Microsoft Posts $3.2 Billion Net Loss For Q4, $22B In Revenue

DSC01769Microsoft lost $2 billion for Q4 of 2014, despite the hefty $22.2 billion in revenue (compared to $23.3 billion yesteryear). This can definitely be attributed to the 7,800 job cuts made earlier this year, plus the de-valuation of Nokia which resulted in a $7.5 billion jab to the coffers. An $888 million profit was made from the Surface line and Xbox clinched a 27 percent gain. Remember Bing? Well its market share increased to a sizeable 20.3 percent.

Talk about an eventful fiscal quarter.

Via: Microsoft

Former Nokia CEO Stephen Elop Is Out At Microsoft As Company Restructures

stephen-elopIn what can only be called unexpected (and maybe a little sad), former Nokia CEO will soon be leaving Microsoft as part of a restructuring of the company near the end of the fiscal quarter. This is what Microsoft is calling a “designated transition period”; Elop served as the executive vice president of the Devices and Services group (after Nokia was purchased by MSFT), so to take his place, operating system head Terry Myerson will take charge of a new, combined division called Windows and Devices Group.

Via: Microsoft

Microsoft Debuts 1TB Xbox One with New Controller, Ships The 16th For $400

XboxOne_Controller_620Microsoft is keen on making the Xbox One a resounding success, no matter the shaky month-by-month sales figures or the intense competition that the PS4 assails the platform with.

Today, the company at Redmond continues the mission with the announcement of a 1TB (1,000GB) Xbox One, as well as the debut of a revised wireless controller that (finally!) uses a 3.5mm headset jack for audio (a la PS4), with revised bumpers that offer increased performance along the entirety of the button(s). Also, wireless firmware updates, because no one wants to connect a controller to a console for an update — it’s 2015.

The new 1TB Xbox One is shipping in the US on June 16th for $399, with Halo: The Master Chief Collection as a bundled game “for a limited time”.

Meanwhile, the existing 500GB One got a price cut, to preppy $349.

Via: Xbox Wire

Windows 10 Will Launch July 29th, And There Will Be Lots To See


Microsoft has outed the street date of the Windows 10 launch: July 29th. With it, Windows becomes a service that caters to all screen sizes and hardware, rather than the arguably static most-used computer operating system it has been, until this point.

Of course, this aggressive release date is of some concern: bugs and finalized features will all but have to be ironed out in less than two months. Available as a free upgrade (for the first year) for Windows 7 and 8.1 users, Windows 10 will revitalize Microsoft’s crown jewel, with Cortana, a new browser, the return of the Start menu, and a few more bells and whistles.

Time to put a reminder on the calendar, meanwhile.

Via: The Windows Blog

Microsoft Brings Cortana To iOS And Android As Companion App

cortana-android-iosIf for some reason you find it more satisfying to use Microsoft’s Cortana to Google’s Now and Apple’s Siri digital assistants, then you’re in luck: Cortana is coming to iOS later this year and Android in late June.

But will anyone use it? Most likely, yes — but it will be odd. It won’t be as powerful as the Windows version, but it will wield the notifications needed to make it a compelling app, alongw ith search queries and asking of questions, on both Android and iOS versions.

Video of it in action, after the break. Via: The Windows Blog

Microsoft Surface 3: The Little $499 Tablet That Crashed The Party

surface-3The Surface RT was a failed attempt of turning Windows into a strictly tablet OS designed for very few pieces of hardware. Instead, the better idea was to always include tablets as the general Windows fold, and make Windows adjustable and reliable when used as a tablet’s interface.

While the Surface 3 Pro is a testament to high-powered (and expensive) tablet gear, the Surface 3 is the $499 entry to make an excellent mainstream tablet — while also reserving the right to be converted to full Windows laptop.

Specs include a 10.8-inch display with a 3:2 aspect ratio (1920 x 1,280 resolution), a quad-core Intel Atom x7 processor, Surface 3 features,pen functionality, front and rear-facing 1080p cameras, and integrated kickstand (non-adjustable). 64 GB (2GB RAM) and 128 GB (with 4GB of RAM) models exist, plus a 4G LTE-ready version: Surface 3 (4G LTE), T-Mobile of which has already published a release supporting the new tablet.

Also: the Surface 3 Type Cover and Pen work just as the Pro variants, except they’re smaller and suited towards the Surface 3.

Launch date? May 7th.

Via: Surface Blog

Windows 10 Will Launch In 190 Countries This Summer

windows-10Times are changing in the PC space. Windows 10, the grand unification of Xbox, mobile, tablets, desktops, and laptops for Microsoft is due for release in the summer, in 190 countries and in 111 languages, the company states. So, all of that should be fun, no doubt.

However, a bit of news that is more interesting is the free upgrade for users on Windows 7 and 8 that includes all versions — genuine or otherwise (!). Terry Myerson, Microsoft’s Executive Vice President of Operating Systems, told Reuters that, “We are upgrading all qualified PCs, genuine and non-genuine, to Windows 10.”

The report was in regards to  China, but considering “all qualified PCs” is a very broad term, this could also extend to other regions — and thus really make the adoption rate of Windows 10 immense, then luring the profits through the use of premium programs.

Via: Microsoft

If It Tickles Your Fancy: Windows 10 Technical Preview Out For Phones

windows10phonesThat is, if you have a (most likely lower-end) Windows Phone device that supports it, you can download and run the Windows 10 Technical Preview — for phones. Solely available as a desktop version (previously), Microsoft is ramping up production on the Windows platform, which will span the Xbox, phones, tablets, desktops and laptops.

Besides being unfinished and lacking the new Spartan browser, Windows 10 for phones in its current form does sport some things of note. A better photo browser, universal voice dictation, the new Action Center, and tons of user interface changes.

So! If you have a Lumia 630, 730 or 830 (which I just reviewed), then you can take a look.

Otherwise, just keep your sensors on Microsoft’s development cycle for a while longer.

Via: Microsoft