Articles about Microsoft

Microsoft buys SwiftKey


Since November 2014, Microsoft has purchased a number of major apps and games to bolster its mobile portfolio on Android, iOS and, of course, Windows and Windows Phone. It has added Minecraft, Acompli, Sunrise and Wunderlist under its belt, titles which have been very popular and highly regarded by smartphone and tablet users. These acquisitions have turned the software giant into one of the strongest developers on the aforementioned platforms.

But Microsoft is not stopping there, as it just announced the purchase of SwiftKey, one of the most popular third-party keyboards available for Android and iOS. And, just like that, four of my favorite apps are now owned by the software giant.

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Microsoft accused of Iowa Caucus voter fraud with hashtag #MicrosoftRubioFraud


Here's the deal, folks. As I said in a previous article, open source is a necessity when it comes to voting. I praised Bernie Sanders' campaign for questioning Microsoft's motives in providing the platform for the Iowa Caucuses. With that said, Microsoft was ultimately not the problem, closed source was.

Unfortunately for Microsoft, as could be expected, it is now being accused of voter fraud by apparent Donald Trump supporters. Since Ted Cruz won last night, you would think the claim is that the Windows-maker fraudulently boosted him. Nope. Actually, conspiracy theorists are claiming Microsoft increased the number of votes cast for Marco Rubio, who placed third. This movement is using the hashtag #MicrosoftRubioFraud.

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How to block the Windows 10 'recommended' update on Windows 7 and 8.1


Microsoft has changed the Windows 10 update from "Optional" to "Recommended". And by "Recommended" it means "You’re getting it whether you want it or not".

If your Windows 7 or 8.1 PC is set to install recommended updates automatically (because -- more fool you -- you just wanted it to be up to date and safe) then Microsoft will cheerfully download the new OS and start the installation process for you. Don’t want that to happen? Here’s how to stop it.

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Microsoft forcing Windows 10 onto people is wrong

Angry PC user

Microsoft says it wants to get people to a "safer place" and that’s why it’s so aggressively pushing Windows 10. But it’s one thing to advertise the new OS on someone’s computer, and another thing entirely to force them to upgrade to it.

Microsoft Marketing Chief Chris Capossela, says a lot of people are putting off upgrading to Windows 10 ("constantly kick[ing] the can down the street" in his words), and so the software giant is taking steps to give them a "push" into taking action. But not with a gentle reminder, or even full on nagging, but by downloading and then starting the OS installation without permission, and that sucks.

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Windows 10 is extremely popular among gamers

windows 10 thumbs up

Windows 10 appears to be making good progress as, in January, it overtook Windows 8.1 in terms of usage share. Its lead varies, but no matter which web analytics resource you choose to go by, the new operating system is still very close to its predecessor at this time. Meanwhile, the gap between it and Windows 7, while no doubt getting smaller, is shrinking at a very slow pace.

The difference in usage share, when looking at NetMarketShare's and StatCounter's numbers, comes from the fact that both analytics companies sort through web traffic. But, if we look at how all the major Windows releases fare on the popular gaming platform Steam, things are very different -- Windows 10 comes quite close to Windows 7, which may surprise many.

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How much will Windows 10 cost at the end of the free upgrade period?


The launch of Windows 10 was revolutionary. We're not just talking (or even talking at all) about features and changes -- this was the first version of Windows to come without a price tag. Windows 10 for free. It's a tactic that paid off.

Microsoft tells us that this is the most successful version of Windows yet, with unprecedented rates of take up. It's free; it's hardly surprising, particularly when you factor in Microsoft's incredibly aggressive pushing of the upgrade. But all good things must come to an end. We've known that Windows 10 would only be free for first year. As the upgrade-for-free deadline of 29 July fast approaches, just what happens next? What if you haven't upgraded to Windows 10? What will it cost to upgrade if you're late to the party?

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If Apple iPad Pro is a failure, why did it beat Microsoft Surface in sales?


For a while, it seemed like everything Apple touched turned to gold. iPod, iPhone, iPad -- all changed the computing landscape. Unfortunately, the more recent products such as the Apple Watch and iPad Pro were viewed by many pundits to be weak. Heck, some have called the iPad Pro a failure.

But what if iPad Pro wasn't a failure? What if those pundits were wrong? Microsoft's Surface line has been viewed as a success -- part of the company's turnaround story. With that said, would you be surprised if I told you that the iPad Pro significantly beat the Surface during the holidays? Well, it is true. The perception of weak iPad Pro sales was exactly that -- perception only. The reality is, iPad Pro destroyed Surface in Q415.

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Microsoft makes Windows 10 a 'recommended update' for Windows 7 and 8.1 users


Microsoft has been accused of pushing Windows 10 rather aggressively, and the company's latest move is going to do nothing to silence these accusations. For Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 users, Windows 10 just became a 'recommended update' in Windows Update.

This is a change from the previous categorization of the upgrade as an 'optional update' and it means that there is renewed potential for unwanted installations. After the launch of Windows 10, there were numerous reports of not only the automatic download of OS installation files, but also unrequested upgrades. The changed status of the update means that, on some machines, the installation of Windows 10 could start automatically.

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Here's what's new in Windows 10 Mobile Insider Preview Build 10586.71


The official launch of Windows 10 Mobile may have been delayed, but the preview builds keep on coming. Today Microsoft launches Windows 10 Mobile Insider Preview Build 10586.71, a cumulative update complete with a few extra bug fixes.

Some of the performance-enhancing features of today's build were made available to Insiders on Friday through the Configuration Update, but this is included in this cumulative update. If you're on the Fast Ring, there's another update to download as well -- Insider Fast Configuration Update. This ensures that future flights will be downloaded by updating expiring certificates.

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Microsoft opens up FastTrack to more SMBs to sweeten the Office 365 deal

Office 365

Microsoft today unveiled a measure designed to attract more SMBs to Office 365. The new scheme sees Microsoft's FastTrack customer service operation expanding so that it is now available to organizations with as few as 50 users; the previous minimum was 150 seats.

Microsoft says that many SMBs who have opted to use Google's App instead reach a "breaking point" when they hit 50 users. The company aims to capitalize on this by offering enterprise-grade services to businesses that would otherwise not be able to take advantage of features such as centralized management capabilities.

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Carolina Panthers will defeat Denver Broncos in Super Bowl 50 says Microsoft and Madden 16


Super Bowl 50 is almost here! While my beloved New York Jets are not in the big game, I will still tune in. Why? Not only should it be exciting football, but it is a shared social event. Many people watch -- even those that aren't NFL fans -- for things like the commercials and the overall camaraderie and competition. Oh, there is a lot of snack-eating too!

This Sunday, February 7, the two competing teams are the Carolina Panthers and Denver Broncos. The former will be the champions. Well, at least according to predictions by both Microsoft's Bing and the Madden 16 video game. Will they be right?

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Just how successful is Windows 10?

Windows compare

As you’ll have seen earlier, according to figures from NetMarketShare, Windows 10 overtook Windows 8.1 in January, taking just six months to do so. StatCounter, which also measures operating system usage, shows Windows 10 achieving the same feat in that month, although its figures are slightly different.

To mark this achievement it seems only right to compare Windows 10’s growth with that of past Windows releases to see how the new OS is really doing.

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Microsoft's aggressive tactics pay off as Windows 10 overtakes Windows 8.1


A month ago, Microsoft announced that Windows 10 was on over 200 million devices. It also claimed that Windows 10 adoption was accelerating, which seemed to be in clear contradiction of NetMarketShare’s monthly usage figures. The pattern there showed adoption of the new OS to be slowing month after month.

That wasn’t the case in January however, as the latest usage figures from NetMarketShare show Windows 10 starting the new year at a fair pace and finally doing something it’s been threatening to do for the past couple of months -- overtaking Windows 8.1.

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With Project Natick, Microsoft is like SpongeBob -- puts data center under the sea


Who lives in a pineapple under the sea? SpongeBob SquarePants! Depending on your age, you might absolutely adore that character or possibly not be familiar at all. Me? I fall into the former. While it is a kids show, I find it to be quite entertaining.

You know who else might be a fan of Mr. SquarePants? Microsoft. Yes, believe it or not, the company has built an underwater data center, located in California, named 'Project Natick' for the ocean. In other words, like SpongeBob, the data center will live under the sea. While it is only in a testing phase, it is still cool nonetheless. Hopefully it operates quietly, however, as if it is noisy, it might bother Squidward's clarinet playing.

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Stop using Microsoft Edge's InPrivate mode if you value your privacy


It's possible that you reached this article purely by chance, or you may have Googled 'how to change the default search engine in Microsoft Edge'. However you got here, the fact that you're reading this indicates that you're either interested in Windows 10's Edge, or actively use it -- and this means there's something you need to know.

If you fall into the latter camp and use Edge's InPrivate mode to cover your online tracks, you might want to think about changing your web browser. Edge has already got some stick for its lack of extension support -- "it's coming, it's coming!" Yeah, whatever... so's Christmas -- but now it turns out that InPrivate mode is a privacy nightmare. It is possible to peak behind the curtain and see which sites have been visited when using a browsing mode that should mask this.

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