Posts Tagged ‘Microsoft’

Microsoft’s Next-gen Console, Xbox 720 Specs Leaked

Written by Gradly on . Posted in blog, Consoles, Gadgets, Games, Microsoft, Rumors, Xbox One

Xbox 720 Specs Leaked

Xbox 720 Specs Leaked

Microsoft‘s Next-gen console, Xbox 720, codenamed Durango, is said to be powered by an 8-core CPU clocked at 1.6 GHz and an 800-MHz graphics processor with 12 shader cores providing a performance of about 1.2 teraflops. This comes on par with specs revealed recently.

The console will sport an 8GB DDR3 RAM with 32 MB of fast embedded SRAM. And for the first time it will be capable of reading Blu-ray discs up to 50GB at x6 read speeds. According to VGleaks, the full reported specs below:

Durango system block diagram

Durango system block diagram

Full specs list:
CPU:

– x64 Architecture – 8 CPU cores running at 1.6 gigahertz (GHz) – each CPU thread has its own 32 KB L1 instruction cache and 32 KB L1 data cache – each module of four CPU cores has a 2 MB L2 cache resulting in a total of 4 MB of L2 cache – each core has one fully independent hardware thread with no shared execution resources – each hardware thread can issue two instructions per clock

GPU:

– custom D3D11.1 class 800-MHz graphics processor – 12 shader cores providing a total of 768 threads – each thread can perform one scalar multiplication and addition operation (MADD) per clock cycle – at peak performance, the GPU can effectively issue 1.2 trillion floating-point operations per second High-fidelity Natural User Interface (NUI) sensor is always present

Storage and Memory:

– 8 gigabyte (GB) of RAM DDR3 (68 GB/s) – 32 MB of fast embedded SRAM (ESRAM) (102 GB/s) – from the GPU’s perspective the bandwidths of system memory and ESRAM are parallel providing combined peak bandwidth of 170 GB/sec. – Hard drive is always present – 50 GB 6x Blu-ray Disc drive

Networking: – Gigabit Ethernet – Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi Direct Hardware Accelerators: – Move engines – Image, video, and audio codecs – Kinect multichannel echo cancellation (MEC) hardware – Cryptography engines for encryption and decryption, and hashing

Sony PS4 and Microsoft Xbox 720 Rumors Round-up

Written by Gradly on . Posted in blog, Consoles, Gadgets, Games, Microsoft, PS4, Rumors, Sony, Xbox One

Sony PS4 and Microsoft Xbox 720 Rumors Round-up

Sony PS4 and Microsoft Xbox 720 Rumors Round-up

The rumor mill regarding Sony and Microsoft next-gen consoles will not stop before the grand unveil which is due in June E3 game exhibition or a bit earlier.

A look at what you expect from both consoles, Playstation 4, PS4 (internally referred to as Orbis) and its Microsoft rival XBox 720 (internally referred to as Durango). Both consoles will feature 8-core CPUs clocked at 1.6GHz based on the new “Jaguar” technology by AMD which is currently in development. The new technology is said to offer great power consumption and raw performance.

Orbis will sport a SoC architecture packed with the latest GPU Radeon 7970M running at 850MHz and featuring 20 of AMD’s “Graphics Core Next” compute units. This specs offer up to 1.84 teraflops metric. On the other side, Durango, will probably use Radeon HD 8770 GPU, featuring 1.23 teraflops. This gives PS4 about 50% of raw power advantage.

Orbis is also said to feature 4GB of GDDR5 RAM with 512MB reserved for the operating system. While Durango is rumored to sport a set of 8GB DDR3 RAM of which 3GB reserved for the OS.

Take these speculations with a bunch of salt and expect more information and leaks on the way.

Windows Head Steven Sinofsky Leaving Microsoft

Written by Gradly on . Posted in blog, Microsoft, News

Windows Head Steven Sinofsky Leaving Microsoft

Windows Head Steven Sinofsky Leaving Microsoft

Microsoft head of Windows division, Steven Sinofsky, has left the company and Julie Larson-Green will take over his position. According to New York Times, The departure of Mr. Sinfosky, a 23-year veteran of the company, described as a mutual decision by Mr. Sinofsky and Steven A. Ballmer, the chief executive of the company.

This is a similar situation to Forstall leaving Apple earlier this month. Mr. Sinofsky said:

It is impossible to count the blessings I have received over my years at Microsoft. I am humbled by the professionalism and generosity of everyone I have had the good fortune to work with at this awesome company.

Some might notice a bit of chatter speculating about this decision or timing. I can assure you that none could be true as this was a personal and private choice that in no way reflects any speculation or theories one might read-about me, opportunity, the company or its leadership.

Steve Ballmer’s letter to the Microsoft team:

Over the past few months we have delivered the foundation for a new era for Microsoft. From Office to Bing to Windows Phone and Windows Azure, to Xbox and of course Windows and Surface and everything in between, we’ve unleashed a huge wave of devices and services that people and businesses love. I simply couldn’t be more proud of the effort you have all put in to get us here and to set the foundation for our future. At the Windows launch in New York, at the Windows Phone event in San Francisco, and again at the Build event on Redmond campus, I was struck that while externally many people look at these events as the finish line, they really represent the starting line of a new era.

As we enter this new era, and with the successful launch of Windows 8 and Surface behind us, Steven Sinofsky has decided to leave the company. Steven joined Microsoft in 1989 as a software development engineer and has contributed to the company in many ways from his work as a technical advisor to Bill Gates, to leading the evolution of the Microsoft Office business, to his direction and successful leadership of Windows and Windows Live as well as Surface. I am grateful for the work that Steven has delivered in his time at our company. Effective immediately, Julie Larson-Green will lead Windows engineering. She will be responsible for all product development for Windows and Windows Live, in addition to Surface. Julie has been a stalwart leader of building compelling “experiences” from her time on Internet Explorer, through the evolution of Office and most recently to the re-imagination of Windows. Her unique product and innovation perspective and proven ability to effectively collaborate and drive a cross company agenda will serve us well as she takes on this new leadership role. All of the current Windows engineering teams will report into Julie, and Julie will report to me.

Tami Reller will lead business and marketing strategy for Windows including Surface and partner devices. She will provide broad stewardship to our PC marketing efforts while managing the line business functions for Windows. Her work on Windows since 2007 has been exemplary and her strong talents in working with internal groups and partners will also serve us well. Tami also will report to me.

We are facing a time of great opportunity. What we have accomplished over the past few years is nothing short of amazing, and I know we have more amazing in us. I am excited about our people, I am energized by our ability to change and grow, and I look forward to the success which lies ahead. Thank you for all you do, and please join me in congratulating our new leadership and celebrating all that we have accomplished so far.

Microsoft’s Surface Tablet Early Reviews Round-up

Written by Gradly on . Posted in blog, Gadgets, iPad, Microsoft, News, Rants & Raves, Reviews, Tech.

Microsoft's Surface Tablet Early Reviews Round-up

Microsoft’s Surface Tablet Early Reviews Round-up

And the early reviews for Microsoft’s new Surface tablet have begun stacked up, giving us a glimpse of whats Microsoft has its up sleeves in the tablet business. Judging by the hands-on, it seems the Surface is not going well for Microsoft primarily with the obvious lack of apps, buggy software and other awkwardness:

TIME:

My 48-year-old eyeballs have no trouble telling the difference between iPad Retina text and the Surface’s ClearType — but overall, the Surface’s screen is one of the best I’ve seen on a tablet.

The screen, incidentally, is 16:9, an aspect ratio designed with Windows 8′s panoramic interface in mind. It lets you see more apps without panning, and is well suited to the feature that allows you to snap a widget-like version of one app on the side of the primary program you’re using. Microsoft thinks Surface buyers will use the tablet mostly in landscape mode; it works in portrait orientation too, although the aspect ratio leaves it looking like a small-but-tall magazine.

NY Times:

Yes, keyboard. You know Apple’s magnetically hinged iPad cover? Microsoft’s Touch Cover is the same idea — same magnet hinge — except that on the inside, there are key shapes, and even a trackpad, formed from slightly raised, fuzzy material. Flip the cover open, flip out the kickstand and boom: you have what amounts to a 1.5-pound PC that sets up anywhere.

This is nothing like those Bluetooth keyboard cases for the iPad. First, the Touch Cover is much, much thinner, 0.13 inches, cardboard thin. Second, it’s not Bluetooth; there’s no setup and no battery hit. The magnet clicks, and keyboard is ready for typing. Third, when you want just a tablet, the keyboard flips around against the back. The Surface automatically disables its keys and displays the on-screen keyboard when it’s time to type.

The Verge:

It does the job of a tablet and the job of a laptop half as well as other devices on the market, and it often makes that job harder, not easier. Instead of being a no-compromise device, it often feels like a more-compromise one.

There may be a time in the future when all the bugs have been fixed, the third-party app support has arrived, and some very smart engineers in Redmond have ironed out the physical kinks in this type of product which prevent it from being all that it can be. But that time isn’t right now — and unfortunately for Microsoft, the clock is ticking.

BGR:

Imagine booting up an iPad for the first time, seeing the OS X desktop exactly as it appears on a MacBook, and then finding out you cannot run any OS X software on the device. As odd as that scenario sounds, that is exactly the situation Microsoft is facing with the next-generation Windows OS…

…At 1.5 pounds, the Surface’s weight falls very close to that of Apple’s iPad despite the tablet’s larger display, and Microsoft says that the 10.6-inch display size is perfect for a device that is as much about content creation as it is content consumption.

Gizmodo:

In the end though, this is nothing more than Microsoft’s tablet. And a buggy, at times broken one, at that, whose “ecosystem” feels more like a tundra. There’s no Twitter or Facebook app, and the most popular 3rd party client breaks often. The Kindle app is completely unusable. There’s no image editing software. A People app is supposed to give you all the social media access you’d ever need, but It’s impossible to write on someone’s Facebook wall through the People app, Surface’s social hub; the only workaround is to load Internet Explorer. Blech. Something as simple as loading a video requires a jumbled process of USB importing, dipping in and out of the stripped-down desktop mode, opening a Video app, importing, going back into the Video app, and then playing. What.

PC World:

The Surface RT’s 1.4GHz quad-core Tegra 3 processor and 2GB of system memory handle their workloads without drama. Gesturing through the OS itself is fast and fluid. Ditto browsing in Internet Explorer. Websites load extremely quickly, and when you scroll rapidly down pages, screen redraws have no trouble keeping up…

…Regardless, performance in hard-core applications probably won’t even matter, because the Windows RT desktop is locked down: You will never be able to install Photoshop, traditional PC games, or any other code we typically define as “PC software.”

BuzzFeed:

I’ve been waiting a long time for somebody to produce tablets and phones that are lock, stock and barrel better than what Apple’s been making since the first iPhone. Every year, somebody gets closer. Surface doesn’t get close enough. The thing is, Surface is supposed to be so much more than just Microsoft’s iPad alternative, the Other Tablet. It may very well be one day. It has everything it needs to be that. But today it’s just another tablet. And not one you should buy.

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