The Xbox 360 controller has been the de facto standard for years (NVIDIA copied it almost exactly for the SHIELD line), and the Xbox One has a refined and streamlined version of that design. So when Microsoft announced that a shiny new revision of the Xbox One controller would not only let you choose your colors and engraving Moto Maker-style, but also include a Bluetooth connection for easy dongle-free pairing with PCs, I couldn't help but get excited. Might Android gamers finally get access to the best controller around without any USB frippery or root-enabled work-arounds? Read More
Right on cue for those in Rio for the Olympics, Microsoft has released an update for its translator app, a few months after the previous update got ever closer to Google Translate. The new version, 2.30.112, includes the ability to change the voice used for reading out translation results, alternative translations for single words, and a phrasebook feature for fifty languages.
- New option in Settings to change the voice that reads out translation results.
- See alternative translations of single words. Available in 100 language pairs.
- Tap on the book icon at the bottom of the home screen to quickly access key phrases in 50+ languages.
Microsoft wants to get in on some of that sweet action that services like If This, Then That and its competitors have been working on for years. To that end they've created Flow, a new web tool that automates actions across some of the major web services available at the moment, most of which (shocker!) aren't even owned by Microsoft. Flow allows users to set up automated "recipes" to complete tasks in Twitter, Dropbox, Google Drive, Slack, OneDrive, Github, Facebook, YouTube, and more. Read More
As we reported yesterday, SwiftKey's synchronization service has been down for several days. At the time, there was speculation that the outage was related to reports from users that they were getting predictions from other accounts. That's not speculation anymore—in a brief post on the SwiftKey blog, the company confirms that it disabled sync because of the prediction bug. Read More
Microsoft is the owner of Mojang, developer of the ultra-popular Minecraft sandbox building game. And at the E3 video game conference, they want everyone to know it. In between the usual slew of console exclusives and hype about the future, the company dedicated a little time to Minecraft exclusively. At least some of the new additions for Minecraft were released immediately for the Android version, most notably access to Realms servers and cross-platform play with the Xbox 360 and Xbox One. Read More
The Xbox Smartglass app has been available on Android for a while, letting users control the Xbox's media functions, such as play, pause, and menu navigation, directly through the app. Today, at Microsoft's E3 press conference, the app is getting a big update, being renamed to just 'Xbox' and with features comparable to the equivalent on Windows 10. With the app, you can use Xbox Live, buy games, or watch game content shared by other users, making it the ultimate companion to the Microsoft-made box sitting near your TV.
- Updated home – The Activity Feed is the home of the Xbox app
- Added Trending content – Find out what's popular on Xbox Live
- Facebook friend finder – Add your Facebook friends who are also on Xbox
- Contact list friend finder – Use your phones contact list to add friends to Xbox Live
- Real name sharing – Be able to share your real name with your friends
- Game hubs – Game Hubs now added to Xbox app
- Updated profiles – Redesigned user profiles in Xbox app
The banner features of the update are mostly to do with Xbox Live, Microsoft's online gaming network. Read More
Microsoft is about to hit it big with one of China's top smartphone manufacturers: Xiaomi. It has announced today a multi-faceted deal with the company including sales of patents, cross-licensing arrangements, and software pre-installation, expanding its OEM partnerships and its services' worldwide reach while also providing Xiaomi with the support it needed to enter more markets.
Microsoft will be selling 1500 patents to Xiaomi — it's not clear whether these came from the Nokia acquisition, its many other acquisitions, or ones that it originally filed for. Regardless, according to Wang Xiang, senior vice president at Xiaomi, this should beef up Xiaomi's arsenal of patents and should, theoretically, make it easier for the company to enter Western markets with lesser friction from other patent holders. Read More
Have you ever wished that your complex word processing software had a simple search function to let you know where the hell it put the word count? It does, and it's called Google. But say you don't want to pop out to another program to do so. That's the idea behind "Tell Me," a feature introduced into the latest versions of Microsoft's various Office programs. It's essentially just a search box with a few predictive tricks to help users find some of the less obvious features. Today it comes to the Android versions of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Read More
The Skype for Business App SDK was announced at Build 2016 a couple of months ago, but it's only now available for download. So developers of both Android and iOS apps can finally start working on integrating Skype's messaging, audio calling, and video calling into their own apps.
The first leg of this initial SDK release is "remote advisor," a solution that lets app developers enable the "guest meeting join" capability to let guests start communicating with companies that already have a Skype for Business Server and an active Skype for Business Online service. In other simpler words, companies that are already using Skype for Business can now update their mobile apps to give their users and customers the option to talk to them via said apps. Read More