In a bid to tap into a fast changing consumer market, Microsoft has pooled entertainment, mobility, communications, web searches, cloud services and devices together to deliver a new experience to consumers.
|Powered by the Intel Core Processor family with Windows 8, Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga merges a stylish,|
powerful ultrabook and a portable 13.3 multitouch tablet.
Microsoft has been working with its partners: Windows Phones with Nokia and HTC, Windows OS with new ultra-mobile PCs with OEM partners such as Lenovo, Sony, Samsung who introduced their latest devices at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2012 in Las Vegas last week.
"People don't want to compromise and they don't want to give up anything as they move to new things," said Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, who made his last scheduled keynote appearance at CES. MS announced that it would no longer exhibit at the world's largest technology show because it no longer coincides with the company's product launch timing.
Ballmer said that there are around 1.3 billion Windows devices in use around the world. Windows 7 continues to be the fastest selling operating system in history with more than 500 million copies sold to date.
|The Nokia Lumia 900 has a 4.3-inch OLED screen,|
1.4Ghz processor plus a front facing camera for video chats.
During the keynote address, Microsoft demonstrated the Windows Phone and gave an early preview of the upcoming Windows 8 operating system, which the CEO said it would run on more devices and offer a better experience than ever before.
"Windows 8 is next! The next milestone in late February will represent the best of the PC and the best of the tablet," said Ballmer, ensuring that every Windows 7 device will be ready for Windows 8 on day one.
"With Windows 8 we have reimagined what Windows could be, from the chipset to the experience. It will deliver a no-compromise experience for customers," said Microsoft's chief marketing officer Tami Reller.
While Windows 8 tablets supports touchscreens, she said that both touch and traditional mouse input are supported.
During her demo on Windows 8, Reller showed off some new features and the plan of Windows Store, which will be available late next month. It will house a range of free and commercial apps that can be used across all Windows 8 devices.
She showed off the popular mobile phone game Cut the Rope on Windows Store, running on a Samsung notebook. The new web app is built entirely in HTML5, which represents the future of programming on the web according to Microsoft.
Microsoft showcased how the products come together to deliver an integrated experience no matter what the device. Using Bing voice search on Xbox and seamlessly connecting to Windows Live via Windows Phone, you access your movies and music on Windows 7 as easily as you can through Xbox and Windows Phone.
Microsoft is also banking on Metro Style, named after the design language that MS pioneered with Windows Phone 7. Metro Style represents Microsoft's belief that having a single design philosophy that spans the devices you use everyday _ smartphone, PC, Xbox_ will make things more instinctive and bring a real sense of cohesion and simplicity.
|The popular mobile phone game Cut the Rope is built|
entirely in HTML5.
"You saw Metro on a phone and you saw Metro on Windows, Metro on Xbox. It will be everywhere," said Ballmer.
The Windows Phone Nokia Lumia 900 and HTC Titan II will be available in the United States on the AT&T LTE network within the next few months.
The Nokia Lumia 900 boasts a 4.3-inch OLED screen, a lightning fast 1.4Ghz processor, a sharp 8MP camera as well as a front facing camera for video chatting, while the HTC Titan II has a 4.7-inch OLED display and a 16MP camera.
On the gaming front, Xbox 360, Xbox Live and Kinect gesture-control technology are transforming entertainment in the living room.
Microsoft celebrated the 10th anniversary of the Xbox, and the first anniversary of Kinect for Xbox 360. There are more than 66 million Xbox 360 consoles worldwide and more than 40 million connected to Xbox Live for simple, social fun and games and entertainment experiences.
The company has quadrupled the Kinect-enabled games portfolio and has seen Kinect used in ways few imagined. The console is now used more for entertainment purposes than gaming.
It has also teamed up with the creator of Sesame Street to develop an interactive version of the popular children's show, enabling the child's reaction to appear on the screen.
Kinect is coming to Windows on February 1, opening up its innovation to businesses around the world and it is set to revolutionise other areas, including education and healthcare. Microsoft is already working with more than 200 innovation leaders including United Health Group, Toyota, Telefonica, Mattel, American Express and many more to utilise Kinect in radically new ways.
"It's going to be amazing. The ability of the computer to see you, to hear you, to recognise you, it has sparked a revolution," said Ballmer.
|Kinect gesturecontrol technology is transforming entertainment in the living room.|
Microsoft has also worked with New Corp to host its programming on the Xbox starting this year. A new partnership with News Corp will soon bring Fox Broadcast, with popular shows to Xbox Live, and shortly following will launch WSJ, IGN and Fox News on Xbox Live.
|An interactive version of Sesame Street allows users to appear on screen.|