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Microsoft Pri0

Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times reporter Sharon Chan.

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June 30, 2008 5:16 PM

Report: Microsoft to cut Xbox 360 price ahead of big industry event

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano




Price cut before E3?


The E3 Media and Business Summit is two weeks away, and it looks like Microsoft may be firing a shot in the console competition. The Hollywood Reporter quoted a retailer on Friday saying the company Xbox 360 Pro will see a price cut before E3, which begins with a Microsoft press conference on July 14.

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June 27, 2008 3:52 PM

Gates send-off: Gates has had Ballmer's back from the beginning

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

I wrote earlier today about Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer meeting at Harvard and going to a double feature of "Singin' in the Rain," staring Gene Kelly, and "Clockwork Orange." But has anyone heard the story of the physical altercation that occurred afterwards?

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Comments | Category: Bill Gates , Steve Ballmer |Permalink | Digg Digg | Newsvine Newsvine

June 27, 2008 1:09 PM

Gates send-off: Photos

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

Microsoft was fairly tight about pictures from today's big goodbye for Bill Gates. They did not allow us or other media outlets covering the event to have our own photographer on site. So here's a photo taken by the shooter that Microsoft hired.


Robert Sorbo / MICROSOFT

Both Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and Chairman Bill Gates were emotional as Gates said farewell to full-time work at the company he co-founded 33 years ago.

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June 27, 2008 11:48 AM

Gates send-off: Two guys and 90,000 employees

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

Steve Ballmer and Bill Gates reminisced in today's goodbye about their friendship, careers and the development of the software industry starting 34 years ago with their first encounter.

A mutual friend said the two energetic Harvard undergraduates, traveling in very different circles, had to meet. They hooked up for a man date of sorts --taking in a double feature: "Singing in the Rain," still Ballmer's favorite movie, and "A Clockwork Orange." They talked about their dreams and aspirations -- the beginning of a friendship that would evolve into one of the greatest partnerships in the history of business.

The two men seemed astounded by their success. (Gates said today was an exception to Microsoft's cultural bias against celebrating successes.)

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June 27, 2008 11:18 AM

Gates send-off: Teary Bill Gates says goodbye to Microsoft employees

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

An emotional Bill Gates said good-bye to Microsoft in a celebration this morning filled with gauzy memories and a candid assessment of his legacy.

"My life's work really is about software and working with incredible people," Gates said with tears in his eyes. "And I love working with smart people. I love working with Steve. I love working with all the incredible people here."

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June 27, 2008 8:30 AM

Gates send-off: Employees won lottery to see Gates go

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

Outside of Microsoft's corporate conference center, employees are lined up to see their leader say goodbye. Only 832 will be inside to watch the send-off conversation between Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer, scheduled to start at 9 a.m. Thousands of employees entered a lottery for tickets to be here.

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June 26, 2008 9:00 AM

Microsoft ships server virtualization technology ahead of schedule

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

Rub your eyes and read that again. Yes. It's a Microsoft product and "ahead of schedule" in the same sentence. Microsoft just announced that it has shipped Hyper-V, the promised virtualization feature of Windows Server 2008. It wasn't supposed to arrive until late summer. The final version of the software is available for download now, the company said.

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June 24, 2008 11:06 AM

Microsoft names insider as new interactive entertainment marketing chief

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

Twelve days after announcing the departure of Jeff Bell, the former Chrysler Group marketer, Microsoft has chosen an insider to head the global marketing effort for its Interactive Entertainment Business, which includes the Xbox 360. Michael Delman, who joined Microsoft in 1990 as communications director, takes on the new job in August.

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Comments | Category: Corporate organization , Games & entertainment |Permalink | Digg Digg | Newsvine Newsvine

June 23, 2008 1:58 PM

Google displaces Microsoft as company with best corporate reputation

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

Harris Interactive released the results of its 2007 corporate reputation survey. Google took the top spot over Microsoft, which was No. 1 last year, and Johnson & Johnson, which was No. 1 every other year going back to the inception of the survey in 1999.

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June 23, 2008 11:24 AM

Yahoo resignation letter creator could come in handy as reorg looms

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

The week is under way and another batch of Yahoo reorg rumors is fresh out of the oven. A friend shared with us something diverting among all the doom and gloom.

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June 20, 2008 12:17 PM

Microsoft head count way up in last 11 months, nearing 90,000

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

Microsoft is now a company of close to 90,000 people and may, in fact, surpass that number by the time the fiscal year ends June 30.

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June 19, 2008 9:22 AM

Chinese official says earlier report wrong, no antitrust probe of Microsoft

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

Yesterday's Agence France-Presse report on a Chinese antitrust investigation into Microsoft and other foreign software companies is being refuted today. AFP itself reported that the China State Intellectual Property Office issued the following statement: "We have never carried out investigations on suspected market monopoly against enterprises, and currently we do not have any plans for this type of work either."

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June 18, 2008 11:18 AM

Attention departing Yahoos: Microsoft is hiring in Silicon Valley

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

With some high-profile executive departures from Yahoo in the wake of its tie-up with Google, Microsoft is launching a recruiting push in Silicon Valley.

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June 18, 2008 8:33 AM

AFP: China conducting anti-monopoly probe of Microsoft

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

Chinese regulators confirmed an antitrust probe of Microsoft and other software companies, according to an Agence France-Presse report this morning. Updated, 4:55 p.m. with the full Microsoft statement. Updated, Thursday morning: Officials from the same Chinese agency quoted in the AFP story are now saying there is no antitrust probe. Please see this post for an update.

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June 9, 2008 11:54 AM

Posted by Mark Watanabe

Glenn Fleishman reporting from the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference:

SAN FRANCISCO -- CEO Steve Jobs today announced the release of a faster, cheaper version of the Apple iPhone on July 11 in 22 countries worldwide. The new phone uses third-generation (3G) data networks, which provide up to eight times as much bandwidth as the so-called 2.5G EDGE network that the iPhone currently uses.

The new model is $199 for a unit with 8 GB of storage with new styling that sports a black plastic backplane. A $299 model will be available in both black and white with 16 GB of storage.

Apple is also including a GPS (global positioning satellite) chip to enhance location and tracking. The iPhone currently uses Wi-Fi base station and cell tower locations to approximate a position.

The new phone's battery life has been extended, Jobs said, with 200 hours of standby time, 5 hours of talk time, 7 hours of video playback, and 24 hours of audio playback.

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June 4, 2008 6:16 PM

Microsoft negotiating with Yahoo on price of search business, Reuters reports, conclusion expected in 'next week or so'

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

Reuters, quoting anonymous sources, reports that negotiations between Microsoft and Yahoo on an alternative transaction are progressing and "are likely to conclude in the 'next week or so.' "

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June 4, 2008 11:16 AM

Video game advertising competition heats up with Sony, IGA deal

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

IGA Worldwide, a competitor of the Massive in-game advertising unit of Microsoft, announced a deal with Sony yesterday to sell in-game advertising on PlayStation 3 in Europe and North America. The move comes a day after Microsoft touted the success of its in-game advertising network on the Xbox 360, and also illustrates the different approaches the two console makers are taking to the business.

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June 3, 2008 10:00 AM

Microsoft to direct 404 errors -- the Internet's dead ends -- to Live Search

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

In a sign that every search -- or would-be search -- counts, Microsoft today announced a plan to steer people who hit the Internet's dead ends toward its Live Search service. The company says it is equipping pages on its Internet domains that return a "404 - File Not Found" error message to redirect to its search engine, and helping Web publishers do the same.

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June 2, 2008 4:34 PM

Google search ad auctions explained, criticized

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano

With Microsoft attempting to undermine Google's incredibly lucrative search advertising business model through its cashback and engagement mapping efforts -- which seek to change how search ads are purchased and valued -- now comes criticism of Google's model from other quarters.

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Concept car: Toyota takes another look at FT-1 new
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