After having been an iPhone user since the launch of the 3Gs, I wanted to test the other operating systems on the market. I had no problem leaving the Android-based S5 behind, but I have to admit that when iPhone launch day came around, I was a little hesitant to give up the Lumia 1020.
NEW YORK (AP) — Microsoft's decision to spend $2.5 billion for the creator of the hit game "Minecraft" could help the Xbox maker grab attention on mobile phones, a new priority for the company. But the move carries risks, as gamers can be fickle. Although the Lego-like multiplayer game is currently the top paid app for the iPhone and Android devices in the U.S., today's popular hit could be tomorrow's dud.
The technology company said it will buy Stockholm-based game maker Mojang. Minecraft, which lets users build in and explore a virtual world, has been downloaded 100 million times on PC alone since its launch in 2009. It is the most popular online game on Xbox, and the top paid app for Apple's iOS and Google's Android operating system in the U.S.
The company says the revamped site fits in with Microsoft's overall strategy of making mobile phones and Internet-based services priorities as its traditional businesses — Windows and Office software installed on desktops — slow down or decline. The changes also come as people increasingly read news on smartphones and tablets rather than desktop computers.
According to IDC's most recent numbers, Microsoft shipped 7.4 million Windows phones in the second quarter, accounting for 2.5 percent of the global smartphone market. That was down from 8.2 million in the same quarter last year, when Windows accounted for 3.4 percent of the global smartphone market.
Part of the reason for working with Tracfone lies in the fact that it is one of the largest Lifeline providers. Microsoft and TracFone will work with Health Choice Network (HCN), a Miami-based company that manages and connects a network of community health centers with more than 760,000 patients in 17 states.
"I bleed Microsoft — have for 34 years and I always will," Ballmer wrote. "I will be proud, and I will benefit through my share ownership. I promise to support and encourage boldness by management in my role as a shareholder in any way I can."
NEW YORK (AP) — HTC will start making a version of its flagship HTC One phone with Microsoft's Windows software inside. HTC says it developed the new model at the request of Microsoft, which has been trying to boost its Windows Phone system. The company will continue to make an Android version of the One, as well as other Android phones.
Microsoft today launched a new line of ultra-affordable feature phones under its recently acquired Nokia Lumia brand. The Nokia 130 sells for just 19 euros ($25 USD) and features a built-in video player, music player with up to 46 hours continuous playback on a single charge, flashlight, FM radio and USB charging.
Microsoft is preparing to cut approximately 4,700 jobs at its Nokia handset factory in Beijing, leaving only 300 workers. The plan was met with protests by Nokia workers there. The news comes as Microsoft has already announced that it plans to slash 18,000 jobs over the next year, many of which will come from the recently acquired Nokia handset business.
The State Administration for Industry and Commerce said it opened a case in June after complaints Microsoft improperly failed to publish all documentation for its Windows operating system and Office software. It said investigators visited Microsoft's China headquarters in Beijing and branches in Shanghai, Guangzhou and Chengdu in southwestern China this week.
Nokia Networks said that its forecast has improved on operational efficiencies gained from the sale of its handset unit to Microsoft. The company expects underlying profitability for Networks to be at or slightly above its long term target range of 5 to 10 percent for the full-year 2014.
Losses at Nokia cut 8 cents per share from earnings. Microsoft lost another net 3 cents on restructuring and tax-related items. Excluding those items, earnings hit 66 cents per share, beating the 60 cents expected by analysts polled by FactSet.
With minimal market share in both tablets and phones, Microsoft has its work cut out for it. Yet a focus on design over compatibility under new CEO Satya Nadella means Microsoft can make products and services for non-Windows platforms, such as Apple's iOS and Google's Android, and still retain the look, feel and functionality of the Microsoft brand.
Microsoft is putting an end to its fledgling Android-based Nokia X line and targeting its Lumia brand toward the low-cost smartphone market. Over the next year, Devices VP Stephen Elop said 12,500 factory and professional employees within the Nokia unit will lose their jobs. The losses at Nokia are part of the 18,000 company-wide layoffs Microsoft anticipates over the next year.
REDMOND, Wash. (AP) — Microsoft says it will eliminate up to 18,000 jobs over the next year as it works on integrating the Nokia devices business it bought in April. With the Nokia deal, Microsoft's employee headcount rose from about 99,000 last year to 127,000 as of last month.
Microsoft has joined the AllSeen Alliance, a Qualcomm-backed Internet of Things consortium. The software giant’s membership makes it a total of 51 companies in the group, including big names in electronics like LG, Sharp and Panasonic. AllSeen are working on a universal IoT standard based on Qualcomm’s AllJoyn open source code.
If Android and the many OEM partners can find a way to close the fragmentation gap, then Android Wear could become as pervasive as its parent software. Of course, if someone releases a commercially viable smartwatch with its own cellular connection, then fragmentation ceases to be a phone-watch pairing issue and becomes a standalone smartwatch problem.
According to report from the Wall Street Journal's Digits, Microsoft hopes to bring prices for mobile devices running its software below the $200 mark. The report cites comments made by Microsoft's vice president of OEM partners Nick Parker during a keynote at the annual Computex conference.
Not to be outdone by literally every other tech company on earth, Microsoft also has a smartwatch in the works. But early reports suggest the company will set its wearable apart from the current crop by making it compatible with Android, iOS and Windows devices, according to Forbes.
Ballmer beat out bids by Guggenheim Partners and a group including former NBA All-Star Grant Hill after presenting an "all-around superior bid," according to an individual with knowledge of the negotiations. The individual, who wasn't authorized to speak publicly, said Ballmer made more than an hour-long personal visit to Shelly Sterling's Malibu home Sunday and laid out his plan.
Microsoft announced a larger version of its Surface tablet to make the device more compelling as a laptop replacement. The Surface Pro 3 will have a screen measuring 12 inches diagonally, up from 10.6 inches in previous models. Microsoft said it's also thinner and faster than before. The company said it worked closely with chip-maker Intel Corp. to maximize performance in a slim device.
The latest line of Chromebooks unveiled Tuesday run on a new generation of faster Intel microprocessors that don't devour as much battery power. The machines will be shipped by major personal computer makers such as Lenovo Group, Acer, Dell, ASUS and Toshiba. They will sell for $300 to $400.
FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel, speaking at a WiFiForward event, said the Commission needs to be creative about finding room for unlicensed spectrum in the 600 MHz Band while protecting incumbent services. She talked about considering an expanded duplex gap, finding new locations for unlicensed microphones and opening up more unlicensed use in Channel 37.
Former Nokia CEO Stephen Elop will receive $33 million in cash and stock as he leave the Finnish handset maker for his new home at Microsoft. As Reuters pointed out, the compensation is 25 percent higher than what Nokia had originally expected to pay Elop. The boost is due to a surge in the Nokia's share price.