UPDATE: We've updated the story to include more info on Microsoft's PC gaming initiative and talked more about the tweaks to Windows 10.
Microsoft held a Windows 10 press conference today and revealed a massive amount of details from the upcoming OS and much more. After many rumors, Microsoft confirmed that Windows 10 will be free to Windows 8, 7, and Windows Phone users...for the first year, at least. The company views it as an incentive for users to quickly jump on board to the Windows 10 platform. Beyond the year, however, Microsoft hasn’t revealed any pricing details for how much the OS will cost.
Stop whatever it is you're doing and make a fist. Make sure there isn't a living creature within arm's length, and when the coast is clear, pump your fist in the air in celebration. What are we celebrating? The fact that Microsoft today confirmed plans to make Windows 10 a free upgrade for Windows 7, Windows 8.1, and Windows Phone 8.1 users! This is exactly the type of announcement we were hoping for, but didn't really think would happen.
Patience is not only a virtue, it can save you cash as well. For example, if you held off on purchasing Theme Hospital when it came out in early 1997 in hopes that the price would come down, you can stop waiting -- Electronic Arts is giving Theme Hospital (Standard Edition) away for free via Origin, available for a limited time. You can then pocket the $5 you saved and apply it towards your health insurance deductible the next time you need to visit the doctor.
Hoping for a strong finish to the year, AMD instead reported revenue of $1.24 billion in the fourth quarter, down 13 percent sequentially and 22 percent year-over-year. The Sunnyvale chip designer also reported an operating loss of $330 million and a net loss of $364 million, or $0.47 per share for the quarter, leading to a net loss for the year of $403 million, or $0.53 per share.
Signs point to The Pirate Bay setting sail once again
After being raided by Swedish authorities and ultimately shut down, it always seemed like a foregone conclusion that The Pirate Bay (TPB) would return to form, it was just a matter of when. After all, this isn't the first time the BitTorrent site has navigated rocky waters and seemingly been sunk for good, only to come back like Davy Jones. And so it goes again, there are plenty of signs that TPB will return to action in another 10 days.
Forget about building a better mouse trap, what about a better mouse? Or to take it a step further, a mouse that doubles as a full fledged PC? While not yet a shipping product, the idea of integrating an entire PC into a mouse has been achieved -- Meet the Mouse-Box, a mouse and computer rolled into one. You can use it as a standard mouse or as a working PC (just add a monitor), or both.
Acer today added to its Chromebook family with the launch of two new models, the 15.6-inch Acer Chromebook C910 and 11.6-inch Acer Chromebook C740. Though they differ in size, both new Chromebooks feature durable design qualities that make them better suited for school environments. It starts with using reinforced covers that can withstand up to 60kg of force, Acer says.
Rumor has it the Radeon R9 380X will feature 4,096 GCN cores
Keeping in mind that nothing is ever official until it's official (one of the many mottos of Captain Obvious), purported details of AMD's forthcoming Radeon R9 380X have started to emerge. If they turn out to be accurate, you can expect the Radeon R9 380X to arrive sometime between April and June of this year with 4,096 GCN cores in tow, along with 4GB of 3D stacked High Bandwidth Memory (HDM).
Fixes for vulnerabilities in 48 different products
Oracle today rolled out a Critical Patch Update for the month of January 2015, which contains fixes for 167 vulnerabilities found in hundreds of the company's products. The most severe of these received a score of 10.0 on the Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS), the highest score available -- they pertain to Fujitsu M10-1 of Oracle Sun Systems Products Suite, Java SE of Oracle Java SE, M10-4 of Oracle Sun Systems Products Suite, and M10-4S Servers of Oracle Sun Systems Products Suite.
It's been rumored that Apple is going to come out with a 12.9-inch iPad Pro tablet, but while iOS fans wait for that day, Android users have another large size option in the new HP Pro Slate 12, one of many mobile devices the company officially launched today. There's also a smaller 8-inch version (HP Pro Slate 8), both of which are powered by an Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 series processor and 2GB of RAM.