Thurrott Daily: March 17

Posted on March 17, 2016 by Paul Thurrott in Android, iOS, Mobile, Office, Windows 10, Windows Phones, Xbox One with 0

Thurrott Daily: March 17

Happy St. Patrick’s Day. A few tech tidbits from around the web.

3/17/2016 10:32:00 AM

Outlook Groups for Windows phones updated to support Windows 10 Mobile

The Outlook Groups app for Windows phones got a big update today. New to this release are:

  • Native Windows 10 support
  • Dark and Light theme support
  • High contrast support
  • Multi attachment support
  • Upgraded conversations view
  • Minor bug fixes

3/17/2016 10:28:41 AM

Microsoft will bring HDR gaming to DirectX 12 in 2017

A report in DualShockers explains what that means:

At the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, Microsoft held a panel to illustrate the latest advancements in DirectX 12 technology.

Microsoft predicts that adoption of High Dynamic Range will be faster than that of 4k. It’s more clearly noticeable to users than 4k, with several TV models that have begun shopping. It’s very difficult for the average consumer to tell the difference between 1080p and 4k unless they get very close to the screen, whereas HDR is something that end users, not just professional graphics artists can see the advantage of.

On a fundamental level, HDR allows a display to emit a peak brightness for certain pixels that is a hundred times higher than on today’s TVs. You can’t run every pixel at that brightness, but having parts of it like stars of floodlights with that kind of brightness is a “big win,”

Windows will allow content to access that additional value.

Actually, there’s a lot more to it. Be sure to check out the original report.

Office Insider program updated on Android

Microsoft this week delivered a new update to the Office Insider program on Android, with new versions of the Word, Excel, and PowerPoint apps. Here’s what’s new:

  • Send any Word, Excel or PowerPoint document as a PDF
  • Open an RTF document in the Word App
  • Insert a picture from camera in the Word and Excel apps
  • Convert a table to a range in the Excel app
  • Apply Morph transitions to your slides to move several objects at once.

Uber app updated with Family profiles

The Uber app for Windows 10 and Windows phones has been updated to support Family Profiles. Uber explains:

One feature passengers have frequently requested is an easy way to pay for family and friends. That’s why we are excited to announce Family Profiles, a new feature we’re launching in Atlanta, Dallas and Phoenix that lets up to 10 riders safely and easily share one payment method.

While we’ve called this feature Family Profiles, we let you decide who is family. It’s a great way to help loved ones, friends or coworkers get where they want to go while you foot the bill. Whether you’re a parent with kids away at college or a daughter wanting to help your parents maintain their independence, it’s never been easier to share some Uber love around to the people that matter most in your life.

The bad news? It only works in Atlanta, Dallas and Phoenix right now.

Teltra goes over the top with Windows 10 designs in retail stores

I’m not an arm of Microsoft marketing, so I’ll let the software giant explainhow excited it is by Telstra’s recent retail store makeover in Australia. (Remember that former Nokia CEO Stephen Elop recently joined this firm.)

Telstra is Australia’s leading telecommunications company, with more than 370 stores across the country.

Telstra has introduced a highly interactive and engaging experience throughout the store. A key part of this solution was implementing Windows 10 and the Universal Windows App Platform, which allowed Telstra to develop and deploy engaging and adaptable content and applications across a broad range of devices and displays throughout the store, where customers browse, test, learn and compare products and services to help them in the decision-making process.

Apple signs on with Google cloud services

So this is what going “totally thermonuclear” looks like post-Jobs: “Partnering.” Reuters reports:

Apple Inc recently started using Google’s cloud service even as it simultaneously builds its own data centers to reduce its reliance on third-party service providers.

Apple currently also uses’s and Microsoft’s cloud services, but intends to end its reliance on all its rivals in the next few years.

The iPhone maker is spending between $400 million and $600 million on Google’s cloud services.

“Apple enlists help of Cookie Monster to highlight ‘Hey Siri’ in new iPhone 6s ad”

Because only a serious addict would ever use Siri for anything.


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