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Windows 8, Take 3: One giant leap for keyboard and mouse

Windows 8 in its original incarnation wasn’t just a learning curve for traditional PC users, with their old-fashioned mice and keyboards. It was a completely foreign experience, designed for tablets, and disorienting on the desktop. But now, on its third attempt, Microsoft is making its flagship product familiar again. An updated version of Windows 8.1,… Read More

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Microsoft is bringing the Start Menu back to Windows

How’s this for a new era at Microsoft? Microsoft operating systems chief Terry Myerson announced this morning that the company will be bringing a version of the traditional Start menu back to Windows 8 in a future update to the Microsoft operating system. The company had previously brought back the Start button, but clicking on… Read More

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Amazon enables returns through delivery lockers

Amazon is now letting customers return purchased items through its Amazon Lockers — a new feature of the large delivery lockers that have been installed in locations around North America and Europe. The feature, offered as an option for returns through Amazon’s site, was noted by the Wall Street Journal overnight. The process is essentially… Read More

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Microsoft exec Antoine Leblond leaving after nearly 25 years

Antoine Leblond, a Microsoft executive known for his leadership roles on the Office and Windows teams, is leaving the Redmond company after nearly 25 years. He’s the latest executive to leave Microsoft following last year’s “One Microsoft” reorganization and the more recent appointment of Satya Nadella as CEO. Earlier departures included Jon DeVaan, the longtime… Read More

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GeekWire Radio: Facebook + Oculus, Google Chromebook at college, and the meaning of Microsoft Office for iPad

We have lots to talk about on the GeekWire radio show this week, starting with Facebook’s surprising acquisition of Oculus, the virtual-reality technology company, for a whopping $2 billion. What does Mark Zuckerberg have in mind here? Facebook’s long-term relevance, for starters. From there we delve into one of the more intriguing stories of the… Read More

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Microsoft confirms Office for iPad — launching today

After years of speculation about its plans for Apple’s tablet, Microsoft will release Office for iPad — including Word, Excel and PowerPoint — at 11 a.m. today, the company just announced at a press briefing in San Francisco. Microsoft says the apps are designed feel native to the iPad but maintain file fidelity with other… Read More

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New forecast: PC market down 7% in 2014, tablets up 39%

Just in time for new Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella’s expected introduction of an Office suite for iPad today, new numbers from Gartner show how business and consumer buying trends are continuing to upend Microsoft’s traditional PC business. Worldwide shipments of traditional desktop and notebook PCs will decline by 6.6 percent, to 276.7 million units, the… Read More

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Candy Crash? King Digital slips 10% in IPO debut

King Digital Entertainment, the maker of the hit Candy Crush Saga game, is trading at nearly 10 percent below its opening share price of $22.50 in its high-profile debut this morning on the New York Stock Exchange. Shares of the Dublin-based company are currently trading around $20.23. The drop underscores investor concerns that the company… Read More

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Porch strikes deal with Realtor.com to deliver home-improvement reports

Home-improvement data startup Porch is partnering with Realtor.com to launch a new product, the “Porch Home & Neighborhood Report,” that promises to give prospective homebuyers new insight into the history of specific homes and neighborhoods. The partnership with Realtor.com, announced this morning, expands the Porch business into real estate while creating a new connection between… Read More

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Microsoft’s $7.2B Nokia deal is officially delayed until April

Nokia and Microsoft will have to wait a little longer to press the Start button. Microsoft’s $7.2 billion acquisition of Nokia’s devices and services business, originally expected to close this quarter, won’t be completed until April, the companies acknowledged tonight. Nokia announced the delay in a news release, saying that both companies are still committed to… Read More

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Xbox film crew’s excavation of Atari ‘ET’ graveyard gets tangled in red tape

A plan to excavate a suspected mass burial of Atari ET video-game cartridges for a Microsoft Xbox documentary has been blocked, at least temporarily, by environmental concerns at the site in Alamogordo, N.M. The Alamagordo Daily News reported this week that the New Mexico Environment Department has so far declined to give the waste excavation approval required… Read More

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GeekWire Bash, Full Results: Crowning our 2014 ping-pong and foosball champs

It was an epic night for geek sports as more than 150 competitors went head-to-head in our annual GeekWire Ping-Pong & Foosball Championships during the GeekWire Anniversary Bash at the Showbox SODO in Seattle. The final in the expert ping-pong division featured a clash between two past champions, as perennial champ Valeri Kim, representing Akvelon,… Read More

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Microsoft defends its Hotmail snooping in Windows leak investigation

Responding to criticism of its investigation into an alleged leak of company trade secrets, Microsoft acknowledged overnight that it searched a Hotmail customer’s Microsoft accounts without a court order — but described the action as “extraordinary” and announced that it will add a new layer of outside review when it encounters similar situations in the… Read More

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Microsoft board member steps down after less than 2 years

Seagate Technology CEO Stephen Luczo, who joined the Microsoft board in May 2012 and was part of its CEO search committee, is stepping down from the board of the Redmond company after less than two years in the role. His departure, announced this afternoon, leaves Microsoft with 10 members, including recently appointed member G. Mason… Read More