The Fire Hose http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose Covering the news of the day at Microsoft Tue, 24 Jan 2017 14:08:12 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.1 69497479 New Windows 10 PCs designed for classroom start at $189; simple tool for schools to set up and manage devices now available http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/2017/01/24/new-windows-10-pcs-designed-for-classroom-start-at-189-simple-tool-for-schools-to-set-up-and-manage-devices-now-available/ Tue, 24 Jan 2017 14:06:38 +0000 http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/?p=335412 Read more »]]>

On Tuesday, Microsoft announced several affordable and powerful Windows 10 PCs from Acer, HP and Lenovo for students to help improve learning, with prices starting at $189, as well as the availability of Microsoft Intune for Education, a simple tool for schools to set up and manage devices.

Also announced: the latest update of “Minecraft: Education Edition,” with new features requested by the education community.

“Now Windows 10 devices offer the power, performance, and security schools need at the same price as Chromebooks, with none of the compromises,” writes Yusuf Mehdi, Windows and Devices Group corporate vice president, on the Windows Blog.

Intune for Education helps schools easily set up and manage classroom devices, an important issue with more than 90 percent of schools using shared devices, Mehdi says. Educators “face more demands than ever before, with nearly 50 percent of teachers serving as their own tech support in their classrooms,” he says. Intune for Education “makes it easy for either IT admins, or teachers playing the role of IT in the classroom, to get up and running in minutes on Windows 10 devices and easily manage shared devices.”

The new release of “Minecraft: Education Edition” includes requested features such as Global Pause, to take a quick break to transition to a new activity; accessibility features like text-to-speech for in-game chats; an updated user interface for managing in-game settings; a 256-block world height for greater building capabilities; complete gameplay from the first night to The End dimension; and new “Minecraft mobs” and items including igloos and polar bears in snowy biomes.

Read Mehdi’s post on the Windows Blog.

Suzanne Choney
Microsoft News Center Staff

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MPN Thought Leader Podcast series debuts with ‘Marketing to Modern Customers’ http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/2017/01/23/mpn-thought-leader-podcast-series-debuts-with-marketing-to-modern-customers/ Tue, 24 Jan 2017 00:15:53 +0000 http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/?p=335397 Read more »]]> On Monday, the Microsoft Partner Network kicked off its new MPN Thought Leader Podcast series, in which a variety of industry leaders will share their insights on doing business.

In the debut podcast, bestselling author David Meerman Scott discusses the new ways consumers research and purchase products and services, and how businesses need to adjust their marketing techniques in order to succeed. To find out more, listen to the podcast or download a transcript, head over to the Microsoft Partner Network blog.

Steve Clarke
Microsoft News Center Staff

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Latest Sketchable update includes grids, jitter control and support for Surface Dial http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/2017/01/23/latest-sketchable-update-includes-grids-jitter-control-and-support-for-surface-dial/ Mon, 23 Jan 2017 22:46:41 +0000 http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/?p=335382 Read more »]]> Sketchable’s latest update adds grids to help divide canvas and position your elements for more pleasing compositions.

This free app brings together the best aspects of a physical notebook and the flexibility of the digital world in an app that’s part journal, part canvas. The update also delivers Jitter Smoothing to create more diverse and subtle effects with your brushes. And with the new Surface Dial, more tools and shortcuts are at your fingertips: manipulate images, adjust volume, change color hues and more, all with simple gestures.

Download Sketchable from the Windows Store.

Also, keep up with what’s hot, new and trending in the Windows Store on Twitter and Facebook.

Athima Chansanchai
Microsoft News Center Staff

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First wave of new Xbox features for the Creators Update shipping to Xbox Insiders http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/2017/01/23/first-wave-of-new-xbox-features-for-the-creators-update-shipping-to-xbox-insiders/ Mon, 23 Jan 2017 22:14:44 +0000 http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/?p=335349 Read more »]]>

The first wave of Xbox One features for the Creators Update is now shipping to the Xbox Insider Program members. As Mike Ybarra, Xbox head of platform engineering, shared last week, the Creators Update is packed full of new features for gamers who play on Xbox One and Windows 10 PCs. Monday’s update will start rolling out to a small subset of gamers, with the rest of the Xbox Insider Program receiving the features in coming weeks.

For gamers, the Creators Update means a faster Xbox One experience, connecting you with friends and the applications and games you enjoy the most. Check out a new look for Home and learn how the newly designed Guide works. There’s also new accessibility options to ensure great experiences for all gamers when playing on Xbox.

Head over to Xbox Wire to get all the details on these features.

Athima Chansanchai
Microsoft News Center Staff

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Winning Internet of Things solutions announced in this year’s Azure4Research program http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/2017/01/23/winning-internet-of-things-solutions-announced-in-this-years-azure4research-program/ Mon, 23 Jan 2017 20:35:33 +0000 http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/?p=335337 Read more »]]> Research projects can generate massive amounts of data, yet many researchers lack access to the computing power and analytical tools to unlock the insights hidden in the data.

That’s why Microsoft started the Azure4Research (A4R) program. Six times a year, Microsoft invites researchers and educators at top research universities to apply for free Azure cloud computing resources, including the Azure Internet of Things (IoT) Suite, which provides an easy-to-use platform to connect IoT devices to the cloud.

Visit the IoT blog to find out about the latest round of A4R winners in areas such as climate research, industrial automation, electrical engineering and green building technologies.

Steve Clarke
Microsoft News Center Staff

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Microsoft UK leaders weigh in on what’s coming in 2017 http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/2017/01/23/microsoft-uk-leaders-weigh-in-on-whats-coming-in-2017/ Mon, 23 Jan 2017 19:26:13 +0000 http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/?p=335322 Read more »]]> Where will digital transformation take us in 2017? To make sense of all the news about what’s coming in tech, the Microsoft News Centre UK team spoke with a number of Microsoft’s leaders in the U.K. about everything from gaming to regulatory policy. Over the course of this week, the team will share some of the leaders’ insights on the impact digital transformation is having now through the next 12 months.

First up, find out from Mark Bedford, senior director for solution sales, about how the cloud will be the catalyst for the new service economy, and from Christopher Bishop, laboratory director for Microsoft Research Cambridge, about a human/machine partnership in artificial intelligence. Read what they have to say.

Steve Clarke
Microsoft News Center Staff

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Introducing new Windows Defender Security Center in upcoming Windows 10 Creators Update http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/2017/01/23/introducing-new-windows-defender-security-center-in-upcoming-windows-10-creators-update/ Mon, 23 Jan 2017 19:23:25 +0000 http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/?p=335310 Read more »]]>

In the Windows 10 Creators Update, the new Windows Defender Security Center will make it easy for customers to view and manage security protections, device health and family settings in a centralized location in Windows 10.

Windows Insiders can explore the experience now and give feedback through the Insider Feedback hub.

Watch the video and go to Windows Blogs to learn more.

Vanessa Ho
Microsoft News Center Staff

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Join Microsoft at Bett to explore transformative technology in education, Jan. 25-28 http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/2017/01/23/join-microsoft-at-bett-to-explore-transformative-technology-in-education-jan-25-28/ Mon, 23 Jan 2017 18:34:22 +0000 http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/?p=335274 Read more »]]> Microsoft will be at Bett, an annual education technology trade show in London, on Jan. 25-28 to share technologies that are empowering educators and transforming classrooms.

Anthony Salcito, Microsoft vice president of Worldwide Education, with deliver a keynote speech and Microsoft will have a booth and sessions on Windows, Office, Skype, “Minecraft” and more.

Learn more on the Microsoft Education blog.

Vanessa Ho
Microsoft News Center Staff

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School Data Sync now available, streamlining operations for Office 365 Education admins and teachers worldwide http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/2017/01/23/school-data-sync-now-available-streamlining-operations-for-office-365-education-admins-and-teachers-worldwide/ Mon, 23 Jan 2017 18:23:29 +0000 http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/?p=335262 Read more »]]> School Data Sync, Microsoft’s online classroom automation solution, is now available in almost every country where Office 365 Education is available.

The tool helps schools create online classrooms from their student information systems. Maintaining online classrooms can be costly and time-consuming, since class rosters typically change throughout the year. But School Data Sync imports rosters from student information systems into Office 365 and automatically keeps them up to date, saving time for IT administrators and teachers.

Customers in 20-plus countries have already used the tool to sync more than 100,000 teachers and 2 million students. For a limited time, Microsoft is offering free one-on-one help to school IT administrators in deploying School Data Sync.

Learn more on Office Blogs.

Deborah Bach
Microsoft News Center Staff

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New video: Carlsberg uses tech to brew up personalized promotions, global teamwork http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/2017/01/23/new-video-carlsberg-taps-tech-to-brew-up-personalized-promotions-global-teamwork/ Mon, 23 Jan 2017 18:09:27 +0000 http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/?p=335214 Read more »]]>

Brewing superb beer requires a medley of subtle ingredients, a careful concoction that eventually fills your glass with golden goodness. Malted barley melds with hops. Then yeast joins the party. Finally, fermentation and filtration fuse the flavors.

In a word, collaboration.

Today, Carlsberg Group is using collaboration on a global scale to quench the thirst of consumers, cater to customers and transform employee interactions.

Carlsberg is using Azure to create “the connected bar,” where patrons enter a tavern, are instantly recognized by their consumer data and – based on what’s known about their individual tastes – learn about the latest beer promotions. Carlsberg’s 40,000 employees – spanning 27 countries – are also equipped with Office 365, using the same cloud productivity services to bust down geographical barriers that would otherwise stall teamwork.

Head over to the Transform blog to watch a video about the digital evolution at Carlsberg.

Bill Briggs
Microsoft News Center Staff

 

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