In case you haven’t noticed, WindowsWave has been on hiatus since December. We launched this website around the time Microsoft launched its new Surface tablet, but sales of that device have been rather lackluster. Moreover, the tablet has an expensive price tag and suffers from a number of performance issues.
While we continue to debate where we will take WindowsWave in the future, be sure to check out iFans.com in the meantime. You’ll find our complete writing staff — Stephen Hall, Thuc Nguyen and I — on that website, a leading online iPhone, iPad and iPod touch community with over 175,000 registered members.
Thanks to everyone that was part of the early audience here at WindowsWave, as we truly appreciate the readership. This isn’t the last time you’ll hear from us, so check back periodically to see what we have in store. We’ll push forward with something, but exactly what remains a mystery at this point.
If you bought a new Windows 8 laptop recently, there’s probably already third party support for DVD playback. However, if you upgraded to Windows 8 on your current laptop or desktop, there’s no way to play your collection of DVDs. That’s because Microsoft removed both the ability to play DVD in Windows Media Player and Windows Media Center from Windows 8.
The only way to get back official DVD playback support from Microsoft is to purchase the Windows Media Center Pack separately for $9.99. Maybe that’s how Microsoft is selling Windows 8 for cheap. Not everyone uses DVD anymore nor do their ultrabooks have a DVD drive.
But luckily you won’t have to pay the $9.99 until after January 31st next year if you need DVD support on your Windows machine. Microsoft has been offering the Windows Media Center Pack for free since they released Windows 8 last October. Head over to their promotion page and register with your email. It will take a couple days for Microsoft to send you a product key and instructions on how to add Windows Media Center Pack to your Windows 8 machine.
Note that this offer is only for the Windows 8 Pro edition.
Link: WMC promotion page
Source: Windows Blog
Microsoft launched its Surface RT tablet in late October but have yet to reveal any early sell numbers. Analysts are casting doubts and lowering sell predictions for the two-faced tablet. Some blaming lukewarm receptions and $499 price tag as barriers. Detwiler Fenton brokerage firm, on the other hand, is saying that limited distribution is the primary factor for low tractions.
Currently the Surface tablet is only available for purchase online and at Microsoft’s 31 store locations and 34 kiosks in the U.S. In contrast, Apple has 395 of its own stores in 14 countries and more locations through major retail stores.
There’s been hints that Microsoft could be offering their tablets through major retail stores in early 2013. On a Yahoo! Answer page dated back to October 29, that had now been deleted, someone asked “When is Best Buy going to sell Microsoft Surface?” and got an interesting answer.
By the context of that answer, it could’ve been someone at Microsoft who answered. That page had been deleted and the reply poster was de-named. Luckily, Microsoft’s own Bing cached of that page is still available.
Now, Paul Thurrott of winsupersite.com said on yesterday’s Windows Weekly podcast that according to unnamed source, the Surface tablet is indeed heading to major retailers like Staples and Best Buy before year’s end.
Whatever the case, we will find out soon enough as the year is rapidly approaching an end. If we survive the Mayan Calendar, who knows, Microsoft could surprise and announce it with the availability of the Surface Pro early. Fingers crossed.
The Windows Store, more than 2 months after its release as part of Windows 8, is still missing many critical apps that have long been available on competing platforms. Most notably of these are official apps for most social networks, such as Twitter and Facebook, but also other official service apps such as YouTube.
Yesterday, Neowin received a tip that there was a Facebook icon within a Surface advertisement, but that turned out to be, according to a Facebook spokesperson, just a ”live tile bookmark to fb.com not an app.” Facebook was quick to make it clear that what was seen definitely wasn’t an app, almost making it seem like one isn’t planned.
I can understand why developers wouldn’t be rushing to put resources toward making apps for a platform that is significantly smaller than its competitors. With the Surface’s sales figures plummeting and Windows 8 being met with mediocre acceptance, it’s not looking good for the future health of the Windows Store at this point. What do you think?
We, like BGR, see potential in the surface. But some industry analysts are already calling it a failure. With orders cut in half short after launch, the tablet received mass criticism from most online publications. The tablet was already off to a rough start, but today’s news from Forbes is making the situation look even worse.
Boston-based brokerage firm Detwiler Fenton has now said that the Microsoft Surface will sell less than a million devices before the end of Q4 2012. This is a scary thought for Microsoft if they want to compete with the iPad — Apple sold 17 million iPads in Q3 2012 alone. Forbes revealed numbers from Detwiler Fenton predicting that the Surface might sell between just 500,000 and 600,000 Surfaces for the holiday-shopping month of December. That’s awful.
Android, as an open source mobile operating system, is considered more prone to malware attacks than closed platforms such as iOS — the iPhone, in particular — or Windows Phone. Microsoft is looking to take advantage of that fact by relaunching a marketing campaign on Twitter, in which users are invited to share their worst Android malware horror stories, using the hashtag #DroidRage, for a chance to win a free Windows Phone.
Microsoft is expanding its reach this year by using its official Windows Phone account on Twitter, which has over 220,000 followers, to promote the marketing campaign. Last year, it ran the campaign using the Twitter account @BenThePCGuy, which only has around 18,000 followers at the time of writing, and generated thousands of tweets in response. This year, that number will presumably be much higher.
The social campaign will certainly involve its fair share of illegitimate entries, as people attempt to win a free Windows Phone by making up an imaginary malware nightmare. But, as The Next Web notes, Microsoft will be pleased just to get the Android malware conversation going, in an attempt to make its flagship Windows Phone 8 smartphones sound more appealing to consumers.
[The Next Web]