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'Minecraft' Could Boost Microsoft's Mobile Reach

September 16, 2014 9:38 am | by Mae Anderson and Barbara Ortutay, AP Technology Writers | Articles | Comments

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.

Microsoft Acquires Minecraft Maker Mojang for $2.5B

September 15, 2014 9:29 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

The technology company said it will buy Stockholm...

Microsoft Refines MSN to Flow Across Devices

September 8, 2014 11:07 am | by Mae Anderson, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

The company says the revamped site fits in with...

Microsoft Rolls out New Lumia Flagship, Windows Update

September 4, 2014 10:59 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

According to IDC's most recent numbers, Microsoft shipped 7.4 million Windows phones in the...

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Microsoft, Tracfone Partnering on mHealth Solution

August 21, 2014 9:40 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

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. 

Ballmer Steps Down from Microsoft Board

August 20, 2014 9:40 am | by Ryan Nakashima, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

"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."

HTC Makes Windows Version of Flagship One Phone

August 19, 2014 11:16 am | by Anick Jesdanun, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

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.

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Microsoft Attacks Feature Phone Market with Nokia 130

August 11, 2014 8:51 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

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 Offers Nokia Workers Free Handset to Leave Jobs

August 7, 2014 10:26 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

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. 

China Pursues Monopoly Investigation of Microsoft

July 29, 2014 10:45 am | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

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.

Unloading of Handset Division Boosts Nokia's Forecast

July 24, 2014 10:22 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

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.

Microsoft 4Q tops Street, CEO Says Nokia Phones Profitable by 2016

July 23, 2014 9:47 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

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.

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Microsoft Refines Design Philosophy for New Devices

July 21, 2014 4:56 pm | by Ryan Nakashima, AP Business Writer | Articles | Comments

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 Kills Nokia X, Plans Big Job Cuts for Former Nokia Units

July 17, 2014 10:13 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

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.

Microsoft to Cut Up to 18,000 Jobs Over Next Year

July 17, 2014 9:19 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

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 Sides with Qualcomm-backed AllSeen IoT Alliance

July 2, 2014 10:27 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

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.

Android Wear Compatibility Gap Leaves Open Door for Apple, Microsoft

June 30, 2014 4:41 pm | by Ben Munson | Blogs | Comments

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.

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Microsoft Slashing Prices on Windows Tablets, Smartphones

June 5, 2014 9:36 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

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. 

Report: Microsoft’s Smartwatch Will Work with Android, iOS Devices

May 30, 2014 10:48 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

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.

Ex Microsoft CEO Ballmer Buying Clippers for $2B

May 30, 2014 10:23 am | by Tami Abdollah, Associated Press | News | Comments

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 Unveils Larger Surface Tablet

May 20, 2014 12:49 pm | by Anick Jesdanun, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

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.

Google Chromebooks on the Rise as Windows Support Wanes

May 7, 2014 10:29 am | by Michael Liedtke, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

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 Pushes for Unlicensed Spectrum in 600 MHz Band

May 7, 2014 10:18 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

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.

Elop Takes Home $33M in Severance from Nokia

April 30, 2014 11:30 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

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. 

Nokia Eyes Turnaround with New CEO, Dividend

April 29, 2014 9:36 am | by Matti Huuhtanen, Associated Press | News | Comments

Nokia Corp. reported Tuesday another drop in sales in the troubled devices unit it sold to Microsoft, but its shares rallied as it named a new CEO, promised a special dividend, and prepared to focus on its remaining businesses. Reporting its last quarter to include cellphones, Nokia said Tuesday that net loss in the period was 239 million euros compared with a loss of 272 million a year earlier.

Nokia Completes Sale of Device Business to Microsoft

April 25, 2014 10:17 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Nokia today announced it has completed the sale of its Devices & Services business to Microsoft. The deal, valued at $7.2 billion when first announced in September 2012, closed at $7.5 billion. Taking into account adjustments for networking capital and cash earnings that were positive for Nokia, the Finnish company expected the deal to close slightly higher than where it is at currently.

Microsoft 1Q Proves Company's Future Is in the Cloud

April 25, 2014 9:16 am | by Ryan Nakashima, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Results from Microsoft's first quarterly earnings release under new CEO Satya Nadella offered fresh justification for his focus on cloud computing. Microsoft Corp. on Thursday posted net income and revenue that beat Wall Street expectations.

Microsoft-Nokia Deal Closing Friday With Changes

April 21, 2014 11:27 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Microsoft today announced its acquisition of Nokia’s devices and services business will close Friday, with some changes to the original deal. Detailed in a blog post, the alterations affect Nokia’s web and social media presence, exchange of property, and additional employees moving from Nokia to Microsoft.

Review: Siri-like Cortana Fills Windows Phone Gap

April 15, 2014 9:28 am | by Anick Jesdanun, AP Technology Writer | Articles | Comments

With the new Cortana virtual assistant, Windows catches up with Apple's iOS and Google's Android in a major way. Microsoft takes some of the best parts of Apple's and Google's virtual assistants and adds a few useful tools of its own. The result is Cortana, named after an artificial-intelligence character in Microsoft's "Halo" video games.

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