Our top 30 favorite Windows 8 apps as of March 2013
When Windows 8 launched we posted our 18 best of the best app picks from the new Windows Store. Four months later we found the situation hasn’t been improving as quickly as we'd like, but at least a handful of new apps are worthy of your attention. The goal of this column going forward is to let us take on the burden sifting through all the crapware, and finding the precious few apps that are actually worth installing. It’s a thankless job, but somebody has to do it.
Our list of the 18 best launch apps has been updated with an additional 12 new picks, and we intend to keep this article updated going forward. Hit the jump and lay down a bookmark to keep an eye on the ever evolving Windows 8 app scene.
It (literally) pays to know all the crafty ways you can save money without sacrificing your power user cred
As much as we love ogling top-of-the-line PC hardware and fantasizing about price-be-damned rigs, we also love, love, love to stretch a dollar. Does that make us cheapskates? You betcha, if that’s what you want to call someone who doesn’t pay a premium when he or she doesn’t have to. Sign us up! In fact, where computing is concerned, knowing all the various angles to save a buck—a buck that can then be put toward new and better gear, mind you—is as much a part of being a power user as knowing how to flash a BIOS or overclock RAM. If you’re currently spending top dollar on your PC activities, it’s time you got schooled in the fine art of penny-pinching. From free software alternatives, to the best deals on all forms of digital entertainment, to hardware-buying tips, to our blueprint for a $600 PC, this year’s Cheapskate’s Guide can save you thousands of dollars and make you a more savvy consumer in the process.
Note: This article appeared in the October 2012 issue of the magazine.
Federal appeals court sides with GameFly in dispute with U.S. Post Office.
GameFly claims it spends millions of dollars every year adjusting to the U.S. Postal Service's (USPS) handling of its games, unlike Netflix, which allegedly receives the white glove treatment. As the USPS's biggest customer, Netflix's DVDs are processed by hand and with specially designated containers, which could serve a dual-purpose of limiting damage to and loss of DVDs. This was the basis for GameFly taking matters to court.
You might love it, you might hate it, but like it or not Windows 8 hits the streets in less than two weeks on October 26th. As a result the Microsoft marketing machine has kicked into overdrive, and we finally have our first of what is likely to be many television bound ads designed to reel in consumers far and wide to the new platform.
Netflix's recent return to profits must have made CEO Reed Hastings a wee bit giddy; buried deep in the company's new earnings report was a paragraph that teased the possibility of a Netflix-HBO partnership. Will we someday be able to stream Game of Thrones? In a word: no. After the press circulated the speculation yesterday, HBO promptly released a statement squashing the rumor with extreme prejudice.
Netflix is home to the first three seasons of Sons of Anarchy, as well as all eight seasons and 249 episodes of The Andy Griffith Show, named after the main character who would go on to star in Matlock and, unfortunately, just recently passed away (R.I.P. Andy Griffith). The point being, there's a healthy selection of streaming content available on Netflix, and subscribers consumed 1 billion hours worth of it in the month of June.
Internet junkies addicted to Netflix, Instagram, and Pinterest had to find something else to occupy their time over the weekend. All three services, plus some others like BlackBerry Mobile, were down for a period of a time after severe thunder storms rolled through the D.C. area, resulting in significant power outages and knocking out Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud in Virginia.
Netflix honcho Reed Hastings became mighty upset when it was revealed that Comcast's Xfinity TV app for Xbox 360 doesn't count against subscribers' Internet bandwidth cap, and he took to the Net to voice his displeasure with a barrage of Tweets, comments, and diatribes. Apparently, someone listened to his ranting: a new report claims that the Justice Department is quizzing streaming media companies and cable providers alike to determine if the cable companies, who also control Internet access for many, are "acting improperly" to reduce the threat of Netflix and co.
As Netflix tells it, the company's streaming subscribers all around the globe are collectively watching a billion hours of movies and TV shows each month. Serving up that amount of content takes some serious bandwidth, and up to this point, Netflix has been relying on third party content delivery networks (CDNs) to pipe petabytes of data to ISPs like Comcast, Charter, and others, who in turn deliver the video to home PCs and living room HDTVs. Now Netflix has its own CDN to play with.