Windows http://www.maximumpc.com/taxonomy/term/189/ en Microsoft Flips Kill Switch on EU Browser Ballot http://www.maximumpc.com/microsoft_flips_kill_switch_eu_browser_ballot_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/microsoft_sign_7.jpg" alt="Microsoft Sign" title="Microsoft Sign" width="228" height="138" style="float: right;" />Has it been five years already?</h3> <p>Technology news can make you feel old. To wit, it may not seem like <strong>five years has passed since Microsoft agreed to a five-year deal in which Windows users in Europe would be offered a choice of browser upon first boot</strong>, but that commitment is not behind the Redmond outfit. Having lived up to its end of the deal, Microsoft has yanked the so-called browser ballot, which may not have done much anyway.</p> <p>The browser ballot came about following an investigation by the EU's Competition Commission into Microsoft's bundling of Internet Explorer with Windows. Microsoft agreed to show users in Europe a browser screen with download links to other browsers for a period of five years, though the company still faced a fine -- a technical oversight in Service Pack 1 for Windows 7 inadvertently removed the ballot screen in 2013, resulting in a $732 million penalty for Microsoft.</p> <p>While it's been costly for Microsoft, there's not much evidence that the ballot screen did much good for other browsers. As pointed out by <a href="http://www.computerworld.com/article/2860886/microsoft-nixes-eu-browser-ballot-screen.html" target="_blank"><em>ComputerWorld</em></a>, Opera lost 27 percent of its global usage share between December 2009 and November 2014, based on stats by StatCounter. Firefox fell even harder, dropping 42 percent of its share. There's a bit of irony there, as Opera Software and Mozilla were most critical of what they perceived as Microsoft's unfair advantage in the browser wars.</p> <p>What does the EU think? In an email to <em>ComputerWorld</em>, the EU called the browser ballot a "successful remedy," noting that it saw 795 million views resulting in 165 million browser installs.</p> <p>Image Source: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/scobleizer/2264764769" target="_blank">Flickr (Robert Scoble)</a></p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/microsoft_flips_kill_switch_eu_browser_ballot_2014#comments browser ballot eu european commission european union microsoft Software Windows News Thu, 18 Dec 2014 18:55:05 +0000 Paul Lilly 29116 at http://www.maximumpc.com Xbox App Pops Up in Leaked Windows 10 Build http://www.maximumpc.com/xbox_app_pops_leaked_windows_10_build_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/xbox_logo.jpg" alt="Xbox Logo" title="Xbox Logo" width="228" height="228" style="float: right;" />Yes console games, we can all get along</h3> <p>There are several interesting things taking place in the <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/leaked_windows_10_build_9901_packs_slew_ui_changes543">leaked Windows 10 build</a>, the one that Microsoft is apparently <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/microsoft_turns_new_leaf_isnt_bothered_windows_10_leaks_2014">super calm</a> about making the rounds. One that we wanted to touch a bit more on is a <strong>new Xbox app</strong>. This is something that Microsoft is still working on, as the app clearly states when it's fired up, but the Redmond outfit is so excited about it that it wanted to give early users a sneak peek.</p> <p>The folks over at <a href="http://www.theverge.com/2014/12/14/7389563/windows-10-xbox-app-cortana-features" target="_blank"><em>The Verge</em></a> have been playing around with Xbox app. They say it appears to act as a gateway into the entire Xbox ecosystem -- you'll have access to achievements, your friends list, activity feeds, and the Store. And since it's an extremely early version, there's speculation that the final release might include SmartGlass integration as well.</p> <p>As our sister site <a href="http://www.pcgamer.com/windows-10-leaked-build-reveals-new-xbox-app/" target="_blank"><em>PC Gamer</em> points out</a>, there's a chance this could be what Microsoft's Phil Spencer was referring to a week ago when he said it was "time for us to talk about gaming on Windows." We're crossing our fingers that Spencer was hinting at something more than an Xbox app -- as cool as that is, accessing our Xbox achievements on our Windows rigs isn't exactly game changing.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/xbox_app_pops_leaked_windows_10_build_2014#comments app Gaming microsoft operating system OS Software Windows windows 10 xbox News Mon, 15 Dec 2014 19:30:13 +0000 Paul Lilly 29095 at http://www.maximumpc.com Microsoft Keeps Mum on New Plans to Monetize Windows, Will Reveal Strategy in 2015 http://www.maximumpc.com/microsoft_keeps_mum_new_plans_monetize_windows_will_reveal_strategy_2015 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/windows_10_systems.jpg" alt="Windows 10 Systems" title="Windows 10 Systems" width="228" height="174" style="float: right;" />Along with a new OS release comes a new strategy to make money</h3> <p>Things are going to be different with Windows 10 in a number of ways, and all presumably for the better (or so we're hoping and knocking on wood with Hulk-like force). It's not just the features and design that Microsoft is altering, however, but also its business model. <strong>Microsoft COO Kevin Turner spoke at a Credit Suisse technology investment conference recently, revealing that his company is looking at new ways of making money off of Windows</strong>.</p> <p>One of the strategies has already been put in motion, and that's the removal of royalties on devices with screens that are 9 inches or smaller. The intention there was to fight back against the Chromebook push and reinvigorate the low-end laptop market with Windows machines. As a result, it's now possible to find plenty of Windows laptops in the range of $200, and a few that even go for half that much.</p> <p>However, giving Windows away for free isn't something we should get used to, as Microsoft has no plans of making Windows 10 a loss leader. <a href="http://hexus.net/tech/news/software/78149-microsoft-unveil-new-plans-monetise-windows-early-2015/" target="_blank">According to <em>Hexus.net</em></a>, Turner revealed that Microsoft will instead make up some of the difference in revenue by looking at other ways to make money from Windows, though he didn't say exactly what they would be.</p> <p>"We've got to monetize it differently. And there are services involved," Turner said. "There are additional opportunities for us to bring additional services to the product and do it in a creative way. And through the course of the summer and spring we'll be announcing what that business model looks like."</p> <p>Turner added that Microsoft's first 39 years was highlighted by "one of the greatest business models of all time built around" Windows, though said that's in the past. Looking to the future, he sees opportunities in "becoming a cloud OS, a devices operating system, having first party hardware light up those experiences," while also providing a dual-user experience (work and play, basically).</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/microsoft_keeps_mum_new_plans_monetize_windows_will_reveal_strategy_2015#comments kevin turner microsoft operating system OS Software Windows windows 10 News Tue, 09 Dec 2014 18:40:43 +0000 Paul Lilly 29062 at http://www.maximumpc.com Microsoft Kicks Off '12 Days of Deals' with $79 Toshiba Encore Mini Tablet http://www.maximumpc.com/microsoft_kicks_12_days_deals_79_toshiba_encore_mini_tablet_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/toshiba_encore_mini.jpg" alt="Toshiba Encore Mini" title="Toshiba Encore Mini" width="228" height="143" style="float: right;" />Save on a new item every day until December 19th</h3> <p>Black Friday? Check. Cyber Monday? Check. Ongoing savings, Steam Weeklong Deals, and GOG DRM-Free Big Winter Sale? Check, check, and check again! Phew, talk about a busy holiday shopping season, and it doesn't feel like it's coming to a close anytime soon. Instead, more and more promotions keep popping up, like <strong>Microsoft's 12 Days of Deals starting with a Toshiba Encore Mini tablet for $79</strong>, marked down from $119.</p> <p>It's the first of a dozen deals over as many days, and to sweeten the pot, Microsoft is throwing in a 16GB microSD card ($20 value) with the package. The tablet already has 16GB of built-in storage, so the microSD card brings the total storage space to 32GB, minus what's used for Windows and Office 365 Personal, the latter of which you get free for a year (a $70 value).</p> <p>Toshiba's Encore Mini sports a 7-inch HD touchscreen display powered by an Intel Atom Z3735G processor and 2GB of RAM. Other features include a micro USB 2.0 port, microphone/headphone combo port, 802.11n Wi-Fi (Miracast enabled), front-facing and rear-facing cameras, and the aforementioned software.</p> <p>Tomorrow's deal will feature an unlocked BLU Win HD phone for $129, marked down from $179. Beyond that, you'll have to keep checking the <a href="http://www.microsoftstore.com/store/msusa/en_US/cat/12-days-of-deals/categoryID.67001200?Icid=Homepage_Header_Tab3_12Days_120414" target="_blank">12 Days of Deals website</a> for the latest offer.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/microsoft_kicks_12_days_deals_79_toshiba_encore_mini_tablet_2014#comments 12 days of deals encore mini Hardware microsoft mobile slate tablet toshiba Windows News Mon, 08 Dec 2014 19:28:14 +0000 Paul Lilly 29053 at http://www.maximumpc.com Capcom Lets Slip Street Fighter V is Exclusive to Windows PC and PlayStation 4 http://www.maximumpc.com/capcom_lets_slip_street_fighter_v_exclusive_windows_pc_and_playstation_4_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/street_fighter_v.jpg" alt="Street Fighter V" title="Street Fighter V" width="228" height="154" style="float: right;" />PC gamers (and PS4 players) get first dibs on Street Fighter V</h3> <p>Being a PC gamer doesn't come without the occasional indignity, likely crappy console ports and being left out of the equation altogether. Thankfully it's not always like that, and it certainly won't be that way when Street Fighter V comes out, or so it seems. How do we know? Capcom posted a game trailer revealing that <strong>Street Fighter V will launch exclusively to Windows PCs and the PlayStation 4</strong>.</p> <p>Apparently we weren't supposed to be privy to that information just yet, as Capcom yanked the trailer offline. However, this is the Internet we're talking about, a hostile place for secrets without a true undo button. As such, you can still view the trailer, just not at its original location. Some of the mirror locations have been taken down due to copyright claims, though at the time of this writing, it's still available for viewing at <a href="http://www.polygon.com/2014/12/5/7338907/street-fighter-5-is-a-playstation-4-windows-pc-exclusive" target="_blank"><em>Polygon</em></a>.</p> <p>The exclusive trailer was first <a href="http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=945721" target="_blank">picked up</a> by a forum member at <em>NeoGAF</em>. The question is, what does exclusive mean (to Capcom)? It's not clear if Street Fighter V will only be released to PC and PS4, or if the publisher is just referring to an initial launch.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/capcom_lets_slip_street_fighter_v_exclusive_windows_pc_and_playstation_4_2014#comments capcom games pc playstation 4 ps4 Software street fighter V Windows News Fri, 05 Dec 2014 17:02:20 +0000 Paul Lilly 29041 at http://www.maximumpc.com Windows 10 Will Feature FLAC and MKV Support http://www.maximumpc.com/windows_10_will_feature_flac_and_mkv_support_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/windows_logo.jpg" alt="Windows Logo" title="Windows Logo" width="200" height="200" style="float: right;" />Third-party programs no longer needed</h3> <p>When it comes to Microsoft's upcoming successor to Windows 8/8.1, the company seems to be hitting the right notes in many ways. So the latest bit of news should excite audiophiles everywhere now that it has been revealed that&nbsp;<strong>Windows 10 is going to support FLAC</strong>&nbsp;straight out of the box, according to Gabriel Aul who is the head of Microsoft’s Operating Systems Group’s Data and Fundamentals Team.&nbsp;</p> <p>“Keen eyed #WindowsInsiders will notice something cool about this pic,” said Aul in a <a title="Aul FLAC tweet" href="https://twitter.com/GabeAul/status/537376407291056128/photo/1" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">tweet</span></a> that was accompanied by a pitcure. “Something to look forward to in the new year!” A brief glance at the picture was all it took to realize that Microsft’s Windows Media Player was playing FLAC files.&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u166440/windows_10_flac.jpg" alt="Windows 10 FLAC" title="Windows 10 FLAC" width="600" height="356" /></p> <p>FLAC, which stands for Free Lossless Audio Codec, is an audio format for those who prefer to listen to high-quality music. Its algorithm is able to reduce digital audio by about 50-60 percent of its original size and decompress into an identical copy of the original audio data. The drawback of FLAC, however, is the size of the files when compared to the more popular MP3 format.&nbsp;</p> <p>Currently, the only way to listen to FLAC files is to download a third-party program, such as VLC Media Player. FLAC joins MKV (Matrsoka Video), another format that hasn't been supported by WMP, which will also run on Windows 10 which and was confirmed by Aul on his Twitter account <a title="Aul MKV tweet" href="https://twitter.com/GabeAul/status/528387652047761408" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">last month</span></a>.&nbsp;</p> <p>What do you think about the upcoming OS finally supporting both FLAC and MKV files? Will you start using WMP to play these files or continue to rely on your third-party program of choice?</p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="https://plus.google.com/+SeanKnightD?rel=author" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/SeanDKnight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="https://www.facebook.com/seandknight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/windows_10_will_feature_flac_and_mkv_support_2014#comments FLAC Gabriel Aul microsoft MKV Windows Windows windows 10 Windows Media Player News Sat, 29 Nov 2014 00:16:30 +0000 Sean D Knight 29007 at http://www.maximumpc.com Asus X205TA Windows Laptop Pops Up Online Starting at $179 http://www.maximumpc.com/asus_x205ta_windows_laptop_pops_online_starting_179 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/asus_x205ta.jpg" alt="Asus X205TA" title="Asus X205TA" width="228" height="153" style="float: right;" />The return of the netbook?</h3> <p>We're beginning to notice more low-cost Windows laptops in the $200 range, though one thing we haven't seen is a manufacturer revive the netbook nomenclature. Fair enough, since these machines are more powerful than yesterday's netbooks, and generally cheaper too. The <strong>least expensive so far is the Asus X205TA Signature Edition, a $199 laptop that's been reduced to $179 in the Microsoft Store</strong>.</p> <p>The Asus X205TA sports an 11.6-inch HD (1366x768) display powered by an Intel Atom Z3735F quad-core processor (1.33GHz to 1.83GHZ, 2MB L2 cache) and 2GB of DDR3L-1333 memory. It also features 32GB of eMMC storage, a microSD card slot, 480p webcam, 802.11n Wi-Fi (Miracast enabled), Bluetooth, a pair of USB 2.0 ports, micro HDMI output, headphone/microphone combo port, 2-cell battery good for up to 12 hours of run time, and Windows 8.1 with Bing (32-bit).</p> <p>Asus calls it an ultraportable companion, a seemingly accurate description considering it measures 0.68 inches by 7.61 inches by 11.25 inches and weighs just 2.11 pounds.</p> <p>It's available now at the <a href="http://www.microsoftstore.com/store/msusa/en_US/pdp/ASUS-X205TA-UH01-BK-Signature-Edition-Laptop/productID.308794000" target="_blank">Microsoft Store</a>, and also on Amazon, <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00OBA5AZU/" target="_blank">albeit for $199</a>.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/asus_x205ta_windows_laptop_pops_online_starting_179#comments asus Hardware laptop mobile notebook OEM rigs Windows x205ta News Wed, 12 Nov 2014 20:17:32 +0000 Paul Lilly 28897 at http://www.maximumpc.com Microsoft's Patch Tuesday Update Squashes 19-Year-Old Windows Bug http://www.maximumpc.com/microsofts_patch_tuesday_update_squashes_19-year-old_windows_bug_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/windows_95_setup.jpg" alt="Windows 95 Setup" title="Windows 95 Setup" width="228" height="152" style="float: right;" />A critical bug went unaddressed since Windows 95</h3> <p>The second Tuesday of every month is known as Patch Tuesday for Windows users, and if you didn't install yesterday's batch of security updates, there's a good reason why you might want to put it on your short-term list of things to do. <strong>One of the patches in yesterday's Tuesday roundup addresses a critical bug in Windows that went unnoticed for 19 years</strong> and is present in every version of the OS from Windows 95 on up.</p> <p>A security researcher for IBM discovered the bug, which an attacker use can use for drive-by attacks to remotely run code and take over a victim's PC. The vulnerability also allows a remote attacker to sidestep the Enhanced Protected Mode (EPM) sandbox in Internet Explorer 11, as well as the Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) anti-exploitation tool Microsoft offers for free, <a href="http://securityintelligence.com/ibm-x-force-researcher-finds-significant-vulnerability-in-microsoft-windows/#.VGOKwfnF_4Z" target="_blank">the researcher says</a>.</p> <p>The bug affects Windows Server platforms as well. It's been compared to Heartbleed in potential severity, and though it doesn't appear it's been exploited in the wild, nor does a proof-of-concept exist, now that it's been made public, there could be attacks on unpatched systems.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/microsofts_patch_tuesday_update_squashes_19-year-old_windows_bug_2014#comments microsoft ms14-064 Patch Tuesday Security vulnerability Windows News Wed, 12 Nov 2014 16:51:40 +0000 Paul Lilly 28894 at http://www.maximumpc.com China Plans to Replace All Windows Machines with Linux Rigs by 2020 http://www.maximumpc.com/china_plans_replace_all_windows_machines_linux_rigs_2020 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/linux_penguin_0.jpg" alt="Linux Penguin" title="Linux Penguin" width="228" height="240" style="float: right;" />It's a "de-Windowsifying movement"</h3> <p>Most of the mainstream angst directed towards Windows 8 and 8.1 in the U.S. has to do with the Modern UI and little things like the lack of a Start menu. But while hopes are high that Windows 10 will be the OS everyone wanted Windows 8 to be, China's concerns run much deeper than the UI. As such, <strong>China reportedly plans to undergo a "de-Windowsifying" process in which its systems will be move to a state-endorsed version of Linux by 2020</strong>.</p> <p>"We call this a de-Windowsifying movement," Computer Science Professor Ni Guangnan of the Chinese Academy of Engineering <a href="http://www.ecns.cn/business/2014/10-23/139690.shtml" target="_blank">told <em>Ecns.cn</em></a>.</p> <p>The 75-year-old professor went on to discuss his plans to bring together China's homegrown OS developers in an alliance to replace Windows within the next few years.</p> <p>"Now is the most vulnerable time for Microsoft in China, and the best time for homegrown software companies to beat it," Ni added.</p> <p>So far the effort has the support of 15 OS developers. None of them can take on Windows by going at it alone, but China's hope is that by pooling their talent and resources, they can rid the country's reliance on Microsoft's OS. It's also worth noting that China recently banned the use of Windows 8 on all government PCs due to spying concerns.</p> <p>"At the end of the day, I expect the 15 operating systems to merge into one or two operating systems, while the rest of the developers can shift into providing other relevant services," Ni said.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/china_plans_replace_all_windows_machines_linux_rigs_2020#comments china linux operating system OS Software Windows windows 8 News Fri, 31 Oct 2014 15:43:26 +0000 Paul Lilly 28823 at http://www.maximumpc.com Lenovo's 13-inch Yoga Tablet 2 with Windows Knows How to Hang http://www.maximumpc.com/lenovos_13-inch_yoga_tablet_2_windows_knows_how_hang_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/lenovo_yoga_tablet_2.jpg" alt="Lenovo Yoga Tablet 2 with Windows" title="Lenovo Yoga Tablet 2 with Windows" width="228" height="159" style="float: right;" />Latest Yoga tablet has a new hang mode</h3> <p>Is there a more appropriate name for a line of tablet PCs than Yoga? While you ponder that one, take note that <strong>Lenovo just expanded its Yoga Tablet 2 family with the new Yoga 13-inch Tablet 2 with Windows</strong>. Joining its 8-inch and 10-inch Windows-based brethren, Lenovo's latest slate is not only the largest, but also the most flexible in that it boasts a new mode -- Hang.</p> <p>Yes, you can hang the Yoga 13-inch Tablet 2 with Windows on a wall if you really want to. And like the other models, it also supports Hold, Stand, and Tilt modes.</p> <p>Lenovo's latest slate measures 12.8 inches by 8.7 inches by 0.2-0.6 inches (324.1 millimeters by 221 millimeters by 3.7-14 millimeters) and weighs 2.27 pounds. The 13.3-inch IPS display sports a Quad HD 2560x1440 resolution powered by an Intel Atom Z3745 quad-core processor clocked at up to 1.86GHz with 2MB of cache, 4GB of LP DDR3 RAM and Intel HD graphics.</p> <p>The system also features 64GB of internal storage, a microSD card slot, micro HDMI port, micro USB port, 3.5mm audio jack, 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, two large chamber speaker, 1.6MP HD front-facing camera, and Windows 8.1</p> <p>Lenovo's 13-inch Yoga Tablet 2 with Windows will be available beginnin in November for $700 MSRP.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/lenovos_13-inch_yoga_tablet_2_windows_knows_how_hang_2014#comments Hardware lenovo mobile OEM rigs slate tablet Windows yoga tablet 2 News Thu, 30 Oct 2014 03:21:02 +0000 Paul Lilly 28809 at http://www.maximumpc.com PC Vendors Can’t Force Italians to Pay ‘Microsoft Tax’ on New PCs http://www.maximumpc.com/pc_vendors_can%E2%80%99t_force_italians_pay_%E2%80%98microsoft_tax%E2%80%99_new_pcs234 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="http://dl.maximumpc.com/galleries/top50windows/MS_Gavel.png" alt="'Microsoft Tax' Abolished in Italy" title="Microsoft Tax Abolished " width="228" height="132" style="float: right;" /></h3> <h3>Landmark verdict by Italian Supreme Court concludes 9-year-old case</h3> <p>In late 2005, an Italian citizen named Marco Pieraccioli, who had just bought a Windows laptop from Hewlett-Packard, <strong>took the then world’s leading PC vendor to court after the latter refused to issue a refund for the accompanying Windows XP Home Edition license</strong> that he had no need of. Almost nine years later, Pieraccioli has finally secured the €140.00 refund (plus interest and costs) that he was after.</p> <p>In its <a href="http://www.italgiure.giustizia.it/xway/application/nif/clean/hc.dll?verbo=attach&amp;db=snciv&amp;id=./20140912/snciv@s30@a2014@n19161@tS.clean.pdf" target="_blank">judgement</a>, hailed as “a victory for free software over the ‘Microsoft tax’” by Pieraccioli’s lawyer, the apex court has lambasted this practice among PC vendors of refusing to refund the price of a pre-installed operating system to those who wish to return such software, saying that it is at odds with “the rules that protect the freedom of choice of the consumer, and the freedom of competition among firms..."</p> <p>As far as the first freedom adverted to in the above paragraph is concerned, this current ruling, says Marco Ciurcina, a lawyer who helped Pieraccioli with his case, follows the precedent set by French courts, but the bit about this practice violating freedom of competition is “interesting considering that, to date, the antitrust authorities have done little against business practices that ‘force’ the joint sale of hardware and proprietary software.”&nbsp; Perhaps equally interesting is the fact that this judgement isn’t restricted to Windows PCs but applies to any computer that ships with a pre-installed OS.</p> <p>Here’s how Ciurcina summed up the rationale behind the ruling in a recent blog post for the <a href="https://fsf.org/blogs/community/a-victory-for-free-software-over-the-microsoft-tax" target="_blank">Free Software Foundation</a>: “The focus of the Court's reasoning is that the sale of a PC with software preinstalled is not like the sale of a car with its components (the 4 wheels, the engine, etc.) that therefore are sold jointly. Buying a computer with preinstalled software, the user is required to conclude two different contracts: the first, when he buys the computer; the second, when he turns on the computer for the first time and he is required to accept or not the license terms of the preinstalled software. Therefore, if the user does not accept the software license, he has the right to keep the computer and install free software without having to pay the ‘Microsoft tax.’”</p> <p><em>Follow Pulkit on <a href="https://plus.google.com/107395408525066230351?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/pc_vendors_can%E2%80%99t_force_italians_pay_%E2%80%98microsoft_tax%E2%80%99_new_pcs234#comments free software hp italy lawsuit legal microsoft tax OEM Windows News Mon, 27 Oct 2014 02:05:14 +0000 Pulkit Chandna 28780 at http://www.maximumpc.com Lenovo Refreshes Yoga Line, Unveils Yoga Tablet 2 and Yoga 3 Pro Laptop http://www.maximumpc.com/lenovo_refreshes_yoga_line_unveils_yoga_tablet_2_and_yoga_3_pro_laptop_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/lenovo_yoga_3_pro.jpg" alt="Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro" title="Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro" width="228" height="149" style="float: right;" />Hey look, it's Ashton Kutcher</h3> <p>Why's Ashton Kutcher hanging around Lenovo, you ask? The short answer, quite simply, is marketing. But the longer answer is that he joined Lenovo as a product engineer a year ago and purportedly helped develop the <strong>Yoga Tablet 2 Pro, one of three new products Lenovo just rolled out. The other two are the non-pro version of the Yoga Tablet and the Yoga 3 Pro</strong>, an ultraslim convertible.</p> <p>Both the <a href="http://news.lenovo.com/article_display.cfm?article_id=1843" target="_blank">Yoga Tablet 2</a> and <a href="http://news.lenovo.com/article_display.cfm?article_id=1844" target="_blank">Yoga Tablet 2 Pro</a> can run either Windows or Android. The Pro model sports a 13.3-inch QHD display with a 2560x1440 resolution powered by a 4th generation Intel Atom Z3745 processor (Bay Trail) and 2GB of RAM. It has a built-in pico projector, 8-megapixel rear camera, 1.6-megapixel front camera, 32GB of internal storage, a microSD card slot, optional 4G, 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, 8W sound system with a subwoofer, and up to 15 hours of battery life.</p> <p><iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/QyZpIVFlon8" width="620" height="349" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p>Lenovo plans to make the Tablet 2 Pro available this month starting at $499.</p> <p>As for the non-Pro models, they're available in 8-inch and 10.1-inch form factors with choice of Windows 8.1 or Android 4.4 KitKat. Both feature a 1920x1200 IPS display powered by the same Atom Z3745 processor and 2GB of RAM. Other specs are similar to the Pro except that onboard storage is cut in half to 16GB.</p> <p>The smaller version will start at $250 and the larger model at $300 later this month.</p> <p>Finally, the <a href="http://news.lenovo.com/article_display.cfm?article_id=1842" target="_blank">Yoga 3 Pro</a> is a thin and light convertible with a new watchband hinge design. It boasts a 13.3-inch QHD+ touchscreen display with a 3200x1800 resolution powered by an Intel Core M-70 processor (Broadwell), 8GB of RAM, up to 512GB of storage, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, two USB 3.0 ports, micro HDMI, microSD card slot, and various other odds and ends.</p> <p>The Yoga 3 Pro will ship at the end of October starting at $1,350.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/lenovo_refreshes_yoga_line_unveils_yoga_tablet_2_and_yoga_3_pro_laptop_2014#comments android ashton kutcher Hardware laptop lenovo mobile notebook OEM rigs Windows yoga 3 pro yoga tablet 2 News Fri, 10 Oct 2014 12:32:58 +0000 Paul Lilly 28696 at http://www.maximumpc.com Windows 8 Market Share Headed Back Towards Single Digits http://www.maximumpc.com/windows_8_market_share_headed_back_towards_single_digits_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/windows_8_1.jpg" alt="Windows 8" title="Windows 8" width="228" height="222" style="float: right;" />Windows 10 will go up against Windows 7, not Windows 8/8.1</h3> <p>Now that Microsoft has <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/microsoft_tosses_windows_9_recycle_bin_announces_windows_10_instead_2014">unveiled Windows 10</a> and is even <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/try_out_microsofts_windows_10_technical_preview_today_2014" target="_blank">serving up a Technical Preview</a> for curious folks to check out, Windows 8 is already feeling like old news. Some felt that way even before Microsoft's announcement, which might explain why <strong>Windows 8 lost market share in the desktop OS market in the month of September</strong>. At this rate, it won't be long before Windows 8's share drops back into single digits.</p> <p>According to <a href="http://www.netmarketshare.com/" target="_blank"><em>Net Applications</em></a>, Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 fell to a combined 12.26 percent of the desktop OS market by the end of September, down more than a percentage point from 13.37 percent at the end of August, which is the highest it's ever been.</p> <p>It will be interesting to see how things shake out from there. On one hand, it's possible that Windows 8/8.1 peaked in August and will never see a higher share of the market now that Windows 10 is on the horizon. However, it's also possible that Windows 8/8.1 will see a small surge as companies continue to migrate away from Windows XP, though the numbers don't yet support that notion.</p> <p>Since having support pulled back in April (except for firms who pay for extended support), Windows XP has dropped less than 3 percentage points, going from 26.29 percent at the end of April to 23.87 percent at the end of September, a decline of 2.42 percent. During that same time, Windows 8/8.1 has gone from 12.24 percent to 12.26 percent, or virtually nowhere.</p> <p>Windows 7 is the one that's benefiting from XP's demise -- it's share of the market has gone from 49.27 percent at the end of April to 52.71 percent at the end of September, a bump of 3.44 percent. Barring an extreme turn of events, Windows 10 will find itself competing with Windows 7 instead of Windows 8/81.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/windows_8_market_share_headed_back_towards_single_digits_2014#comments net applications operating system OS Software Windows windows 8 windows 8.1 News Thu, 02 Oct 2014 18:13:18 +0000 Paul Lilly 28654 at http://www.maximumpc.com Chromebooks and Macs Cut into Windows PC Sales http://www.maximumpc.com/chromebooks_and_macs_cut_windows_pc_sales_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/chromebooks_1.jpg" alt="Chromebooks" title="Chromebooks" width="228" height="94" style="float: right;" />Retail PC sales rise up on Chromebook and Mac shipments</h3> <p>As we've said time and again, the PC sector is alive is well. <strong>According to NPD Group, retail PC sales grew nearly 3 percent during the 10-week back-to-school shopping season</strong> that went from July 4th through Labor Day week), compared to a 2.5 percent decline in the same period a year ago. Where things get interesting is when you break down those sales to look for trends in consumer spending.</p> <p>Chromebooks drew a lot of attention and led the sales drive with Chrome OS unit sales jumping 37 percent over 2013, while Mac OS-based systems climbed 14 percent. The increased sales came at the expense of Windows devices, which declined 3 percent.</p> <p>That said, Windows is still the most popular platform with a 68.4 percent share of the market, though that's down from 72.3 percent in 2013 and 75.2 percent in 2012. Mac OS-based systems take up second place with a 26.8 percent share, up from 24.2 percent in 2013 and 24.5 percent in 2012. Finally, Chromebooks bring up the rear with a 4.5 percent of the market, up from 3.3 percent 2013 and just 0.2 percent in 2012.</p> <p>Going forward, Windows is in position to reverse course. There's a concerted effort to flood the market with lower cost Windows laptops in the $199 to $249 range, along with a new OS (Windows 9) around the corner, both of which could drive sales up.</p> <p>"Due to the success of the aggressive Windows notebook pricing during back-to-school we could see a much more aggressive pricing strategy this holiday season as the seemingly stable PC volume environment emboldens the PC OEMs and the OS and chip suppliers to make a grab for market share while the industry remains relatively steady," <a href="https://www.npd.com/wps/portal/npd/us/news/press-releases/apple-and-chrome-boost-us-retail-pc-back-to-school-sales/" target="_blank">said Stephen Baker</a>, vice president of Industry Analysis at NPD</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/chromebooks_and_macs_cut_windows_pc_sales_2014#comments chromebook Hardware Mac NPD Group OEM rigs Windows News Fri, 26 Sep 2014 21:13:32 +0000 Paul Lilly 28620 at http://www.maximumpc.com ARChron Hack Brings Android Apps to Chrome for Linux, OS X and Windows http://www.maximumpc.com/archron_hack_brings_android_apps_chrome_linux_os_x_and_windows <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="http://www.maximumpc.com/files/u46168/chrome-os-android-app.png" alt="ARChron" title="ARChron" width="228" height="151" style="float: right;" /></h3> <h3>Theoretically, almost any app can be ported</h3> <p>When Google first announced Chrome OS in 2009, among the few people who were polite enough to not dismiss it outright, and predict for it either a stillbirth or an early demise, were those who saw a merger with Android as its ultimate fate. Of course, let alone a full-blown merger, we have yet to see substantial interplay between the two platforms. The best we have seen, all these years down the line, is the <strong>ability to run a grand total of four Android apps on Chrome OS</strong> — and that too is a very recent development. Even now, Google is only working with “a select group of Android developers” and is unlikely to bring more than a handful of mobile apps to Chrome OS in the near future. Well, that’s what hacks are for, right?</p> <p>A developer named Vlad Filippov (a.k.a Vladikoff) has not not only figured out a <a href="http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2014/09/hack-runs-android-apps-on-windows-mac-and-linux-computers/?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=pulsenews" target="_blank">way to run virtually any Android app on Chrome OS</a>, he has also found a way to do so using the Chrome browser on major desktop OSes like OS X, Linux and Windows. To this end, he has released a custom version of <a href="http://chrome.blogspot.in/2014/09/first-set-of-android-apps-coming-to.html" target="_blank">App Runtime for Chrome (ARC)</a>, the Native Client-based Chrome OS extension that enables Android apps to run on Chrome — the APK needs to be converted into a Chrome extension. Unlike ARC, which is only compatible with Chrome OS,&nbsp; the hacked version called <a href="https://github.com/vladikoff/chromeos-apk/blob/master/archon.md">ARChon</a> can be used to run Android apps inside the Chrome browser. As for converting APKs into Chrome extensions, the Toronto-based developer has released a tool called “<a href="https://github.com/vladikoff/chromeos-apk" target="_blank">chromeos-apk</a>”.</p> <p>Follow Pulkit on <a href="https://plus.google.com/107395408525066230351?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/archron_hack_brings_android_apps_chrome_linux_os_x_and_windows#comments app runtime for chrome apps archron chrome chrome os hack linux nacl native client OS OS X Software Windows News Mon, 22 Sep 2014 06:54:08 +0000 Pulkit Chandna 28578 at http://www.maximumpc.com