Tag Archives: Microsoft Surface

Microsoft unveils Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 in NYC

LB_8705Before I even get into this announcement, can I just say it’s starting to become a real bummer when companies release these new products at swanky events but don’t do a live stream. I digress.

At a swanky un-watchable event in NYC this morning the Redmond Surface team officially took the wraps off of the new Surface Pro 2. A substantial update to the progressive little Windows 8 tablet released in February of this year. This was a necessary release time table for Microsoft as the OG Surface came out right before a new generation of lower power processors from Intel.

LB_8749The design and dimensions remain largely unchanged from the original. There weren’t many criticisms about the form factor or build quality. One of the few exterior updates is a change to the angle of the kickstand allowing for improved lap usability.

Continue reading Microsoft unveils Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 in NYC

Jon Rettinger from TechnoBuffalo back tracks on his original Surface Pro review in time for Surface Pro 2.

I wrote a longer maudlin article about agenda “journalism” and bias. I had no idea I’d be rewarded so soon with another perfect example of why we journalists need to take a more nuanced approach to reviewing, and at least try to overcome our natural personal bias.

Screenshot (91)Windows 8 has been incredibly divisive in the tech community. Most of the commentary surrounding MS’s new OS has been pretty negative, and there have been a number of criticisms regarding changes to the UI. See, when you change something as well established as Windows, a UI which hasn’t been significantly altered since Windows 95, people are going to freak out. For as much as we like to think we want “new” and “bleeding edge” we don’t weather actual change all that well. Windows 8 was a shock for me, but after a couple days on a touchscreen laptop, I came to not only really like the UI, but also appreciate the improvements to file management and hardware resource management.

That’s the kicker however. I had to take a couple days to get used to it. I didn’t write up reviews and thoughts during that time. I wanted to understand it before I shared my experiences with readers, even though I was hopelessly behind the tsunami of early angry reviews.

Windows 8 is far from “bad”, it’s actually quite good. If Microsoft is guilty of anything here, it’s not making a bad product, but doing a miserable job of communicating with consumers what the changes were going to be.

And now, in time for the Surface 2 launch, we’re seeing people “come to appreciate” the changes to the UI. Now Windows 8 is “elegant”. Those adorable scamps, they just had to “get used to it”, and wouldn’t you know it, it’s not really as bad as their initial reviews would have led MILLIONS of tech enthusiasts and blog readers to believe. It’s almost like you get more honest and accurate information when you don’t put an un-boxing and first impressions video up as your proper review of a product. Interesting.

Sorry to pick on you Jon, but welcome to the club. Glad you finally figured out how to use a product that most of us haven’t had any serious or significant issues with. I hope you enjoy the Surface Pro 2 even more. Maybe spend more than a day with it before you “review” it?

Hit the jump for Mr. Rettinger’s ACTUAL review of the Microsoft Surface and Windows 8.

Continue reading Jon Rettinger from TechnoBuffalo back tracks on his original Surface Pro review in time for Surface Pro 2.

Updated: Nokia selling Devices & Services to Microsoft for 5.4 Billion Euro

And so it begins!

nokia selling to microsoft somegadgetguy devices services smartphonesRumors have been flying since the initial WP7 Lumia 900 was released, that at some point Microsoft would swallow up Nokia. These rumors have intensified in light of Redmond producing their own line of Surface tablets. Driving the Windows 8 bus like Google did with the Nexus line of phones and tablets.

Announced this evening Nokia is selling off their Devices and Services business to Microsoft for 5.44 billion Euro, with Nokia expected to gain 3.2 billion on the sale if it’s approved in 2014 by Nokia shareholders. Nokia will focus on networking infrastructure, developing their HERE platform of navigation solutions, and “Advanced Technologies”. Plus they’ll have a war chest of patents to profit off of.

Microsoft gains an incredible hardware development platform out of this transfer, responsible for the most compelling Windows Phone 8 hardware in the ecosystem. Plus they’ll receive a ten year grace on Nokia’s patent collection while becoming a “strategic licensee” of HERE solutions.

This is a very interesting development. Nokia has been struggling to gain traction with high end premier smartphones, but was finding some success in mid-range and low end hardware. It remains to be seen if Microsoft will be as interested in that segment of the market, and if they’ll continue pushing forward into developing markets with Asha devices and other low end solutions.

More commentary and analysis as this develops!

UPDATES:

Microsoft is already speaking out, making it clear they will be absorbing 32,000 Nokia employees. They will also be continuing support and development of the Asha platform. They’ll be setting up a new data center in Finland to facilitate the transfer, and that at the end of the sale Nokia executives will also transfer over to Microsoft including Mr. Stephen Elop.

Nokia will hold a press conference September 3rd at 11 a.m. EEST – http://press.nokia.com/

The Next Chapter: An Open Letter From Steve Ballmer and Stephen Elop

Ralph de la Vega, president & CEO, AT&T Mobility weighed in on the sale:

“Microsoft’s acquisition of Nokia’s handset business will help strengthen the Windows Phone ecosystem.  It underscores how the future of mobile computing will be software-driven and cloud-based, further taking advantage of high-speed mobile networks to transform how we live and work.”

Hit the jump for Microsoft’s official press release:

Continue reading Updated: Nokia selling Devices & Services to Microsoft for 5.4 Billion Euro