The Verge posted a report today about “HTC preparing a 5-inch phone with 1080p display for September”. Yes, it’s a rumour, but I think even if this phone isn’t real and it isn’t released we will start seeing 1080p (1920×1080, but probably 1794×1080 on Android smartphones because of the onscreen navigation buttons introduced in Ice Cream Sandwich) screens on smartphones soon. But it isn’t needed, in my opinion. Why? Because with 720p screens (usually 1280×720 or 1280×800) on even large phones like the 4.8inch Samsung Galaxy S III and the 5.3inch Samsung Galaxy Note you usually can’t see the individual pixels. And since a 1080p screen wouldn’t actually make any more content appear on screen (it would be scaled), there really is no point except for marketing hype.
Sure, a 1080p screen on a phone would be great for adverts, but if people got the phone in question and a similar sized phone with “just” a 720p screen, they wouldn’t be able to tell the difference. People would pay more for an unnoticeable feature.
Maybe I’m wrong, and the higher res. screen would make a world of difference. But usually once a screen gets past a certain dpi, and the human eye can’t see individual pixels, more pixels added won’t make a difference… unless we all start seeing the world with microscopes. Which, I suppose, could happen.
My mockup of a “HTC One 1080p”
To show users how to use Windows 8, the tutorial below will show at the Out Of Box Experience. If you have a touch device, you’ll see exactly the following below (touch demo than mouse/keyboard demo). Mouse/keyboard only users will just see the later demo. From Paul Thurrott’s SuperSite for Windows:
What do you think of them?
Do I need to say any more?
Windows 8 is finished! Microsoft have just announced it in two blog posts, and I recommend you read both to get the full picture. You can find them here and here.
And some dates! MSDN and TechNet subscribers can get their hands on 15th August, not the rumoured 1st September that I’ve previously blogged about. And there are some more dates in the second blog post mentioned.]
So, hurry up 26th October!
A lot of people were getting confused when switching to the amazing Outlook.com mail, but someone has helpfully put a forum post on The Verge explaining how to switch and how to get an awesome new @outlook.com address. I recommend you view it:
I personally find Outlook to be 5 stars – yes, I am a bit of a Microsoft fan but reviewers are also saying this is quite good, so do give it a try. Remember, you can always switch back to Hotmail for a while (providing you had a Hotmail account in the first place – if you created a brand new Outlook account, you won’t be able to) though eventually this will replace Hotmail. RIP. But it’s time to move on – when a service is 16 years old, especially an internet service, it needs a refresh.
Who’s signed up for Outlook? And what do you think?
I haven’t got time to write much about this brilliant turn of events, but basically Microsoft is replacing the (very) old Hotmail with a brand new Outlook.com, which has a metro-style interface and some nice new features. The transition will happen over time and is optional now, but you can try a preview by heading over to http://outlook.com/ and logging in with your Hotmail account. You can get a new Outlook email address as well (I have) and still get your old email, or just create an Outlook alias.
My rating for the service? 10/10. It’s the best of Hotmail, with a new name and (finally!) a design better than Gmail’s.
For more information, see the official blog post and here, here, here and here.
Let me know your thoughts on Microsoft’s new email service!
Update: Windows 8 did indeed RTM on 1st August, but MSDN/TechNet subscribers will get Windows 8 on 15th August - not 1st September as this post suggests. See this post for more information.
Rumours are everywhere at the moment about Windows 8, saying many different things. But it seems that Windows 8, scheduled to RTM in “the first week of August” will RTM tomorrow, 1st August. This is when Windows 8 will be completely finished and the OEMs (Dell etc.) will get copies to put on PCs ready for 26th October.
One rumour is that MSDN/TechNet subscribers (who usually get Microsoft stuff early) will be able to access Windows 8 from 1st September onwards. This is a little disappointing, especially because these people got Windows 7 days after the RTM, and there’s nothing stopping Microsoft from releasing it, say, next week. But this is a rumour, and the software giant could let the subscribers get it sooner than next month.
In RTM related news, it appears that Microsoft have added some more Start screen patterns for the final release. Throughout the 3 previews, Microsoft have added more customisation options to Windows 8. In the Developer Preview, there was basically no start screen customisation and people were stuck with green and a single pattern. I think the original idea was to have a non-customisable single (different) colour for each preview release, and options in the final release. However, people complained and in the Consumer Preview a small choice of colours and 6 patterns (including no pattern) were available. In the Release Preview, a load more colours but the same 6 patterns were available. But for the final release, Microsoft have kept the RP colours but added a load more patterns (making Windows 8 customisable enough that people won’t mind not being able to set an image as the Start screen background). Here they are, from Win8china.com:
Some of them look a little… childish to me (a little like Hotmail’s themes though these will change with the upcoming metro redesign) so I’m glad the existing themes in the Release Preview are still there, as I like my Start screen just the way it is:
I personally think it’s great. Way better than the hills of XP and the Windows logo of 7 (I’ve never used Vista).
After many incorrect dates rumoured about the release of Office 2013 (codenamed Office 15) beta, it seems like it may finally be released on Monday.
It seems to have taken a while – earlier this year, a select group of people got access to a Technical Preview, but this was never made public. And the RTM/GA date seems to have been delayed – instead of being available in early 2013, it may instead be available in mid 2013. And for those of you who know that Windows RT will come with Office 2013 RT pre-installed, it’s bad news. Because Windows RT ships around October time, with RTM early next month. And Office 2013 RT won’t be ready then. So will it ship with a beta version? Office 2010? Nothing? And then will it get an update with Office 2013 RT when it’s available? Only Microsoft knows.
Onto the topic of naming – it most likely, following the Windows 8 names, won’t be called a ‘beta’, though it actually is. The Windows 8 beta is called the Consumer Preview, so what with Office 2013 beta be called? I’m guessing Consumer Preview, or simply Preview. And for the RT version? Probably Office 2013 RT.
Only Microsoft knows whether the Preview will be released on Monday. It probably will though – yesterday (?) Microsoft started an “Office Next” blog, so it’s likely it will be released soon. (The bad thing is I’m away the week on the release… annoying!!).
It’s been quite a busy week for Microsoft, with them announcing 2 Surface tablets, Windows Phone 8, Windows Phone 7.8 and some more minor news, such as the Audible app finally being released for Windows Phone.
I’m not going to attempt to cover all the information by myself, so here are links to The Verge‘s relevant articles:
I recommend watching Windows Weekly 256, which will cover most, if not all, of these topics. Paul Thurrott and Mary Jo Foley discuss the latest Microsoft news each week, and this week will be especially interesting. You will be able to watch it at http://twit.tv/ww.
What do you think of this week’s Microsoft news? Are the Surface tablets an iPad killer? Will their launch hurt sales of Dell’s, Asus’ etc. Windows 8/RT tablets? Will you buy one?