Tag: microsoft

08
Oct
2020
Posted in technology

Microsoft is bringing xCloud to iOS via the web

Microsoft is working on a “direct browser-based solution” to bring xCloud to iOS early next year. Sources familiar with Microsoft’s plans tell The Verge that the company has been developing a web version of xCloud to run on iOS and iPadOS devices, alongside continuing its work on an app that it hopes will also eventually run on Apple’s platform.





Microsoft’s gaming chief, Phil Spencer, revealed the company’s browser-based xCloud work during a recent internal all-hands meeting. “We absolutely will end up on iOS,” said Spencer during the meeting, noting that he “feels good” about the company’s iOS progress. “We’ll end up on iPhones, and iPads with Game Pass.” Business Insider first reported the news of the web version for iOS.

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Apple has been blocking services like xCloud and Stadia from running on iOS devices via its App Store, and recently offered an olive branch to these services with some big restrictions. Apple insists that developers must individually submit their games as separate apps using their streaming tech. Microsoft and Google are free to create a “catalog”-style app that collects and links out to all of these individual apps.

Microsoft wasn’t impressed with Apple’s approach, and xCloud’s potential launch on iPhones and iPads has been left in limbo as a result. We understand Microsoft is targeting an early 2021 release for a web-based version of xCloud for Apple’s devices. This browser version would bypass the App Store, just like Amazon is doing with its new Luna game streaming service.

During the same all-hands call at Microsoft, Spencer also discussed the company’s plans for xCloud on PC. Spencer described PC as a “great opportunity” for both Game Pass and game streaming. Microsoft is now aiming to bring xCloud to Windows 10 PCs in 2021. The software giant has been testing

08
Oct
2020
Posted in technology

GameStop Stock Jumps on Multiyear Microsoft Partnership

GameStop  (GME) – Get Report said Thursday that it entered a multiyear strategic partnership agreement with Microsoft  (MSFT) – Get Report that the videogame retailer said would expand its product offerings and enhance its retail infrastructure.

Shares of the Grapevine, Texas, company were soaring nearly 20% to $11.19, while Microsoft was up slightly to $210.59.

Under the agreement, GameStop will standardize its back-end and in-store solutions on Dynamics 365, Microsoft’s portfolio of cloud-based business applications and customer data platform.

GameStop said this would enable store staff to access omnichannel insights about customer preferences and purchasing history, real-time information on product availability, subscriptions, pricing, and promotions.

Associates will be equipped with new Microsoft Surface devices, which will enable them to move freely within the stores.

GameStop said it planned to roll out Microsoft 365 and Microsoft Teams, the business communication platform, to its stores. With Teams, store associates will more easily be able to ask questions and share insights with one another.

GameStop has expanded its Xbox product offerings to include Xbox All Access, which provides an Xbox console and 24 months of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate to players with no up-front cost. 

GameStop operates more than 5,000 stores across 10 countries,. 

“This is an exciting day at GameStop,” Chief Executive George Sherman said in a statement, “as we announce the advancement of an important partnership that capitalizes on the power of our operating platform and significant market share in gaming to accelerate our digital transformation; drive incremental revenue streams; and over time, further monetize the digital world of gaming.” 

Last month, Ryan Cohen, GameStop’s biggest individual investor, reportedly said he believed the company could rival Amazon.com  (AMZN) – Get Report and was holding talks with management and several board members.

08
Oct
2020
Posted in technology

Microsoft takes a jab at Apple, Google with new app store principles

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Angela Lang/CNET

Microsoft announced 10 new app store principles in a blog post Thursday, needling Apple and Google’s policies in the process. The new principles are intended to promote choice, fairness and innovation for software developers on Windows 10.

“Developers will have the freedom to choose whether to distribute their apps for Windows through our app store. We will not block competing app stores on Windows.” the first principle reads.

“Windows 10 is an open platform. Unlike some other popular digital platforms, developers are free to choose how they distribute their apps,” the tech giant wrote, alluding to Apple and Google.

Those companies are embroiled in a legal battle with Fortnite developer Epic over fees they charge in their respective app stores.

Earlier this month, lawmakers from the US House of Representatives accused Facebook, Amazon, Google and Apple of “abuses of monopoly power” and called for restructuring of the companies. Politicians also took issue with Apple’s “gatekeeper power” over its App Store.

Source Article

08
Oct
2020
Posted in technology

Microsoft takes aim at Apple with new app store principles

The Washington-based tech giant, and longtime competitor to Apple, is part of a growing list of companies advocating for new policies that would upend the way Apple does business. The coalition, which includes Epic, maker of video game Fortnite, and Spotify, a music streaming service, laid out a set of app store principles it thinks Apple and other companies should follow.

Microsoft’s support for the coalition comes two days after a congressional committee released a 450-page report that blasted Apple and other technology companies for anticompetitive practices. The majority of the criticism for Apple revolved around the way it treats developers and competitors on the App Store. Microsoft is the only tech giant that was not investigated by the committee for antitrust concerns.

Apple has said its App Store does not have a monopoly, citing competition with Google’s Android operating system, and denies that it engages in anticompetitive practices.

In the blog post, Microsoft announced its own 10 principles, which closely resemble the coalition’s. Microsoft said, for instance, that it would charge developers “reasonable fees that reflect the competition we face from other app stores on Windows.” Apple has come under criticism from companies such as Epic and Spotify for charging companies a 30 percent commission on sales made on the App Store or on digital goods sold within apps.

“The innovation that drives the app economy also needs healthy and vibrant digital platforms,” Microsoft’s blog post said. “We know that regulators and policymakers are reviewing these issues and considering legal reforms to promote competition and innovation in digital markets,” the company wrote, adding that the sets of principles could serve as “productive examples.”

The news of Microsoft’s support was welcomed by the coalition’s members, which also include smaller companies such as Tile, the maker of Bluetooth tracking tags, and

07
Oct
2020
Posted in technology

WFH tips from Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella: Regular breaks, short meetings, and other advice

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)

Schedule super quick meetings just to check in with colleagues. Read more. And try to fit “moments of transition” into your daily schedule.

Those are some tips from Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella to help manage well-being with the new WFH lifestyle.

Nadella spoke this week at the Wall Street Journal’s CEO Council. He said he’s focused on three major considerations of how the nature is work is changing amid the pandemic: how collaboration happens, how learning happens inside companies, and how to ensure employees aren’t burning out.

The last point has become even more important over the past several months as workers conduct multiple meetings per day via video and don’t have the same interactions with colleagues at a physical office. Microsoft studies show that people are now working after hours and on weekends more frequently, and that remote work is leading to more stress and mental fatigue.

Nadella said people can get more tired because of the concentration required during video calls. That’s why Microsoft earlier this summer rolled out the new Microsoft Teams “Together” mode, a feature for video meetings that places participants against a shared virtual background, out of the traditional grid view, to help create the perception of sitting together.

Nadella also called out the new “virtual commute” feature for Teams, which uses automation tech to help users close out tasks and designate work for the following day, log their sentiment about the work day, and direct them into a guided meditation process. Microsoft said its research finds that the blurred lines between work and home are hurting remote workers’ feelings of well-being.

Whether it’s the bus ride to and from work, or even walking down a hallway for your next meeting, there are fewer “transition times”