Office Updates For Apple Users, $1B Cloud Donation: Microsoft Roundup - InformationWeek
Software // Enterprise Applications
10:06 AM
Connect Directly

Office Updates For Apple Users, $1B Cloud Donation: Microsoft Roundup

This week brought a new Windows 10 build to Insiders, Office updates to iOS and Mac users, and a $1B donation to nonprofits worldwide.

9 Skype Alternatives Worth Considering
9 Skype Alternatives Worth Considering
(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)

Microsoft kicked off this week's National Retail Federation (NRF) Annual Convention and Expo, with a demo showing how Windows 10 might influence the consumer shopping experience with more interactive multi-channel transactions.

Microsoft also shared its idea of the future of point-of-sale (POS) technology, which will include devices and IoT running on Windows 10. Retailers will, for example, eventually be able to log into mobile workstations using Windows Hello and transition from tablet to desktop using Continuum.

In Windows 10 news, data released this week from StatCounter indicates Windows 10 has surpassed Windows 8.1 in desktop marketshare. The new OS holds 12.22% of desktops worldwide; Windows 8.1 accounts for 10.7%.

[13 hot IoT trends coming to businesses in 2016.]

While this demonstrates the progress Windows 10 has made, it has a long way to go before it beats Windows 7. Microsoft's most popular OS is still running on 42.77% of desktops, but that number is sure to dwindle as businesses buy new PCs.

In an update issued to its support policy this week, Microsoft announced it will only support new processors and chipsets running Windows 10 on the computer systems. This news is likely to accelerate Windows 10 adoption, but have a greater effect on businesses with plans to buy new devices running Windows 7 or Windows 8.1.

Windows Insiders in the Fast ring received preview build 11102 for Windows 10 on PCs. This build delivers a new history menu in Microsoft Edge, but comes with a few bugs: Some PC games may crash when switching to full screen; third-party assistants may crash; and you may see errors when updating and logging in.

Office updates announced this week primarily affect Apple users, who have access to new digital inking tools on Office for iPad. These include a Draw tab to find inking tools, Instant Inking to detect active pens, and Ink to Shape for transforming hand-drawn shapes into perfect-looking squares and circles.

Microsoft released Morph and PowerPoint Designer on iPhone and iPad, follow-ups to the release of both tools on Windows in November. It also opened its Office Insider program to Mac users so they can test new features before they are released.

(Image: MichalPuchala/iStockPhoto)

(Image: MichalPuchala/iStockPhoto)

A OneNote update, which brought improved search, iPad multitasking, and notifications also includes a new batch of features called Learning Tools. These tools are intended to help students with dyslexia by highlighting text and by reading selected text out loud, both of which can help improve focus and reading speed.

Microsoft also announced its acquisition of MinecraftEdu, a game created by Teacher Gaming, which will be renamed Minecraft Education Edition. Microsoft plans to expand the game with features to build student engagement and collaboration, on top of the educational features already built into MinecraftEdu.

CEO Satya Nadella shared Microsoft's plans to donate $1 billion of Microsoft Cloud Services to benefit nonprofit organizations and university researchers over the next three years. The donation falls under the responsibility of Microsoft Philanthropies, a new division under Microsoft.

The program, intended to make the cloud universally accessible, has three primary goals: to provide nonprofits with additional cloud resources, to help solve last-mile challenges to Internet access, and to improve access for university researchers.

Microsoft Cloud Services included in the donation program include Microsoft Azure, CRM Online, Power BI, and its Enterprise Mobility Suite. Donations will begin rolling out this spring to help 70,000 nonprofits.

Kelly is an associate editor for InformationWeek. She most recently reported on financial tech for Insurance & Technology, before which she was a staff writer for InformationWeek and InformationWeek Education. When she's not catching up on the latest in tech, Kelly enjoys ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
2017 State of the Cloud Report
As the use of public cloud becomes a given, IT leaders must navigate the transition and advocate for management tools or architectures that allow them to realize the benefits they seek. Download this report to explore the issues and how to best leverage the cloud moving forward.
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
Join us for a roundup of the top stories on for the week of November 6, 2016. We'll be talking with the editors and correspondents who brought you the top stories of the week to get the "story behind the story."
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll