Earlier this week Microsoft announced that Office 365 customers would have their current 1TB of OneDrive storage increased to an unlimited amount. This was big news and I think it is a show of force by Microsoft that they are serious about being the cloud storage leader in the market. This morning it appears that this massive increase in OneDrive storage is starting to happen for some users.
Months behind their competition, Verizon and Microsoft are finally working on the Lumia Cyan update for customers. The news comes from Microsoft’s Joe Belfiore via his Twitter account where in two separate Tweets gives everyone an update on the update for Verizon customers.
In the first Tweet, Belfiore states that Lumia Cyan is coming to Verizon but it will be “farther off”
This isn’t great news for Verizon customers given that AT&T has Lumia Cyan and Windows Phone 8.1 out on their devices and T-Mobile will have it out on all of their devices shortly. Still, I suppose it is progress. It’s the second Tweet however that made me really scratch my head.
Microsoft has released an update to the Bing Rewards app for Windows Phone. The update brings the app to a level of being an actual app. The initial release from this summer was little more than a web wrapper for the Bing Rewards site and, as you can imagine, was met with a fair amount of skepticism. This update should squelch some of those concerns.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with Bing Rewards, it is a US-only program where you are awarded points for doing searching on Bing. Those points in turn can be used to purchase of things like Microsoft Store or Xbox credits, Starbucks cards and the like. The more you search the more points you get. The Bing Rewards app lets you keep track of how you are progressing towards a point total or status level as well as shop to spend those earned points.
Even the most seasoned Windows Phone user from time-to-time needs a little bit of help. An app is not behaving or there is a strange WiFi issue with the latest update or simply to get a suggestion on how to do something with your phone. There are plenty of blogs and sites out there to help but sometimes reaching a broader audience – a global audience – is what you need. That is where Windows Phone Community can be a huge help and frustration saver.
The Windows Phone Community is part of the Community pages from Microsoft. These self-help site cover virtually every Microsoft product and are monitored by both enthusiasts, MVPs and Microsoft staff to help you with your Windows Phone needs. The best part is that all of this is free. All you need to do is sign in with your Microsoft account to post your questions and helpfully some answers to help your fellow Windows Phone user.
Microsoft’s announcement yesterday of offering unlimited OneDrive storage for Office 365 users is, as it should be, a very big deal. In effect, they have gone to the market and told everyone that not only can they offer a cloud storage solution, they can do it at a cost that nobody can compete with the possible exception of Apple or Google. I say this not as a fanboy but as a realist. Only a company with the experience and shear size of Microsoft could put into play such an audacious plan. And if you are an executive at Dropbox or Box, I would be waking up this morning worried.
The challenge all cloud storage solutions have had to this point is that it is, effectively, a one-trick pony. It does what it says on the tin in that it stores your files and photos in some way or another to the cloud. But that is fundamentally the problem. You are paying a monthly or yearly premium to simply store your content online so you can access it from anywhere. Functional, yes. Great value, no.