Microsoft launches early Black Friday

Microsoft has launched its version of Black Friday with a week-long promotion offering content for only 10 cents. The Redmond giant announced the deals late last week. Yusuf Mehdi, Corporate Vice President of the Windows and Devices Group at Microsoft said in a blog post for the next 10 days Windows 10 users can take advantage of the promotion, which will over offer over 1,000 movies, music, applications and games for 10 cents each.

Opera Max Now Also Helps You Save Data While Streaming Music

While Opera is best known for its browsers, the company has recently put quite a bit of effort into its Opera Max data-saving app for Android. The company started with helping users save bandwidth for image-heavy apps like Instagram and Facebook, but earlier this year, it also introduced support for saving data when streaming videos from services like YouTube. It’s expanding the services feature set by introducing support for a limited number of music apps, too.

Google Cloud Platform adds options for custom virtual machines

Google's cloud department has been vocal in the past about its theories and strategies for lowering storage prices in the long run, and the Internet giant continued that rhetoric with a new debut on Wednesday. Google Cloud Platform is introducing the option of Custom Machine Types, which will allow IT professionals to fit virtual machines (VMs) to particular workloads rather than just rounding up to the next tier on the pricing scale.

Windows 10 telemetry: Time for a level playing field

When, why and how much diagnostic data Windows 10 sends back to Microsoft has been a source of considerable debate for the last couple of weeks. By default Windows 10 collects some data about how Windows and Windows apps are performing plus some additional details - such as about crashes, so-called telemetry data. (Calling all this 'telemetry data' makes it sound much more grand than it is, like the sort of information that would be sent back by a probe en route to a distant star, rather than the more humdrum details of why your PC crashed halfway through you writing a Facebook post.)

Apple to pull the plug on Beats Music on Nov. 30

 The tech giant will shut down Beats Music on November 30, according to a document published Thursday. All Beats subscriptions will be canceled on that day, but Apple is encouraging subscribers to migrate their user profiles to Apple Music, the music subscription service it launched in June.

Microsoft to acquire data protection firm Secure Islands

Microsoft announced Monday that it has made a deal to acquire Secure Islands, an Israeli company that focuses on protecting companies' data. Neither company disclosed the terms of the deal. The acquisition will help Microsoft level up its Azure Rights Management Service, which lets companies protect files individually and in bulk with tools that ensure they aren't opened or modified by people who are unauthorized to do so. Secure Islands's services include data classification technology that automatically detects the creation of new files from a variety of sources and then applies a protection policy to it. 

Apple iPad Pro online orders start November 11

The iPad Pro will roll out quickly to a wide number of countries around the world starting with online pre-orders Wednesday, November 11 in four dozen regions. Apple Stores, carriers and select retailers will have the large tablet available two days later. The tablet has a 12.9-inch Retina Display, four audio speakers, and supports the new $99 Apple Pencil for drawing applications. Apple will also sell the $169 Smart Keyboard that doubles as a protective cover and stand for the 1.57 pound tablet.

Opera's Max Data-Savings App

Opera today announced that its Opera Max data-management app is now integrated into phones from 14 OEMs. These include previously announced partners like Samsung and Xiaomi, as well as three newly announced partners: Acer, Hisense and TWZ. Thanks to these partnerships, Opera now believes its Max software will be on more than 100 million Android phones by 2017.

Microsoft readying Windows 10 Store for Business

Microsoft is readying its promised Windows Store for Business for Windows 10, and has made available some initial information on the coming Store as of November 4. The Windows Store for Business is the portal for Windows 10 apps for business users. Microsoft officials first outlined the company's plans for a Windows 10 Store for Business in November 2014.

Microsoft to discontinue Windows 7 and 8.1 next November

Updated late October, Microsoft's "Windows lifecycle fact sheet" shows October 31, 2016, as the "end of sales for PCs with Windows preinstalled" for both Windows 7 Professional and Windows 8.1, a change spotted by CNET sister site ZDNet. After that date, the only choice for consumers will be to purchase new computers with Windows 10 installed. The lone exception will be businesses with license agreements that entitle them to choose which version of Windows they want preinstalled.

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