I have a theory – and it involves Google taking over the (digital) world.
So the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 have finally been eclipsed by newer, higher spec models.
It seems like only yesterday since the Xbox 360 was thrown onto centre stage as the dawn of HD gaming. There was just a gap of 3 and a half years between the original Xbox and the Xbox 360; which at the time caused a bit of an uproar.
It seems that Microsoft and Sony lived up to their promise of delaying any more releases of concoles for longer than previous. The launch of the Xbox 360 in 2005 is now so long ago that YouTube wasnt used to share it with the world because it wouldn’t launch until one month later!
The era of the paid-for OS has just been ended by the above image.
Eighteen years ago, the tech industry’s dominant company made nearly half its revenue selling OS licenses. Now, as Apple just confirmed, the prices of OS licenses are headed towards zilch.
There’s a reason Microsoft’s CEO Steve Ballmer is stepping down.
The tech giant, once quite possibly the most powerful company on the planet, has fallen by the wayside – still relevant, but increasingly less so. The rise of mobile devices, tablets, and smartphones powered by Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS have weighed on the demand for traditional Windows PCs.
Ballmer has made a fair amount of gaffes over the years, but three in particular stand out. Taken in context, they explain exactly why Microsoft lost its operating system monopoly.
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates has admitted that making users press Ctrl, Alt, Delete to log on to PCs was a “mistake”.
Microsoft is to buy Nokia’s mobile phone business for 3.8bn euros (£3.2bn) as it attempts to expand its share of the smartphone market.
Leaked code and now a screenshot have shown the Start button once more occupying a spot on the desktop taskbar of Windows 8. More throwbacks also appear to be in store. Users can also now transfer their desktop wallpaper to the Start screen, and a boot-to-desktop option is also going to be available.
Microsoft hasn’t acknowledged the existence of these Windows 8.1 features, but the rapidly approaching Build conference suggests that we’ll learn more in the near future.
The next-generation console was shown off alongside a new Kinect camera-and-voice sensor and a redesigned gamepad.
The US firm described the voice and gesture-controlled machine as an “all-in-one” system offering games, live TV, movies and music.
The firm’s Entertainment and Devices Division accounted for $9.6bn (£6.3bn) worth of sales in Microsoft’s last financial year.
That only represented about 13% of its total revenue for the period – but one analyst said the importance of this launch should not be underestimated.
“Microsoft is very strong in business software and the enterprise cloud business, but its consumer businesses are facing tremendous challenges: PCs are declining rapidly and Windows Phone handsets have only a fraction of the market shares of rivals,” said Jia Wu from consultants Strategy Analytics.
“Xbox represents Microsoft’s core strategy in the consumer entertainment market, especially after it sold its Mediaroom video distribution business to Ericsson earlier this year.
“This is also the unique asset which Microsoft has that can differentiate itself from Apple, Google and several of the other large tech companies. ”
The new machine sees Microsoft add a Blu-ray drive and Skype functionality to its console, built in feedback into its gamepad triggers, and upgrades its Kinect camera sensor to 1080p high definition resolution.
It said the Kinect would allow the device to better analyse body movements allowing users to more accurately control game characters and navigate other entertainment options.
Microsoft has added the ability to watch live TV with channel selection controlled by voice
“When you’re exercising, it can read your heartbeat,” claimed the firm.
New tools will also allow users to record and edit gameplay so clips can be easily uploaded to the web.
EA Sports was first to announce new titles for the machine revealing Fifa 14, Madden 25, NBA Live 14 and the fighting game UFC would all launch on the platform within the next 12 months using a new games engine called Ignite.
It said the new machine allowed it to carry out four times as many calculations a second as the Xbox 360 and 10 times more “animation depth and detail”.
Microsoft Studios also revealed that Forza Motorsport 5 – the latest in its own racing car franchise – would be available when the console launched.
The division added that it planned to release 15 games within the console’s first year, eight of which would be new franchises.
Another Microsoft unit, 343 Studios, revealed it would release a live-action Halo television series co-developed with movie director Steven Spielberg.
Windows 8 “Metro” users shouldn’t get their hopes up regarding an iTunes app on their operating system, according to a new report. “You shouldn’t expect an iTunes app on Windows 8 any time soon,” said Tami Reller of Microsoft’s Windows division. “ITunes (sic) is in high demand. The welcome mat has been laid out. It’s not for lack of trying.” Windows 8 users can only use iTunes in desktop mode, which means the iTunes experience suffers on Windows tablets. It also means iTunes can’t be used on the Microsoft Surface, which only runs Microsoft desktop software. And as the report notes, “There’s no reason for Apple to help make the Surface a better product.”
Source: [CNN Money]
It’s hardly a secret that the computer-buying public hasn’t fallen head over heels for the Windows 8 start screen. In fact, a whole cottage industry has sprung up around returning Windows to its version-7 glory.
The latest rumors indicate that Microsoft may be moving to squash these apps, by enabling 8.1 to boot directly to the desktop and reinstating the start button.
Code recently dug up in a DLL, buried within the bowels of a leaked version of Windows Blue strongly suggests that this relatively minor revision of the desktop and tablet OS could offer users a way to skip the live tiles and go right to the familiar UI of Windows past.
An entry for “CanSuppressStartScreen” was found by quite a few different forum users in the TwinUI.dll file.
While there’s no hard evidence for a return of the start button just yet, at least one source has hinted that Redmond is considering bringing the little logo orb back. Of course, nothing is certain yet.
There’s no guarantee that either feature will actually make it into the final version of Windows 8.1.