Microsoft announced their quarterly numbers on Friday and they were pretty good. They posted a profit of $165 million for the quarter, due in large part to the Entertainment and Devices Division which is responsible for Xbox and Zune.
The console saw a slip of 12 percent on sales, however the cost of production was down and they saw record usage of the Xbox Live platform, more than covering the sales losses. Total sales were $14.5 billion, which is a 6 percent increase over this quarter last year. Some of that is because of a recovering global economy and part because of increased sales of Windows machines and Windows software because of Windows 7.
In March, Microsoft launched Game Room - a virtual arcade on your Xbox 360. The offering was developed as a partnership between Microsoft and Krome Studios and offered the ability to purchase full (digital) arcade cabinets of classic arcade games. Since launch, 30 cabinets have been added to the lineup with another 6 on the way next week. Although the service got off to a rough start, it does seem to be doing pretty well now.
On Thursday, Krome Studios confirmed rumors that they had laid off a number of employees earlier in the day via press statement.
My schedule for the week consists of a few repeatable tasks, mainly being catching up on my anime, watching
The Office, doing homework and checking what new updates there are for Bioware's MMO Star Wars: The Old Republic. This week has definitely been one of my favorite updates simply because it gave us a glimpse of the universe's past, as well as giving something for the Darth Revan fanboys to get excited for.
Flashback to last month when Ubisoft announced to the world that its fun-filled humiliation based game
Just Dance had sold a cool 2 million copies world wide. Fast-forward to now, where based on data from the March NPD report, analyst Ben Schachter estimates that one million copies have been sold in the US alone between the game's November release and the end of March. Needless to say it's suprising to know that a lot of people out there have no shame in bustin' a move to the Trashmen's Surfin' Bird!
236,000 of those copies of
Dance were purchased just last month in the US. In contrast, Ubisoft's new Wii release, Red Steel 2, sold only 50,000 copies. We look forward to the obvious knockoffs from other developers. Just for some example: Dancing Euphoria, You Can't Stop the Beat or who can forget Pump It... nevermind.
school district in Pennsylvania? Yes, we're referring to the Lower Merion School District, the one that allegedly caught students performing inappropriate behavior through webcams in the district-issued latops. The boy's parents were unaware that an override feature allowed the county to access the webcam at any time. On November 11, the student was called into the office and punished for "inappropriate behavior" caught on the webcam. Turns out, some of the images captured were of the boy half-dressed. Also, personal instant messages were viewed without merit.
The override feature was intended to track stolen laptops, and while activated was capable of taking photos on the webcam and screenshots every 15 seconds. Blake Robbins and his parents were not happy when they found out the school had over 400 personal shots. When the laptops were issued, an agreement was signed agreeing to not engage in inappropriate behavior on the laptop itself, but that doesn't include what the student was doing in his home when the photos were captured.
Silverlight has been in the news a lot lately, and we have been avid supporters of Microsoft's Flash-combatant and have kept everyone up to date on their
successes and shortcomings. Well, more great things at happening on the Microsoft front, as along with the announcement of Visual Studio 2010 and .NET Framework 4, Microsoft has launched Silverlight 4!
What's so cool about this version? How about support for webcam and microphones, to start. Throw in a little better plug-in compatibility with Google Chrome to go along with the already supported browser array of Internet Explorer, FireFox and Safari.