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Microsoft buys Danger, maker of the Sidekick

Microsoft may be hitting a rough patch with its biggest Silicon Valley acquisition but Yahoo is hardly the only company it’s after. The Redmond company announced today it was buying Palo Alto-based Danger, which makes the software and services that go into phones like the Sidekick from T-Mobile. The terms of the deal have not been announced. The Sidekick has been one of T-Mobile’s best selling phones, especially with younger consumers who have taken to its cool design, flip out keyboard and easy interface. With Microsoft working to expand the appeal of its Windows Mobile operating system to consumers, the… Read more »


Microsoft Launches Online Music Store

Microsoft Corp. launched a new online store for music downloads on Wednesday, taking direct aim at Apple Computer Inc.’s popular iTunes music service. MSN Music, which is aimed at luring more users to the world’s largest software maker’s online service, launched in beta, or test mode, offering songs for download at 99 cents each, the same price as Apple’s online store. Users can access MSN Music from a browser as well as a brand new version of the Windows Media Player that also was unveiled. “We believe we’ve built a better service than the Apple service,” Yusuf Mehdi, MSN vice… Read more »


Government, Microsoft Fight Over Online Music

Nearly a year after Microsoft Corp. agreed to end its anticompetitive conduct, the government is raising concerns the world’s largest software maker is trying to use its dominant Windows operating system to influence where customers buy their music online. If the dispute isn’t resolved by week’s end, it could become the first test of Microsoft’s landmark antitrust settlement that was approved by a federal court in October 2002. Lawyers for the Justice Department and 19 state attorneys general have formally complained to a federal judge about a design feature of Windows that compels consumers who buy music online to use… Read more »


Mariah Carey in Kosovo to Entertain U.S. Troops

Christmas came early on Tuesday for hundreds of U.S. troops in Kosovo when pop diva Mariah Carey flew in to perform a festive concert for them. “We want to give them a little glamour,” said the 31-year-old singer, sporting stylish military fatigues for her frontline “day out with the boys in the Balkans.” One of the world’s most successful female artists of the past decade took a chartered jet from London to Skopje and then was off by helicopter for a whirlwind tour of bases in Kosovo. Her top priority, she told Reuters on the flight out, was to boost… Read more »


Microsoft Taps Madonna's 'Ray Of Light' For Ad Campaign

Multibillionaire Bill Gates is using Madonna’s “Ray of Light” in an ad campaign for Microsoft’s latest computer operating system, Windows XP. The company started airing the ads on Monday (October 15). The 60-second spot begins with a man running through a green field and then taking off into a cloudy, blue sky. The ad pairs the song’s lyric “Faster than the speeding light, she’s flying” with the words “You soar” and “Yes you can” in bright white letters. “The product is all about empowerment, and we wanted a song that really brought that spirit to life,” said Michael McLaren, a… Read more »


Microsoft Enlists Partners To Enable MP3 Recording

Microsoft Corp. said Monday it is enlisting three companies to sell plug-ins to enable its upcoming media player software to record music in the MP3 format and play DVD movies. Microsoft’s Windows Media Player, a new version of which will debut in the software giant’s new Windows XP operating system in late October, has not supported high-quality music recording in MP3, the most popular format for storing songs and CDs as digital files on a computer. Critics have said lack of MP3 support was evidence that Microsoft was trying to drive users to its own format, called Windows Media Audio,… Read more »


Napster Talks With Microsoft For New Platform

Embattled song-swap company Napster Inc. is talking with many technology companies, including Microsoft Corp., as part of its efforts to design a fee-charging service that pays royalties to artists and record labels, a spokeswoman said Friday. “Napster has been talking with Microsoft, along with a number of other technology companies, about how several of their products might be incorporated into the new Napster service. Those conversations are ongoing,” the spokeswoman said. She declined to elaborate but sources said that Napster has already spoken with dozens of technology firms. Microsoft officials were not immediately available. Napster has said it hopes to… Read more »


Microsoft Undermines MP3 Format

Microsoft has taken a big plunge with the major labels by weaving copyright protection into its newest operating platform. The record labels and rights holders have successfully lobbied the Redmond, Wash. based behemoth to shun the most popular audio file format on the planet, and press to introduce its own alternative. With Microsoft’s net generation Windows operating system, dubbed “Windows XP,” music recorded in Microsoft’s proprietary Windows Media Audio format will offer clearer sound than the MP3 format and take up far less space on a computer. However, Microsoft’s new XP system contains built-in software that cannot record MP3 files… Read more »


MAX Issues Sun-Soaked New Track, “PINKBERRY”

Following the release of his fourth studio album Love In Stereo earlier this year and two must-watch live performances at the idobi Radio Studios in North Hollywood last week, MAX has issued a spellbinding, sun-soaked new single, “PINKBERRY.” “This was such a fun song to create,” MAX shares in a press release. “And usually the ones the most fun to create for me end up being my favorites.”  He continues, speaking on behalf of the Miles Murphy-directed accompanying music video, “It was also really special to film the music video entirely in the Philippines our last trip there to continue… Read more »

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