Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times technology reporter Janet I. Tu.
Topic: windows store
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September 26, 2013 at 1:13 PM
Terry Myerson, head of Microsoft’s operating systems division, apparently said at Microsoft’s big annual company meeting today that the company is working on consolidating its Windows Store and Windows Phone Store into a single app store, according to a a report in The Verge.
Myerson apparently did not specify whether Windows Phone apps would work on Windows or when the consolidated store would launch.
Microsoft declined to confirm the consolidation of the app stores but did send this statement:
As we’ve said before, one benefit of Windows Phone 8 sharing a common core with Windows 8 is that developers now have the ability to use much of the same code to deliver apps and games on both Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8 devices. Beyond that, we have nothing more to share.
Currently, Windows Phone and Windows tablets apps are purchased separately, and the apps for one platform do not work on the other.
Microsoft is holding its annual employees meeting today at KeyArena. Presumably, this is CEO Steve Ballmer’s last presentation at this meeting, given that he said earlier this year that he would be stepping down within 12 months once his successor has been appointed.
About 13,000 employees are at the arena, with more than 25,000 other employees expected to watch the meeting via webcast. About 9,600 employees are discussing the meeting with each other on Yammer, according to Microsoft.
September 9, 2013 at 11:50 AM
Back in June, Microsoft had announced that it was launching 600 Windows Stores within Best Buy and Future Shop locations in the U.S. and Canada.
Of those store-within-stores, there are now four open locally including one completed about a week ago in Tukwila. They are at the Best Buys located in:
- Bellevue at 457 120th Ave N.E.
- Seattle at 330 N.E. Northgate Way
- Tukwila at 17364 Southcenter Parkway
- Lynnwood at 19225 Alderwood Mall Parkway
These four are in addition to five others that have opened in Washington state already. Those five are in Silverdale, Puyallup, Tacoma, Kennewick and Spokane.
In total, almost 500 Windows Stores within Best Buy locations have opened in the U.S. so far.
These stores, now essentially the computer departments inside Best Buy, are designed to include a range of Microsoft devices and products, including Windows tablets and PCs, Windows Phones, Surface, Office, Xbox and more.
Best Buy employees, trained by Microsoft, will staff the Windows Stores.
June 13, 2013 at 9:06 AM
Microsoft last fall launched a vastly redesigned operating system with Windows 8, which the company hoped would launch it boldly into the mobile-devices arena.
The problem was many users found Windows 8 confusing. And the devices Windows 8 was designed to work best on —- touch machines or hybrid/convertible tablet-laptops — either weren’t available or added to the confusion about which one to to purchase.
Best Buy, meanwhile, is facing its own struggles in an increasingly competitive consumer-electronics market, with everyone from Walmart to Amazon.com biting off big chunks of that market.
A solution that both companies hope may address those woes: Teaming up to open 600 Windows Stores within Best Buy and Future Shop stores in the U.S. and Canada.
June 6, 2013 at 9:53 AM
The Bing Translator app, which translates in more than 40 languages, is now available in the Windows Store, Microsoft said today.
The app can translate via use of a device’s camera, or through typed or scanned text. It also has text-to-speech and can also be used offline, according to Microsoft.
May 14, 2013 at 7:49 AM
The upcoming Windows 8 update, known up to now by the codename “Windows Blue,” will officially be called “Windows 8.1,” Windows marketing and financial chief Tami Reller said today.
She also said Windows 8.1 will be delivered as a free update to Windows 8 and Windows RT, adding that update will be easy to get directly from the Start screen and from the Windows app store.
A preview version of Windows 8.1 will debut June 26 at the company’s annual Build conference for developers, and will be available for download.
Reller did not give a specific date for when the final version of 8.1 will be generally available but said it would be later this year and that the company is sensitive to the timing of getting hardware preloaded with Windows 8.1 out in time for the holidays.
“We understand when the holidays are,” she said.
March 19, 2013 at 6:05 PM
Under a program that runs March 8 to June 30, Microsoft is paying developers $100 for each app — up to a maximum of 10 per store — that they publish in the Windows Store or Windows Phone Store.
(To participate in the program, developers must be legal U.S. residents and be U.S. registered Windows Store and/or Windows Phone Store developers.)
Microsoft has lagged behind Apple’s App Store and Google Play in terms of the number of apps available for its mobile devices.
Microsoft has not released an official count of the number of apps in its Windows Store. But the site MetroStore has the number of apps in the Windows Store at about 48,400 as of Wednesday. And it looks like Windows Phone Store has more than 130,000.
But at least some people would like to see more emphasis on quality rather than quantity.
“I want to see two amazing apps a month instead of 300 mediocre apps a day,” said Wes Miller, an analyst with independent research firm Directions on Microsoft, who says he’s still waiting to see an outstanding, breakthrough app on the platform.
Not to say that there aren’t plenty of junk apps in Apple’s and Google’s stores but he said there are some great apps as well (in Apple’s app store. He has not perused Google Play thoroughly.).
[Update 3/20/13: I had asked Microsoft about why it decided to create the program. I received the following statement in reply:
We are encouraged about the quality and the breadth of apps in our Store and more are being added every day. Since launch the number of apps has more than quadrupled and just two months after GA, we passed the 100 million app download mark. We believe the best apps come from those partners who are invested in the platform and own their experience now and in the future. Of course, we are always working to spark creativity with new developer audiences and sometimes try limited incentives or contests, like Keep The Cash. However, it is not representative of an ongoing program. Our approach and commitment to working with app builders remains the same.]