Thurrott Daily: October 8, 2015

Posted on October 8, 2015 by Paul Thurrott in Microsoft Surface, Skype, The Sams Report, Windows Phones, Xbox with 0

Thurrott Daily: October 8, 2015

Here’s what’s happening today.

10/8/2015 3:45:30 PM

Sway improves with OneDrive for Business integration

Microsoft announced today that Sway is now compatible with OneDrive for Business for those who sign-in to Sway with Office 365 work or school accounts.

Additionally, Sway for iPhone and iPad has been updated with new Comparison, Slideshow and Grid Group options and faster previewing. Plus, Microsoft has fixed a bug with image insertion. Sway for iOS is available from the Apple App Store.

10/8/2015 3:04:03 PM

About that custom NVIDIA GPU in certain Surface Book models…

It’s a “a Maxwell architecture-powered GeForce GPU with 1GB of video memory,” according to Microsoft News. “Maxwell is NVIDIA’s next-generation architecture for CUDA compute applications. Maxwell introduces an all-new design for the Streaming Multiprocessor (SM) that dramatically improves energy efficiency. Improvements to control logic partitioning, workload balancing, clock-gating granularity, compiler-based scheduling, number of instructions issued per clock cycle, and many other enhancements allow the Maxwell SM (also called SMM) to far exceed Kepler SMX efficiency.”

S. “Soma” Somasegar is leaving Microsoft after 27 years

Well, this was unexpected. Mary Jo Foley reports that Microsoft Developer Division Corporate Vice President S. “Soma” Somasegar [who was a champion of Microsoft embracing more open-source processes] is leaving Microsoft after a 27-year career at the company. “Microsoft is working on its transition plan now and is hoping to announce that plan in the next few weeks, a company spokesperson confirmed,” she writes.

Some iPhones 6S and 6S Plus handsets are better than others

Ewan Spence reports on the latest i-controversy: Some iPhone 6S and 6S Plus handsets feature Samsung-made A9 chips, while others have TSMC-made versions. And the ones made by “Samsung appear to be drawing more power and offering a shorter battery life,” he says. It doesn’t appear that you can find out which you have.

10/8/2015 10:59:54 AM

Weather Channel app comes to Windows 10

I missed this one in all the excitement around the Windows 10 devices event, but the Weather Channel app is now available for Windows 10. “Using the Weather Channel App, Windows 10 users receive customizable push alerts for severe weather, breaking news, lightning strikes, upcoming rain, and pollen counts. Users can also personalize their screen with new live tiles to stay current on local weather, or track conditions in favorite locations.” It works on both PCs and Windows 10 Mobile phones. You can download the app from the Windows Store.

10/8/2015 10:01:47 AM

Skype tries to make up for September 21 outage, fails

I received this message via email from Skype:

“On September 21, we experienced an issue that prevented us from delivering on our mission. We’re sorry for the technical issue we suffered that day. We know how important our service is to you and how frustrating outages like this can be. We also know that sometimes saying sorry just isn’t enough.”

I’m listening.

“To make it up to you, over the next few days we will add 20 minutes of free calls to over 60 landline and 8 mobile destinations around the world.”


“Make sure you look out for your free calls as they will be available to use for 7 days.”

Wait, what? 7 … days? LOL. Useless.

“Microsoft gave us a glimpse at what the future of computers could look like”

Wrong. They’ve been providing us with glimpses of the future of computers for years. What they’ve done is deliver the future of computers … today. Big difference.

Sony cuts PlayStation 4 pricing

The PlayStation 4 and Xbox One both launched two years ago this November, and Sony’s console has been putting the hurt on Xbox One ever since, leading to several rounds of Xbox One price cuts, configuration changes, and new bundles. Well, now it’s Sony’s turn: The PlayStation 4 is finally getting a price cut of its own in the U.S., Canada, and Japan.

So the U.S. price of the Sony PlayStation 4 is going from $399 to $349, matching the price of the Xbox One.

This tells me that demand has dried up, finally, and that Sony now has to work as hard as Microsoft to attract new customers. Or, as Sony puts it, “we aim to fuel momentum of PlayStation 4 toward the year-end holiday season.”

I can’t find up to date numbers, but the sales/usage gap between the PS4 and Xbox One must still be enormous, given that Sony’s console has outsold Microsoft’s worldwide every single month since their respective launches.


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