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Consumer Reports Windows 7 vs. Windows 8

Consumer Reports thinks that, for the time being, you're better off sticking with Windows 7 and waiting on Windows 8. The consumer ratings publication provides pros and (mostly) cons of Windows operating systems, and ultimately comes to the conclusion that updating to Windows 8 is not worth the upgrade at its current state. Windows 8 has received mostly lackluster reviews from technology internet sites. Most of them being flummoxed as to what went into the decision-making at Microsoft. Still, according to Microsoft, Windows 8 is selling faster than when Windows 7 launched; but there's a question as to where these numbers came from. Here's an excerpt:

"A quick look at our newest computer Ratings tells an interesting story: Despite the release of the new Windows 8 OS, many Windows 7 computers are still available from a variety of retailers, and several top our Ratings. If you're shopping for a new computer right now, there are some good reasons to opt for Windows 7." - Consumer Reports

Read More | Consumer Reports

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Steve Ballmer's Steve Jobs Pose

Microsoft is not shy about patting itself on the back. Here's the 2012 highlight reel that it put together, showcasing company milestones like Halo 4, Kinect, and their re-imagining Surface tablet.

There’s no question that it’s been a momentous year at Microsoft. The company introduced the world to Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8, announced its family of Surface PCs, showcased a new version of Microsoft Office and released “Halo 4,” keeping up a steady rhythm of advancements across its most popular products for individuals and businesses throughout the year. - Microsoft

Click to continue reading Microsoft releases 2012 highlight reel video

Read More | Microsoft

Windows Phone 8 Facebook

A new update for Windows Phone 8's Facebook app doesn't bring new features, but does make the app a lot faster and more responsive. Similar to the recent Facebook app updates on Android and iOS, this one focuses on the general performance of the app, and eliminates the lag from the older version.

Windows Phone 7 devices, however, aren't capable of running the new update. UK users will assuredly find the Facebook version 4.1 update in the UK Windows Phone Marketplace, but its not quite available in all markets yet.

Read More | Windows Phone

Surface with Windows 8 Pro

If the Surface with Windows RT isnt sporting the power and flexibility you need (check our Microsoft Surface review,) then the Surface with Windows 8 Pro would be more your jam, and Microsoft has finally announced pricing for the beefed up slate. Surface with Windows 8 Pro will be available in early 2013 (read: at least 3 months later than it should have been release) in two configurations: a 64GB standalone version priced at $899 and a 128 GB standalone version priced at $999. Both models will include a Surface pen with Palm Block technology.

What do you think? Have you been holding out for the Surface Pro? How does that price range hit you?

Read More | Microsoft Blog

windows phone 8 reboot

Microsoft has gotten to the bottom of the random Windows Phone 8 reboots, and is issuing an OTA update by December. The company, however, won't reveal the problem.

Here's what Microsoft had to say: “We’re continuing to investigate some reports of phones rebooting and have identified a cause with our partners. We are working to get an over-the-air update out in December.”

If you're currently one of the people with affected phones, let us know in the comments what model you have, as Microsoft hasn't detailed the types of phones affected or whether it's all Windows 8 devices.

Read More | AllThingsD

Windows 8 Pro

Microsoft has announced that it has sold 40 million Windows 8 licenses since the release of the operating system on October 26th. Although reviews of the operating system suggest it has not been well received, it seems that consumers are excited about Microsoft's new hotness. Also, sales figures revealed by Microsoft state it sold just 4 million copies in the first week of launch, so it's obviously ramped up a bit.

Click to continue reading Microsoft has sold 40 million Windows 8 licenses

Read More | ZDnet

Outlook App for Android Outlook App for Android (1)

Microsoft has given relief to Android business users as a native Outlook.com app made its way to the Google Play Store. The Exchange ActiveSync protocol is standard for business and Enterprise professionals. Unfortunately, the functionality is lacking in many older Android handsets. So, the initial user reviews of the app seem mixed but it's better than nothing. Check out the features after the quick jump.

Click to continue reading Microsoft releases native Outook app for Android

Read More | Google Play Store

Microsoft store cyber Monday

The Microsoft Store has a bunch of great Cyber Monday deals today, and we figured we'd help highlight some of the best. If you're looking for a Windows 8 tablet, PC, or cheap Xbox 360 and PC games for you or a loved one, check these deals out:

Read More | Microsoft Store Cyber Monday Deals

Microsoft Surface review

The release of the Microsoft Surface is a much bigger deal that the average consumer might perceive it to be. You see, Surface marks Microsoft's entry into the PC market. That might sound odd, but it's true--Microsoft may be the maker of Windows, but it's always been Microsoft partners who build the PCs. I'm talking about companies like Samsung, Toshiba, Dell, Lenovo, and others. Now, Microsoft is competing directly with its partners, hoping that consumers will flock to its Surface in a major way.

Similar to Apple's approach, Surface is the marriage of first-party software with first-party hardware. Microsoft controls the whole platform. If devices like the Mac, iPhone, iPad, and even Microsoft's own Xbox 360 have shown us anything, it's that when you have the ability to control the whole device as it pertains to software and hardware functionality, you can generally make a better product than you could using third-party ingredients. It's never a guarantee, but we think it puts you in a better spot to shine. That is the hope that Surface brings. Does Surface succeed in carving out its own niche, and filling a need that consumers are willing to pay to remedy? That's what we are here to discuss, so following along with us for our Microsoft Surface RT review.

Click to continue reading Microsoft Surface review


This is an entry from our 2012 Holiday Gift Guide. Check it out for suggestions on what to buy your loved, liked, and hated ones this holiday season!

kinect sesame street tv

Next up in our 2012 Holiday Gift Guide is Kinect Sesame Street TV, an educational title for the Xbox 360 geared towards young children. In the game kids are invited to experience the world of Sesame Street alongside their favorite characters, such as Big Bird, Grover, Cookie Monster and Elmo, like never before. With Kinect players to share in the experience through visual and physical interactions with characters of Sesame Street, placing them right in the Sesame Street experience.

Children can interact with their favorite Sesame Street characters on screen to help them with tasks, play in their world, and learn together. Full-body gestures and voice recognition are used to move from experience to experience, and go from passive watching to active participation, and the game even includes hundreds of clips from the Sesame Street archive. You can pick up Kinect Sesame Street TV for about $30 on Amazon.

Read More | Kinect Sesame Street TV

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