cheap tablet market, their OS will be adapted to run more smoothly on devices with smaller memory side and other technical capabilities.
Quick shutdown option
Another rumoured usability improvement is a quicker option to shut down the PC, with a new icon being placed in the top right of the start screen, next to the user’s profile image. This saves the step of having to log out first and then waiting for this to happen, bringing it more in line with the speed and convenience of tablets and Mac computers.
Therefore, it looks like Microsoft is planning on changing SkyDrive to OneDrive! Just as we are getting used to it, they go and change the name again. However, we cannot fully blame Microsoft for this, as the name change comes from a complaint from BSkyB, who use the word “Sky” for TV, broadband and phone services in the UK, Australia and New Zealand. It is believed that a consumer could be easily confused between SkyDrive and Sky TV! Anyway, OneDrive is not such a bad name, after all, Microsoft are marketing it as one place for all of your stuff, such as video, images and documents.
The roll out has not started yet, but anyone with a current SkyDrive will need to do nothing as the changes will take place as OneDrive is released across the Microsoft network. In the mean time, anyone interested in signing up for brand new OneDrive account will need to leave his or her email and wait for the official launch. It should not be too long, as you would think that Microsoft would need to get this going as soon as they can in order to keep a smooth transition from SkyDrive to OneDrive!
Source: One Drive
We have passwords for almost anything these days, but there are security issues with using what we think is a safe and secure password, as hackers appear to be able to break even the toughest passwords with ease! So software giant Microsoft has come up with an app called Telepathwords, the idea behind it is to weed out those weak passwords by reading the mind of the person trying to create the perfect password to use.
The site is easy to use, simply begin to enter your password into the field provided using a single letter or number at a time. As soon as the first digit is in place, the site will try to predict the next letter or number. It sounds like a bit of fun, but there is a serious side to having a password that is difficult to break and that is keeping data, finances and other information safe from being accessed by a total stranger.
Source: Telepath Words
As the market war wages on between Microsoft and Sony’s next generation home consoles, Valve have shaken things up. The major player in the PC gaming market has announced that they will be releasing their own home-based operating system.
Valve have announced the SteamOS, based on the hugely popular Steam digital distribution platform. Designed with living-room based PC devices in mind, the SteamOS is Linux-based and offers users access to its current library of more than 2,000 game titles.
The firm describes the system as “a collaborative many-to-many entertainment platform, in which each participant is a multiplier of the experience of everyone else.”
Users will be able to share games between their TV and Mac or PC devices with the ‘in-home streaming’ feature. This will allow family members to share their Steam libraries between individual accounts.
The announcement continued: “Content creators can connect directly to their customers. Users can alter or replace any part of the software or hardware they want. Gamers are empowered to join in the creation of the games they love.
“In SteamOS, we have achieved significant performance increases in graphics processing, and we’re now targeting audio performance and reduction in input latency at the operating system level. Game developers are already taking advantage of these gains as they target SteamOS for their new releases.”
In addition to this, Valve are also promising to work in collaboration with media services in order to give users access to music and video content. Further details on this have yet to be announced.
The SteamOS will help to make PC gaming competitive again, as sales for tablets are set to outsell laptops six to one by 2017. As the mobile games market continues to grow, gaming sites such as MoneyGaming are migrating to the platform, leaving traditional PC gaming under threat. However, the release of the new Valve operating system could revolutionise the PC gaming experience.
It was once a dreaded feature of a Microsoft Windows powered computer for a while, but now the infamous blue screen of death has appeared on the screen of some iPhone 5S’s according to users who have been reporting on some Apple forums.
The problem seems to happen when the user is trying to work on the Numbers App in the free Apple iWork Suite! The phone screen suddenly becomes bright blue and then restarts. There are some users saying that it happens in other apps too!
So, is this a homage to Microsoft or just a coincidence! More to the point has anyone else experienced the blue screen of death on their iPhone 5S? Check out the video below to see what you think is going on with the new iPhone 5S.
Microsoft has updated its Bing app for iOS powered devices, before the update to Bing; users would have to have used a separate app to include Siri into the Bing experience. However, now that is no longer needed for a smooth Bing on iOS experience. In fact, the Bing app offers the user a much better all round experience with plenty of new features to enjoy.
The newly updated Bing app now features, a homepage with four tiles displaying Popular Now, Nearby, Images and Weather! There is a new sharing button too and options added to the menu that help with finding images and other apps produced by Microsoft, the Bing journey on iOS devices has just become a lot smoother.
The Bing App is available now and can be downloaded from the iTunes app store.
Source: Bing Blog
Until the 27th October owners of the iPad 2, 3 and 4 will be able to trade them in at any Microsoft Retail Store in the US and Canada for at least $200 to spend at the Microsoft Store! Obviously, it the actual amount offered will depend on condition etc, but for anyone looking to switch from the iPad to the Surface it would appear to be a good deal! It is just a shame that the offer cannot be extended to other countries, so that everyone can join in.
According to the special deals page at the Microsoft Store;
The Surface RT starts from $349 and the Surface Pro starts from $799.
Source: Microsoft Store
So now we know, that the next big thing to come out of Microsoft, the new Xbox One, will be released and available in the stores on the 22nd Nov, which just happens to be eight years to the day when the Xbox 360 was first released.
According to the Xbox Wire YouTube channel, this is;
Xbox’s Yusuf Mehdi discusses the Xbox One launch date and recent momentum as the team heads toward launch.
Source: Xbox Wire