Tag Archives: Office

Tuesday Talk ~ Microsoft


Did you know Microsoft is expanding its presence on Apple’s iOS 10 messaging platform with a new iMessage App designed to allow groups to search for movies, food, events and other entertainment options and vote on what to do? Does this surprise you?
It shouldn’t. Despite public posturing to the contrary, which hit its apogee under the madly gesticulating Steve Ballmer (thank goodness for his great replacement, CEO Satya Nadella), Apple and Microsoft have had a long and very rewarding relationship, with engineering teams collaborating on each other’s campuses for decades.
Apple uses Microsoft networking protocols; Microsoft embraces Apple video and audio standards. Microsoft Office works beautifully on Mac and iOS, and in fact, to my eyes, benefits from Apple’s superior (-looking) OS and monitor tech. And even Apple’s macOS has only had little updates over the last couple of years – meanwhile Microsoft is developing a future OS that will combine standard 2D display tech with 3D/holographics, VR and AR. This is called Fluent Design.

I guess we will see if Apple has any vision in this area … one day.
Meanwhile, Microsoft recently released its dev platform Visual Studio for macOS. Chipping, chipping, chipping away …

This is reasonable, sensible and productive. It’s how adults should behave, right? I think so.  However, lately Microsoft has been making hardware, something it has almost never done, barring Xbox. In fact, Windows fans used to laugh at Apple because Apple made hardware as well as software. Then Microsoft made some awful products like that cack-coloured music player and the Windows Phone. Yuk.

But now, Microsoft is making the hardware that even Apple fans can be impressed by, while Apple fiddles while watching its hardware house burn down. Apple’s products are still beautiful, sexy, slim, minimalist … and obsolete, lagging generations behind other computers. Pro Mac users want and need their Macs to be grunty, and nothin’ else! They’ve got to the point where looks are secondary because Apple needs so desperately to up the computational power of its pro machines.
Some, unfortunately, have given up already – will they come back? We used to run stories about ‘switchers’ who had dumped Windows for macOS and couldn’t be happier.
Now there are even rumours that Apple is planning a new ‘pro’ iMac “designed to compete with Microsoft’s Surface Studio all-in-one PC“…

WHAT? That’s pure heresy right there! Also, Apple isn’t in the Virtual Reality space yet. There’s supposedly an Apple lab in wellington pursuing this, and Apple has made various VR acquisitions, but Apple’s hardware isn’t up to VR – Oculus dropped support for the Mac in 2016 because it wasn’t powerful enough. The only thing Apple seems to excel at now is 4K display support, but Windows is catching up fast.
Once we looked cool and progressive with our Apple gear.
Now we look like sad holdouts.

Anyway, it’s WWDC soon (New Zealand’s June 6th). Apple, will announce stuff. But I remember saying that last year … and the year before …

Apple shares high, 5k iMac, Microsoft, slow wifi, AfterShot, Reznor, Droplr


The Retina 5k iMac (image from Apple Inc).
The Retina 5k iMac (image from Apple Inc).

Apple shares reach new peak as company gears up to pay investors $2.8 billion in dividends — Apple shares reached a new all time high of $108 for the end of October, less than two weeks prior prior to the company’s quarterly dividend distribution date.

Why iMac is 5k, not 4k — The  new iMac with a 5K Retina display, boasts of an impressive 14.7 million pixels packed into the 5120×2880 matrix. Why did Apple choose this novel 5K resolution over a myriad of standard 4K? Dr. Ray Soneira of DisplayMate, who provided a simple explanation: video editing. The resolution is geared towards the videographer who can take advantage of the extra screen real estate when working with 4K video streams.

Microsoft says new Office for Mac due in 2015, unveils new Outlook app — It’s been four long years since Microsoft released the last version of Office for the Mac, in 2010. And it will be one more before the next version arrives, Microsoft said Friday. But at least there’s a new version of Outlook.

Users report slow Wi-Fi, dropped connections after upgrading to Apple’s OS X Yosemite — Apple’s new Mac operating system, OS X Yosemite, appears to have bugs related to Wi-Fi connections, with users reporting slow transfer speeds and dropped signals after upgrading.

AfterShot Pro 2 from Corel is a competitive Mac photo manager — Corel’s latest Mac OS release, AfterShot Pro 2 (currently on sale for US$69.00) is hard to quickly characterise. It combines elements of Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop.

Microsoft Universal Mobile Keyboard hands-on: Solid, but not quite universal — Microsoft’s US$80 Universal Mobile Keyboard continues its tradition of excellence with a well-thought-out design incorporating a hardware switch to reconfigure the keyboard for Android, iOS, and Windows devices. Look closer, though, and what Microsoft bills as a “universal” keyboard simply doesn’t deliver, because it doesn’t support Windows Phone.

Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails ‘flattered’ to be working for Apple — In an interview with Billboard magazine, Reznor said that working for Apple was, “unfamiliar and it’s kind of everything I asked for.” He added, “and the bad thing is it’s everything I asked for.”

Droplr is back with new features and Yosemite support — The Mac application is back with a spanking new interface and new features that are likely to appeal to people who share screen shots, screen videos and files.