Items tagged with Microsoft

Not long after Apple unveiled its Siri personal assistant to the world, people began asking her outrageous questions, sometimes inappropriate or just humorous, if for no other reason than they just could. When creating Cortana, Microsoft was well-aware of what its digital assistant was going to have to deal with. As as result, Cortana was designed in such a way to handle abuse or inappropriate questions in a rather specific, simple manner. According to Microsoft's Deborah Harrison, who is one of eight writers for Cortana, a chunk of the earliest queries were about Cortana's sex life. Over time,... Read more...
Microsoft made a splash in the wearables market with its original Band device, and then followed that up with the Band 2, a fancier and more feature rich version of the original. The second iteration is one of the best fitness wearables on the market, and it just got a little bit better courtesy of a new update. One of the biggest issues with wearables is battery life. It's the nature of the beast when you're dealing with a small and lightweight gadget, so rather than roll with bigger and heavier batteries, manufactures have to get creative. Microsoft's done that with its newest update by enabling... Read more...
I just had one of those "Oh s**t!" moments. What prompted it was a short video from Microsoft teasing a whole new level of immersion with professional football, one that can only be made possible through augmented reality (AR), and in this case, HoloLens. I'll admit, I was a bit tepid towards HoloLens, but not anymore. HoloLens is different from headsets like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, both of which plunge you into a virtual reality (VR), be it a rendered video game world or a real life location. Instead of transporting you to another place, HoloLens augments your own surroundings, turning real-life... Read more...
SwiftKey has been one of the more popular predictive keyboard offerings in the mobile space since it was first released in beta form on the Android market back in 2010. What made SwiftKey so appealing, aside from the myriad of customization options, clean layout, support for numerous languages, an innovative input method, was its intelligent predictive text technology. SwiftKey isn’t a simple keyboard replacement. Rather, the software uses a combination of artificial intelligence technologies and algorithms that give it the ability to learn usage patterns and predict the next word the user most... Read more...
Microsoft is just getting started when it comes to spreading the love with its Windows 10 operating system. Within a month of launching during the summer of 2015, Windows 10 was installed on over 75 million PCs. During the company’s blockbuster October hardware event, the company announced that Windows 10 had surpassed the 110 million mark. And just last month, Microsoft revealed that Windows 10 installations have topped 200 million. The rather frantic pace of Windows 10 upgrades is now having an effect on legacy Windows operating systems, with the latest victims being Windows 8.1 and Windows XP... Read more...
Submerging your PC in water probably isn't something you're keen on trying, and with good reason—water and electronics aren't the best of friends. So why then is Microsoft experimenting with under sea data centers? For one, we're coastal creatures with nearly half of society settling down near large bodies of water. However, it's not the only reason. "The vision of operating containerized data centers offshore near major population centers anticipates a highly interactive future requiring data resources located close to users. Deepwater deployment offers ready access to cooling, renewable power... Read more...
In November, Microsoft kicked OneDrive users in the gut when it announced that it was neutering its existing OneDrive storage options. Microsoft killed its unlimited storage option, executed the 100GB and 200GB storage tiers (replacing them with a lone 50GB tier) and announced that it would rollback the free 15GB tier to a mere 5GB (even for existing users). Microsoft blamed its need to make drastic changes to its storage tiers on data hogs that were using up to 75TB of storage on unlimited plans and using their OneDrive accounts to store DVR recordings, entire movie collections, and multiple complete... Read more...
Since Satya Nadella stepped into the role of Microsoft CEO, the company's outlook has been a lot more positive than it had been in recent years. As the company's latest financials highlight, the company's killing it where cloud services are concerned, and as we've reported a few times over the past year, its latest OS, Windows 10, has proven to be a grand success. When Microsoft unveiled its first cloud initiatives, many revolving around its Azure platform, it was hard to grasp just how important they'd become for the company. As we now see, and Nadella backs up, it's proving to be an extremely... Read more...
Microsoft doesn’t have any intention of revealing Xbox One sales numbers, as the company has decided to keep those figures under lock and key (Microsoft last gave an update in November 2014, when it had sold a total of 10 million Xbox One consoles). On the other hand, Sony has been trumpeting its PlayStation 4 sales numbers whenever possible. Sony last gave us an update on the PlayStation 4 in early January, indicating that it had sold 35.9 million consoles since it was first launched in late 2013. Interestingly, Electronic Arts Chief Financial Officer Blake Jorgensen filled in the blanks for us... Read more...
A father in Canada is relieved that Microsoft dismissed a bill his son had racked up for in-game charges on this Xbox system just before Christmas. Had Microsoft decided to let the charges stand, as it initially did (more on that in a moment), he would have owed his credit card company more than $8,200, a tremendous sum that all went towards a $60 video game.According to a local news report in Ottawa, his 17-year-old son used his credit card to make in-game purchases for one of the FIFA soccer games on his Xbox (it's not clear which FIFA title or whether it was for the Xbox 360 or Xbox One). The... Read more...
At this point, it has to be tough for Windows Phone/Windows 10 Mobile users. Besides the fact that Microsoft's smartphone operating system has global market share in the low single-digits, its app ecosystem isn’t nearly as healthy as what’s available on iOS or Android. And even when Microsoft develops interesting smartphone apps that people might enjoy, it often introduces them to Android or iOS first instead of Windows 10 Mobile — if at all. Such is the case with new Word Flow keyboard for iOS, which is currently undergoing internal testing at Microsoft and in a closed beta via the Windows Insider... Read more...
When we last left Joe Belfiore, he announced that he was taking a nine-month-long break from Microsoft to travel the world with his family. Belfiore is Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President for the Operating Systems Group and has been the most recognizable face at Microsoft when it comes to championing the Windows Phone platform. So can understand why many were quite shocked this morning when Belfiore resurfaced on Twitter with a tweet about his visit to Kyoto. And it wasn’t his luscious golden locks that people were most interesting in; it was the fact that he was posting from an iPhone. That’s... Read more...
Microsoft caused a lot of confusion and anger in the enthusiast community when it was announced that customers running Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 on Skylake hardware would no longer be officially supported after July 17th, 2017. That means critical security updates will no longer be delivered to these systems, and even if they are provided, Microsoft will do so only “if the update does not risk the reliability or compatibility of the Windows 7/8.1 platform on other devices.” Although it wasn’t entirely clear at the time (because we couldn’t fathom that Microsoft would take this drastic of an action... Read more...
Since its initial release over a decade ago, Skype has evolved to become the de facto application for those wanting to chat online. It works great as a simple messenger, but also quite well for 1v1 video chats, or even group chats. While the service might have its own caveats, its reliability has effectively locked in a great number of people. Because of its reliability, even game streamers have adopted its use to chat with fans during a broadcast. But up until this point, there has been a serious flaw tying into this: users could quite easily discover the IP address of a broadcaster, then target... Read more...
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