Tech News

Microsoft’s New Mission Statement, Apple Rewrites History, & More… [Tech News Digest]

Dave Parrack 26-06-2015

Satya Nadella rallies the troops, Apple dictates to developers, Microsoft Office lands on Android, Tumblr TV shows nothing but GIFs, Amazon keeps on trucking, and four hours of reactions to Final Fantasy VII Remake.

Microsoft Wants To Empower Everybody

Microsoft has a new mission statement, and it’s a rather ambitious one. The new official mission statement was revealed in company-wide email sent out to all employees.

Written by CEO Satya Nadella, it sets out the company’s goals for the next year. This “State of the Union” wasn’t meant for public consumption, but was published in full by GeekWire.

Nadella first suggests Microsoft “can do magical things when we come together with a shared mission, clear strategy, and a culture that brings out the best in us individually and collectively.” He then goes onto spell out this shared mission.

Microsoft’s new mission statement is: “Every great company has an enduring mission. Our mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.”

This is simple to understand, effective in getting the message across to all employees, and really rather ambitious while remaining vague enough that it’s virtually impossible to fail. That is unless Windows 10 absolutely blows The Latest Windows 10 Version Won't Be the Last One What is the latest Windows 10 version? How long is it supported? And why did Microsoft switch to a service model? Answers within! Read More , obviously.

Apple Pulls American Civil War Games

Apple has pulled all games from the App Store which feature the Confederate flag. This means any and all games concerning the American Civil War have disappeared, with Apple telling affected developers this is because their game “includes images of the confederate flag used in offensive and mean-spirited ways.”

This is in response to the racially motivated mass murder at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church on June 17th. In the aftermath of the killing and the debate that ensued, retailers banned sales of the Confederate flag Retailers Ban Confederate Flag, Use Messenger Without Facebook, & More... [Tech News Digest] Confederate flags disappear, Messenger drops Facebook, DriveClub arrives, Eternify trolls Spotify, Reddit turns 10, and Super Mario meets Game of Thrones. Read More . However, Apple is going one step further and trying to rewrite history.

In order to have their games reinstated to the App Store, Apple is asking developers to remove all traces of the Confederate flag. Thus ignoring the fact that, as unsavory as it may be, the Confederate flag is a part of history. We can only imagine Apple would remove Hitler from the movie Downfall if it had its way.

Office Arrives on Android Smartphones

Microsoft Office is now available for Android smartphones, with Word, Excel, and PowerPoint apps available to download for free. Office arrived on Android tablets earlier this year, over a year after first being launched on the Apple iPad Microsoft Launches Office For iPad & Office Mobile On Phones Now Free Office Mobile for Android sneaked into the headlines while the world was watching the arrival of Microsoft’s Office suite to iPad. So, let's give them each the space they deserve. Read More . Office is now available on all three major mobile operating systems, on both tablets and smartphones.

The basic features of Office are all free, with the option to subscribe to Office 365 An Introduction to Office 365: Should You Buy Into the New Office Business Model? Office 365 is a subscription based package that offers access to the latest desktop Office suite, Office Online, cloud storage, and premium mobile apps. Does Office 365 provide enough value to be worth the money? Read More for those who need to unlock all of the functionality. Microsoft has included integration with the likes of Google Drive and DropBox. Office for Android phones is only compatible with Android 4.4 (KitKat) and later versions, and requires your handset to have at least 1GB of RAM.

Tumblr TV Shows All GIFs, All the Time

Tumblr has unveiled Tumblr TV, a television station completely dedicated to GIFs. This isn’t a proper television station, of course, but it is set up to look like one, with a user interface that allows you to play, pause, and skip the GIFs being shown.

Tumblr TV follows hot on the heels of Tumblr’s dedicated GIF search engine Microsoft Launches Skype for Web, Amazon Echoes Audiobooks, & More... [Tech News Digest] Skype for Web, Amazon books Audible, Popcorn Buzz calls groups, Tumblr GIF searches, Netflix expands into Europe, and dumb robots fall over like dumb dumb dummies. Read More , which just shows how important GIFs are to this particular platform. The aim of both is to get users finding and sharing more GIFs they love, but Tumblr TV is also a fun way of relaxing for two minutes Take A Break: 10 Websites To Help You Relax For Two Minutes It's incredibly important to take the time to relax occasionally. It doesn't do anyone any good to constantly be ON, to be working, to be stressed by the rigors of everyday life. In the same... Read More .

Amazon’s Treasure Truck Drives to Seattle

Amazon currently has a Treasure Truck driving around Seattle, and it could soon be coming to a city near you too. The Amazon Treasure Truck contains a limited number of a certain product being offered at a huge discount on a given day. The truck acts as a moving billboard, although we’re not sure Amazon really needs to advertise its existence in its hometown.

Customers in Seattle can purchase the item on offer using Amazon’s mobile shopping app, and then meet the Treasure Truck at one of the drop-off points to collect their bounty. It’s essentially a physical version of the company’s Gold Box deal. Amazon refuses to be drawn on whether its Treasure Truck will make it to other cities in the United States, but we certainly hope it does.

Reactions to Final Fantasy VII Remake

And finally, proof, if proof was needed, that Square Enix is doing the right thing remaking Final Fantasy VII. I must admit to being just a little excited when Square teased Final Fantasy VII Remake during Sony’s E3 2015 press conference Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo - Who Had the Best E3 Showing? It's E3 again, which is like Christmas for gamers, if Santa told you about your presents a year in advance and then spent Christmas morning selling them to you in bits and pieces. Read More , but I wasn’t quite as excited as these people.

This video is four hours long, and that whole four hours consists of people reacting to the news that Square is working on a remake of the beloved Final Fantasy VII. No one under a certain age will understand what this all means, but for us middle-aged types, this news was mind-blowing. [H/T Kotaku]

Your Views on Today’s Tech News

What is your opinion of Microsoft’s new mission statement? Is Apple justified in pulling games depicting the American Civil War? Are you pleased to see Microsoft Office released for Android? What was your reaction to Final Fantasy VII Remake?

Let us know your thoughts on the Tech News of the day by posting to the comments section below. Because a healthy discussion is always welcome.

Image Credits: Bhupinder Nayyar via Flickr

Related topics: GIF, Microsoft, Microsoft Office 365, Politics, Tumblr, YouTube.

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  1. Anonymous
    June 29, 2015 at 11:58 pm

    It is with great disappointment that Apple has chosen to do what they have regarding the Civil War Games developed by people not even employed by Apple. That is in effect censorship of people who are not under their control except as a way to market their merchandise. And for writing& marketing a war game based on the American Civil War. It happened. That isn't going to change no matter what they or anyone else says or does. It happened just as World War II happened. The Nazis were monsters, terrorists, & mass murderers. But no one banned the Nazi flag, the Red background with the Black Swastika!! The Japanese flag? The Russian flag? All still out there on the shelves for sale!! Grow up Apple & stop trying to rewrite history. Grow a pair Apple & stand up for the rights of people to Choose!

  2. Anonymous
    June 28, 2015 at 6:58 pm

    The Confederate Flag is part of the Civil War. You can take it off store shelves. You can take it down from government land. But, when the topic of whatever it is you are doing is the Civil War you cannot ignore the flag. That is when you take it too far.

  3. Anonymous
    June 27, 2015 at 11:16 am

    While Apple samsung is free to set rules for its stores as they want, we must remember that Apple’s primary motive here is probably making money every day (Android Smartphones) .

  4. Anonymous
    June 26, 2015 at 11:58 am

    While Apple is free to set rules for its stores as they want, we must remember that Apple's primary motive here is probably making money .

    The cleansing of history or the greater concept of cleaning of ideas is something we should all fear the government doing .... EVEN if that idea is racism.

    While the motive may be right, everyone needs to remember that freedom of religion and separation of church and state were implemented for a reason ..... our civil right to freedom of belief regardless of the belief. Racists have rights too, believe it or not.

    The U.S. is already too far down the road of belief cleansing with it's anti-discrimination laws which violate our civil right to freedom of association.

  5. Anonymous
    June 26, 2015 at 11:50 am

    "Our mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.”
    Read: "Our mission is to make sure every person on the planet is using Microsoft Windows/products". Sorry, Mr. Nadella, that train has left the station long time ago. If M$ didn't do it in the first 20 years, it is not going to do it this year.

    "Apple Pulls American Civil War Games"
    Political Correctness run amok.