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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

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When you think of education, Electronic Arts probably isn't the first company to come to mind. But for the publisher Pearson, EA is exactly the kind of role model it's looking for in remodeling Pearson for a digitized age.

Speaking to GigaOm, chief product officer Luyen Chou revealed his intent for his company to become an "Electronic Arts for education." Chou enumerated, detailing the struggle to keep up with the times, and getting "high-quality, interactive digital learning experiences" into classrooms.

"Digital studios, animators, illustrators, producers, 3D artists – we need to build that capacity within instructional companies like Pearson and we need the whole end-to-end supply chain to the take that from the studio to the actual users,” Chou said. “The folks that have done that well are the EAs of the world, digital studios. That’s not a core competency for companies like Pearson.”

Pearson's lately been busy acquiring a massive amount in the way of pushing toward an interactive education company, spending $1.6 billion on acquisitions alone.

Read More | GigaOm

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:

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Target cyber MondayTarget is following up its Black Friday deals week with Cyber Monday Deals Week. All week long, Target will be featuring some killer deals in its Cyber Week section, and we're already seeing some nice discounts, particularly on video games and consumer electronics. Here's a sampling:

Read More | Target Cyber Monday & Cyber Week sales

XBox 360 4GB Kinect Bundle

Now that Thanksgiving is over, the holiday shopping season is in full swing. Video games are always a hot item, with kids and adults alike wanting to get in on the action. We've put together eith different video game-related gifts that you pick pick up for your loved ones this holiday season, and we did our best to find something for everybody, starting with the Xbox 360 4GB Kinect holiday bundle. If you know someone who doesn't yet have an Xbox 360, then this is the one to get. They get the Kinect accessory included in the box, along with Disneyland Adventures and Kinect Adventures, two fun games. You can pick this one up for $249.99. Read on for the rest of our list!

Click to continue reading 7 hot holiday gaming gifts for 2012


Target Black Friday 2012

We've been busy posting some of the tech-heavy Black Friday 2012 sales that we're finding, and now we've arrived at Target. Doors at Target will open at 9:00pm on Thanksgiving, but you can get a ton of deals online, which is always our preferred method of beating the crowds. We've got the full list of the more noteworthy items the break, and it's definitely worth taking a look. Can't wait a day or two? Target is also running a Beat the Rush sale right now!

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Best Buy Black Friday 2012 ad

Details of Best Buy's Black Friday 2012 sales have just been released, and we've got a links to all the highlights you can expect to see throughout Thanksgiving weekend. Doors will open right at midnight on November 23rd, and tickets for the doorbusters will be handed out as early as 10:00 pm on Thanksgiving Day. If you'd rather do all your shopping online (which is what we're doing,) here's your guide to all the Best Buy deals, after the break.

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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

Xbox Surface specs

Among the smaller tablets of the world like the iPad mini, Kindle Fire HD, and Nexus 7, Microsoft's platform is nowhere to be found. Sure, the company just launched Surface a couple of weeks ago, it's first first-party tablet device, and it has the Surface Pro on the way too…but what about the smaller form factor? Well, it turns out that Microsoft is working on it's very own 7-inch tablet, the previously-uncovered Xbox Surface.

Click to continue reading Microsoft working on Xbox Surface, a 7-inch gaming tablet

Read More | The Verge

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!

Halo 4 Limited Edition

Halo 4 launched today, and is downright amazing. If there's a gamer in your life who didn't already pick this one up, do them a favor and grab them a copy of this Limited Edition version, because this one is good enough to make it into our 2012 Holiday Gift Guide. What sets the Halo 4 Limited Edition apart from the standard version? Well, a lot. Read on, but just remember that these are going to go fast. We don't expect to see the Limited Edition version in stock for more than a few more days:

  • Spartan-IV “Recruit” In-Game Armor
  • Spartan-IV “Prime” In-Game Armor Skin
  • Assault Rifle “Prime” In-Game Weapon Skin
  • “Prime” In-Game Emblem
  • Xbox LIVE Avatar “Recruit” Armor
  • Cryo-Tube Xbox LIVE Avatar Prop

Click to continue reading 2012 Holiday Gift Guide: Halo 4 Limited Edition

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