Best of the Web for Windows Users – 20 - 26 April 2014

This was another busy week for Microsoft: they have announced their latest financial results, closed the deal with Nokia and announced more specific plans about their launch of the Xbox One in new markets like Japan. Also, rumors have surfaced about another important update coming to Windows 8.1 by the end of the year. To learn more about this subjects and other important news, don’t hesitate to read this week’s roundup.

The Best Tech Related News

Let's start with the most important news of the week:

Microsoft morphs into a hardware giant with closure of Nokia deal - This is most probably the biggest news of the week. With the close of the Nokia deal, Microsoft has become a major player in the hardware market.

Strong cloud, weak PCs, and accounting rules give Microsoft a flat 3Q 2014 - Microsoft has released its quarterly financial results. If you are looking for a good summary, here’s one that’s worth reading.

Microsoft's new, new Windows cadence: Once a year is not enough - Microsoft is increasing the speed at which it is delivering updates to Windows. According to Mary Jo Foley and her sources, we should see another major update to Windows 8.1 arrive by the end of the year. Most probably in August or September.

The inevitable arrival of subscription-based Windows - This is an opinion article published on Ars Technica which completes very well the previous article from Mary Jo Foley. Most probably, the next big version of Windows will also be sold as a subscription, just like Office 365. Personally, I love this vision and I think it is the next best thing that Microsoft could do.

As iPad sales slow, hybrid PCs begin to find a foothold - A very interesting opinion article from Ed Bott, based on worldwide device shipment numbers from Gartner. Apparently, hybrid and ultramobile devices, which are essentially PCs with detachable keyboards, are the fastest growing group of all, with sales poised to triple between 2013 and 2015.

Google, Microsoft and Facebook launch $3.6 million project to stop the next Heartbleed - All the major players in the world of technology are coming together and trying to spot the next Heartbleed before it can wreak quite as much havoc.

Xbox One arrives Sept. 4 in Japan - Microsoft plans to launch its Xbox One console in 26 new markets in September, and now Japan, one of the most important markets in the gaming industry, has a specific launch date for the console: September 4.

Microsoft names former HP senior VP as new Windows Marketing chief - the changes at the top of Microsoft continue. This time Tony Prophet, the former Hewlett Packard Senior Vice President of Operations for Printing and Personal Systems, is the new head of Microsoft Windows Marketing. He is replacing Thom Gruhler, who will be moving to a new role inside Microsoft.

The Best Tech Tips & Guides

Next, we would like to share several tips and guides from other websites in the tech blogosphere:

OpenOffice vs. LibreOffice: What’s the Difference and Which Should You Use? - If you are not that keen on using Microsoft Office or Office 365, then you may want to try its open-source alternatives.

7 Power Tips for Spotify to Enhance the Music Listening Experience - If you are a Spotify user, then you will surely appreciate these tips.

Lyrics Finder Finds Lyrics And Adds Them To Your MP3 Files - A mini-presentation of a very interesting app for music lovers.