Posts Tagged ‘microsoft’

Boston Blowout Doesn’t Put a Damper on World Series Ratings

October 24, 2013  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

An unhittable Jon Lester and a bevvy of bearded batsmen may have turned Game 1 of the 2013 World Series into a blowout, but that didn’t seem to shake up Fox’s prime-time ratings. According to Nielsen live-plus-same-day data, Boston’s 8-1 rout of St. Louis averaged 14.4 million viewers and an 8.6 household rating, marking an 18 percent delivery in overall viewers and a 13 percent uptick in the rating. Game 1 also drew a 4.2 rating among adults 18-49, up 17 percent from the year-ago 3.6. Season-to-date, Fox is averaging a 1.9 in the dollar demo. While the initial comparisons to last year’s Fall Classic are encouraging, it’s worth noting that San Francisco’s sweep of Detroit was the least-watched, lowest-rated World Series in history. The four-game set averaged just 12.7 million viewers and a 7.6 household rating.

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Microsoft Yanks Windows RT 8.1 Update

October 20, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Uh-oh — trouble already with Windows RT 8.1. On Saturday, Microsoft temporarily pulled the update from the Windows Store following reports that it was bricking some devices on which it was installed. This just two days after it was officially released. “Microsoft is investigating a situation affecting a limited number of users updating their Windows RT devices to Windows RT 8.1,” the company said in a statement posted to Microsoft Community . “As a result, we have temporarily removed the Windows RT 8.1 update from the Windows Store. We are working to resolve the situation as quickly as possible and apologize for any inconvenience. We will provide updates as they become available.” Microsoft did not say how long Windows RT 8.1 will be unavailable. The company has not yet responded to a request for comment or provided further detail on the situation.

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Microsoft Yanks Windows RT 8.1 Update

October 20, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Uh-oh — trouble already with Windows RT 8.1. On Saturday, Microsoft temporarily pulled the update from the Windows Store following reports that it was bricking some devices on which it was installed. This just two days after it was officially released. “Microsoft is investigating a situation affecting a limited number of users updating their Windows RT devices to Windows RT 8.1,” the company said in a statement posted to Microsoft Community . “As a result, we have temporarily removed the Windows RT 8.1 update from the Windows Store. We are working to resolve the situation as quickly as possible and apologize for any inconvenience. We will provide updates as they become available.” Microsoft did not say how long Windows RT 8.1 will be unavailable. The company has not yet responded to a request for comment or provided further detail on the situation.

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Oracle Beats IBM to Become No. 2 Software Company by Revenue

October 18, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Here’s another interesting change coming in the wake of IBM’s disappointing earnings report on Wednesday : The size of its software business has slipped enough that it has ceased to be the second-largest software company in the world by revenue. That honor now apparently goes to software giant Oracle. Who says so? Oracle, naturally. It issued a press release Thursday night, claiming the second-place spot for itself. Given IBM’s recently announced quarterly results, we would like to take this opportunity to point out that Oracle’s software business has been growing faster than IBM’s software business and now Oracle has moved up to become the number two software company in the world while IBM has slipped to number three

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Acer Unveils Iconia W4 with Windows 8.1, Faster Processor

October 17, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

This morning, Microsoft began rolling out Windows 8.1 , the first major update to its Windows 8 operating system that was released last year. It’s available as an optional free download to current users. But of course, device manufacturers are also using it as opportunity to trot out new hardware. Joining Lenovo , Dell and others, Acer today introduced the Iconia W4, an eight-inch tablet running Windows 8.1. The tablet will start shipping in the U.S. this month and comes in two versions: A 32-gigabyte model for $330 and a 64GB model for $380. At first glance, the tablet doesn’t look all that different from the Iconia W3, which was released just a few months ago. But the company has made a few changes under the hood that hopefully address some of the issues of the Iconia W3 , which my colleague Walt Mossberg called a flawed device. So, what’s different? Well, for starters, the eight-inch, 1,280 by 800 touchscreen now offers wider viewing angles (170 degrees) and features technology that helps improve the screen’s readability in sunlight. The tablet is also equipped with a faster fourth-generation Intel Atom processor. And it’s slightly lighter at 0.91 pound versus 1.1 pounds. The addition of Windows 8.1 also brings a number of enhancements and tweaks aimed at addressing some of the early criticism of Windows 8. This includes the return of the Start button, smarter search and better multitasking.

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The Convergence Tipping Point

October 14, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Image copyright Dusit The media and technology world has reached a tipping point, one captured in some prosaic but infinitely powerful numbers. In the U.S., on a normal weeknight, video streaming on Netflix accounts for almost a third of all Internet traffic entering North American homes . The average U.S. household now has 5.7 Internet-connected devices , and according to ratings agency Nielsen, 41 million Americans watch video on a mobile phone for an average of five hours and 23 minutes per month . New market entrants, from Netflix to Apple, distribute both original and third-party content to a global audience on virtually any connected device via the Internet, and are rewriting the rules of global television distribution and consumption. As a symbol of the speed and scale of over-the-top distribution, Netflix itself just won its first Emmy — the first ever Emmy for Internet-distributed content — for best director of its ground–breaking drama “House of Cards.” To put this in context, HBO began creating original content in the early 1990s and only won its first Emmy in 2001 . It took Netflix just one year to gain 14 Emmy nominations and win its first award . Netflix’s accomplishment highlights the reality that the convergence revolution has finally, and indisputably, arrived. Convergence — the disruptive power of technology to transform the creation, distribution and consumption of media content — is creating game-changing opportunities and threats for almost all established media companies. In television, the incumbent cable, satellite and telecom multi-service operators are being forced to review and often revamp their traditional business models to compete with the OTT distributors who have now achieved material traction. In fact, Netflix now has nearly 30 million domestic subscribers, more than Comcast, the largest cable network.

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The Convergence Tipping Point

October 14, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Image copyright Dusit The media and technology world has reached a tipping point, one captured in some prosaic but infinitely powerful numbers. In the U.S., on a normal weeknight, video streaming on Netflix accounts for almost a third of all Internet traffic entering North American homes . The average U.S. household now has 5.7 Internet-connected devices , and according to ratings agency Nielsen, 41 million Americans watch video on a mobile phone for an average of five hours and 23 minutes per month . New market entrants, from Netflix to Apple, distribute both original and third-party content to a global audience on virtually any connected device via the Internet, and are rewriting the rules of global television distribution and consumption. As a symbol of the speed and scale of over-the-top distribution, Netflix itself just won its first Emmy — the first ever Emmy for Internet-distributed content — for best director of its ground–breaking drama “House of Cards.” To put this in context, HBO began creating original content in the early 1990s and only won its first Emmy in 2001

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Google Is Working on Ingress for iOS, but It Won’t Be Ready Until 2014

October 12, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Google’s mobile augmented-reality game Ingress , which has found a small but passionate audience on Android, is also coming to Apple’s mobile operating system, iOS, but not until next year. Ingress product manager Brandon Badger confirmed the iOS plans in an interview yesterday with AllThingsD . The game launched into closed beta last November, and so far has racked up about one million activations, with tens of thousands of active players every month on Android phones. Badger couldn’t say for sure when in 2014 the iOS version of Ingress would be available. Thomas Hofmann/Google+ Ingress fan art The game pits players around the world against one another as two teams, The Enlightened and The Resistance; players uncover clues about some mysterious new technology (a live story with new clues from Google every week) and claim local landmarks in the real world for their chosen side. Ingress players score points for their teams by exploring meatspace and collaborating with total strangers, both online and off. A cursory Web search turns up an unauthorized iOS port of Ingress, but its creators warn: “Use at your own risk, a banning may result for using a 3rd party app.” An official version of Ingress for iOS makes sense in the context of Google’s broader app strategy. As Walt Mossberg wrote earlier this year, “Google, Microsoft and Amazon are primarily software and services companies [... and] the Apple market is too big to ignore, even for its direct competitors.” Hence all the snazzy and full-featured iOS versions of the Gmail, SmartGlass and Kindle apps. Badger added that Niantic Labs, the autonomous startup within Google that is responsible for both Ingress and Field Trip , wants to use what it has learned about location-based gaming from Ingress to build out a platform for outside developers of location-based games. Currently, Niantic’s devs are the only ones with access to a special version of Google’s local data, which allows them, for example, to feed Ingress players a custom map of local landmarks that looks more like something out of “The Matrix” than Google Maps. A new “season” of the Ingress story, called 13Magnus begins today, with live-play events for the game’s faithful planned for 38 cities around the world over the next nine weeks. In the U.S., the season kicks off today in San Jose and Los Angeles, and finishes in San Francisco on Dec. 14.

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Microsoft Denies Report of Ad Data Being Harvested From Xbox One’s Kinect

October 7, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Asa Mathat / AllThingsD.com It’s still a month and a half away from launch , but Microsoft’s next-gen gaming console kicked up another messaging controversy over the weekend when Advertising Age reported that the Kinect camera, mandatorily bundled with the system, could be used to harvest marketing data about users. But Microsoft is flat-out denying that report, saying it was based on a misinterpretation of marketing and strategy VP Yusuf Mehdi’s onstage presentation at a marketing conference in Phoenix. The reporter did not interview Mehdi to confirm his interpretation of the speech, a company spokesperson said. The original report quoted Mehdi (pictured, top) as saying Microsoft’s strategy with the new console is to bridge offline and online worlds: “It’s early days, but we’re starting to put that together in more of a unifying way, and hopefully at some point we can start to offer that to advertisers broadly.” However, the company said that line was in reference to content that can carry over from the Xbox One into platforms like the second-screen companion , SmartGlass. “For example, just as Xbox SmartGlass allows companion mobile experiences that are synchronous to what is being watched on TV, advertisers could create new experiences unifying their content across devices,” the company said in an emailed statement.

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Nathan Myhrvold’s Intellectual Ventures Said to Be Hunting for New Capital

October 5, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Intellectual Ventures founder Nathan Myhrvold It appears that Intellectual Ventures, the controversial company founded on the idea that it could create a capital marketplace in patents, is having trouble raising money for a new fund. According to a Reuters report Thursday which cites sources familiar with the matter, I.V. has slowed down its purchasing of patents and is on the hunt for new sources of funding. Having raised about $6 billion since its founding in 2000, it has gathered up a portfolio of some 70,000 patents. The story said the firm is on the hunt for another $3 billion. One problem: Early investors, including Microsoft and Google, are taking a pass. Google in particular has been on the business end of I.V.-spawned lawsuits against its Motorola Mobility unit. Most of those cases began before Google owned Motorola, but I.V. sued again in June. As it happens, I.V. had a busy summer. It raised its profile in Washington, D.C., boosting its spending on lobbyists against the backdrop of an increase in White House interest in crafting policies meant to regulate patent-trading firms. And last month it struck a licensing deal with Nest , the smart thermostat company. Founder Nathan Myhrvold, a former Microsoft CTO, likes to describe his business model as “invention capital.” Others, namely Google, have labeled I.V. a “patent troll.” And as Myhrvold readily acknowledged in an unapologetic interview with Walt Mossberg at the tenth D: All Things Digital conference in 2012, he’s never going to be the popular kid in the class. Here’s the video of that interview, which in light of I.V.’s reported troubles, bears watching again. [ See post to watch video ]

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