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NEWS HEADLINES FOR: SUNDAY, AUGUST 31, 2014



  What went wrong with Microsoft's August updates?
Time: 22:02 EST/03:02 GMT | News Source: ZDNet | Posted By: Erick Cordero

It's been a long time since Microsoft had a Patch Tuesday this bad. By Friday they were conceding problems with several updates. Not only did they withdraw four updates, but they recommended that users uninstall one of them.

Yesterday they reissued that update, but they also announced that it had its own set of new bugs, one of which can make windows inaccessible or invisible. Three of the four withdrawn updates are still withdrawn and two of those are also subject to the missing window bug. Two other updates, previously uninvolved with the August updates, also have this missing window bug.

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  Could acquiring Cyanogen solve Microsoft's smartphone image problem?
Time: 22:00 EST/03:00 GMT | News Source: ITProportal.com | Posted By: Erick Cordero

I'm not going to retread old ground too much here, but there's no getting away from the fact that Microsoft has something of an image problem when it comes to smartphones. But this could be set to change. The word on the grapevine is that Microsoft - possibly in conjunction with the likes of Yahoo and Amazon - is interested in joining forces with, or even buying, Cyanogen Inc, purveyor of some of the finest Android ROMs known to humanity. It's a branch of Android favoured by handset owners who live and breathe tweaking, who want an OS custom-made to fit them like a well-tailored suit.

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NEWS HEADLINES FOR: WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 20, 2014



  HP Stream revealed: Microsoft's Chromebook killer is a Chromebook clone
Time: 07:48 EST/12:48 GMT | News Source: PC World | Posted By: Andi Stabryla

Microsoft drove out Linux as the platform of choice during the netbook craze, and now the Windows maker is hoping it can do the same to the latest PC upstart, the Chromebook.

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NEWS HEADLINES FOR: TUESDAY, AUGUST 19, 2014



  Microsoft aims to be greener and drops ALEC membership
Time: 22:37 EST/03:37 GMT | News Source: CNET | Posted By: Erick Cordero

Microsoft announced Tuesday that it's cutting ties with the American Legislative Exchange Council, a conservative public-policy lobbying group. It appears this decision was made due to ALEC's lobbing efforts to block the development of renewable energy. Microsoft had previously been a member of ALEC's Communications and Technology Task Force. In a statement, the company said it has halted all participation in this group.

"In 2014 Microsoft decided to no longer participate in the American Legislative Exchange Council's Communications and Technology Task Force, which had been our only previous involvement with ALEC," the company said. "With this decision, we no longer contribute any dues to ALEC...we are no longer members of ALEC and do not provide the organization with financial support of any kind."

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  HTC One M8 Gets Reimagined as a Windows Phone Battleship
Time: 22:33 EST/03:33 GMT | News Source: Mashable | Posted By: Erick Cordero

The HTC One M8 is one of the most well-received Android phones of the year, so when Microsoft approached the company about making a new Windows Phone, it requested the M8 specifically. "The M8, as our flagship, has been doing fantastic," says Jeff Gordon, HTC's online communications manager. "Microsoft came to us a while back and, loving what we did with the HTC One M8 for Android so much, they wanted to do something similar, but running Windows Phone software."

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  Microsoft Develops Ruggedized Touchscreen for Its Devices
Time: 22:31 EST/03:31 GMT | News Source: Softpedia | Posted By: Erick Cordero

A patent that Microsoft has recently filed reveals that the company is working on a ruggedized touchscreen for its devices, which could help bring tougher tablets and smartphones to the market.

As reported by Microsoft-News, Microsoft has already tried to prove that its devices are very durable with several occasions, including Surface product launches when Panos Panay, the man in charge with the Surface division, dropped the tablets during live demoes.

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  Bye bye, Ballmer -- Steve bows out from the board at Microsoft
Time: 22:30 EST/03:30 GMT | News Source: BetaNews | Posted By: Erick Cordero

Having left his post as CEO of Microsoft six months ago, Steve Ballmer today further cut his ties with the company. In a letter to Satya Nadella, he explains that it would be "impractical" to continue to serve on the board of directors. The decision comes after the purchase of the LA Clippers, and Ballmer's letter makes reference to "the start of the NBA season" meaning that his "departure from the board is effective immediately". But Steve is not cutting the umbilical cord entirely; he remains a shareholder and wants to keep his hand in to some extent.

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NEWS HEADLINES FOR: MONDAY, AUGUST 18, 2014



  Microsoft pulls updates, recommends uninstall
Time: 08:19 EST/13:19 GMT | News Source: ZDNet | Posted By: Andi Stabryla

Since Patch Tuesday this past week, Microsoft has been receiving reports of severe system errors caused by one or more of the updates. In response, the company has pulled several updates from download channels and offered advice on how to remove them. In one case, it recommends that users uninstall the update.

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  Microsoft pulls its August Windows update after users report crashes
Time: 08:15 EST/13:15 GMT | News Source: PC World | Posted By: Andi Stabryla

Microsoft has pulled its August Update for Windows after users reported crashes and issues restarting their systems. The company is currently recommending users uninstall the update.

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NEWS HEADLINES FOR: FRIDAY, AUGUST 15, 2014



  Standing Alone, Microsoft Asks Feds for Privacy Legislation
Time: 20:43 EST/01:43 GMT | News Source: Advertising Age | Posted By: Erick Cordero

Microsoft used the Obama administration's request for comment on its big data report to bemoan the U.S. government's surveillance practices while also demanding federal legislation. The company stood alone among its tech brethren in its support of comprehensive federal privacy legislation, as firms including Amazon, Google, and Twitter pushed against a new law.

It's a matter of trust in foreign markets, said the Redmond firm. "Without new privacy legislation, U.S. companies will find themselves increasingly disadvantaged compared to foreign providers that will compete against U.S. companies in their home and other jurisdictions based on more protective privacy regimes," wrote David Heiner, Microsoft's VP and deputy general counsel, legal and corporate affairs, in an Aug. 5 letter to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration.

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  Microsoft Debated Rebranding Internet Explorer
Time: 17:32 EST/22:32 GMT | News Source: TechCrunch | Posted By: Erick Cordero

In a Reddit AMA session, the Internet Explorer team revealed that it has discussed rebranding the browser. The team made its comment in response to a question regarding the negative public image that Internet Explorer earned.

Itís fair to say that Internet Explorer has improved rapidly in recent years. Its brand, however, has lagged. Microsoft has introduced advertising to combat Internet Explorerís image issues.

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  Windows 'Threshold' to go public within weeks
Time: 17:31 EST/22:31 GMT | News Source: ComputerWorld | Posted By: Erick Cordero

Microsoft will issue a preview of "Threshold," the current code name for Windows 8's successor, as soon as next month, according to an online report today. ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley, citing unnamed sources, said that Microsoft will deliver a "technical preview" of Threshold late in September or early in October. Previously, Foley had reported that Microsoft would offer a preview of some kind this fall.

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  Microsoft launches WindUp, its own Snapchat rival
Time: 17:29 EST/22:29 GMT | News Source: ITProportal.com | Posted By: Erick Cordero

Microsoft has launched its own Snapchat rival called WindUp. According to the Windows Phone Store, the app lets users "wind up" their friends as "they race to see what you've posted." The firm also announced that WindUp lets users share "pictures, videos and audio snippets, as well as text."

The software giant will be hoping to capitalise on the recent criticism levelled at Snapchat, particularly with regard to user privacy.

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  Despite Microsoft's takedown, GameOver Zeus botnet rises again
Time: 17:27 EST/22:27 GMT | News Source: BetaNews | Posted By: Erick Cordero

Back in early June Microsoft announced it had taken down the GameOver Zeus botnet, in an effort to protect customers. But, thwarting the internet bad guys is much more difficult in practice than it is in theory. Now security researches claim the phoenix is rising from its ashes.

The folks at Arbor Networks, a security research firm, have been keeping regular tabs, and have noted a sudden and very rapid growth. The rise is actually due to a new variant that seems to be spreading quickly, but has become most prevalent in the US.

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NEWS HEADLINES FOR: THURSDAY, AUGUST 14, 2014



  Microsoft opens new site for Lumia beta tests
Time: 11:42 EST/16:42 GMT | News Source: PC World | Posted By: Andi Stabryla

Microsoft is closing the Nokia Beta Labs site, but users will still be able to test apps under development via the new Lumia Beta Apps site, designed to elicit more feedback and make it easier for users to participate. The new site is powered by UserVoice, which also hosts the Windows Phone Feature Suggestion box page.

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NEWS HEADLINES FOR: TUESDAY, AUGUST 12, 2014



  Microsoft Readies $25 Feature Phone
Time: 00:03 EST/05:03 GMT | News Source: PC Magazine | Posted By: Erick Cordero

In a world of smart, sometimes you've just got to be dumb. That's Microsoft's strategy, highlighted by today's debut of the $25 Nokia 130 feature phone. Whether in the market for your first cell phone or just looking for a backup device while on vacation, the Nokia 130 comes with a 1.8-inch color display and a battery that lasts up to 36 days on standby.

It also boasts a built-in video player, a music player with up to 46 hours playback on a single charge, and everyday essentials like a flashlight, FM radio, and USB charging.

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NEWS HEADLINES FOR: SUNDAY, AUGUST 10, 2014



  Microsoft and iFixit launch Pro Tech Network gadget repair site
Time: 11:20 EST/16:20 GMT | News Source: ITProportal.com | Posted By: Erick Cordero

Microsoft and gadget repair website iFixit have announced the launch of Pro Tech Network, a service designed to teach more people how to fix gadgets. The partnership should help give people the skills they need to fix devices, set up businesses and recycle the valuable materials within electronic products.

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  What to expect on August's Patch Tuesday
Time: 11:17 EST/16:17 GMT | News Source: BetaNews | Posted By: Erick Cordero

As all Windows users will know, the second Tuesday in each month means it's patch time. So that system admins donít get caught out Microsoft has published its advanced notification ahead of August's Patch Tuesday. So what can we expect to see in this round of updates? There are nine bulletins in total for software including Internet Explorer, Windows and Office. Two are rated "critical" as they allow for remote code execution.

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  Living With a Surface Pro 3
Time: 11:15 EST/16:15 GMT | News Source: PC Magazine | Posted By: Erick Cordero

Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 is an interesting hybrid. Microsoft markets the device as "the tablet that can replace your laptop," and in its introduction, the company compared it to a MacBook Air. After living with it as my primary notebook for the past couple of weeks, I'm not completely convinced. It has some nice features and is particularly light given its power as a Windows notebook, but it has some quirks and limitations that may narrow its appeal.

As with previous Surface devices, the Surface Pro 3 is a tablet with a cover that acts as a keyboard, so you can also use it as a desktop. But this version is much more powerful.

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  Microsoft to drop support for older versions of Internet Explorer
Time: 11:12 EST/16:12 GMT | News Source: ZDNet | Posted By: Erick Cordero

Microsoft announced today that it's dropping support, including security updates, for older Internet Explorer versions. The changes, which take effect in 18 months, are meant to push the vast Windows installed base to Internet Explorer 11.

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NEWS HEADLINES FOR: MONDAY, AUGUST 04, 2014



  The pane points of Microsoft's 'one Windows'
Time: 09:21 EST/14:21 GMT | News Source: CNET | Posted By: Robert Stein

Still, what if Microsoft really tried to create one version of Windows that ran on laptops, tablets, and phones using either x86 (Intel or AMD) or ARM (Qualcomm, Nvidia, and so on) processors? In addition to having to reconcile a fair amount under the hood, there would be significant user interface differences between the desktop, tablet, and handset flavors of Windows.

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  Microsoft Enhances Office For iPad
Time: 09:19 EST/14:19 GMT | News Source: InformationWeek | Posted By: Robert Stein

Earlier this month, Microsoft revealed that Office for iPad has been downloaded more than 35 million times since launching four months ago. Though the company did not provide granular financial breakouts, Microsoft also indicated that Office for iPad, which is free but requires an Office 365 subscription for full functionality, contributed to soaring consumer Office 365 revenue over the last quarter. With the new features, Microsoft hopes to continue this momentum.

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  Microsoft Power Query for Excel
Time: 09:19 EST/14:19 GMT | News Source: ActiveWin.com | Posted By: Robert Stein

Microsoft Power Query for Excel is an Excel add-in that enhances the self-service Business Intelligence experience in Excel by simplifying data discovery, access and collaboration.

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  Microsoft Says It Is Suing Samsung Over Smartphone-Patent Contract
Time: 09:14 EST/14:14 GMT | News Source: Wall Street Journal | Posted By: Robert Stein

Under a 2011 deal, Samsung pays Microsoft an undisclosed amount for each Android phone and tablet it sells. Nomura Securities analyst Rick Sherlund last year estimated Microsoft collects roughly $2 billion annually from patent fees on Android devices.

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  How long before Microsoft Windows XP disappears?
Time: 09:14 EST/14:14 GMT | News Source: ZDNet | Posted By: Robert Stein

Netmarketshare's monthly updates on the state of the operating system and browser markets are useful not because the numbers are accurate ó they clearly have a margin of error ó but because they show trends. The most obvious trend at the moment is the decline of Microsoft's ancient Windows XP. This enables us to project how long it will be before Windows XP finally disappears, and you're welcome to have a go in the comments below.

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  NFL and Microsoft Partner Up, Stash Surface Pro 2 Tablets on the Sidelines
Time: 09:13 EST/14:13 GMT | News Source: PC Magazine | Posted By: Robert Stein

Are you ready for some tablets? A new $400 million partnership between the National Football League and Microsoft is giving heavily modified versions of Microsoft's Surface Pro 2 tablets sideline access to this year's games. Coaches and players will be able to use the tablets to transcend the print photographs of yesteryear and receive images about a team's formations for review on the sidelines.

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  What Microsoft Has Done Right (And Wrong) In China With Xbox One
Time: 09:09 EST/14:09 GMT | News Source: Forbes.com | Posted By: Robert Stein

But will Chinaís consumers actually care? Thatís the question observers (myself included) have been asking since whispers of the console ban being lifted first came up. After all, the countryís console restrictions have not been strictly enforced, and gray-market imported consoles (many of which have been hacked to play cheap pirated games) have been easily available in Chinaís electronics markets all along. But despite the proliferation of these less-than-legal consoles, Chinaís gaming market is still dominated by the PC and mobile platforms.

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NEWS HEADLINES FOR: FRIDAY, AUGUST 01, 2014



  Windows 8 Overtakes Windows XP in the United Kingdom
Time: 21:37 EST/02:37 GMT | News Source: Softpedia | Posted By: Erick Cordero

Both Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 have lost users worldwide, but as far as the United Kingdom is concerned, Microsoftís modern operating systems continue their growth. Figures provided by market researcher StatCounter reveal that Windows 8 has grown so much that it managed to finally overtake Windows XP, thus becoming the fourth most popular operating system in the country.

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  BlackBerry opens up BBM to Windows phone users
Time: 21:34 EST/02:34 GMT | News Source: Reuters | Posted By: Erick Cordero

BlackBerry Ltd said on Thursday its popular messaging system BBM, or BlackBerry Messenger, would now be open to those using the Windows phone platform, a move that potentially makes the messaging service more appealing to its enterprise clients.

BlackBerry, which is seeking to reinvent itself as a more software and services driven company as its smartphone market share has dwindled, has been lately touting new BBM features in a bid to make it a more viable messaging tool for clients such as corporations and government agencies that are on the lookout for a secure messaging service.

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  Microsoft files Android patent-royalty suit against Samsung
Time: 21:32 EST/02:32 GMT | News Source: ZDNet | Posted By: Erick Cordero

Microsoft has filed a contract dispute suit against Samsung over what Microsoft claims is a breach of contract by Samsung involving Android patent royalties. Microsoft filed its complaint against Samsung in U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York on August 1 following what Microsoft claims to have been "months" of attempts between the two companies to resolve their dispute.

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