Mobile World Congress, Bing’s Guide to the Academy Awards and Xamarin acquisition — Weekend Reading: Feb. 26 edition

Welcome back to another edition of Weekend Reading. Our recent stories include reports from the Mobile World Congress, Bing’s new experience timed to the Academy Awards and the recent acquisition of Xamarin.

This week in Barcelona a wealth of new Windows 10 devices were announced as part of Mobile World Congress, the world’s largest mobile trade show. The offerings span across device types, extending mobility of the Windows 10 experience to small screens, big screens and even devices with no screens at all – with universal apps that likewise span device types. To peruse a collection of the devices, head over to Terry Myerson’s post on the Windows Experience Blog. Also be sure to check out the Sway from Barcelona from Nick Parker, corporate vice president of the Original Equipment Manufacturer Division.

Bing Academy Awards Martian

Once a year, the world turns to Hollywood on its biggest night, the Academy Awards. There’s a new experience that helps people satisfy their cravings for information on Tinseltown’s premier event: Bing’s Guide to the Academy Awards. Searching for anything related will open up a newly designed guide that includes nominees, predictions, a ballot, top moments and fashion in one place. And through the CelebsLike.me experience, which debuted Tuesday as part of the guide, you can pop in a photo and the site will tell you which Oscar-nominated actor, actress or director from the current and previous years you most resemble, along with runners-up curated from a deep pool of celebrity photos. Read the full story on the Microsoft News Center.

Pictured left to right: Nat Friedman, CEO and co-founder of Xamarin; Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of the Microsoft Cloud and Enterprise Group; and Miguel de Icaza, CTO and co-founder of Xamarin.

Pictured left to right: Nat Friedman, CEO and co-founder of Xamarin; Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of the Microsoft Cloud and Enterprise Group; and Miguel de Icaza, CTO and co-founder of Xamarin.

Microsoft signed an agreement to acquire Xamarin, a leading platform provider for mobile app development. Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of the Microsoft Cloud and Enterprise Group, writes that the combination of Xamarin, Visual Studio, Visual Studio Team Services and Azure will provide “a complete mobile app dev solution” for developers to build, test, deliver and instrument mobile apps for every device.

Astronaut Scott Kelly with Microsoft HoloLens on the International Space Station

Astronaut Scott Kelly with Microsoft HoloLens on the International Space Station

Two Microsoft HoloLens devices for NASA’s Sidekick project reached the International Space Station as part of a shuttle resupply mission in December. Earlier this week, astronaut Scott Kelly modeled them from there. Sidekick’s goal is to enable station crews with assistance when and where they need it. Find out more about Sidekick on the Microsoft Devices Blog.

When you’re on your smartphone, you may frequently toggle between apps, especially when you’re trying to share information with someone via mail or text message. Now you can say goodbye to all that switching back and forth thanks to a new Android app released through the Microsoft GarageHub Keyboard, which keeps you in your conversation, bringing in relevant information to help complete common tasks. Another new Garage app, Sprightly, can help small and medium-size businesses that need to organize and share product images quickly with their customers make flyers, catalogs, price lists and e-card reminders – all on their phones.

"Top Gear: Drift Legends"

“Top Gear: Drift Legends”

We also saw new apps and updates, such as the App of the Week “Top Gear: Drift Legends,” City Art Search and “World of Tanks Blitz,” which added its first large-caliber auto-loader – now free for a limited time. The Red Stripe Deals provided its usual weekly sales of six Windows 10 apps and games and fans of “Moby Dick” could now find “In the Heart of the Sea” in the Windows Store’s Movies & TV section.

That’s it for this edition. See you next Friday for another Weekend Reading.

Posted by Athima Chansanchai
Microsoft News Center Staff