Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

Other Stuff From Microsoft Today

Microsoft didn’t just unveil a slightly hyperbolic version of the future today. They also unveiled a big-ass wall-mounted table. Er, a “Surface Hub”. Emil Protalinski, VentureBeat:

In fact, Surface Hub can take content from any device in the room (think of it as a projector) and then share it again to your conference call. This will be the device’s main use: A meeting mode lets users conduct presentations and send them to users that are dialed in from conference rooms or their personal computers.

“It will make your meetings productive and engaging,” Microsoft declared. This is not the first time a company has declared that, and it’s unlikely to be the last.

Nobody likes meetings. Nobody likes them even if they have a gigantic dynamic whiteboard to stare at. Seriously, why is Microsoft obsessed with whiteboards?

Bigger news than that was the pricing for Windows 10: free, in a very Microsoftian kinda way. Jordan Novet, VentureBeat:

“I’m very excited to announce that for the first year after Windows 10 is available, we will be making available a free upgrade to Windows 10 to all devices running Windows 8.1,” said Terry Myerson, executive vice president of Microsoft’s Operating Systems group, kicking off a series of news announcements at a press event.

A free Windows 10 upgrade is coming to all devices running Windows Phone 8.1. And for the first year after Windows 10 is available, Microsoft will provide a free upgrade to all customers still running Windows 7, Myerson said.

I might be incredibly stupid, but this sounds way more complicated than it needs to be. Why is it only free for a year? Why not just make it, well, free, at least as an update? Why did a gigantic metaphorical asterisk appear over Myerson’s head when he said this at the launch event?