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Project Natal launching on October says UK’s Jonathan Ross

Jonathan Ross Project Natal

Long-tenured UK TV host Jonathan Ross was able to give the upcoming Xbox 360 motion gaming add-on, , a try. Aside from the hint of jealousy he left us all with, he also tweeted out an interesting tidbit of information on his Twitter account, which in a nutshell says that he feels that Natal has potential, and that Microsoft has until October to get it right. So the obvious question is, does that imply that Natal gets an October launch (which does fit in with the holiday 2010 launch period)? Or does it mean it has to all be done so they can start packing and shipping devices for launch in early November? I’m sure everything will be made clear in a couple of months at .

Hit the break for a video of Jonathan giving Project Natal a try.


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Still running Windows 7 RC? Time to upgrade!

Posted by Andru Edwards Categories: Microsoft, PC / Laptop, Software

If you got in early on the whole thing with the RC and never upgraded, you may wanna get cracking with that, because as of yesterday, Windows 7 RC will be bugging you a few times a day leading up to the expiration of the product. Here’s the rundown:

As of February 15, 2010, Windows 7 RC users will receive the following alerts:

  • Windows 7 RC users receive an expiration notification in the task bar one time per day.
  • Windows 7 RC users are presented with the Notification Wizard one time every four hours and then one time every hour.

If that’s not annoying enough, starting March 1 (that’s two weeks from now,) the next phase of the expiration process begins:

  • Windows 7 RC users receive an expiration notification in the task bar one time per day.
  • Windows 7 RC users are presented with the Notification Wizard one time every four hours and then one time every hour.

Yup, your computer will restart every two hours, no matter what you are in the middle of doing. Your work won’t be saved or anything. Of course, we can’t blame Microsoft, since the product has been available at retail for month. Still, there’s one more phase to the expiration process, and that happens on June 1:

  • Windows starts to a black desktop.
  • Windows 7 RC users are presented with a Windows Activation screen. The screen states that the Windows that you are running is not genuine.
  • Computers that are running Windows 7 RC restart every two hours.

So there you have it, a friendly reminder that if you are on Windows 7 RC, it’s time to make some decisions. Things are about to get very annoying, very quickly.

Read More | Microsoft

Windows Phone 7 22-minute definitive walkthrough

Okay, so we’ve hit you with the Windows Phone 7 Series keynote video, which introduced the product. We also gave you the shorter Windows Phone 7 Series demo video, which just gives you a glance at the new hotness from Microsoft. We’ve got one more for you though, as Joe Belfiore, the VP of , as he chats with Microsoft’s Laura Foy on Channel 9. They have a conversation about the new operating system, and it’s a deep 22-minute look at what Microsoft has been cooking up to try and reclaim their mobile crown.

Read More | Channel 9

Windows Phone 7 Series demo video

So, aside from that Windows Phone 7 Series keynote video, we thought you might want a condensed version that will allow you to just take a look at what all this Windows Phone 7 fuss is all about. Microsoft took the liberty of putting together this much shorter demo video to explain. Here you can get a look at all of the design elements and decisions that have gone into Windows Phone 7, which fundamentally set it apart from other mobile operating systems on the market. Here’s a quick rundown:

  • Every Windows Phone 7 device will have three physical buttons on the front: Start, Search, and Back.
  • There’s a focus on productivity, simplicity, music, and gaming. Both Xbox Live and Zune are deeply integrated into Windows Phone 7.
  • People hub: Pulls in live data feeds, bringing you social networking status updates and photos from services like Facebook, Twitter, and Windows Live.
  • Pictures hub: Brings together picture and video assets from your phone, web, and PC, allowing you to view your entire collection.
  • Games hub: Check out your Xbox Live messages, achievements, avatar, and even play some games. Achievements can be earned on the phone.
  • Office hub: Access to Microsoft Office suite, including OneNote and SharePoint Workspace. Also includes new version of Outlook Mobile for email.

This is definitely the biggest step that Microsoft has taken in the mobile phone space, and they do it over three years after Apple announced the original iPhone. The competition is heating up, and we are super-excited about it.


Microsoft Office Mac 2011 includes ribbon interface

Posted by Andru Edwards Categories: Microsoft, Software

Office Mac 2011 ribbon

The Mac Business Unit over at Microsoft is hard at work on Office for Mac 2011, and released some new details about the product, slated to ship in the 2010 holiday season. The biggest change, at least visually, is the inclusion of the ribbon interface, which has been a part of the Windows Office suite since 2007. Microsoft did say that they took great care to make the ribbon on the Mac side of things feel very Mac-like, so that’s a plus, we guess. Another big change/addition here is that Entourage goes away, and gets replaced with Outlook for Mac. You’ll be able to import a PST file and get right to work, and you’ll have Time Machine and Spotlight support as well, which we think is fantastic for those of you who live in Outlook and currently rely on a product like Parallels or Fusion to make that happen.


Original Xbox games lose Xbox Live access on April 15

Posted by Andru Edwards Categories: Microsoft, Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox Live

Xbox Live v1

Check it out, Microsoft just announced that all games made for the original Xbox will no longer be able to access the Xbox Live service as of April 15, 2010, and we couldn’t be happier with the news. No, we don’t hate classics like Halo 2, but the thing is, those titles are many years old, and they’ve been holding back the full potential of Xbox Live for far too long. As an example, it’s no secret that we hate the Xbox Live friend limit, and the major reason it exists is because of Halo 2. With Halo 2, and all the rest of the original Xbox games, being denied access to Live, Microsoft will be able to stop worrying about those original Xbox restrictions - and that means, among other things, that we should finally see that friend limit jacked up, if not removed entirely.

It should be noted that, even if you downloaded original Xbox games on your Xbox 360 using Games on Demand, even those won’t work when you try to connect to Xbox Live. It’s just the nature of the beast, and it’s all in the name of progress.

Read More | Gamerscore Blog

Bleeding Edge TV 328: Project Natal demo from CES 2010

During the opening keynote, Microsoft announced that would be launching in Holiday 2010. We take that to mean that we will be able to pick one up at a retail store sometime before Thanksgiving, giving us a good 11 month wait before we can get our hands on it, unless they have something good set up for this year. During the event, Microsoft also showed off a demo video explaining the concept behind Natal and what it will be able to do for you. We captured it, and have it available for you here. Check it out, and color us excited.

A big thank you to Bing for sponsoring Gear Live’s CES 2010 coverage.


Zune HD Twitter app now available

If you’ve been wanting to use your to get your Twitter on, today is your day. Twitter for Zune HD is a free app, now available in the Zune Marketplace, that lets you interact with your Twitter peoples. You can read Tweets, update your status, and all that good stuff. If you don’t see it, give it a little bit, it was just deployed, which means it may take a few before it shows up.

Now, can we get some Zune HD Facebook love?


BioWare hires an All-Star cast for Mass Effect 2

Mass Effect 2Casting is a very important part of film production, used to attract movie goers into theaters.  Similarly, BioWare is hoping to achieve this same kind of effect by casting big names into their upcoming title, Mass Effect 2. Sure, they are also hired to bless the game’s characters with talent, grace and—in some cases—even mannerisms. Names such as comedic actor Seth Green, Chuck stars Yvonne Strahovski and Adam Baldwin, Star Trek’s Michel Dom, Battlestar Galactica’s Tricia Helfer, Carrie-Anne Mos, and even Martin Sheen are part of this all-star game cast.  If the Mass Effect series never tickled your fancy, these names will surely spike your interest, even if it’s just curiosity.


2009 Holiday Gift Guide: Zune HD

Zune HD

We must say, one device we were excited about this year was the , and as evidenced in our Zune HD review, Microsoft came through with a superb device with a fantastic service behind it to match. In fact, we’ve said it many time that, in our opinion, for someone that truly loves music, Zune is the best deal around. Coupled with the $15 per month Zune Pass (which isn’t a requirement,) you get a top-notch portable media player with an OLED screen, HD Radio, and web browser with the advantage of being able to listen to pretty much any song you can think of at a moments notice.

The Zune HD retails for $289 for the 32GB model, and $219 for the 16GB model - however, Amazon’s got a great sale on the Zune HD that’ll put the 32GB model into your hands for $269 ($21 off,) while the 16GB model will run you $189 ($30 off.)

Read More | Zune on Amazon

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