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Friday, October 05, 2012
Microsoft Updates Windows 8 Integrated Apps

The general availability (GA) of Windows 8 and Windows RT is approaching and Microsoft is getting ready to release updated apps for Bing, maps, news, gaming and many more.

With Windows 8 Microsoft introduced a new Store for Windows 8 apps, as well as a number of new apps that are included with Windows. The company already has thousands of apps in the Windows Store, even before GA, and is working with developers from around the world to bring more in every day. This is part of Microsoft's efforts to attract more developers to deliver new apps for Windows 8 devices and effectively compete with Apple's well-established app store.

Leading up to GA for Windows 8, Microsoft will be releasing updates for many of the apps that were included with the release to manufacturing (RTM) build of Windows 8 that was delivered to PC makers and to MSDN and TechNet subscribers in August. These app updates will also be available to PC makers to include by default with their PCs shipping in the future, but for those of you who have already installed Windows 8 RTM, it is easy to get the updates from the Store app.

The Bing app will be the first one out, available on Friday, and more updates will roll out up until Oct 26th.

Here are some highlights of the changes you'll see:


Search within SkyDrive
Rename and move folders and files
New first-run experience
Custom sort order

Mail, Calendar, People, and Messaging

Conversation view of your inbox
Complete IMAP account support
Accepting and declining invitations in email
Capturing and updating your account picture
Improved search
Search for a contact within the Messaging app


Crop and rotate photos
New auto-curated collage slideshows
View photos and videos on network locations in your Pictures
Library such as Windows Home Server, network shares, and HomeGroups
Move through photos in your Pictures Library even when you open them from the desktop


Bird's eye view
3,000+ indoor venue maps
Driving directions hints
Improved navigation and layout
Improved customization, including custom pushpins and roaming options

Integration with Bing and Travel apps


Richer search results for local content and images
Bing rewards integration
Use zoom on your search results to see related queries
Use the file picker to select an image from Bing to use on your lock screen or in your other apps


Additional news and magazine content
More market exchanges enabled
Finance videos


Additional news content from partners such as The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal
Enhanced article reader, including font customization, zoom, pagination, and more
Improved offline reading experience
News videos


Additional news and magazine content
Sports videos
New soccer leagues, including MLS, J. League, and Brazilian League


Additional news and magazine content
Improved flight search and new flight progress indicator
Improved hotel listing page
Interactive 360-degree panoramas (gyroscope supported)


Improved default location usability
Hourly weather forecasts, up to 10 days
Day & evening high/low temperatures


Purchasing in local currencies
Closed captioning
Search by actor or director


Expanded music services
Rich "Now Playing" experience
Discover more music with SmartDJ


New games
In-game purchasing
Invites and turn notifications

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