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Microsoft Announces Surface: New Family of PCs for Windows

LOS ANGELES, June 18, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Today at an event in Hollywood, Microsoft unveiled Surface: PCs built to be the ultimate stage for Windows. Company executives showed two Windows tablets and accessories that feature significant advances in industrial design and attention to detail. Surface is designed to seamlessly transition between consumption and creation, without compromise. It delivers the power of amazing software with Windows and the feel of premium hardware in one exciting experience.

Advances in Industrial Design

Conceived, designed and engineered entirely by Microsoft employees, and building on the company's 30-year history manufacturing hardware, Surface represents a unique vision for the seamless expression of entertainment and creativity. Extensive investment in industrial design and real user experience includes the following highlights:

Software takes center stage: Surface sports a full-sized USB port and a 16:9 aspect ratio - the industry standard for HD. It has edges angled at 22 degrees, a natural position for the PC at rest or in active use, letting the hardware fade into the background and the software stand out.

VaporMg: The casing of Surface is created using a unique approach called VaporMg (pronounced Vapor-Mag), a combination of material selection and process to mold metal and deposit particles that creates a finish akin to a luxury watch. Starting with magnesium, parts can be molded as thin as .65 mm, thinner than the typical credit card, to create a product that is thin, light and rigid/strong.

Integrated Kickstand: The unique VaporMg approach also enables a built-in kickstand that lets you transition Surface from active use to passive consumption - watching a movie or even using the HD front- or rear-facing video cameras. The kickstand is there when needed, and disappears when not in use, with no extra weight or thickness.

Touch Cover: The 3 mm Touch Cover represents a step forward in human-computer interface. Using a unique pressure-sensitive technology, Touch Cover senses keystrokes as gestures, enabling you to touch type significantly faster than with an on-screen keyboard. It will be available in a selection of vibrant colors. Touch Cover clicks into Surface via a built-in magnetic connector, forming a natural spine like you find on a book, and works as a protective cover. You can also click in a 5 mm-thin Type Cover that adds moving keys for a more traditional typing feel.

An Amazing Windows Experience

Two models of Surface will be available: one running an ARM processor featuring Windows RT, and one with a third-generation Intel Core processor featuring Windows 8 Pro. From the fast and fluid interface, to the ease of connecting you to the people, information and apps that users care about most, Surface will be a premium way to experience all that Windows has to offer. Surface for Windows RT will release with the general availability of Windows 8, and the Windows 8 Pro model will be available about 90 days later. Both will be sold in the Microsoft Store locations in the U.S. and available through select online Microsoft Stores.

Contributing to an Expanded Ecosystem

One of the strengths of Windows is its extensive ecosystem of software and hardware partners, delivering selection and choice that makes a customer's Windows experience uniquely their own. This continues with Surface. Microsoft is delivering a unique contribution to an already strong and growing ecosystem of functional and stylish devices delivered by original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to bring the experience of Windows to consumers and businesses around the globe.

Additional Product Information

Surface for Windows RT              Surface for Windows 8 Pro        

OS                           Windows RT                          Windows 8 Pro        
Light(1)                     676 g                               903 g        
Thin(2) 9.3 mm 13.5 mm
Clear 10.6" ClearType HD Display 10.6" ClearType Full HD Display
Energized 31.5 W-h 42 W-h
Connected microSD, USB 2.0, Micro HD Video, microSDXC, USB 3.0,
                             2x2 MIMO antennae                   Mini DisplayPort Video,
                                                                 2x2 MIMO antennae
Productive Office '15' Apps, Touch Cover, Type Touch Cover, Type Cover,
Cover Pen with Palm Block
Practical VaporMg Case & Stand VaporMg Case & Stand
Configurable 32 GB, 64 GB 64 GB, 128 GB
(1, 2) Actual size and weight of the device may vary due to configuration
and manufacturing process

Suggested retail pricing will be announced closer to availability and is expected to be competitive with a comparable ARM tablet or Intel Ultrabook-class PC. OEMs will have cost and feature parity on Windows 8 and Windows RT.

For more information about Surface, visit .

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Some information relates to a prerelease product, which may be substantially modified before it is commercially released. Microsoft makes no warranties, express or implied, with respect to the information provided here.

SOURCE Microsoft Corp.

Posted Monday, June 18, 2012 by ChrisD
Rating: 3.08

ITC Awards Microsoft an Import Ban on Motorola Phones, Tablets

The proposed ban, which was first reported by the website Foss Patents, is the result of a December ITC ruling that Motorola�s Android devices violate a Microsoft-owned patent � patent 6370566 � that pertains to �generating meeting requests and group scheduling from a mobile device.�

Essentially, Microsoft owns a patent on enabling a mobile device to give users �the ability to schedule a meeting request from the mobile device itself� by assigning the created meeting request, or �object,� by way of �a global identification number which uniquely identifies the object to other devices which encounter the object.�  (Source: Nathan Olivarez-Giles, Wired)

Posted Friday, May 18, 2012 by ChrisD
Rating: 3.06

Microsoft returning Windows to 'the digital dark ages'?

Mozilla, the developer group behind the popular Firefox browser, argued Wednesday night that Firefox is being banned from certain versions of Windows 8, the forthcoming tablet-centric OS from Microsoft -- returning Windows users to the dark ages before competition.

�The upcoming release of Windows � and Microsoft�s browser practices regarding Windows 8 Metro signal an unwelcome return to the digital dark ages where users and developers didn�t have browser choices,� wrote Harvey Anderson, Mozilla general counsel, in a Wednesday night blog post.  (Source:

Posted Thursday, May 10, 2012 by ChrisD
Rating: 3.08

Barnes & Noble Stock Soars on Microsoft Nook Stake

Microsoft has agreed to invest $300 million in Barnes & Noble's Nook digital-book business and college texts, in a deal that helps establish the value of the popular Nook business while giving Microsoft a foothold in the e-book market.

Microsoft and Barnes & Noble will introduce an application for the Nook on Windows 8, the upcoming version of Microsoft's operating system.   (Source: CNBC)

Posted Monday, April 30, 2012 by ChrisD
Rating: 3.06

Microsoft's master plan to beat Apple and Google

Here's the big vision: Whether you're using your TV, PC, tablet, phone, or almost any other device that comes along, you'll be able to accomplish all the same tasks through all the same platform. The form factor will change, but the core experience won't.

"People are starting to see the same look-and-feel across the three screens and the cloud," says Craig Beilinson, director of Microsoft's consumer marketing. "This is all going to get pretty blurry." (Source: David Goldman, CNN)

Posted Tuesday, April 17, 2012 by ChrisD
Rating: 3.04

27 percent of Americans get news via mobile devices

"More than 80 percent of smartphone and tablet news consumers still get news on laptop or desktop computers. On mobile devices, news consumers also are more likely to go directly to a news site or use an app, rather than to rely on search � strengthening the bond with traditional news brands," Pew said.

"Rather than gravitating toward one device, a growing number of Americans are becoming multiplatform digital news consumers. These 'digital mavens' get news on all their devices."

"People who acquire mobile devices appear to be using them to get news on all their devices. This also suggests they may be getting more news more often," Pew said. (Source: Suzanne Choney, MSNBC)
Posted Monday, March 19, 2012 by ChrisD
Rating: 3.04

Ice Cream Sandwich for Android Rolling Out

"What plagues the Android ecosystem is the lack of consistency," says Richard Shim of NPD Group's DisplaySearch. "That spells consumer experience that is less than ideal. It's difficult to navigate, and frankly, (something) consumers shouldn't have to deal with."  

If you're an Android novice, here are some questions to ponder as you look to update your phone.  (Source: Rodger Yu, USA Today, CNBC)

Posted Monday, March 19, 2012 by ChrisD
Rating: 3.12

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