What to expect from Microsoft

What to expect from Microsoft in the near future? Microsoft starts Build event today, and there are expectations that it will offer views what to come. What to expect from Microsoft’s most important event of the year article tells that Build starts Wednesday and it’s going to be big. For Microsoft, 2015 is a year of adjustment. While the software giant focuses its efforts across multiple platforms, Windows is gearing up for big changes.With Windows Phone increasingly squeezed out by Android and iOS, this year’s Build conference feels like a last chance for Microsoft to woo mobile developers to Windows Phone. Developers are key to Microsoft’s current and future platforms. It’s fair to say the company hasn’t made it easy for its loyal community over the years, with constant changes, reversals, and just a lack of key developer APIs to create apps that really shine on Windows.



  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    John Callaham / Windows Central:
    Microsoft confirms its new Edge browser won’t support Silverlight

    Microsoft has already announced that its new Microsoft Edge web browser in Windows 10 will not be using many of the features that were a part of its old Internet Explorer browsers. That includes support for ActiveX-based plug-ins. Today, Microsoft confirmed that the ditching of ActiveX also means Edge won’t support the company’s own Silverlight web-based media player.

    Silverlight was first introduced in 2007 as an alternative Adobe’s Flash player for web-based media. It was most famously used by Netflix for its desktop streaming video service. The last major release was Silverlight 5 in 2011 and Microsoft has not indicated plans to release a major new version

  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft: Stop using Microsoft Silverlight. (Everyone else has)
    Says websites should switch to HTML5-based playback as netizens snub plugins

    Microsoft is encouraging companies that use its Silverlight media format on their web pages to dump the tech in favor of newer, HTML5-based media playback systems.

    “The commercial media industry is undergoing a major transition as content providers move away from proprietary web plug-in based delivery mechanisms (such as Flash or Silverlight), and replace them with unified plug-in free video players that are based on HTML5 specifications and commercial media encoding capabilities,” the software giant said in a Thursday blog post.

    Similarly, Redmond observed, browser makers are moving away from supporting media plugins. Google plans to drop support for the outdated Netscape Plugin API (NPAPI) later this year, while Microsoft Edge, the new browser that will ship with Windows 10, was designed not to support plugins from the get-go.

    One reason is because vulnerabilities in media plugins often become vectors for web-based attacks, something to which Silverlight fell prey last year.

    Instead, Microsoft and others now recommend that web developers handle video and other media playback via a number of new protocols introduced in the ongoing HTML5 standardization effort.

  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Windows 10: Preparing to Upgrade One Billion Devices

    Updated July 2, 2015 1:19 pm – With around four weeks to go before Windows 10 becomes available, I thought it would be helpful to provide some context on how we will roll-out Windows 10 to the world. We’ve been really pleased with the strong response to Windows 10 since we kicked off reservations in early June, with millions of reservations

    Preparing for Windows 10 Upgrades

    With all of our ecosystem partners, we have been actively engaged to work on device and application compatibility. It’s been amazing to see the teamwork taking place across companies to ensure a quality experience as our shared customers experience Windows 10 soon. In our testing of millions of systems, we’re seeing full compatibility today with the vast majority of Windows 8x and Windows 7x systems

    Soon, we will give a build of Windows 10 to our OEM partners so they can start imaging new devices with Windows 10.

    How To Know When You’re Ready to Upgrade

    Starting on July 29, we will start rolling out Windows 10 to our Windows Insiders. From there, we will start notifying reserved systems in waves, slowly scaling up after July 29th. Each day of the roll-out, we will listen, learn and update the experience for all Windows 10 users.

    If you reserved your copy of Windows 10, we will notify you once our compatibility work confirms you will have a great experience, and Windows 10 has been downloaded on your system.

    If your system is not ready yet for your upgrade to Windows 10, we will provide more details during the upgrade experience.

    Business Customers and Windows 10

    The Windows as a service model extends to our enterprise and business customers as well.

  4. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Windows 10 Editions Compared
    by Brett Howse on July 2, 2015 10:45 PM EST

    Today Microsoft has finally created tables outlining what the different versions of the operating system are going to feature. It was back in May that they finally announced all of the versions of Windows 10 that are coming, but the actual features of each version was still a mystery. We could of course take an educated guess based on history, but as of today there is finally a list of all of the features broken down by version.

  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Tom Warren / The Verge:
    Minecraft for Windows 10 beta launching July 29 for $10; Minecraft for PC owners get it for free

    Minecraft for Windows 10 beta arrives on July 29th launch day

  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Windows 10: Microsoft’s ‘final edition’ will arrive with PC makers this week
    The end of an error x00064622b

    MICROSOFT WILL RELEASE the RTM edition of Windows 10 to its partners later this week, according to a report at The Verge.

    It’s a significant milestone, but it would be wrong to call this the ‘finished product’ as Windows 10 is designed to be a perpetual beta, constantly being updated and improved.

    That said, the RTM will be the version that will appear in the PCs you buy in the shop, and will be bettered only by bug fixes that happen between now and 29 July when the rollout proper starts.

    Microsoft to finalize Windows 10 this week

    Microsoft is planning to finalize Windows 10 this week, ahead of its official launch later this month. Sources familiar with Microsoft’s plans tell The Verge that the company is currently working on final copies of Windows 10, with a release to manufacturing (RTM) build expected later this week. RTM candidate builds have already been spotted online. Once the RTM build is ready, Microsoft will send the final copy of Windows 10 to its PC partners ahead of a release to the public on July 29th.

    Microsoft is moving Windows 10 to a “Windows as a service” model that means the operating system is regularly updated. That’s part of the reason Windows 10 is considered the “final version of Windows,” as regular updates means it’s never really finished.

  7. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Major Job Cuts Expected at Microsoft

    Microsoft plans to announce a major new round of layoffs as early as Wednesday, as the company seeks to further cut costs in a shifting technology landscape.

    The layoffs are in addition to the about 18,000 employees that Microsoft said it planned to let go a year ago, according to people briefed on the plans, who asked for anonymity because the details were confidential. The new job cuts are expected to affect people in Microsoft’s hardware group, among other parts of the company, including the struggling smartphone business that it acquired from Nokia last year in a $7.2 billion deal.

    At the end of March, Microsoft had more than 118,000 employees globally.

    Microsoft is not expected to leave the smartphone business in the near term, given the importance of mobile devices in the technology business.

  8. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft announces 7,800 job cuts mostly in phone business, writes off $7.6B from Nokia deal
    — Microsoft Announces Restructuring of Phone Hardware Business — REDMOND, Wash. — Microsoft Corp. today announced plans to restructure the company’s phone hardware business to better focus and align resources.

    Microsoft announces restructuring of phone hardware business

    Microsoft Corp. today announced plans to restructure the company’s phone hardware business to better focus and align resources. Microsoft also announced the reduction of up to 7,800 positions, primarily in the phone business. As a result, the company will record an impairment charge of approximately $7.6 billion related to assets associated with the acquisition of the Nokia Devices and Services (NDS) business in addition to a restructuring charge of approximately $750 million to $850 million.

  9. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Jack Schofield / ZDNet:
    Microsoft details Project Westminster, one of four bridges for converting apps on other platforms into Universal Windows apps

    Microsoft plugs Westminster as one of its four bridges to the future of Windows Universal Apps

    Project Westminster is a way of converting web-based apps into Windows 10 apps. That and three other bridges — to convert Android, iOS, and Win32 programs — are part of Microsoft’s attempt to create the world’s best app store.

    Microsoft programmer Kiril Seksenov has published Project Westminster in a nutshell, a short and readable guide to converting web-based apps into Universal Windows Apps that can run on a wide range of Windows 10 devices.

    This is just one of the four bridges announced at the Build2015 conference, the others being bridges for Android and Apple iOS apps, and for traditional Windows programs.

    What Microsoft calls “Hosted Web Apps” are apps that run mainly on the web, but are packaged and distributed via the Windows Store. This allows for apps that can be updated on the fly (web app publishers just update their servers) but can also exploit local features (such as Live Tiles and Cortana voice commands) and local content.

    The main drawback with hosted web apps is that users may try to run them when they don’t have an internet connection. However, Seksenov says: “Navigation to a local page can be done using the ms-appx:/// or ms-appx-web:/// protocols, allowing you to load html/css/JS from inside the package for an offline experience.”

    Seksenov says that Project Westminster is “agnostic” to developer preferences and workflows

    Programmers can use their favourite text editor, code repository and hosting site. Obviously, Microsoft might prefer it if they used Visual Studio and Azure, but they can use Atom, GitHub and Amazon AWS if they want.

    Project Westminster in a nutshell

    While building Hosted Web Apps, Project Westminster is agnostic to the developer workflow that you’ve chosen. Simply put, you can keep using your favorite code editor, source control and hosting service while developing your website.

    Once your website is published as a Hosted Web App in the Windows 10 Store you are able to continuously deploy updates by pushing changes to your servers – no need to re-submit your app to the Store. You also gain the opportunity to integrate with the platform by directly calling into the Windows namespace from JavaScript hosted on your servers without the need for packaged code.

    Project Westminster represents an evolution in our continued Web App investment. HTML/JavaScript apps have existed on the platform since Windows 8. However, they were restricted to packaged apps.

    A Standards approach

    Developers who build for the web do so to build apps that run in any browser or on any platform. For that reason we are also contributing to the development of the W3C Manifest for Web Apps. When complete, this will be a single, common manifest that will support web apps in all environments.

    In the meantime, Microsoft along with other developers in the community have been supporting a new open source project called Manifoldjs. Manifoldjs is the simplest way to build hosted apps across all platforms. Manifoldjs starts with the W3C manifest and from it, builds hosted apps for Windows 10, along with apps for iOS, Android, FireFoxOS and Chrome.

    You can use Manifoldjs to generate apps on the website, or as a command line tool. Once you have node.js installed, just simply type “npm install manifoldjs –g” and you’re set. Find out more about Manifoldjs by visiting the project’s website at http://www.manifoldjs.com .

  10. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Paul Thurrott / Thurrott.com:
    Microsoft dramatically scales back on Windows Phone, leaving long-term future of Lumia in doubt as it focuses on “mobility of experiences”

    Analysis: Microsoft is Scaling Back on Windows Phone Dramatically

    Yes, we were right to be worried about Windows Phone. Satya Nadella’s email only touches on first-party phones for the short term, buying Microsoft time to transition to a “mobility of experiences” future in which it doesn’t matter which phones its customers use.

    Windows Phone is failing

    Actually, that’s not an opinion, it’s a fact. The company that makes over 96 percent of all Windows Phone handsets in use just wrote off $7.6 billion related to its Windows Phone assets, and has announced plans to dramatically scale back its mobile operations. And, yes, Windows Phone has fallen to just 3 percent market share worldwide too. Things aren’t going well. Sorry.
    Phone business restructuring means a total loss from Nokia purchase

    Nadella said that Microsoft was “fundamental restructuring” its phone business. This includes an “impairment charge” of approximately $7.6 billion related to assets associated with the acquisition of the Nokia devices and services businesses last year, plus an additional restructuring charge of approximately $750 million to $850 million. When you consider that Microsoft paid $7.2 billion for the only parts of Nokia that mattered (minus HERE), this is a total disaster. Nokia was going out of business. Now only a tiny part of what used to be Nokia remains. And I believe the remainder is on borrowed time.

  11. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Satya Nadella email to employees on sharpening business focus

    Over the past few weeks, I’ve shared with you our mission, strategy, structure and culture. Today, I want to discuss our plans to focus our talent and investments in areas where we have differentiation and potential for growth, as well as how we’ll partner to drive better scale and results. In all we do, we will take a long-term view and build deep technical capability that allows us to innovate in the future.

    With that context, I want to update you on decisions impacting our phone business and share more on last week’s mapping and display advertising announcements.

    Phones. Today, we announced a fundamental restructuring of our phone business.
    In the near term, we will run a more effective phone portfolio, with better products and speed to market given the recently formed Windows and Devices Group.
    In the longer term, Microsoft devices will spark innovation, create new categories and generate opportunity for the Windows ecosystem more broadly.

    Mapping. Last week, we announced changes to our mapping business and transferred some of our imagery acquisition operations to Uber.

    Advertising. We also announced our decision to sharpen our focus in advertising platform technology and concentrate on search, while we partner with AOL and AppNexus for display.

  12. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Windows 10: Zinstall lets you upgrade with all your settings
    And it costs exactly the same as a licence

    AN ENTERPRISING COMPANY has found a loophole for those who don’t automatically qualify for a free upgrade to Windows 10. It’s still not 100 percent clear who is getting what yet, but we already know that enterprise customers definitely aren’t getting a free ride.

    Zinstall allows users to migrate to Windows 10 and keep all their settings and programs intact, whereas otherwise they would be required to perform a clean install.

    The company uses a sneaky method whereby it upgrades to Windows 10 via a copy of Windows 7, which it bundles in with software to preserve all your settings from start to finish.

    The service costs $199, which is exactly the same as buying a retail version of Windows 10, with the advantage of a smooth migration with all your files intact, which will save a fortune in man hours alone for the average SMB.

    Zinstall was founded in 2009 and allows users seamlessly to transfer from any version of Windows to any other, which is quite often not possible using an out of the box Windows setting. It uses container files to freeze your old machine’s settings and spit them out into the new version.

    The service, complete with all licences and the software, will be available on 29 July when Windows 10 is due to hit the streets

  13. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Some Think That the “Get Windows 10” App Is a Virus That Won’t Go Away

    “Help me remove this virus from my computer!”

    Microsoft rolled out the Get Windows 10 app on June 1 in order to let Windows 7 and 8.1 users know that the new version of its operating system is available free of charge, but since this program showed up all of a sudden on users’ computers, some believe that their PCs actually got infected.

    Poor communication?

    Needless to say, this isn’t a virus and is actually supposed to let you take advantage of a great promo, but it’s a little bit worrying that pushing such a tool out of nowhere to users’ computers could make some think that they got infected.

  14. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Why Microsoft is giving away Windows 10 for free
    A great desktop operating system must be a bridge to the computing platforms that come after mobile

    When Microsoft released Windows 95 almost 20 years ago, people packed into stores to be among the first lucky buyers to get their hands on this cutting edge new technology. Microsoft had an iron grip on productivity software in the enterprise, but even ordinary consumers were accustomed to paying hundreds of dollars for software. Two decades later, Microsoft is releasing Windows 10. But most people won’t have to rush out and purchase a copy. Anyone with a copy of Windows dating back to Windows 7 can upgrade for free, a first for Microsoft.

    The decision to forgo that traditional revenue stream and attempt to broaden the install base of Windows 10 highlights the tough choices Microsoft must make as it tries to claw its way back into the competition for mobile. It also needs to marry the strength of the slowly waning desktop world to its offerings on phone, tablets, consoles, and the cloud. The goal is to create “universal” apps that work on Windows 10 and across Windows mobile, as well as on computing platforms like Xbox and the forthcoming HoloLens.

    Along with growing its user base to woo developers, Microsoft hopes it can use a freemium model, giving away more of its core software but monetizing in other ways. The margins will never again be as fat as they were in the glory days of Windows 95, but the number of people who own a personal computing device is now far larger. If Microsoft could capture a significant portion of the smartphone market, the revenue opportunity could be far greater.


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