Chris Weber is the CVP of Mobile Devices Sales at Microsoft, re-joining the company through it's purchase of Nokia, where he was in charge of global sales. He knows his way around every Lumia device, and is now aiming to make sure that Windows Phone first-party hardware is an even player at the devices table. We were able to sit down with Chris to talk about Nokia, Lumia, Windows Phone, and what changes need to be made in order to realize the success he is seeking. Check out the full interview below:
When is Windows Phone 8.1 coming out?
The answer varies by device and operator. The Lumia 630 and 635 are the first 8.1 products, launched internationally. We’re also working with our current products, and any Windows 8 phone is upgradeable to 8.1. There is currently a developer preview, but the operator version requires further testing. 8.1 is a completely different experience. Things like the background wallpaper, increased customization, and especially Cortana, which is one of the best features.
There are key differences between Cortana and similar services on other devices. It proactively learns. The other day I was flying to Moscow. The week before, it asked if it wanted me to track my flight to Moscow. There is a link that says "Do you want to know how I knew that?" Cortana looked at my calendar and started looking up flight numbers. It also has geo-fencing. You can say "Remind me that Ignacio owes me $100." I can say remind me when I send an email, when I arrive home, etc. Or "Remind me to pick up my dry cleaning" and when you get in the area, the message pops up. "Remind me to pick up milk at the grocery store” and you get the choice of having it remind you when you are near any grocery store, not just one specific one.
Back to being on the plane, I said "Remind me to download the music for guitar when I get home." It's really, really good. Flow writing, which is similar to Swype, means I can do emails faster on my phone than on the keyboard now. I got a new phone and it wasn't running 8.1 and the hunt and peck was tough!
Apple has posted the OS X Yosemite design video that it showed during the WWDC 2014 keynote, which shows a bunch of the new features and design elements found in OS X 10.10. In case you haven't seen WWDC (although you can watch the WWDC 2014 keynote video in its entirety,) this video covers the larger design language updates, and the more subtle changes to the dock, icons, traffic light buttons, etc. It also gives a look at the new AirDrop functionality, Finder, Messages, Notification Center, and all the rest of the OS X new hotness.
You can check out the video after the jump.
Industry sources are aligning, and it appears that Apple is prepping to release its first wearable watch (which many are referring to as the iWatch) this October. According to Re/code and Nikkei, Apple is planning a special event to debut and show off all the features of the new device in October--by our own estimation, this would be a month after the iPhone 6 and iOS 8 launch, and could be within the same timeframe that Apple launches the new Touch ID-enabled iPads.
People familiar with Apple's plans tell Re/Code the company hopes to schedule a special event that month to show off the device, which is designed to make good use of the HealthKit health and fitness information-gathering app it recently showed off at WWDC. Could things change between now and fall? That's certainly possible. But right now October is the target date.
We've been hearing about the rumored fall release of the iWatch for months, while simultaneously also hearing that it might be pushed back to 2015. Now that more reliable sources are in on the reports, it looks like things are coming together. Nikkei is also reporting that the device will sport a curved OLED touchscreen display, and will heavily focused on integrating with the new Health app in iOS 8, tracking things like calories burned, sleep activity, blood oxygen levels, and other fitness-related data.
"I'm curious if my iPhone 4S will be able to run iOS 8. How do I know if it is compatible?"
You may be wondering if your iOS device is compatible with Apple's latest and greatest, so here's a look at the full list of Apple products that will be able to be upgraded to iOS 8:
- iPhone 4S
- iPhone 5
- iPhone 5c
- iPhone 5s
- iPad 2
- iPad with Retina display (iPad 3 and iPad 4)
- iPad Air
- iPad mini
- iPad mini with Retina display
- iPod touch (5th generation)
As you can see, as it pertains to the iPhone line, the iPhone 4 (released in 2010) and older will not be compatible with iOS 8. With iPad, it'll be the original model that won't be able to use the new operating system. Meanwhile, the only iPod touch that can run iOS 8 is the 5th generation model. That's quite a generous line-up when compared to competing smartphone and tablet platforms!
If you missed the WWDC 2014 keynote, we've pretty much had you covered here at Gear Live as far as the news coming out of the event. However, sometimes, seeing is believing, and many would rather watch the historic event for themselves. Now you can. Apple has made the video available to view on demand on YouTube and on the Apple Web site. If you'd prefer to download it, you can grab it in iTunes using your Mac, iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. We've embedded the YouTube version right here for you!
With plenty of people now running both iOS 8 beta and OS X Yosemite Developer Preview in order to kick the tires on Apple's upcoming operating systems, we're hearing that a lot of people are confused as to how to get the cool Handoff feature working. Handoff, announced during the WWDC 2014 keynote, is what allows the two operating systems talk to each other and pass app information back and forth seamlessly. Here's how you do it:
Apple announced that third-party keyboard support would be a major feature in iOS 8 just two days ago during its WWDC 2014 keynote, and just like that, Fleksy is already showing that it's up and running on Apple's upcoming mobile operating system. The Fleksy keyboard is actually available already on iOS, but only within the Fleksy app itself, as well as in apps that have built-in the Fleksy API. What changes in iOS 8 is that Fleksy (and other keyboards) will be able to take over as the system-wide keyboard for all applications, should a user choose to do that. You can download the Fleksy app now for a preview, and sign up to join the iOS 8 Fleksy beta.
Yesterday was another big Apple event, and there was a lot of news coming out of the WWDC 2014 keynote--we got a look at OS X Yosemite, iOS 8, and much more. Here's a look at everything we covered in one easy place:
- First official look at OS X Yosemite at WWDC
- Purported leaked images of OS X 10.10 leak new UI and design changes
- OS X Yosemite: Translucent window UI, dark mode, new icons, and more
- iCloud Drive: Apple finally lets you browse and store iCloud documents on Mac, iOS, and Windows
- OS X Yosemite will be released this fall for free, public preview coming this summer
- Apple shows off iOS 8 Health app & HealthKit platform
- iOS 8 to debut third-party keyboards, here comes Swype
- iOS 8 introduces new time-lapse camera mode
- OS X Mavericks was downloaded 40 million times in 8 months
What are you most looking forward to?
One new iOS 8 feature that wasn't announced during Apple's WWDC 2014 keynote is time-lapse video capture. When using the camera app, you can swipe over to the new Time-Lapse option, and set up your device to start taking photos at dynamically selected intervals. So, if you want to capture a sunset, a cityscape, or an animal floating by in the water, when you are all said and done, your iOS device will stich the images together into a video. iOS 8 will be available later this fall.
During its WWDC 2014 keynote, Apple announced iOS 8 will support third-party keyboards as part of a new extensions capability. You'll be able to set the new keyboard to be used system-wise, and Apple shows an image of the popular Swype keyboard system as an example. The keyboard will be sandboxed so that they can only access text input, although the user will have the ability to also grant the keyboard network access if there are more features that may require Internet access that someone may want to use.
Third-party keyboards will be available in the App Store when iOS 8 is released.