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Skype

Microsoft to launch global wifi network for enterprise customers

technologyEdward KiledjianComment

Microsoft's Skype entity already offers a product called Skype WIFI (link) which allows you to buy WIFI access in millions of locations by the minute. A barebones webpage now may indicate that Microsoft has bigger plan for it's WIFI resale business and may be branding it Microsoft WIFI (link). 

The service (purportedly) will offer access to its millions of WIFI access hotspots to Office 365 Enterprise subscribers, Surface 2 owners or buyers of the Work & Play bundle. 

The DNS lookup of the website seems to indicate that it belongs to Microsoft so I am assuming it is legitimate but it is still very sparse and missing tones of information. Based on the info it does contain, it looks like this service will continue in the path started by Skype WIFI where Microsoft will resell WIFI hotspot access belonging to other providers such as Boingo, XFinity WIFI, BT and more. And yes, it does look like a global service. 

We don't know the model they will use. Will it be a subscription based model, a pay-per-use model or a hybrid? Will some access time be included in the base subscriptions? 

We do know, based on the website that they will have apps for most platforms including Windows, Android, Mac OS X, iOS and Windows Phone. Skype WIFI also offered an app for these platforms but also included one for Linux (which the Microsoft WIFI page does not mention right now).

At this point that's all we know but I'll keep watching this site and report back when things develop further.

 

Microsoft offers a 4 service bundle for 50% off (xbox, office, skype, music)

technologyEdward KiledjianComment

Christmas has come early for Microsoft customers as the Redmond giant has just unveiled a hugely discounted subscription bundle for 4 Microsoft services :Microsoft Office 365 Home, Skype Unlimited World, Xbox Live Gold, Xbox Music. Bought seperately, these would cost you more than $US400 but Microsoft has created the Work & Play bundle and is offering everything for the low price of $US199.

For anyone living the full Microsoft life, this is an incredible deal. This special price is valid until January 4 2015 so get it while the getting is good.

Source: Microsoft's Work & Play bundle page (Link)

Apple Messages most secure messaging platform

technologyEdward KiledjianComment
Image by  Daniel Dudek-Corrigan  used under Creative Commons License

Image by Daniel Dudek-Corrigan used under Creative Commons License

The Electronic Frontier Foundation has released an interesting comparison chart showing how well the most common instant messaging platforms compete on security.

The EFF analysis looked at these criteria:

  • Encrypted in transit
  • Encrypted so the provider can't read it
  • Can you verify contacts identity
  • Are past communication protected if keys are stolen 
  • Is the code open to independent review
  • Is security design properly documented
  • Has the code been audited
    Are

The highest rated tools (scoring 7 out of 7) were:

  • ChatSecure
  • CryptoCat
  • Signal/Redphone
  • Silent Phone
  • Silent Text
  • TextSecure

Not surprisingly, Apple's Facetime & iMessage (Messages) were ranked as the most secure mass market messaging tools. 

although neither currently provides complete protection against sophisticated, targeted forms of surveillance
— EFF

Google Hangouts, Facebook Messenger, Blackberry Messenger and Microsoft's Skype were dinged on several fronts including lack of protection of past communications and lack of detailed documentation about security.

EFF Press Release : Link

EFF Scorecard : Link

 

Whatsapp reaches 430M Users

technologyEdward KiledjianComment
2014-01-20_13-47-39.jpg

A Whatsapp cofounder came clean and praised Android for its openness. He further explained how much easier it is to add new features to its Android version compared to IOS. And to top it all off, he confirmed that Whatsapp has more Android users than IOS.

They have managed to collect 430M users (up almost 30 million since December). The company has 50 employees of which half work on localization and translation. 

Whatsapp is a lean organization which keeps costs low and has a steady revenue stream of $0,99 per account per year. Rumours have swirled that competitors like Facebook have offered up to $4B, the company has a strong desire to stay independent.

TechCrunch (link)

BBM Voice chat coming to IOS and Android next year

technologyEdward KiledjianComment
2013-12-19_21-57-27.jpg

BBM for IOS and Android has been available for some time but it still lacks many of the features found on the BB10 version. Now Blackberry has let the cat out of the bag and everyone can expect functional parity between all of the different versions in 2014.

You don't use a BB10 device so you're wondering what's in store? 2 features:

  • BBM Voice - Is a VOIP service similar to Skype or FaceTime Audio
  • BBM Channels - Is Blackberry's own social media network that reminds me of twitter.
  • More Sharing - Better sharing options for pictures and locations.