Microsoft, Amazon, Samsung, and Yahoo all express interest in Cyanogen

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Some of the biggest technology companies in the world are all taking a look at Android software developer Cyanogen. They are the developer of the very popular custom CyanogenMod ROM. The community for CyanogenMod has been so strong that is has been questioned whether or not it is actually in contention to be the world’s third most popular mobile operating system. It is being reported by The Information that Microsoft, Amazon, Samsung, and Yahoo have all been keeping an eye on Cyanogen with an acquisition or at least a partnership in mind.


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Microsoft OneDrive app brings together personal and work accounts

 

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Separating personal and work accounts can be challenging and confusing with many apps and services. OneDrive, though, is making it simple with its latest Android app update. The cloud storage app from Microsoft will now let users maintain multiple accounts on a single device and separate them with ease. This ensures that your personal files do not get mixed in with work documents that can be pretty important. With this update, Microsoft fittingly brought in OneDrive for Business support to make everything happen seamlessly.

Hit the break for the changelog and download links.


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Microsoft reportedly working on Chromecast competitor

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With Chromecast’s booming popularity, everyone’s trying to come up with a competitor. Count Microsoft in. According to recent FCC filings, there’s a device Microsoft is working on codenamed HD-10, which features WiFi, HDMI support and a USB connection. A separate filing at the Wi-Fi Alliance website details that the device will use Microsoft’s Miracast to stream from a Windows Phone or Windows laptop to larger screens. This is obviously still very much in the works, so there’s still a lot to learn about the speculative device.

Source: The Verge

Microsoft OneNote optimized for Android tablets with handwriting support

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Just in time for students heading back to school, Microsoft has updated its note-taking application. OneNote, which is a go-to app for many, now supports handwriting on Android tablets. With either a finger or stylus (or Samsung’s S Pen), users can scribble write on their Android tablet with the OneNote app. Microsoft has included new formatting and font selections for the tablet experience. OneNote has also been improved with a cleaner user interface that matches Google’s design language for apps.

Hit the break for the video highlighting handwriting support and download links.
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Carriers recommend Samsung devices more than Apple and its iPhone

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The role of an employee in a carrier’s retail store is quite easy. They are there to sell a device. So they have some options as to what devices are the best for a particular consumer. New research conducted by Kantar Worldpanel shows that United States carriers are more inclined to recommend a Samsung device rather than an iPhone from Apple.
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Microsoft files lawsuit against Samsung for Android royalty payments

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It may come as a surprise, but Microsoft owns a lot of patents used in Android devices. In 2011 after a dispute over licensing fees, the tech behemoth entered a cross-licensing agreement with Samsung, allowing the allies to share one another’s intellectual property at a cost. Today, Microsoft has filed a lawsuit in an attempt to force Samsung to hold up their end of the bargain.


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Android gobbles up 85 percent of global smartphone shipments in Q2 2014

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According to new industry data from Strategy Analytics, Android is doing pretty well.

The numbers show that the operating system shipped on roughly 85 percent of all smartphones in Q2 2014 — the total shipments came out to 295 million units worldwide.

This can’t be good news for Apple, Microsoft and Blackberry, although their numbers are most likely much better when the statistics are including only American shipments.

To see the full report, hit the source link.

Source: Strategy Analytics

Microsoft killing off future Nokia Android-based smartphones

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As Microsoft finalizes its acquisition of Nokia by fully merging Nokia into the larger Microsoft organization resulting in layoffs of 18,000 employees, they indicate they will also be putting an end to Nokia’s efforts to produce Android-based smartphones. This move comes as Microsoft has been expending some effort to ensure their software offerings are available across a wider range of platforms. When it comes to hardware though, especially smartphones, the company has decided to make Windows Phone the only platform that fits in their strategy.

Nokia had two Android-based smartphones in its portfolio, the Nokia X released earlier this year and the recently announced successor, the Nokia X2. Microsoft indicates they will continue to support those devices, but all future phones will be built for the Windows Phone operating system. This decision is part of an effort by Microsoft to target the budget and mid-tier portions of the market with their Lumia line of devices. According to a letter released by Microsoft,

“We will be particularly focused on making the market for Windows Phone. In the near term, we plan to drive Windows Phone volume by targeting the more affordable smartphone segments, which are the fastest growing segments of the market, with Lumia. In addition to the portfolio already planned, we plan to deliver additional lower-cost Lumia devices by shifting select future Nokia X designs and products to Windows Phone devices. We expect to make this shift immediately while continuing to sell and support existing Nokia X products.”

Microsoft is implementing a new phone business unit, based on the former Smart Devices and Mobile Phones business units, that will be responsible for both the Lumia line of smartphones and devices as well as the transition of Nokia X over to the Lumia line.

source: Microsoft

Microsoft planning on launching ultra-cheap laptops to compete with Chromebooks

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One of Microsoft’s biggest threats has been Google’s Chromebook line. Chromebooks have been relatively cheap and functional, primarily using the Chrome web browser for “apps.” Since Google doesn’t charge high licensing fees for Chrome OS, and they’ve marketed the simplicity and virus-immunity heavily against traditional Windows laptops, Chromebooks have been steadily eating Microsoft’s laptop market share from the bottom up.
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