Tech News

Microsoft Shows Off Windows 10, HoloLens, Cortana On PC & More… [Tech News Digest]

Dave Parrack 22-01-2015

Microsoft reveals the future, with Windows 10, HoloLens, Cortana, and Spartan, BlackBerry wants app neutrality, Twitter launches While You Were Away, The Elder Scrolls Online is set free, and LittleBigPlanet does Game Of Thrones.


Microsoft Reveals The Future

Microsoft has revealed a host of details regarding its plans for the future. With this being billed as a Windows 10 event, Microsoft’s next operating system took center stage, but several other exciting products and services were also unveiled for the first time.

About Windows 10

Windows 10 Windows 10 In Pictures - A Guided Tour Of The Technical Preview The Windows 10 Technical Preview is now available to everyone. Some bugs aside, it does look promising. We'll guide you through the new Windows one screenshot at a time. Read More is, as expected, a hybrid of Windows 7 and Windows 8. It is designed to work across a range of devices, working with rather than against users of PCs, tablets, and smartphones. And in a quest to tempt people to upgrade, Windows 10 will be free for the first year for anyone currently using Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows Phone.

Cortana On Desktop

As rumored, Cortana Geek Humor Included! Meet Cortana, Windows Phone 8.1 Digital Assistant Cortana is the best reason to upgrade your Windows Phone early. Microsoft's answer to Siri offers great features and will make you laugh. Read More is coming to the desktop in a big way. Microsoft’s personal assistant, which has been helping users of Windows Phone Why You Should Consider Switching To Windows Phone [Opinion] I want Windows Phone to succeed. The problem is persuading you Apple fanboys and Google droids to give Windows Phone a chance. Read More for some time, will have a permanent home on Windows 10. Cortana will act as both the spoken interface and a personal assistant able to answer questions and suggest which apps to obtain.

This Is Spartan

After leaking early, Project Spartan Is Internet Explorer Making A Big Return In 2015? Microsoft no longer has to offer EU Windows users a choice of browsers. Moreover, Microsoft is working on a new browser. Nevertheless, we'll show you how to install your favorite browser without touching IE. Read More is now official. Spartan is a new Web browser designed to replace the much-maligned Internet Explorer. Early sightings suggest Spartan is cleaner and less bloated than IE, with a host of new features including integration with other Microsoft services and a “note-taking mode” which lets you add comments and draw all over Web pages.

Xbox One Integration

Windows 10 and the Xbox One will be integrated in a number of innovative ways. A dedicated Xbox app for Windows 10 will let you view your games collection, chat with friends on Xbox Live, and even share clips. Xbox One owners will also be able to stream games to their Windows 10 devices, which may just be another reason to choose the Xbox One over the PlayStation 4 PS4 vs Xbox One: 5 Reasons To Buy The Xbox One This year's E3 felt almost like it was over before it began. Though the conference lasts for days, both Microsoft and Sony made their announcements before the doors opened, showing not just hardware but also... Read More .


Holy HoloLens Headsets

Last but certainly not least is HoloLens, an augmented reality headset which projects holograms onto the real world around you. Microsoft showed off the power of HoloLens using four demos which you can see glimpses of in the video above.

While this is very much future technology, all Windows 10 devices have Holographic APIs built into them, suggesting Microsoft is keen to push HoloLens through from being a development unit to a finished product sooner rather than later.

Keep your browsers aimed at MakeUseOf for more detailed breakdowns of Windows 10, Cortana on desktops, Project Spartan, and HoloLens in the following days, weeks, and months.

BlackBerry Boss Wants App Neutrality

The CEO of BlackBerry, John Chen, is calling for “application neutrality,” which would ensure companies have to create apps for all operating systems rather than just Android and iOS. Chen seems to suggest this would be an obvious extension to the principles of net neutrality What Is Net Neutrality & Why Should I Care? A significant number see Net Neutrality as essential to the survival of the Internet. In this article, we're going to look at why Net Neutrality matters, and why we should fight to protect it. Read More .


In a blog post adapted from the letter Chen sent to several important members of Congress, the BlackBerry boss suggests,”all wireless broadband customers must have the ability to access any lawful applications and content they choose, and applications/content providers must be prohibited from discriminating based on the customer’s mobile operating system.

It’s a nice idea but it twists the logic behind net neutrality into something completely different. Forcing ISPs to remain neutral in how they deliver content to their users isn’t the same as forcing companies to develop apps for every operating system that exists. The former is positive, the latter is, well, a little deluded.

Twitter Launches While You Were Away

Twitter has officially begun rolling out its new ‘While You Were Away’ feature, starting with iOS, and adding Android and the website in the near future. In essence, ‘While You Were Away Never Miss A Great Tweet Again: Meet Twitter's 'While You Were Away' Feature Twitter has been making some changes to draw new users. Several iOS users are now reporting seeing a feature that recaps important tweets you may have missed, called "While You Were Away". Read More ‘ will show irregular users the best tweets that have surfaced since the last time they checked their feed. While “best” is obviously a subjective term, Twitter suggests this will be “determined by engagement and other factors.

The Elder Scrolls Online Will Be Free

The Elder Scrolls Online is launching on PS4 and Xbox One in June, and in preparation for the switch to consoles, Bethesda is ditching mandatory monthly subscription fees. Instead, ESO will be re-released as Tamriel Unlimited, a free-to-play title with an optional premium package and a host of available micro-transactions.


LittleBigPlanet Does Game Of Thrones

And finally, proof that some people have too much time on their hands, with a video showing the Game Of Thrones title sequence as recreated using LittleBigPlanet 3. This game, along with its predecessors, allows players to create their own levels User-Generated Content Done Right With These 6 Games [MUO Gaming] One of my favorite things to see in a video game is user-generated content. That is, as long as it makes sense within the context of the game, of course. Some games have done a... Read More , although few are as detailed or impressive as this particular one.

Your Views On Today’s Tech News

What do you think about the slew of announcements Microsoft made yesterday? Is the idea of “app neutrality” nothing but wishful thinking? Will you be trying The Elder Scrolls Online once it’s free?

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.

Related topics: BlackBerry, Microsoft Cortana, Twitter, Windows 10, Xbox One.

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  1. Carlos
    January 22, 2015 at 11:30 pm

    It looks really good. Windows 10 is a winner.

    • Dave Parrack
      January 27, 2015 at 5:04 pm

      It certainly looks good.

  2. DonGateley
    January 22, 2015 at 6:40 pm

    Dave, your observation about the HoloLens API being intrinsic to Windows 10 is the most astute I've seen relative to it and its time frame. I quoted that (with attribution) in the Wired discussion of the HoloLens.

    Hope you don't mind.

    • Dave Parrack
      January 27, 2015 at 5:05 pm

      I don't mind at all. In fact, I'm honored :)

  3. SKTech
    January 22, 2015 at 5:11 pm

    So wait, he wants me to support ALL of these?:

    Not happening

    • Dave Parrack
      January 27, 2015 at 5:06 pm

      He does indeed. Or, at a push, at least BlackBerry ;)

  4. dragonmouth
    January 22, 2015 at 4:38 pm

    I hope Cortana performs better than Boob.

    "John Chen, is calling for “application neutrality,”"
    Don't hold your breath, John Chen.

    • Dave Parrack
      January 27, 2015 at 5:08 pm

      What the hell is Boob? Well, apart from the obvious.

    • dragonmouth
      January 27, 2015 at 8:41 pm

      Oh, I'm sorry. I meant BOB. My finger must have stuttered.