Even though it already has a smartphone line, rumors suggest that Microsoft wants to release a smartphone under the Surface brand. It may sound a bit far-fetched, but this might just be what Microsoft and Windows 10 Mobile really need to become a serious contender in the high-end smartphone market.
While Surface tablets are increasingly more appealing, following the introduction of Surface Pro 3, the Lumia line is proving to be increasingly less attractive in consumers' eyes, as proven by its tiny 1.7 percent market share. Moving an upcoming flagship product from a fading to an up and coming brand starts to make a whole lot of sense.
If you are the type of person that likes to tinker, Linux-based operating systems are for you. You would probably have many hours of fun playing with an Android device or Raspberry Pi. With that said, Linux is not the only game in town.
Windows Phone and Windows 10 Mobile are probably the last operating systems you would expect to be hacker-friendly. After all, despite its occasional embrace of open source, Microsoft is largely a closed company. Today, this perception could begin to change, you see, as a new tool rocks the mobile community. Called "Windows Phone Internals", it allows Lumia owners to unlock their bootloaders, gain root access and even flash custom ROMs. Whoa.
Microsoft has just released its Q1 FY2016 (Q3 CY2015) earnings report, posting revenue of $20.4 billion, operating income of $5.8 billion, net income of $4.6 billion and earnings per share of $0.57 (all GAAP figures). The software giant's numbers beat analysts' expectations, which has added around 10 percent to its stock price in after-hours trading. Here are the highlights of the software giant's quarter.
Microsoft has divided its earnings in three categories, namely Productivity and Business Processes, Intelligent Cloud, and More Personal Computing. The good news comes from Intelligent Cloud, where revenue is up by eight percent, while the bad news is in More Personal Computing, where the poor performance of Lumia and Surface devices lead to a 17 percent decrease in revenue, year-over-year.
The next phase of the Windows 10 rollout will happen in December. We already know that the latest version of Microsoft's operating system is installed on millions of desktops and laptops, but the mobile version has been dragging its heels.
With the announcement of the Lumia 950 and Lumia 950 XL which have Windows 10 Mobile pre-installed, owners of other devices have been left wondering when the upgrade will make it to their handset. Originally slated for a November launch, Microsoft has revealed on Facebook that the rollout will start in December.
Having trouble locating Lumia Storyteller, Lumia Beamer, Photobeamer, and Lumia Refocus in the Windows Store? Quit trying; they are no longer available to download. That's because Microsoft has pulled these services from the official store as part of its ongoing “streamlining” efforts, it announces in a blog post.
The company has pulled Lumia Storyteller, Lumia Beamer, Photobeamer, and Lumia Refocus apps, and noted that those who have it installed on their device, will stop receiving any app updates after October 30, 2015. The said apps won't be able to offer online services. Lumia Panorama and Video Uploader are also among the affected apps, and they too won't receive any updates from the company.
Microsoft has been cleared of patent infringement by the US International Trade Commission. The case dates back to 2007 when InterDigital Inc claimed Microsoft infringed its patents, and there were calls for a ban on the import of handsets.
InterDigital Inc has been battling in court for eight years, initially trying to claim royalties on phones made by Nokia, now transferred to Microsoft. As well as blocking the call for an import ban, the ITC stated that Microsoft did not infringe patents relating to the way mobiles make calls. In short Microsoft is in the clear and InterDigital's rights have not been violated.
Windows Phone enthusiasts, you'll be pleased to know that Microsoft has just released a new Windows 10 Mobile Insider Preview Build -- dubbed 10149 -- for all Windows 8.1 and up powered Lumia smartphones. The new build brings improvements to the user interface, renames Project Spartan to Microsoft Edge, while also offering improvements to Cortana, Photos app alongside plenty of bug fixes.
Build 10149 will be seeded to Windows Insiders on the Fast ring today. The company is finally making it possible to jump to the next iteration of the developer preview of its impending mobile operating system without the need of having to flash the phone again. It notes that users will be able to directly snag updates from their existing builds instead of having to flash back to Windows Phone 8.1 first. Following is a list of new features and improvements you get with the new build.
Most newspapers are full of bad, and depressing news. Microsoft Lumia wants to change that, and is putting together its own print newspaper that it hopes will inspire commuters and help them to "achieve more".
The Five to Nine newspaper will focus on positive, uplifting content, and also show workers how they can use technology to work smarter and more efficiently. There will be five editions, published between 22 June and 26 June, all focusing on a different theme (culture, music, fashion, design, and sport) and featuring commissioned content alongside crowd sourced "good news" stories, life hacks and musings.
Considering the apprehension from smartphone manufacturers on Windows 10 Mobile, Microsoft is planning two smartphones quick out the gate to keep customers and developers interested in the platform.
Codenamed the Talkman and Cityman, the two devices will feature aluminum edges with removable polycarbonate backs. Following the color scheme of past Lumia devices, both will come in various vibrant color options, which can be switched in and out.
Microsoft could face a ban on importing handsets into the US after a ruling by the International Trade Commission. The ITC found that Microsoft had used technology for which InterDigital owns the patents without obtaining the relevant permission.
Microsoft plans to challenge the ruling, saying "we have a successful track record challenging patent assertion entities that misuse industry standards". It is not the first handset manufacturer to have been hit with legal action from InterDigital, and it could severely hamper future handset sales.
If you own a Windows Phone, I feel sorry for you. Why? Microsoft is showing a lot of love to Android and iOS lately, while neglecting its own mobile operating system. Hell, the company even seems to be embracing Apple Watch very strongly! True, Microsoft did release Windows 10 Technical Preview Build 10051 for the phones, but it was only for certain devices, and worse than that, it is an absolute train wreck. While it is a fun look to the future, it isn't something to be used as a daily driver.
If you did choose to install Windows 10 Technical Preview Build 10051 on your only smartphone, you may be regretting it. Before you move back to Windows Phone 8.1, you should try out the all-new Build 10052, which was released today. It is a bug-fix release that may solve your woes. Other than fixes, it appears to be a rather ho-hum affair.
Microsoft releases new Windows 10 for phones preview to more Lumias, includes Project Spartan and new Outlook Mail
As promised two weeks ago, Microsoft is today releasing the Windows 10 for phones preview build across a larger set of Lumia phones. In a blog post, the company announces that it is seeding out the Build 10051 of the Windows 10 Technical Preview for phones to the Fast ring today. In addition to bringing support for more smartphones, the new build also brings along a number of new features, including Project Spartan, new Outlook Mail and Calendar apps, and more.
First up, let’s talk about the new features. Project Spartan -- the new browser from the Redmond-based company which recently made its way to the Windows 10 technical preview for desktops -- is now making its debut on Windows Phone handsets. “It uses our new rendering engine to give greater interoperability with the modern mobile web, and includes early versions of Reading View and Reading List”, says Gabe Aul, Windows Insider Guru, Microsoft. Project Spartan will not replace Internet Explorer 11 on your phone as the default browser but will exist side-by-side with it.
Windows Phone users are a special bunch. They have chosen to invest in the last-place mobile ecosystem. The reason they chose this route can be many things, such as Microsoft loyalty or having an underdog personality. The most sensible reason for choosing Windows Phone, however, is the potential low cost of ownership coupled with the well-designed user interface. It is a solid experience.
Of course, these users are very anxious to try the next version of the mobile operating system, Windows 10 for phones. When Microsoft released the Technical Preview of the OS last month, the list of compatible devices was so small, that many users of the non-compatible devices felt a bit jilted, and rightfully so. Today, Microsoft releases a list of devices scheduled to get the next version of Windows 10 Technical Preview for phones. To the delight of Windows Phone users, the list is much more extensive, but only includes Lumia devices.
When I first pondered leaving Windows Phone behind, I imagined it would be for an Android flagship. It made sense. Android is, after all, much more permissive, has way more apps, and is available in a larger variety of smartphone flavors. And Google is committed to improving the operating system, launching at least one major update a year. Also, I use a Google Nexus 7 as my every day tablet; an Android smartphone would be a perfect fit. But things change.
Apple finally came up with bigger iPhones last year, and the prospect of ditching Windows Phone for a new iPhone suddenly became irresistible. It didn't hurt that iOS 8 dropped some of the annoying restrictions of its predecessors. Ultimately, I ended up with an iPhone 6 Plus. And, after two years of Windows Phones, using Apple's phablet as my daily driver can only be described as liberating.