Thurrott Daily: June 16

Posted on June 16, 2016 by Paul Thurrott in Android, iOS, Mobile, Office, Social, Windows Phones with 0

Thurrott Daily: June 16

I went hands-on with a near-final HP Elite x3 today.

Tech tidbits from around the web.

6/16/2016 7:02:13 PM

Microsoft buys Wand Labs

Yep, I don’t know what they are either. So I’ll let them explain it.

Microsoft has acquired messaging app developer Wand Labs. This acquisition accelerates our vision and strategy for Conversation as a Platform, which Satya Nadella introduced at our Build 2016 conference in March.

Wand Labs’ technology and talent will strengthen our position in the emerging era of conversational intelligence, where we bring together the power of human language with advanced machine intelligence — connecting people to knowledge, information, services and other people in more relevant and natural ways. It builds on and extends the power of the Bing, Microsoft Azure, Office 365 and Windows platforms to empower developers everywhere.

The Wand team [will] join the Bing engineering and platform team.

The First Big Company to Say It’s Serving the Legal Marijuana Trade? Microsoft.

“We do think there will be significant growth,” said Kimberly Nelson, the executive director of state and local government solutions at Microsoft.

Pardon the pun.

Xbox One Backwards Compatibility list swells to 200 Xbox 360 games

Neowin notes a nice milestone:

Microsoft has added five more titles to the list of Xbox 360 games that are backward compatible with the Xbox One. The fresh additions bring the Backward Compatibility list to a new milestone: it now has over 200 games on it, or more specifically, 203.

This seems to be going nicely.

Microsoft rolls out new Insider update for Office Mobile on Windows 10 phones and tablets

Again, Neowin has the story:

Microsoft has released a new Office Insider preview for those using its Office Mobile apps on Windows 10 phones and tablets.

Office Mobile build 17.7070 is now available for those enrolled in both the Office Insider and Windows Insider Programs. This latest preview introduces a range of new features for Word, Excel and PowerPoint on mobile devices, ahead of their general release to other users.

New features include more font and shape colors in Office 2016, more formatting options with export to OpenDocument in Office 2016, new Draw tab available for Word and PowerPoint 2016 on Windows Phone, more background formatting options for PowerPoint 2016, and more open file options with Excel 2016.

Facebook announces a major update to its Messenger app

I’ll let Facebook explain itself.

With over 900 million people using Messenger every month, Messenger is the place where you can connect with the people and businesses you care about most … We’ve been thinking about how we can make it simpler and easier to find what you want to start a conversation.

Now, you’ll see your conversations and ways to connect right where you need them most. You’ll still see the first few most recent messages at the top of your screen, followed by a new Favorites section, which highlights people you message most frequently, so you can quickly pick up your last conversation.

We’re also adding helpful reminders like people’s birthdays so you can wish them a happy day.

I’m not sure when this started, but you can now make Facebook Messenger your default SMS/MMS app on Android only too.

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