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Found 5 results

  1. Apple’s full-frontal assault on Microsoft yesterday didn’t go unnoticed by the folks in Redmond. During its iPad event yesterday, Apple went out of its way to not only attack devices like the Surface but also go after the company’s approach to operating system upgrades and productivity software. Today, Microsoft is striking back, and it’s taking the very same direct approach that Apple did. In a post on the official Microsoft blog, communications VP Frank Shaw railed back against Apple, which he argues has extended its reality distortion field beyond Cupertino. Defense 1: Unlike the iPad, the Surface is a work machine While Apple CEO Tim Cook might argue that hybrid devices like the Surface are a sign that its competitors are confused, Shaw says the Surface’s hybrid approach is actually its biggest strength. he writes. Translation: When Microsoft gave the Surface both a touchscreen and a physical keyboard, it wasn’t because the company was confused — it was because Microsoft knew exactly what people wanted in tablets and was responding to that. In other words, the Surface is meant to be for work and play. Apple, Shaw argues, can’t say the same thing for the iPad. Defense 2: Microsoft understands productivity (better than Apple does) This, Shaw points out, taps into another one of Microsoft’s traditional strengths: As the history of Windows and Office shows, Microsoft understands productivity better than just about anyone else. (Or so it claims.) he writes. Microsoft, it seems, is drawing the line in the sand: While Apple’s tablets may be good for burning time, Microsoft’s approach the tablets make them better for both burning time and actually getting work done. Defense 3: Apple’s approach to productivity software is ‘watered down’ Shaw, also uses his post to take a few shots back at Apple’s iWork productivity suite, which he says is “watered down” compared to Office. (Presumably, this is also how Microsoft justifies charging $99 a year for a subscription to Office 365. You get what you pay for, right?) More, Shaw also downplays the significance of Apple’s decision to make iWork free, a move he says wasn’t surprising or significant because not many people were using iWork to begin with. he writes. Ouch. Overall, a few things should be clear from the above: Apple’s comments yesterday clearly touched a nerve at Microsoft, which is still struggling to catch up with tablets despite throwing lots of money at it. Shaw’s argument that the iPad “isn’t a productivity machine” ignores the fact that, for a lot of people, it is a productivity machine. No amount of spin can change that It’s also telling that Shaw didn’t respond to Apple’s move to make Mavericks, the latest version of OS X completely free. Why? Because this is an area where Microsoft really doesn’t have much to say. Software upgrades are a big part of its business, while for Apple they’re quickly becoming just one check box in the feature set for Mac owners.
  2. It’s not long now until Microsoft will start shipping out stock of Xbox One consoles to retailers. But even with tight security surrounding the distribution and launch, some leaks are bound to happen. The latest is a leaked copy of the manual, although I’d usually call this a quick start guide. The guide details how to go about connecting your console to a TV, cable box, and the Kinect, as well as how to insert the batteries on the controller and get the headset working. But by far the most interesting piece of information it contains is the optimal positioning guidance for the Kinect sensor. Here’s the diagram taken from the manual: As you can see, the optimal height for the Kinect sensor is a minimum of 0.6 meters from the ground all the way up to 1.8 meters. Players should not stand or sit closer then 1.4 meters from the Kinect. The height measurements match those of the original Kinect for the Xbox 360, however, the distance players need to stand back from the sensor has been reduced. With the original Kinect you had to be at least 1.8 meters away when playing alone, or 2.4 meters if there were two players. In other words, Xbox One with Kinect is going to work in smaller rooms or without you having to move your furniture back to make sure you have the required minimum distance to the sensor. The only other details this guide: http://jogos.download.uol.com.br/levelup/manual_xboxone.pdf reminds us of is the fact the Xbox One has a power brick and that you still need batteries to power the controller. A Play and Charge Kit will be available, but that’s an extra $25 you need to spend.
  3. Dozens of screws and a 'tar pit' of glue spell 'keep out' Teardown We knew that Microsoft's Surface Pro 2 tablets wouldn't stray too far from the original Surface Pro design - but according to the tool-and-part masters at iFixit, the new tablets are virtually identical to the old ones – meaning they're just as difficult to repair. Surface Pro 2 with docking station The Surface Pro 2 looks a lot like the original Surface Pro, and it's built the same, too iFixit's teardown of the new slate reveals that its guts are full of thick, tacky glue and more than 90 screws, just like its predecessor. And just like the first Surface Pro, it earns a Reparability Score of 1 out of 10 – which, as iFixit observed last time around, is the lowest score ever received by any fondleslab. In fact, a lot of the Surface Pro 2 internals looks familiar. The new motherboard is virtually the same as the old one, except that it's now a shade of bluish-green and some of the components have been sourced from new suppliers. If you can pry it open without destroying it, you'll find familiar components inside The biggest change, naturally, is that the new Surface Pro is powered by a fourth-generation Intel Core i5 processor based on the Haswell microarchitecture, instead of the original Surface Pro's Ivy Bridge chip. But it's a 1.7GHz quad-core processor, just like the old one, so you're not likely to see much performance improvement. The Intel Core i5-4200U CPU (boxed in red) is one of the few significant upgrades Any gains in battery life are going to be mostly down to the Haswell design, because the Surface Pro 2 uses the exact same LG "Escalade" 42 watt-hour battery as the original Surface Pro, rated for 7.4 volts and 5676mAh. It's a nice battery, as iFixit noted in its teardown of the first Surface Pro. But it didn't exactly give that slab what you'd call a stellar battery life, and early reports suggest the Surface Pro 2 performs only marginally better. Microsoft is clearly still expecting a fair amount of heat from the new processor, too, because the Surface Pro 2 includes what iFixit describes as a "notebook-worthy" copper heat sink and the same twin miniature fans as the earlier-generation Surface Pro, although the fans are designed to run less frequently in this model to save power. The Surface Pro 2's SSD by SK Hynix is rated for much faster write speeds than the earlier generation Other components are slightly different from those used in the original Surface Pro, but only slightly. Microsoft has swapped out the Surface Pro's Micron SSD for a 128GB SK Hynix HFS128G3AMNB. Like the earlier drive, it's a 6Gbps SATA number, but while its rated read performance is similar to the Micron drive's at 505MB/sec, its write performance is much better at 470MB/sec, rather than the Micron drive's 95MB/sec. Redmond has also gone with SK Hynix as its RAM supplier this time around, where the first-generation Surface Pro used Micron for that, too. The Surface Pro 2 uses four H9CCNNN8JTML 1GB DDR2 chips to get its 4GB total memory, as opposed to the eight chips that went into the Surface Pro. Still, other pieces are unchanged. The Surface Pro 2 uses the same three Atmel MXT154E touchscreen controllers as the Surface Pro, for example, plus the same Realtek ALC3230 audio chip and the same Marvell Avastar 88W8797 integrated Wi-Fi/Bluetooth/FM radio controller. Compare the motherboard to the Surface Pro's and you'll see there's not much change But the biggest similarity between the Surface Pro 2 and the original Surface Pro is a disappointing one, in that all of these components are still painfully difficult to get to. The display is, as iFixit put it, "trapped like a baby diplodocus in a treacherous tar pit of black adhesive," and the battery is also glued to the case, not to mention all of those pesky screws. This means that while it's technically possible to swap out the SSD and the battery, as was the case with the Surface Pro, you can't even get at these components without an arduous opening procedure that involves a heat gun and a very steady hand. "One slip-up," iFixit's repair gurus explain, "and you'll likely shear one of the four ribbon cables in the edge of the display." You've made it this far – now get out your glue gun and put it back together It was for this reason that the original Surface Pro received an even lower Reparability Score than the 2 that iFixit gave to Apple's fourth-generation iPad, and while we have yet to see how the new iPad Air fares on the same scale, the Surface Pro 2 scores just as low as its predecessor. The result is a tablet that is practically unrepairable and is therefore, in essence, disposable. The Reg has criticized Microsoft before for adding to the pile of discarded tech in the world's landfills, and we're disappointed to report that the Surface Pro 2 does nothing to slow this trend.
  4. Microsoft will be releasing a new version of its Remote Desktop software to Android and iOS in the future, as part of a raft of enterprise cloud computing launches. The app, which allows users to control a PC or virtual desktop remotely, will appear on the mobile operating systems at the same time as updated versions of the software ship for Windows, Windows RT, and OS X. Remote Desktop Android The iOS Remote Desktop app will have an "app bar" to remotely launch and switch between apps, writes Microsoft MVP Michel Roth, with the app said to work with both iOS 6 and iOS 7. The updated OS X app will apparently have more functionality, including "seamless windows." Remote Desktop iOS The Android version, usable on devices running Gingerbread and later, with support for the Remote Desktop Gateway also touted. All touch-enabled versions will apparently have various virtual mouse modes, and will be able to bring on screen a virtual keyboard for text entry. The new Remote Desktop apps will be made available later this month on the appropriate app stores, though pricing was not revealed. Remote Desktop Mac OS Microsoft also outlined its plans to release Windows Server 2012 R2 and System Center 2012 R2 on October 18th, .NET 4.5.1 for Visual Studio 2013 on the same day, access discounted Windows Azure prices for Enterprise Agreement customers on November 1st, and the introduction of the Windows Azure US Government Cloud.
  5. Looking for Microsoft SBS 2011 Standard to play with... Thanks...
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