Articles about Microsoft

Microsoft suggests mobile Groove Music users switch from iOS or Android to Windows Phone

Believe it or not, Groove Music was a very good streaming music service. Unfortunately for Microsoft, consumers largely did not give it a chance, causing it to shut down. Despite the service dying, the Groove Music apps have lived on.

Sadly, Microsoft today announces that it is killing the mobile apps for both iOS and Android later this year on December 1, 2018. What does the company recommend these mobile users do? Switch to Windows Phone, of course! No, seriously...

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Windows 10 April 2018 Update rolling out at an impressive rate

Microsoft rolls out feature updates for Windows 10 twice a year, often at quite glacial speeds. The Creators Update, released last Spring, was particularly slow and problematic. By the time its successor arrived, six months later, over a quarter of users (27.5 percent) still didn’t have it.

The Fall Creators Update push was, in comparison, much smoother. Helped by the delay in getting the Spring 2018 Update out of the door, it managed to make its way on to more than 92 percent of Windows 10 PCs, making it the most installed Windows 10 update ever.

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Microsoft releases Windows 10 Redstone 5 Build 17677 to the Fast ring

Microsoft has been rolling out new Windows 10 RS5 builds on a weekly basis, but it looked as if we weren’t going to get one this week due to what appeared to be a roll-back bug. However, it turns out the problem was actually a deployment issue which Microsoft was able to fix server side.

The just-released Build 17677, for Fast ring and Skip Ahead Insiders, has a number of additions.

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Microsoft removes ability to comment on popular Major Nelson Xbox gaming blog

While there are times when the comments section of a website offers interesting statements from readers, quite often, it is full of vile and vulgar speech instead. We here at BetaNews are lucky -- you guys are rather tame... for the most part. On other websites, such as YouTube, a hardened United States Marine could be made to blush by the horrific comments.

Today, Larry Hryb (aka Major Nelson) Director of Programming for Xbox Live announces he is turning off the ability to comment on his wildly popular blog. While he doesn't cite cancerous language from readers as being a reason, I wouldn’t he surprised if that didn’t weigh on his decision -- even just a little bit. Surprisingly, he blames a lack of interest.

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New Windows 10 update addresses problems with SSDs

Windows 10 April 2018 Update

The rollout of Windows 10 April 2018 Update was recently blocked to some computers because of problems with certain SSDs. Now Microsoft has issued an update that addresses the issues.

Releasing the KB4100403 patch, Microsoft says that problems with Intel SSD 600p Series or Intel SSD Pro 6000p Series, and Toshiba XG4 Series, Toshiba XG5 Series, or Toshiba BG3 Series drives, are fixed. After installing it, users should be able to upgrade to Windows 10 April 2018 Update.

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Microsoft temporarily disables the Windows 10 April 2018 Update on PCs running Avast antivirus

New Windows 10 feature updates get tested thoroughly both internally at Microsoft and by Windows Insiders. However, with so many PC variations and third-party programs, it's all but impossible to identify and eradicate every potential issue. That's why as soon as a new big Windows update gets released we suddenly hear of previously undetected problems arising.

In the case of the Windows 10 April 2018 Update, or Windows 10 1803 as it’s also known, we’ve seen users reporting issues with Intel and Toshiba SSDs, and some upgraders have experienced a black screen with no icons -- something I initially encountered after upgrading to the Fall Creators Update last year.

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Microsoft partners with Special Olympics for Xbox gaming tournament

The Special Olympics is a wonderful organization that enables people with intellectual disabilities to compete against each other and win medals. While it promotes health, fitness, and camaraderie, it also highlights that all people deserve the right to compete. It is very inspiring stuff, folks.

Today, Microsoft announces that it has partnered with the Special Olympics for an all-new Xbox gaming tournament. This is not the first time that the Windows-maker has worked with the organization. For this tourney, Microsoft is pairing two players to a team -- one with an intellectual disability and one without. Teams will then face-off by playing Forza Motorsport 7 -- a racing game published by Microsoft Studios.

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Microsoft will roll out 'key' GDPR rights globally... not just in Europe

Microsoft GDPR compliance

The clock is ticking for the arrival of GDPR (or General Data Protection Regulation) in Europe. As of May 25 -- this Friday -- new regulations will give people greater access to the data companies store about them and the right to have it deleted.

Microsoft is among the global technology firms that will have to comply with the laws in Europe and -- pointing out how it appreciates "the strong leadership by the European Union on these important issues" -- the company says that it will also roll out some of the benefits of the privacy legislation on a global basis. It will be known as Data Subject Rights.

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Microsoft unveils SharePoint spaces to help anyone create mixed reality experiences

Microsoft SharePoint spaces

At its SharePoint Virtual Summit, Microsoft today unveiled SharePoint spaces, a way to bring SharePoint into virtual reality and mixed reality environments.

Microsoft says that SharePoint spaces adds a third dimension to company intranets, and allows people to engage and interact with documents, data, and video in new and more immersive ways. The company envisions the technology being used by businesses to create interactive welcome environments for new employees, interactive product databases, training experiences, and much more.

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Microsoft acquires AI startup Semantic Machines to help boost Cortana

Microsoft logo on curved building

Microsoft has announced plans to acquire Semantic Machines, a startup based in Berkley, California, that specializes in conversational artificial intelligence.

The acquisition makes a great deal of sense because of Microsoft's desire to push Cortana forward, and the general increased interest in voice-powered digital assistants and chatbots -- and products such as Google Duplex. The Semantic Machines team includes members who have worked on Siri and with speech-recognition firm Nuance.

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Microsoft releases Windows 10 Redstone 5 Build 17672 to the Fast ring

Last week saw the release of Windows 10 RS5 Build 17666 to Insiders on the Fast and Skip Ahead rings. It was a very impressive build, with a number of big new features, including a dark theme for File Explorer, acrylic in Sets, Cloud Clipboard, and more.

Today Microsoft rolls out Build 17672, with a big new change to security.

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Microsoft is said to be working on a cheap Surface tablet to compete with the iPad

Square Microsoft store logo

Not wanting to be outdone by Apple, Microsoft is reportedly planning to release a low-cost Surface tablet later this year.

Said to measure 10 inches and with a price tag of around $400, the budget Surface will retain the familiar kickstand found on its Pro sibling, and will compete directly with the iPad. This is not a re-run of the Surface RT, as full-blown Windows will be supported.

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Microsoft blocks the rollout of Windows 10 April 2018 Update to computers with problematic Intel SSDs

If you have an Intel SSD installed, there's a chance that you won't be able to upgrade to Windows 10 April 2018 Update for the time being.

Computers with Intel SSD 600p Series or Intel SSD Pro 6000p Series ended up crashing after the installation of the most recent major update to Windows 10, but users have been able to roll back their system to a usable state. To prevent further problems Microsoft has opted to block the April 2018 Update to such systems.

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Ubuntu 18.04 LTS hits the Microsoft Store for Windows 10 users

Ubuntu 18.04 LTS in the Microsoft Store

There are now two versions of Ubuntu available to download from the Microsoft Store. Adding to the existing Ubuntu 16.04, Ubuntu 18.04 has also now arrived.

The addition comes just weeks after the official launch of Ubuntu 18.04, and it gives Windows 10 users the option of working with the new LTS (long term support) build of Ubuntu. The older version remains supported for the time being as well.

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What's wrong with this picture?

Earlier today, I needed to get Skype onto my iPhone X to receive an overseas call. So I hauled over to the App Store, like any sensible iOS user would do. I was shocked—absolutely floored—to see an advert for Google Duo taking up about half the screen, and appearing above Skype.

You got to ask how many people end up downloading the upper one instead. I don't often go to the App Store and wonder: How long has been this kind of aggressive placement?

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