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February NPD Group figures released Thursday showed that Xbox One continues selling at a record-breaking pace with 258,000 units sold in the U.S. in the month of February, surpassing Xbox 360 sales by over 61 percent at the same point in time.
Also, Xbox 360 continues to grow its install base, with 114,000 units sold in February in its 100th month on the market in the U.S., more than any other seventh-generation console. The growing fan base for Xbox 360 will have their opportunity to play “Titanfall” -- which released this week for Xbox One -- when it launches on Xbox 360 on March 25.
Oracle software is now generally available for Windows Azure, marking “an exciting milestone as we move the partnership with Oracle to the next step,” writes Stephen B. Martin, Windows Azure marketing & operations general manager.
The partnership with Oracle was announced last year, and reflects one of the “core tenets” of Windows Azure, to provide customers with an open and flexible platform.
College basketball fans who want to stay on top of the sport’s biggest show can watch every moment of all 67 games on their Windows 8.1 PC, tablet or Windows Phone device with the NCAA March Madness Live app.
You can now be the “captain” of your Skype emoticons – “Captain America,” that is, as well as four other limited-edition emoticons: the mysterious Winter Soldier, Nick Fury, Black Widow and Bucky, all featured in the upcoming film, “Marvel’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier.”
While you can find most emoticons in Skype’s gallery, these emoticons are “hiding” within Skype, like the spies of SHIELD. To find out how to activate them, visit the Hero Hub.
Personal trainer and fitness expert Gabe Aguilar-Gamez uses his Surface device to help him teach outdoor classes, train with his clients one-on-one, and to be mobile and productive from anywhere.
In a Q-and-A on the Surface Blog, Aguilar-Gamez says he uses the Surface video camera to let clients “see themselves workout much like if they were to work out in front of a mirror” to make sure they’re doing their exercises correctly. “This allows me and the client to analyze their video so we can work together to find the appropriate solution for a better overall experience,” he says.
Searching for images can be tough, especially when you’re trying to nail down one with high resolution and the right dimensions. Bing has introduced a new feature that can match an image in a few clicks – without having to go back and scroll through the results pages.
Microsoft Advertising has launched a brand new ad unit, Connection Hub ads, which increase the scale of the Skype for Windows desktop offering to advertisers by five-fold, and is placed in the “grand central” of Skype for Windows: The Connection Hub. The Connection Hub is the starting point for all Skype users for voice calls, video calls, chat and messaging activity.
Skype Connection Hub ads were tested in emerging markets such as Brazil, Russia and Turkey. As with any new ad unit, Microsoft Advertising is continuing to monitor the user experience closely to make sure it maintains the company’s commitment to quality for both consumers and advertisers in every market.
A study comparing the total cost of ownership between Lync and its competition shows that once a business puts Lync 2013 into place, the break-even point for recovering the costs of doing so is 14 months, and in some cases, even faster.
Forrester Consulting’s Lync 2013 Total Economic Impact (TEI) study, commissioned by Microsoft, built total cost of ownership comparisons between Lync and the competition, and also gave Lync customers a platform to share their experiences through written case studies and in-person customer sessions.
In only three months, the French studio Magma Mobile has ported 14 games to Windows Phone and accrued 2.5 million downloads. The Windows Phone Developer Blog shares a Q&A with Magma’s CEO, Nicolas Sorel, which reveals his story and successful strategies.
At the Microsoft in Education Global Forum in Barcelona, there’s a lot of buzz about the rise of mobile computing and new apps that make math fun, bring reading and storytelling to life and that make collaborating with students in distant classrooms as easy as a quick swipe of the screen.
On Thursday, Microsoft revealed a new way to enjoy Office 365 called Office 365 Personal.
Coming this spring, Office 365 Personal is a new option designed for an individual. It allows for one PC or Mac and one tablet to be connected to the service and will be available for $69.99 per year or $6.99 per month.
Now that the team over at Xbox Wire has unlocked all the weapons in “Titanfall,” they’re sharing a guide to the tools of the Titan trade, from the Sidewinder to Quad Rocket and many, many more.
You’ll want to take note of the anti-Titan weapon, the Mag Launcher. “Titanfall” creator Respawn has “proven that they know how magnets work with fun little toy, which fires magnetic grenades that, perhaps not surprisingly, work really well against giant metal Titans,” Xbox Wire notes.
Each week, we bring you new app recommendations from our colleagues. This week’s Thursday Staff App Pick comes from Tereza Nemessanyi, a partner business evangelist in Developer and Platform Evangelism at Microsoft.
I’m a wife and mom of two, with a high-pressure job. And I have a confession: I hardly ever cook. I have just one recipe in my walkabout repertoire (my mom’s chicken paprikash). I do love to eat, however.
I also have an active fantasy about food and cooking that rivals any suburban mom’s. I dream that my kitchen repertoire is broader. I’m neutral as to whether I do anything about it. When it comes to food apps, recipe encyclopedias that list all the things I don’t cook leave me cold. I need my food app to transport me to an alternate reality. No guilt, no pressure to perform. I need food porn.
Gojee delivers, gorgeously.
Bridgestone Asia Pacific will equip its sales and technical engineers in the field with an agile, secure and intuitive Windows 8-based mobile cloud solution supported by Windows Azure, Microsoft Singapore announced Thursday. Bridgestone is one of the leading tire manufacturers in the world.
Developed by Microsoft’s IT partner NCS, the solution includes a customized Windows 8 app called Bridgestone Toolbox Touch. With a Windows 8 tablet, Bridgestone’s sales and technical engineers now have the tools and information they need to be more productive on the ground, as well as to deliver better customer service.
If you want one app that can play both your music and videos, the VLC Media Player might be right up your alley. The beta version of VLC for Windows 8 gives you the ability to easily add media, sort it, search it and play it.
Heat maps are a type of overlay that use different colors to show data hot spots on a map. Now a member of the Bing Maps team has come up with a solution for creating heat maps in native Windows Store apps.
Ricky Brundritt, Bing Maps Technology Solution Professional, describes in a post how he came up with the solution, and also documents the reusable library he created. Full source code can also be downloaded from the MSDN Code Samples he shares.
In Windows 8.1, Microsoft introduced new app-to-app contracts that let your users easily interact with people in their address books and integrate events into their calendars.
In the first of a two-part series on the Windows App Builder Blog, the Windows App Team walks you through both of these contracts, starting with contact cards that work specifically with people.
Microsoft has been dedicated to creating meaningful change in education for more than three decades, with $750 million invested in teacher training and professional development in the last 15 years, and Wednesday, at the 2014 Microsoft in Education Global Forum, the company’s top leaders worldwide pledged their continuing support for teachers as well as students and school leaders who are shaping the future.
The company’s education legacy is “without equal,” including the global YouthSpark Initiative, to create opportunities for young people in education, employment and entrepreneurship, writes Anthony Salcito, Microsoft’s vice president, worldwide education.
In the “Witch Potion” puzzle game, exclusive to Windows Phone 8 devices, you’re in charge of protecting adorable creatures from black magic.
In the world where “1 Phoenix Force” takes place, the Earth we know is long gone, burned to ashes and taken over by monsters. You take flight as the reborn Phoenix in hopes of restoring life to Earth.
Skype Labs, the in-house innovation hub, is celebrating its fifth anniversary of improving the Skype experience for the product’s more than 300 million monthly users, who generate more than 2 billion minutes of Skype audio and video calls every day.
Adriana Dumitras, head of the Skype Labs team, writes that the team has used its expertise in audio, video, computer vision, networking, machine learning, data mining, statistics and quality of experience to create and deliver some of the fundamental and innovative core technologies that have contributed to Skype’s success.
This July at the Imagine Cup World Finals in Seattle, the top team from each category – Games, Innovation and World Citizenship – will take home $50,000. Now, thanks to a trio of new partnerships, each of those teams is also going to have a life-changing experience.
Microsoft Ventures, Microsoft YouthSpark and PAX will provide a customized Boot Camp for each of the category winners.
“Soulcalibur V” and “Retro City Rampage” are among the games on sale this week at the Xbox Games Store, with savings of up to 80 percent. Discounts are good through March 17.
“Soulcalibur V” – regularly $14.99, now 75 percent off – continues the epic story of the legendary soul swords 17 years after the events of “Soulcalibur IV,” and features a fluid 3D battle system and guest appearance by Ezio Auditore, the Master Assassin from “Assassin’s Creed.”
It’s hard to beat Facebook Messenger for getting in touch with your Facebook friends on your Windows Phone device. Not only does the app let you quickly see who’s online for a private or group chat, it also makes it easy for you to send private messages.
The 2014 Microsoft in Education Global Forum starts Wednesday in Barcelona, with more than 1,100 educators, school leaders and government officials from nearly 100 countries attending to re-imagine and redesign the world of education for the 21st century.
With the increased role of technology and cloud services in the classroom, serious privacy-related questions about the use of student data are being raised worldwide. “Misleading, exploitative, or aggressive marketing practices simply don’t belong in the classroom,” writes Anthony Salcito, Microsoft’s vice president, worldwide education.