Microsoft

Microsoft to give 100GB free OneDrive storage to early birds

OneDrive users who sign in fast enough can score plenty of free storage for the next year.

Microsoft will dole out 100GB of extra space to the first 100,000 people who sign onto their OneDrive accounts once the new promotion gets off the ground sometime on Wednesday. The extra space comes on top of your existing OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive) storage, but is good just for one year.

Angus Logan, the group product marketing manager for OneDrive, confirmed the promotion to CNET but didn't reveal a specific launch time. OneDrive users who want to vie for the free storage … Read more

Microsoft's OneDrive to take on Google Drive and Dropbox

Over the years, critics occasionally -- and justifiably -- slammed Microsoft for cramming too many features into its software. But could that ingrained habit yet work to Microsoft's advantage as it relaunches its consumer cloud storage service in a young market that's up for grabs?

Microsoft on Wednesday officially announced the global availability of its rebranded cloud storage service OneDrive. Microsoft originally called the service SkyDrive but was forced to rebrand after British Sky Broadcasting, the biggest pay-television broadcaster in the United Kingdom, sued and won a trademark lawsuit over use of the name.

Besides the new markings, … Read more

Xbox One hit by black screen bug

A new update for the Xbox One didn't quite go smoothly.

Many Xbox One users who downloaded the latest update say their screens now go black when they press the Xbox Button on their controllers. A number of them commenting on both the Xbox One support forums and Reddit's Xbox thread report that the audio remains alive even as all screen activity goes dark. Some have responded to the bug by unplugging and replugging their consoles, while others were able to recover by holding down the power button to reset the machine.

In response to a tweet from … Read more

Swype-like keyboard set for Windows Phone 8.1, report says

Swype, the much-ballyhooed virtual keyboard technology that allows users to run their fingers around the keys to type out messages, might soon have a competitor on Windows Phone 8.1.

Microsoft is planning to offer a Swype-like technology in Windows Phone 8.1, The Verge reported on Tuesday, citing people familiar with the company's plans. A video was posted by UnleashThePhones purporting to show the technology in action.

If Microsoft decides to go with the new input method, it will mark a significant change in the way most device owners type messages by hunting and pecking. According to The … Read more

Windows 8 designer: Why Microsoft forced Metro on us all

Microsoft designed its Metro, aka Modern, interface for "your computer-illiterate little sister, for grandpas who don't know how to use that computer 'dofangle' thingy, and for mom who just wants to look up apple pie recipes."

At least that's the take from someone who claims to have worked on the design of Windows 8.

Chiming in on a Reddit conversation on Friday, Jacob Miller, a self-described UX designer for Microsoft, said that Metro was created for casual users first and foremost, but claimed that the interface ultimately will be a boon to power users as well. … Read more

Microsoft inks digital signature integration deal with DocuSign

Microsoft Office 365 users will soon be able to submit and digitally sign documents without leaving Microsoft applications.

The software announced a "long-term strategic partnership" on Monday that will see the integration of DocuSign's eSignature apps with Office 365. Apps that integrate with Outlook, Word, SharePoint Online, and SharePoint Server 2013 are expected to arrive in the Office Store in March, the companies said in a statement.

"This partnership with DocuSign helps our customers keep transactions digital and manage eSignatures seamlessly from within Office 365, where they already communicate, collaborate, and create," John Case, vice … Read more

'iPad Pro' iffy, Microsoft Office on iPad 'alive' in 2014: Reports

A pair of reports speak to coming iPad attractions. One addresses the prospects for the so-called iPad Pro, the other, Microsoft Office running on Apple's tablet.

A larger iPad in 2014? Don't bet the farm on it is the crux of a report, via AppleInsider, from Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities.

While Kuo expects development of the iPad Pro to be important for Apple's future, the device -- rumored to be 12.9 inches -- will require a modified operating system. The upshot: that may not be doable by the end of 2014, Kuo claimed.

And … Read more

Hey Microsoft, Surface 2 is great, but clear up something please

It might be a good idea now for Microsoft to be more public about the direction of its tablet operating system so consumers know what they're buying into.

I like the Surface 2 and the Nokia Lumia 2520. A lot. As hardware, they're two of the best tablets out there. Bar none (including iPads).

But Windows RT, as it stands now, is in no-man's-land. It's not the Windows 8.1 that comes on PCs and it's not Windows Phone 8.

And it's been that way too long -- since October 2012.

So far, the … Read more

PlayStation 4 beats out Xbox One as the best-selling console

In the battle for the best-selling console, Sony's PlayStation 4 has come out on top -- beating Microsoft's Xbox One -- for the month of January.

Research firm The NPD Group released new data on Thursday showing that hardware sales were up 17 percent to $241 million in January compared to the same time last year. However, since January 2013 was five weeks and January 2014 was four weeks -- normalized sales of gaming hardware shows a 47 percent increase. And, PlayStation led these sales.

"PS4 led overall hardware sales this month, followed by the Xbox One,&… Read more

Windows 8 tops 200M license mark

It's been a while since Microsoft execs shared an official count of licenses of Windows 8 sold. Last time we got a tally was in May 2013, when the Softies said the company had sold more than 100 million licenses.

On Thursday, however, Microsoft's Executive Vice President of Marketing Tami Reller, casually dropped an updated figure of 200 million Windows 8 licenses sold. Reller made that remark during an appearance at the Goldman Sachs Technology & Internet Conference. (I listened to a live Web cast.)

Microsoft's silence since last May about Windows 8's sales rate has … Read more