Tag Archives: Lumia

Shooting street style at Milan Fashion Week with Nima Benati and Lumia 950

Nima Benati, is a 23-year-old fashion photographer, and despite her young age, she is already making waves in the fashion industry. After working for several famous brands and magazines, she recently decided to undertake a new challenge: portray the street style at Milan Fashion Week with her Lumia 950.

Image from Nima Benati's fashion shoot in Milan. Shot with Lumia 950.

When Nima was a child, she used to browse through fashion magazines, dreaming of being part of the fashion world one day.

Once Nima turned 16, she got a professional camera and started to arrange amateur photoshoots. She took care of everything: the makeup, hairstyle and styling. In just a few years, Nima found herself working for many Italian fashion brands, and conquering the covers of some the top magazines in the industry, becoming a true style icon.

Nima is constantly trying to amaze her fans. She was inspired by the fact that on social media many people mistake the pictures she’s taken with a professional camera to the ones taken backstage with a smartphone.

She thought it would be interesting to see if she could do the whole photoshoot with her Lumia 950 that Microsoft gifted to her. Would anyone spot the difference? She decided to use the Milan Fashion Week as the location for her Lumia smartphone shoot, capturing street style.

For a photographer, talent isn’t everything. A great shot requires powerful equipment, capable of capturing exactly what the artist has in mind.

Nima immediately appreciated the quality of Lumia 950 camera, loving the possibility to manually adjust the camera settings, just like with her professional camera. This allowed her to make great pictures even though the sky was very cloudy.

Nima, who is constantly working on the go, was also surprised how Continuum together with the Microsoft Display Dock, enables her to use the Lumia 950 almost like a PC. This is very useful for her, as many times she finds herself in a hotel room around the world without a PC. Nima has also been able to test the new Surface Pro 4, discovering a new way of reviewing and editing her shots while on the go.

We are truly inspired by Nima’s story and that she is constantly pushing her limits to #DoGreatThings. And the images are stunning too, don’t you agree? Let us know on Twitter.

Read more about the camera magic on the Lumia 950 on our interview with Juha Alakarhu here.

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Getting ready for 2016 F1 season with Romain Grosjean and Lumia

Those of you who follow Formula 1, the king of motorsports, know that for the first time in 30 years we’ll have an American team entering the sports – the Haas F1 team. We caught up with the legendary Formula 1 driver and Lumia Ambassador Romain Grosjean, who will be taking the all-new American team’s cars through their paces this season as their number one driver.

Romain Grosjean at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.

The pre-season winter testing in Barcelona in late February marks the beginning of a new Formula 1 season in many ways. It’s there at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya where the teams reveal their cars to the world. And it is also the first time they can test their cars on a race track and see how competitive they are against others, and then work hard on finessing the details before the season officially starts on March 20th in Melbourne, Australia.

Revealing the VF-16 on the pit lane @circuitdebcncat prior to the start of testing. #HaasF1

A photo posted by Haas F1 Team (@haasf1team) on Feb 22, 2016 at 12:17am PST

In the midst of all the testing, excitement, and media galore in Barcelona, we brought together Haas F1 driver and Lumia Ambassador Romain Grosjean and a big time F1 fan and Lumia advocate Patrick Walsh to talk about life on and off the race track in preparation for the upcoming season.

“Give 100% all the time. You’re allowed to dream. You’re allowed to dream bigger.”
– Romain Grosjean

We learned about Romain’s rivalry with Niko Hulkenberg (btw they finished first and second fastest on the third day of the pre-season testing in Barcelona), how he is balancing his life between F1 circus and home, how he prepares for night races, his transition to a new team and country, and more.

Go to Lumia on Instagram to see the behind-the-scenes shots and interview released over the course of the next few weeks documenting Romain’s preparation for the upcoming 2016 F1 season.

Also check out Romain’s Instagram and Twitter feeds to track his progress throughout the season, and keep an eye out on images captured with the Lumia 950 XL.

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Microsoft x Nat Geo: Shooting the aurora with Lumia 950

Two and a half years ago I was asked to shoot the Seven Natural Wonders of the World using Lumia smartphones. And so I did.

Stephen Alvarez capturing the shadow, light, and water that create dramatic reflections and silhouettes along the Synnov Nordvegen Road near Tromso, Norway.

Stephen Alvarez capturing the shadow, light, and water that create dramatic reflections and silhouettes along the Synnov Nordvegen Road near Tromso, Norway.

Ok, really I was asked to shoot six of them, as I had already photographed the Grand Canyon with the Lumia 1020 while exploring the American West.

The Seven Wonders was a great assignment. And a challenging one, too. I was to make National Geographic quality images using only Lumia smartphones.

I went through the list of the remaining natural wonders and made mental notes of the demands I faced with each location.

Rio de Janeiro: heat and humidity

Mount Everest: high altitude and cold

Victoria Falls: dangerous animals

Paricutin volcano in Mexico: dust and dirt

Great Barrier Reef: underwater

With my 20 years of experience shooting for National Geographic Magazine, all those issues were manageable. But the Aurora Borealis, also known as the Northern Lights, had challenges that initially I wasn’t certain I could face.

The Northern Lights are the only Natural Wonder that are not a place – they are phenomena. Their appearance relies on the interaction of charged particles given off by storms on the sun hitting the Earth’s atmosphere and magnetic field. The sun storms are intermittent, unpredictable, and so are the Northern Lights. Coupled with the lights unpredictability is the extreme cold and bad weather of the far north.

When they do happen, the lights can be spectacular but they are not very bright. Smartphone’s weak point has always been shooting in low light. Therefore, I did the logical thing in arranging the assignments and put the aurora shoot off to the end!

A Lumia 950 smartphone shoots time lapse images of rosy light flooding the sky over Tromso, Norway.

A Lumia 950 smartphone shoots time lapse images of rosy light flooding the sky over Tromso, Norway.

This wasn’t just procrastination. As Microsoft’s Devices Ambassador, I knew Microsoft’s camera phone technology was advancing at a fantastic pace. Once I got the Lumia 950 in my hands, I was pretty sure it was capable of capturing a natural phenomenon that happens only at night.

On this assignment, I chose to work above the Arctic Circle, in Northern Finland and Northern Norway. The idea was to see different landscapes and people in the land of the aurora while waiting for the right combination of weather and light display.

National Geographic photographers Stephen Alvarez and John Burcham in bitter cold Finland.

National Geographic photographers Stephen Alvarez and John Burcham in bitter cold Finland.

It was bitter cold shooting in Finland. Temperatures hovered around 35 degrees Celsius below zero! Days up there in January are short, 2-4 hours of daylight so we had lots of night to see the aurora if it would appear.

At night, my friends and I would walk through the snow-covered dreamscape of the Finnish winter. Eyes glued to the sky. We’d look at clouds and ask “do you think that is the aurora?” Then one night when it was 40 below there were no longer questions! There were curtains of light from horizon to horizon.

I was shooting with the Lumia 950 on a tripod and turned the ISO to between 100-400, the exposure to four seconds and then fired away. The tripod was so cold that touching it burned my fingers.

I made pictures while great ribbons of green orange and white light crisscrossed the sky. They looked like dragons flying above us. I could not believe what I was seeing both above me and on the screen.

Low light, the last barrier to smartphone photography, has fallen way. I was shooting the Aurora Borealis on a smartphone!

– Stephen Alvarez

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New Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter coming soon

Back in 2014, we launched a brand-new accessory that allowed people to project anything from a Miracast®-enabled tablet, laptop, or smartphone onto a big screen, wirelessly. The Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter didn’t rely on specific apps to display content – any and all screen images went right to an HDTV or monitor thanks to Miracast technology.

We heard great feedback about the device, most notably from students and mobile professionals, due to the size, ease of use for setup, and the fact there was no internet required for it to work. Road warriors have been using the device to make mobile work stations at hotel rooms without being hunched over a desk, and students found it useful for streaming movies to a TV directly from the couch. Additionally, businesses are plugging their Wireless Display Adapters into their overhead projectors; eliminating the need for those multiple cords, wires, and adapters we all scramble for in order to present in a conference room.

So today, we are announcing the next generation of Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter. It brings the best features and functionality of the first generation while reducing the latency and packing it into a new form factor. It’s still just as easy to setup and use and also allows people to mirror or extend their screen from Miracast-enabled Windows 10 phones, tablets and laptops, including the Surface lineup.

New Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter

You can pre-order the Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter now in the U.S. and Canada, and it will be available on March 1, 2016, for the estimated retail price of $49.95 at Microsoft Store, Best Buy and Amazon – it will be coming to future markets soon. Please visit our Microsoft Accessories website for additional information.

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Microsoft Lumia 650: sophisticated, metal design and Windows 10 under $200 USD

As one of the leaders in our devices business, I’ve had the privilege of seeing firsthand transformation and progress across our Windows and Devices group. From Windows 10 to Surface Book to HoloLens, and PC-like productivity on Lumia 950 series, it is clearly now apparent that we have a portfolio of unique and productive Windows devices.

One of the guiding principles of the devices vision is that it’s not just about the device itself, but what you’re able to get done with it. The simple fact is that the most personal device that we have to get things done is our phone. So the team and I are working tirelessly to make sure that we do our best to give you the most productive phones on the planet. At the end of 2015 we introduced the first Lumia devices running Windows 10 – Lumia 550, Lumia 950 and Lumia 950 XL – and we’re thrilled at the response they’ve received.

Now, here at the beginning of 2016, we’re excited to announce the new Lumia 650 – our latest smartphone running Windows 10. The Lumia 650 comes in matte black and matte white, and will become available in select European markets beginning Feb. 15, starting from a suggested retail price around $199 USD before local taxes and subsidies.

We’re extremely proud of the Lumia 650 and believe it will quickly be seen as the device that provides the perfect balance between work and personal needs.

I’ve had an opportunity to talk with our business customers as well as our Windows fans and something that consistently comes up is that this ever expanding mobile world is quickly becoming chaotic. It’s in that spirit that we designed the Lumia 650 to bring first class to business class; giving our customers the best of Microsoft productivity and security, all wrapped in a beautiful slim package. By providing a consistent experience across PC and phone through the power of Windows 10, we think professionals and Windows fans alike will love using it every day.

Lumia 650 family

Sophisticated Design

This really is a beautiful phone. We’ve paid attention to every detail, pairing the highest level of craftsmanship with maximum everyday productivity. The 5” OLED display is bright and crisp; colors really pop and blacks are deep and clear. It’s by far our most beautiful screen ever at this price point. Lumia 650 also features a highly polished, diamond cut and anodized aluminum frame, giving it an unparalleled and premium feel. Importantly, we didn’t sacrifice the removable battery and expandable storage, something we know our customers enjoy having. And with a profile of only 6.9mm and weighing just 122 grams, it’s incredibly thin and light. It’s a phone I’m proud to show off.Lumia 650 in white Lumia 650 in white

Lumia 650 in whiteLumia 650 also features a 5MP wide-angle, front-facing camera and Microsoft’s flagship imaging algorithms, providing remarkable photo and video capabilities. Leveraging our world-class optics, the advanced 8MP rear-facing camera includes options for rich capture and living images enabling you always to capture the memory as it happens.

The Best of Microsoft Productivity

If you’re like me when you work, you want to really get things done. We need to be able to seamlessly move between our work and personal needs. Building on our success of more than 200 million devices running Windows 10, the Lumia 650 puts Microsoft’s smooth, responsive and most productive OS in your pocket.

Our business customers continue to send great feedback on Windows 10 and are compelled by the mobility of the Windows experience across devices. Lumia 650 runs the latest Microsoft Office apps right out of the box, allowing you to create and edit documents on-the-go and sync them to the cloud via OneDrive. It’s also perfect for picking up on email and an important presentation during your commute. And with Cortana, your very own personal assistant, you’re always organized and prepared for the day ahead.

Lumia 650 family

The Lumia 650 fits perfectly into the enterprise with built-in support for Microsoft business applications, new third party Universal Windows Applications like Uber, and one click setup of common everyday tools like Office 365. It also allows IT to test the latest Windows 10 Mobile updates against critical line of business systems and apps, before you distribute to end users via MDM.

It’s secure by design and keeps company and personal data safer with features like device encryption and device wipe. These features allow businesses peace of mind, knowing important information in emails and files are protected from threats and empowers employees to use one device for work and play.

As we’ve sharpened our mobile strategy with a new focus in phones, the Lumia 650 is another step towards bringing Windows 10 to more than a billion devices. Our phones will continue to play a key role in this effort. We’re improving our platform with regular updates and are committed to continuing to deliver the most productive and secure Windows-based smartphones to Windows fans and business customers.

I’m really proud of our team’s work on this new device and am really looking forward to bringing the Lumia 650 to market. So far, feedback has been great and our partners in Europe are excited to begin sales this week.

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Lumia Challenge: Long exposure extraordinaire

We all know by now that the camera on your Lumia phone can do exceptional things. We have a huge community of you who know how to use the advanced camera user interface on Lumia to help you take great photos every time. So we’re handing over to you for a chance to win a great prize, just by showing us your fabulous long exposure Lumia shots!

The Challenge

So what’s a ‘long exposure’ shot you ask? Long exposure is photography which works particularly well at night time, showing a beautiful array of light trails or motion blur. The perfect subject for a long exposure shot might be city traffic or flowing water – all of which can create mystifying effects straight from the camera on your Lumia. We’ve got some really well established long exposure photographers in our community already, one of which is the fabulous Olivier Wong-Man-Kan, who wrote this extraordinary article last year on how to create the perfect Lumia long-exposure photo. This is a great place to get started and pick up some tips and tricks.

Here’s a few of our favorite Lumia long exposure shots from Olivier:

Slow shutter speed in front of Eiffel Tower – Lumia 920 – Paris
My favorite shot.

A photo posted by Olivier Wong (@wonguy974) on Dec 8, 2013 at 12:01am PST

Light trails under the bridge. Paris. Lumia 920.

A photo posted by Olivier Wong (@wonguy974) on Feb 4, 2014 at 9:52am PST

Light trails in front of Eiffel Tower. Paris. Lumia 920.

A photo posted by Olivier Wong (@wonguy974) on Jan 26, 2014 at 12:53am PST

How to enter

So – without further ado, get submitting your #LumiaChallenge snaps! Use the hashtag #LumiaChallenge and mention @LumiaVoices on any pictures you’d like to enter, through either Twitter or Instagram. You can enter right up until February 16th.

On February 17th , we’ll unveil a short-list of the best entries, picked by the Lumia Voices team.

It’s then over to you to vote for your favorite snap right here. The winner will be the picture with the most votes and will be announced on February 24th. Check out the terms and conditions here.

Prize

If sending in your pictures and getting a chance to feature isn’t a big enough pull for you – the Lumia 950 we’re giving away just might be!

So what are you waiting for? Send us those long exposure marvels!

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Weekend Reading: Microsoft devices news and stories you may have missed (Jan 29)

The TripAdvisor app is now available for Windows 10, Surface 3 combines design and technology to win over the most prestigious luxury watch group in the UK, and Cortana gets better at helping you manage your busy schedule—these are our picks for Weekend Reading:

Announcing the TripAdvisor app for Windows 10

The TripAdvisor app for Windows 10 is now available as a free download in the Windows Store for your Windows 10 devices, including Surface devices and Lumia phones. Browse millions of traveler reviews, opinions, and photos to help you choose your next travel decision, and compare hotel prices and availability to plan your accommodations. Read more about using the TripAdvisor app for Windows 10 here.

The TripAdvisor app for Windows 10

Surface 3 combines design and technology to win over the most prestigious luxury watch group in the UK

On Monday, we were pleased to announce that one of the UK’s most prestigious watch groups, Aurum Group, decided that Surface 3 was the right device for their business and brands. The sleek, sophisticated design of the Surface fits perfectly with luxury brands, and many of their boutiques use the tablet throughout the store with customers.

Click here to continue reading about what makes the Surface 3 a top choice for businesses.

Microsoft Surface 3

Cortana Gets Better at Helping You Manage Your Busy Schedule

On Monday, Marcus Ash, Program Manager for Cortana, wrote a blog post outlining exciting new features coming to Cortana that will make her even more like a true-life assistant right on your Windows 10 devices. Watch the following video to hear from Marcus himself about these new features, and read the full story here.

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Accessorize your new Microsoft Lumia, Surface, or Band

Part of the fun of owning a Microsoft Lumia, Microsoft Surface, or the Microsoft Band, is personalizing it with accessories. Check out our list of top must-haves. And win a Mozo cover for your Lumia 950!

Mozo covers for Lumia phones and a chance to win one

Mozo cov ers for Lumia 950 XL

If you own the new Windows 10-enabled Lumia 950 or Lumia 950 XL, there are a couple of case options available, made by one of our accessory partners such as Mozo. Not only do they look stunning, but they also fit perfectly.

The Mozo has a variety of covers in a range of colors to choose from, making your Lumia 950 or Lumia 950 XL look stunning and protecting it from scratches.

The Mozo back and notebook covers replace the original cover on your Lumia and support wireless charging, while the Mozo wallet flip cover with two credit card slots has the potential to make your wallet redundant.

Head over to the Mozo online store to (pre)order yours today!

Win a Mozo cover for your Lumia 950!

We’re giving away two Mozo Lumia 950 back covers (one red, one white) to two lucky people. For your chance to win, let us know why you want one for your Lumia 950, mentioning both @Lumia and @Mozo_FI and using #Lumia950.

Entries will close on February 2, 2016, and we’ll contact the winners shortly after on Twitter.


Microsoft Display Dock for Lumia

Lumia 950 connected to a large screen, mouse and keyboard with Microsoft Display Dock.

Leave your laptop at the office: Connect your Lumia 950 or Lumia 950 XL to an external monitor, keyboard, and mouse with the Microsoft Display Dock to get a full PC-like experience.

Windows apps such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook will scale up onto the big screen and the Display Dock (with full HD output and a USB-C port) also charges your phone as you work.

Microsoft Surface Pro 4 Type Cover

Surface-Pro-4-Type-Cover_group
The Surface Pro 4 Type Cover, available in a variety of colors, cranks the productivity up to another level on the Surface Pro 3 or Surface Pro 4 tablet.

The keys are spread out for a more comfortable and efficient typing experience, and the larger track pad makes all the difference for precision control and navigation.

The type cover’s enhanced magnetic stability along the fold of the keyboard also makes it more comfortable to use your Surface whether it’s balanced on your lap or perched on your desk.

Microsoft Surface Pen New Surface Pens in black, dark blue, gold and silver.
One must-have accessory for your Surface 3, Surface Pro 3, Surface Pro 4, or Surface Book, is the new Surface Pen, available in gold, silver, black and dark blue.

With the Surface Pen, you can write, draw, or mark-up documents digitally. If you’ve made a mistake, the eraser button located on the top of the pen can be used to remove errors. And if you have the Surface Pro 4 or Surface Book, you can take advantage of the new Surface Pen’s 1,024 levels of pressure sensitivity.

One click of the Surface Pen opens up OneNote, and to launch Cortana* just click and hold.

Note: Includes the Pen tip kit ($10 if purchased separately) that changes the tip size of the new Surface Pen for precision work.

Microsoft Surface Dock

Microsoft Surface Dock
Transform your Surface into a desktop PC with the new Microsoft Surface Dock. The Dock has two Mini DisplayPort ports, a gigabit Ethernet port, four USB 3.0 ports, and an audio output allowing you to plug in all your favorite accessories.

And while you’re plugged in, you can continue inking with the Surface Pen and use your Surface at the perfect angle by adjusting the multi-position Kickstand.

The new Surface Dock is compatible with Surface Book, Surface Pro 4 and Surface Pro 3.

Microsoft Surface Sleeves

Sleeves for Microsoft Surface designed by Kate Spade and Jack Spade.

You’re already making a statement by owning a Surface device, but now you can really turn heads with a stunning designer sleeve.

Our Surface accessories line-up is growing faster than ever and we’re excited to be working with Kate Spade and Jack Spade on luxury sleeves that protect your Surface device while making it look like you just stepped off the runway. From soft vegan leather to protective neoprene cushion material, it’s easy to find a sleeve that fits the needs of any fashion-forward techie.

Microsoft Band 2 Charging Stand

Microsoft Band 2 Charging Stand
Between tracking your workouts and sleep and notifying you of new messages and calendar alerts, your new Microsoft Band is busy! So charge it in style.

The Microsoft Band 2 Charging Stand lifts your new Microsoft Band off the table, elevating it into a better viewing position, turning it into a table clock.

The charging cable tucks away neatly behind the stand helping with cable management.

Microsoft Band 2 USB Charging Cable

Microsoft Band 2 USB Charging Cable

This cable is included with your Band, but it’s good to keep an extra one in case you lose the original. Alternatively, if you regularly travel from one place to another, you could keep a spare cable for the car or office so you don’t have to schlep cables everywhere.

Bought a new accessory for your Microsoft Lumia, Microsoft Surface, or Microsoft Band? Let us know on Twitter – @Lumia / @Surface / @MicrosoftBand.

* In select markets.

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Weekend Reading: Microsoft devices news and stories you may have missed (Jan 15)

Skype celebrates ten years of Skype video calling and announces free group video calls for mobile phones, Designed on Surface project highlights mural artists around the globe who are doing great things with Surface, and the world of work is changing – here are our picks for Weekend Reading.

A man plugs a Lumia 950 into a screen using Microsoft Display Dock

Continuum for Phones: Making the phone work like a PC
Continuum for Phones is a Windows 10 feature that, with the Microsoft Display Dock, gives you a PC-like experience, allowing you to scale the Office apps on your phone onto a second screen, while you can continue using your phone as a phone.

Head over to the Windows Experience blog, to read about the making of Continuum – the challenges, vision, and solution.

Designed on Surface: Inspiring artists around the world to do great things
Designed on Surface project is a collaboration with artists across the globe to create murals embodying the spirit of people who do great things and the places that inspire them. Read more about the project here.

In our new weekly series, we showcase the individual artists and their inspiring work, created with the help of Microsoft Surface. The first in the series is Jasper Wong, an artist, illustrator and curator from the USA.

Jasper Wong creating his mural.

Ten years of Skype video calling
A decade ago, Skype introduced video calling, changing the way we communicate and keep in touch with our friends, family and colleagues. Since then, Skype has become the video calling app of choice for many, generating more than 2 trillion minutes of free Skype video calls to date.

Skype, originally only available on PCs, has evolved over the years, and this week the evolution continues as Skype announced it would bring free group video calling to mobile phones in the coming weeks.

The changing world of work
With the help of technology and mobile devices, we can work anywhere and anytime. So why go the office?

Microsoft Office Envisioning and PopTech spoke to experts around the globe trying to understand how automation, intelligence and the exponential growth of digital connectivity are changing the way we work.

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Bing’s NFL playoff picks, Skype’s big milestone and the new Microsoft Envision event — Weekend Reading: Jan. 15 edition

Bing’s sports predictions, beautiful murals around the world and a photographer’s Great Barrier Reef adventure are just a few reasons to take a look back at the week’s news at Microsoft. We’ve rounded up some of the highlights in this latest edition of Weekend Reading.

If you’re settling in to watch some football this weekend, you may want to first check out which teams Bing Predicts expects to win. Seattle or Carolina? Kansas City or New England? You can find predictions for the divisional round matchups on Bing or using the new “Cortana! Powered by Bing Predicts” feature on Xbox and the Windows 10 app.

Bing also offers what ESPN college basketball analyst Jay Williams calls “a one-of-a-kind predictive NCAAB experience” with AreWeIn.net, a data-driven tool that predicts whether your favorite teams will make this year’s NCAA tournament.

WR bing predicts

This week Skype marked a big milestone: 10 years since it changed the way people connect with colleagues and loved ones with the launch of free video calling. To celebrate, Skype is rolling out group video calling on Android, iPhone, iPad and Windows 10 mobile — and it’s free.

Skype video calling has been used in incredible ways on various platforms and devices. Couples use it to keep in touch when they’re apart, soldiers use it to witness the births of their children, explorers in remote areas connect with classrooms of students and more. Users have made nearly 2 trillion minutes of video calls over the past decade.

What’s more, Skype Translator is now available to all Skype for Windows customers.

This week Microsoft announced a new flagship event for business leaders, Microsoft Envision, to take place April 4-6 in New Orleans. It replaces Microsoft Convergence as the premier event for execs and business leaders around the world. Registration is now open.

Attendees “can expect to gain insights, uncover solutions and build connections to help them achieve more,” writes Chris Capossela, Microsoft executive vice president and chief marketing officer.

It’s also almost time to reserve your place at Build 2016; registration opens Tuesday. The three-day developer conference begins March 30 this year in San Francisco.

For those of you who appreciate unusual art, local artists in 17 cities around the world have created stunning murals that bring new color to their communities as part of the “Designed on Surface” project. The collaboration is aimed at art that embodies the spirit of people who do great things and the places that inspire them.

Graffiti artists drew inspiration from Microsoft’s core theme, “Do great things,” and each used the latest Microsoft devices to enhance their creative process.

WR_murals

In the enviable adventures department, National Geographic photographer Steven Alvarez traveled light on his 10-day shoot of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef: He brought just a few Microsoft devices to capture about 10,000 photos.

The spectacular trip was part of his mission to capture the Seven Natural Wonders of the World with Lumia devices. He came away with quite a story to share, along with tips for underwater photography using a Lumia phone.

WR Alvarez

In apps this week, there’s plenty to keep you busy this winter weekend, no matter what Mother Nature has in mind. You can try liberating the world in the World War II-inspired “Panzer Geekz,” which sends you through model landscapes with combat based in toy physics and plastic destruction rather than graphic carnage.

Or put the pedal to the metal in “Smashy Road: Wanted” and go on the run from police, SWAT teams, Army jeeps and thundering tanks as you choose from dozens of different vehicles and navigate erratically changing terrain.

The latest table pack in the “Star Wars” Pinball lineup, “Star Wars Pinball: The Force Awakens,” is now available for “Pinball FX2” on Xbox One and Xbox 360, and is coming soon to Windows 10. The two-pack ($2.99 each as an in-app purchase) presents two different perspectives on the smash hit film.

“The Banner Saga,” now out for Xbox One, is a tactical, role-playing game based on quick, brutal decisions. The game’s art director and writer share how this thrilling adventure came together in an interview with Xbox Wire.

WR apps

This week on the Microsoft Tumblr page, we caught up with Sonja Rasula, founder of Unique Markets and The Unique Space, which bring the work of local designers, artisans and creatives to the public.  Her focus on quality over quantity is fostering the future of makers in the United States.

sonja_rasula_001

You’re now caught up on the latest news around Microsoft. See you back here in one week for our next edition of Weekend Reading.

Posted by Tracy Ith
Microsoft News Center Staff

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