Friday 18 September 2009

Microsoft Offers Students Windows 7 Pro at Snow Leopard Prices Until January 2010

 MaTiCa    18 Sep : 17:59
 None    Software

Its a good time to be a student, thanks in part to a sweet Windows 7 discount from Microsoft

Windows 7 is getting closer to its October 22 launch date. With improved security, better compatibility, and a slick new look, the OS should please owners of both powerful and underpowered machines alike. Microsoft has already offered hot pre-order deals, but now it has announced its sweetest deal of them all.

Students with a valid student email address are eligible to get a copy of Windows 7 Home Premium or Professional, 32-bit or 64-bit (your choice, presumably some might pick the lighter Home Premium for netbooks) for a mere $30. And with one announcement, Microsoft has essentially matched Apple's OS price point for one of its most pivotal demographics -- students.

Apple beat Windows 7 to the market and has been loudly trumpeting that its Snow Leopard -- priced at $29 per license -- beats Windows 7 in prices. However, students in the U.S., U.K, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Korea and Mexico will now have their pick between the two competitors at virtually identical prices.

With Snow Leopard, students will get several key improvements (virtually all of Apple's core software was fine-tuned and sped up), but the release falls somewhere between a full Windows OS release and a Windows Service Pack. For an equivalent price they can get Windows 7, a full OS release packing many features that have drawn rave reviews from early adopters. The deal is sweet for users of traditional PC hardware and Macs alike, as even Mac users can take advantage of it to equip their Boot Camp Macs with Windows 7 for gaming and Windows-favored activities.

The deal is found on the site, a recently launched site from Microsoft, which calls the offer "too sweet to pass up." The site proclaims, "For a limited time, eligible college students can get the sweetest deal on Windows 7 - for only $29.99 USD. That's less than most of your textbooks! Hurry -- offer ends January 3, 2010 and 12 a.m. CST."

One major appeal of the deal is that with Windows 7 and a netbook, students get about the most portable and affordable bundle possible for a fully functional computer.

The move seems a smart one, given that Apple does have Microsoft beat on standard prices, with a copy of Home Premium (upgrade) retailing for $120 and $200 for a Professional upgrade (versus $29 for Snow Leopard). With the price bar set nearly four times as high as Apple's, the pressure is on Microsoft to deliver a dynamite product -- which indications show it will.

Still, Snow Leopard's aggressive pricing has caused it to double the initial sales of its predecessor, Leopard, and quadruple the sales of Tiger. Apple has also been much more aggressive in targeting school children, with programs such as "Field Trip to the Apple Store" in the U.S. and Canada. Many schools continue to use Mac computers primarily. All of this bodes well for Apple's long term success. However, Microsoft is at last making a legitimate bid to seize this important demographic from Apple.

SOURCE: DailyTech

Windows 7 Graphic1

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Wednesday 16 September 2009

Google aims big with Chrome v3.0

 MaTiCa    16 Sep : 17:53
 None    Software

Looking to add yet more shine to the appeal of its Chrome browser as a simple but speedy alternative to the likes of Internet Explorer and Firefox, platform maker Google has unveiled a stable downloadable version of Chrome v3.0.

Looking to add yet more shine to the appeal of its Chrome browser as a simple but speedy alternative to the likes of Internet Explorer and Firefox, platform maker Google has unveiled a stable downloadable version of Chrome v3.0.

Marking a full year of activity and availability in the hard-fought Web browsing arena, Google’s latest release touts a significant percent performance improvement and comes as the California-based search giant strives to secure a 10 percent market share for its Chrome browser by 2011.

“If at the two-year birthday we’re not at least 5 percent (market share), I will be exceptionally disappointed,??? commented Chrome Engineering Director Linus Upson in a Reuters report.

“And if at the three-year birthday we’re not at 10 percent, I will be exceptionally disappointed,??? he added.

Beyond providing Chrome users with enhanced surf speed, version 3.0 also includes aesthetic themes, which, much like Personas for Firefox, allows personal customisation of the browser’s appearance.

The release of Chrome version 3.0 comes in the same week Google has promised to have a stable Mac version of its sleek browser ready for full consumer download by the close of 2009.

In terms of current market share figures, research firm Net Applications offers that Microsoft’s Internet Explorer is enjoying dominance to the tune of 67 percent, while Mozilla’s Firefox has a secure second place with 23 percent, and Apple’s Safari browser sits in third with 4.0 percent.

SOURCE: The Tech Herald

Chrome 14

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Thursday 10 September 2009

Microsoft Instructs Best Buy Employees on How to Trash Linux

 Christo [PCD]    10 Sep : 09:09
 None    Software

Microsoft pulls no punches, but misses on the facts in its humorous training brochure

Microsoft pulls no punches, but misses on the facts in its humorous training brochure

Typically, it's Apple doing the trash talking in the operating system market with its long running "Get a Mac" series of commercials. However, an increasingly feisty Microsoft is following up its "Laptop Hunter" commercials with a roast of Linux.

Microsoft and Best Buy's management has been reportedly distributing "training materials" to Best Buy employees, which educate them on Microsoft's view on difference between Linux and Windows. Reportedly, the idea is for the employees to then share this enlightened viewpoint with their customers.

An employee recently took screenshots of the "educational" training program. Its introduction reads, "Windows offers your customer choice and compatibility. A PC sale is not just about the PC, its also about the software and devices you attach to the sale. Since fewer software applications and devices work with Linux machines, your customers' PC experience will be negatively impacted. It is also more difficult for you to attach compatible add-ons to the sale."

It goes on to list tables with "Camera, iPod, and MP3 compatibility" and "Printers and scanners compatibility" being described as "many" for Windows and "few" for Linux. It also lists an ambiguous "Authorized Support" which it claims Linux is lacking, ignoring the fact that many Linux distributions do have support teams. It also mentions that Linux users can't play games like "World of Warcraft", which Windows users can. Ironically, Linux users can in fact use WoW within the free WINE.

The screen also humorously complains that Linux doesn't have support for video chat and can't support Windows Live essentials, failing to note that Linux provides a wealth of alternatives. To top it off, reportedly the training program then quizzes the reader on what they learned. One question reads "Linux is safer than Windows: ( ) fact ( ) myth". Answering "fact" earns you a glaring "incorrect" response.

Without question Microsoft has come a long way in security, but it's still a huge stretch to say that Linux is targeted by malware and attacks to an equal or greater extent than Windows.

Leaked screenshots from a Best Buy and Microsoft's Windows training program indicate that the company is "educating" employees on why Linux is horrible. (Source: ZDNet)

[Submitted by Christo [PCD]]

1 1252566181 Micros

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