Mac growth topped Windows for 25th consecutive quarter in Q2

By on July 13, 2012 at 3:15 PM.

Mac growth topped Windows for 25th consecutive quarter in Q2

Mac Growth Q2 2012

Shipments of Apple computers appear to have outgrown Windows PC shipments for the 25th consecutive quarter in Q2 2012, reports Fortune’s Philip Elmer-Dewitt. Following the release of Gartner’s second-quarter PC market estimates, Fortune has published the results of a survey that polled 61 different analysts in search of a consensus. The results are in: Wall Street analysts see Apple having shipped 4.41 million Macs last quarter, and independent analysts put the figure at 4.49 million. In either case, Apple, which shipped 3.95 million Macs in the second calendar quarter last year, would have enjoyed growth that handily tops the decline the global Windows PC market saw in the June quarter. Of course, it’s comparatively easy to grow when you have nowhere to go but up — as of the end of June, Net Applications estimates Microsoft’s share of the desktop operating system market to be 92.23% compared to just 6.72% for the Mac platform. More →

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NPD: Ultrabooks are saving the high-end notebook market

By on June 29, 2012 at 11:00 PM.

NPD: Ultrabooks are saving the high-end notebook market

Ultrabook Sales Share Increase

For people who want super-thin computers and who don’t feel like paying more than $2,000 for a Retina MacBook Pro, ultrabooks are a blessing. And according to the NPD Group, ultrabooks are helping to keep the U.S. notebook market afloat as they “are off to a fast start capturing nearly 11 percent of all $700+ Windows notebooks sales at U.S. retail through the first five months of 2012.” What’s more, ultrabooks’ share of Windows notebooks costing at least $700 has steadily climbed month by month this year, going from just over 6% in January to more than 15% in May. NPD says strong ultrabook sales are welcome news for the Windows notebook industry, which has seen overall sales of laptops costing $700 or more fall 3% through the first five months of 2012. Full press release after the jump. More →

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Microsoft offers free Xbox 360 to PC buyers

By on May 18, 2012 at 4:10 PM.

Microsoft offers free Xbox 360 to PC buyers

Free Microsoft Xbox Promotion

Microsoft is looking to bolster sales of Windows-powered computers this summer by offering students a free Xbox 360 video game console with a qualifying PC purchase. Beginning on May 18th in Canada and on May 20th in the United States, students who purchase a PC for at least $599 CAD in Canada or $699 in the U.S. will receive a free 4GB Xbox 360. Purchases must be made from participating retailers including Best Buy, Dell.com, Fry’s Electronics, HPDirect.com, Microsoft Stores and NewEgg.com in the U.S., and Best Buy, Dell.ca, Future Shop, Staples and The Source in Canada. Microsoft did not indicate when the promotion ends. More →

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Angry Birds has been downloaded more than a billion times [video]

By on May 9, 2012 at 1:40 PM.

Angry Birds has been downloaded more than a billion times [video]

Angry Birds iPhone Android

Rovio on Wednesday announced that its Angry Birds franchise has surpassed one billion downloads across Android, iOS, Windows and Mac OS X, with 350 million downloads having been served in 2012 alone. The latest Birds installment, Angry Birds Space, was downloaded more than 10 million time in less than three days and a whopping 50 million times in 35 days, making it the fastest growing mobile game of all time. The immensely popular franchise generated $106 million for the company in 2011 and drew in 200 million active monthly users. Rovio’s video announcement follows below. More →

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Apple is 10 years behind Microsoft on security, expert says

By on April 26, 2012 at 5:35 PM.

Apple is 10 years behind Microsoft on security, expert says

Apple may be the most valuable company in the world, but when it comes to security, the Cupertino-based company doesn’t hold a candle to Microsoft. Kaspersky Lab co-founder and chief executive Eugene Kaspersky on Wednesday told CBR that Apple is a decade behind Microsoft in terms of computer security. “I think they are ten years behind Microsoft in terms of security,” Kaspersky said. “For many years I’ve been saying that from a security point of view there is no big difference between Mac and Windows. It’s always been possible to develop Mac malware, but [Flashback] was a bit different. For example it was asking questions about being installed on the system and, using vulnerabilities, it was able to get to the user mode without any alarms.” More than 600,000 Macs were infected by the Flashback trojan virus before it was discovered earlier this month and the exploit it used to infect OS X PCs was patched. “Apple will understand very soon that they have the same problems Microsoft had ten or 12 years ago,” Kaspersky said. “They will have to make changes in terms of the cycle of updates and so on and will be forced to invest more into their security audits for the software.”

More →

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Pre-launch Windows 8 usage doubles that of OS X Mountain Lion

By on April 26, 2012 at 2:45 PM.

Pre-launch Windows 8 usage doubles that of OS X Mountain Lion

Since Microsoft released its Windows 8 Consumer Preview in February, millions of users have downloaded the software giant’s latest operating system, which looks to carefully blend its existing mobile and desktop experiences into one. According to research from ad network Chitika, the Windows 8 CP adoption rate in the U.S. and Canada has doubled that of OS X Mountain Lion, Apple’s upcoming operating system. Of course Microsoft’s Windows 8 preview is publicly available for free while Apple’s Mountain Lion preview is available only to those with paid developer accounts. Chitika’s research was conducted from April 13th to April 19th and it analyzed hundreds of millions of impressions across the Chitika ad network. The Consumer Preview makes up .1% of all Windows traffic and exhibits traffic levels more than three times the peak level that the Windows 8 Developer Preview produced. The increased level of activity is a good sign for Microsoft, which will reportedly complete work on Windows 8 this summer. According to rumors, the first wave of PCs and tablets powered by the new platform are slated to launch in October. More →

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Though risks are minimal, one in five Mac computers found to contain Windows malware

By on April 24, 2012 at 11:00 PM.

Though risks are minimal, one in five Mac computers found to contain Windows malware

Security firm Sophos on Tuesday indicated that a surprisingly high level of malware has been found on Mac computers — the firm’s research revealed that one in every five Mac computers is harboring some kind of Windows malware. Of the 100,000 customers sampled through Sophos’s antivirus offerings, 20% of users were found to be carrying one or more instances of Windows malware. The firm highlighted that Windows malware on a Mac won’t cause any harm, however, unless the computer also runs a Windows partition in addition to OS X. The company’s research found that just 2.7% of Macs that installed the company’s free anti-virus software were infected by OS X malware. Nearly all of the OS X malware discovered was an iteration of the “Flashback” trojan called “Flshplyr.” Sophos said that cybercriminals may find Macs to be targets because OS X users are less likely to be running an anti-virus software, however Macs can get viruses and the right software can keep a user’s computer safe. A second pie chart follows below. More →

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Microsoft posts Q3 beat: Operating income grows to $6.37 billion on $17.41 billion in sales

By on April 19, 2012 at 4:03 PM.

Microsoft posts Q3 beat: Operating income grows to $6.37 billion on $17.41 billion in sales

Following the huge loss reported by major mobile partner Nokia, Microsoft posted its fiscal third-quarter results on Thursday following the close of the market. Wall Street was expecting the software giant’s earnings to slide 7% year-over-year to $0.57 per share on sales of $17.18 billion, up 5% from the same quarter in 2011. Microsoft reported earnings of $0.60 per share, beating estimates, and revenue came in at $17.41 billion. Operating income totaled $6.37 billion, up 12% year-over-year. Read on for more. More →

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Microsoft reveals three editions of its next-generation operating system

By on April 17, 2012 at 8:55 AM.

Microsoft reveals three editions of its next-generation operating system

Microsoft on Monday announced that there will be three editions of its next-generation Windows 8 operating system: Windows 8, Windows 8 Pro and Windows RT. The Redmond-based company detailed each edition on its blog and promised “all editions of Windows 8 offer a no-compromise experience.” Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro will support PCs and tablets powered by x86 processors, while Windows RT will be reserved for ARM-powered devices. The basic edition of Windows 8 is aimed at the average consumer, while the Windows 8 Pro edition is designed for tech enthusiasts and business and technical professionals and the RT edition is aimed at lighter-duty devices. More →

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Microsoft’s Windows and Windows Phone roadmap reportedly leaks

By on April 12, 2012 at 2:15 PM.

Microsoft’s Windows and Windows Phone roadmap reportedly leaks

Images of Microsoft’s product roadmap for partners have leaked onto the web. The documents were posted on Twitter by Maartin Visser, who discovered the them on the Microsoft Partner Network. The purported roadmap reveals new details regarding the next versions of upcoming products, including Office 15, Internet Explorer 10 and Windows Phone. Microsoft’s IE 10 could be out by mid-year according to the roadmap, possibly around around the same time as the Windows 8 Release Candidate. Office 15 is expected to enter its beta-testing phase midway through 2012 and become available in the early part of 2013. Window Phone will see “future investments” somewhere around the third quarter of this year, possibly indicating an Apollo launch. A second image can found after the break. More →

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Windows Vista enters extended support, XP support ends in 2014

By on April 10, 2012 at 2:50 PM.

Windows Vista enters extended support, XP support ends in 2014

Microsoft products fit into two different life cycle stages — mainstream support and extended support. With mainstream support, users receive free security updates, stability improvements, bug fixes and occasional new features. In the extended support phase, security updates are available for free but other fixes require paid support. Microsoft reminded Windows XP users earlier this week that XP is now in the extended phase, and it said support for the operating system and Office 2003 will be officially discontinued by April 2014. Mainstream support for Windows Vista has also officially ended as of Tuesday, along with support for Office 2007. Both Windows Vista and Office 2007 will be in the extended support phase from now until April 2017. Microsoft recommends that users with PCs running Windows XP and Office 2003 should migrate to Windows 7 and Office 2010 before support is completely cut off and systems are left vulnerable to new forms of malware. More →

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Selling used Android phones poses huge identity theft risk, expert says

By on March 30, 2012 at 1:25 PM.

Selling used Android phones poses huge identity theft risk, expert says

Android users who are looking to sell their old devices should be wary of the possible consequences. McAfee identity theft researcher Robert Siciliano warned that personal data from Android devices is not completely removed after a user activates the built-in wipe option, The Los Angeles Times reported on Friday. “What’s really scary is even if you follow protocol, the data is still there,” Siciliano said. If you have a BlackBerry or Apple device, Siciliano said your data can be fully deleted by following the manufacturer’s directions. As for smartphones running the Android operating system and computers running Windows XP, Siciliano recommends that people don’t bother with selling them at all. “Put it in the back of a closet, or put it in a vise and drill holes in the hard drive, or if you live in Texas take it out into a field and shoot it,” he said. “You don’t want to sell your identity for 50 bucks.” To test the security of various platforms, Siciliano purchased 30 smartphones and computers from Craigslist. The researcher was able to access personal data from 15 of the 30 devices through his own hacking efforts and the help of a forensic expert. The data obtained included bank account information, Social Security numbers, child support documents and credit card account log-ins. More →

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Galaxy Nexus user defeats Windows Phone in challenge, Microsoft calls foul

By on March 26, 2012 at 11:05 AM.

Galaxy Nexus user defeats Windows Phone in challenge, Microsoft calls foul

After learning about Microsoft’s latest “Smoked by Windows Phone” challenge, Sahas Katta visited his local Microsoft store equipped with confidence and his trusty Samsung Galaxy Nexus. The Windows Phone challenge is issued to users with non-Windows Phone handsets, and it calls for these users to perform a variety of tasks faster than a Microsoft store sales associate armed with a Windows Phone. Microsoft was rewarding 10 winners a limited edition Hunger Games PC (HP Folio 13 Special Edition) valued at $1,049.00, and challengers who lose are given the option to trade in their current smartphone for an unlocked Windows Phone device. After waiting for his turn to challenge an employee, Katta’s task was to “bring up the weather of two different cities.” Katta smirked, knowing he had two weather widgets on his home screen. Victory was all but certain, until the employee proclaimed victory “just because.” Read on for more. More →

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