Bing iPad app lands and it’s pretty cool

Microsoft isn’t shying away from Apple’s products, as it has just released a Bing iPad app and this program is actually pretty darn cool.

The Bing iPad app is similar to the iPhone version but it has been optimized for the larger screen. As you would expect, you can quickly do searches from the top bar and it does a solid job of auto-populating results and suggesting queries. You can also do voice searches thanks to the TellMe technology that’s built in.
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How Ballmer’s Windows-dependency has helped kill Microsoft’s chance at tablet success

Microsoft built its business on the back of Windows, but by insisting that tablets use Windows, CEO Steve Ballmer Microsoft has helped kill its chances at succeeding with tablets. So concludes a recent article in Forbes, and I think it’s right on target.

The Fortune article, titled The problem with Microsoft…, says many of Microsoft’s current problems, including lagging in mobile and innovation, have been caused by CEO Steve Ballmer’s blind spots, including his too-heavy reliance on Windows for products for which it’s not well suited.
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Microsoft employees rate Steve Ballmer as tech’s worst CEO. How long can he last?

Here, from the glassdoor site, you can see the ranking, and then underneath that, from the site, a comparison of Schmidt’s, Bartz’s and Ballmer’s approval rating over the last several years (sorry for the blurriness, just click on the chart to open and see more clearly). Not a pretty picture, is it?

The site glassdoor.com says the approval rating of Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer from his employees is the lowest of any major tech company — a dismal 40%. Given this latest piece of bad news, how long can he last at Microsoft?

For the last two years, Glassdoor.com has regularly surveyed employees of a dozen major tech companies and asks them to rate their CEOs. It just announced the latest year’s rankings, and the news couldn’t be worse for Ballmer. His approval rating is down in the dumps, at 40%. The next worst CEO rating is well above his, eBay’s John Donahoe at 46%.
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Smartphone OS shootout: Android vs. iOS vs. Windows Phone

Posted from Computerworld, Wirtten by Preston Gralla

The past year has been a remarkable one for smartphones, with the meteoric rise of Google’s Android OS, the restart of Microsoft’s mobile strategy with its much-ballyhooed release of Windows Phone 7 and the continuing success of Apple’s iPhone, buoyed by its new availability to Verizon subscribers. Never has there been so much choice in the smartphone market. As a result, hype and overstatement have been the order of the day.

Which smartphone operating system really is the best? More important, which one is best for you?

If you’re in the market for a new smartphone, choosing which one to buy has much to do with the operating system that runs the phone as with the hardware itself. To help you decide, I put the latest versions of the three top mobile operating systems through their paces: Android 2.3, Windows Phone 7 and iOS 4.3.

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Nokia posts video of Microsoft partnership

Wow, we have to hand it those Nokia social media types, they’re on top of their game. A mere couple of hours after Stephen Elop and Steve Ballmer took the stage in London, the video of their joint announcement of a Nokia-Microsoft partnership is up and ready for repeated consumption. For those of you just catching up now, Windows Phone 7 has become Nokia’s “principal smartphone strategy,” MeeGo is getting transformed into an experimental “learning” platform, and Symbian… well, maybe you should sit down for this one, Symbian’s being killed off. There’s more to the strategic alliance unveiled today, including the WP7 Marketplace subsuming the Ovi Store and some Bing and Ovi Maps interaction, so why not press play above and let the men in charge tell you about it?

Windows Phone 7 devices may be leaking 3G data, Kin-like online features on the way

Users of Windows Mobile 7 devices are reporting heavy 3G data usage while their phones are idle, something that could pose a problem for those with limited data plans.

But at least there may be some good news on the horizon for Windows Phone users: A recent interview with Microsoft’s Aaron Woodman hinted that some of the cool online features from Microsoft’s failed Kin phones may make it to Windows Phone’s Live online service.

The 3G data usage problem still hasn’t been confirmed by Microsoft, but it definitely seems to be affecting a number of users, who say their phones are using multiple megabytes of data while idling. Even worse, the phones appear to be ignoring WiFi connections — meaning you’re not even safe when on your home network. Read the rest of this entry »

Microsoft Launches Bing 2.0 for iPhone

In its latest bid to capture more of the mobile search market, Microsoft yesterday launched a new version of its Bing search engine (Bing 2.0) for Apple’s iPhone, adding new features, such as camera search and Streetside view, as well as a revamped UI.

Bing 2.0 puts a heavy emphasis on deeper social networking integration, touting “check-ins” for Facebook, Foursquare and Windows Live Messenger without leaving the application.

Streetside is a new mapping feature that gives users a multi-street level panorama of a location so they can take a virtual walk through the streets with a view of a location and its landmarks.

The new Bing app can be downloaded for free at the iTunes App Store. Microsoft also launched an updated version of Bing for Mobile for Android, available through the Android Market.

The Best Smartphone on Every Platform

The most important thing about your next phone isn’t what carrier it’s on, how big the screen is, or even who makes it. It’s the platform, stupid. So here are the best phones on every platform.

iOS: iPhone 4 (32GB)

Duh. While you can pick up an iPhone 3GS on the cheap, there’s no reason to. Saving $100, you lose out on the iPhone 4′s frankly a-mazing screen, killer camera, faster speed (for better gaming) and FaceTime. When it comes to iOS, there is only one choice: iPhone 4. And really you should get the 32GB model. Why? Because apps, HD video and 5-megapixel photos can take a lot of space, and you’re gonna be stuck with this thing for two years.
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Samsung Focus Review

Windows Phone 7 is back! Aaron reviews the Samsung Focus, another WP7 option on AT&T. Aside from a gorgeous 4-inch Super AMOLED display, it offers a 1 GHz processor, 5-megapixel camera, and a microSD card slot. It’s a nice device, but is it the best Windows Phone 7 device on the market? We’ll find out.

KIN One and KIN Two making their grand return to Verizon

Remember the KINs? Microsoft’s high-end feature phones/kind-of-smartphones that were killed off only six weeks after being launched are coming back for a second go-round with Verizon, although things have changed slightly since the phones were canned in June. The biggest complaint that people had with the KINs was that they required a full-on, $30/month smartphone data plan, even though Verizon referred to them as “enhanced feature phones” that were targeted at teens. When they are relaunched, possibly as early as this quarter, the KINs will require no data plan whatsoever. This could be good for sales, although it also means that KIN-specific features that require data, like the Loop, have been axed. One big feature of the KINs has remained intact, though: the Zune Pass functionality is still alive on the KINs and can be used over WiFi.

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