Today in the news: Why Google's silence about Microsoft may bode ill for Redmond's mobile-first strategy; how to secure your computer using one little finger; say hello to Cortana's little friend; how to find the happiest job in tech.
TODAY ON OUR SITES
APPARENTLY, GOOGLE HELD SOME SORT OF LITTLE TALK?
Google held its I/O keynote today. Richard reported that Sundar Pichai, Google’s Senior VP for Android, Google and Chrome Apps, hit a lot of the same notes that Satya Nadella hit in his Microsoft Ignite keynote last night: Prep for a mobile-first, cloud-first world and expect our software to become a lot smarter via machine learning. But one thing Google did not touch on once: how its products would fit into a Windows computing environment or on a Windows Mobile phone. In fact, it's a bracing reminder of the big challenge Microsoft's mobile strategy faces:
Microsoft has to embrace Android and iOS with its services and apps because that is where the customers are located. On the other hand Android and Apple can ignore Microsoft’s Windows Phone because it is a far off distant third overall despite it beating out iOS in some areas of the world.
As for what Google announced today? It's going to make some of its apps accessible offline, a move with vast implications for emerging markets with limited Internet connectivity. The Google Inbox app now features a lot of machine-learning-type features (bundling travel-related emails together, adding calendared reminders) and an expanded test program for Google Apps for Work users. Google Wallet is now Android Pay. And meet Google Photos, a one-stop shop for storing and editing all your snaps, now with 100% less Google+ required.
GIVE YOUR SYSTEM THE FINGER
You can now secure your Windows 10 machine using only a fingerprint scanner and a fingerprint (preferably your own, still attached to you). Richard Hay walks you through all the steps you can take to do this in any build of Windows 10.
CORTANA MAKES A FRIEND IN LENOVO
At Lenovo Tech World in Beijing, China, news broke of Lenovo's REACHit, a search tool that connects to multiple file storage locations and allows a user to search those multiple locations in one interface. Why is this news? Because REACHit will be partnering with Cortana, thus broadening the abilities and scope of Microsoft's personal assistant. You'll be able to ask Cortana to look for files and be able to search well beyond your desktop or mobile device.
IF YOU WANT TO BE HAPPY FOR THE REST OF YOUR WORKING LIFE ...
... Become a mobile or responsive design Web programmer. Those folks topped the list on a recent survey from SkilledUP that sought to ask which professions were happiest in their careers. What makes these Web programmers so happy with their jobs? Control over their time: respondents cited the opportunity to work from home, control over the number of projects they accepted, the ability to set their own schedule, and reasonable hours.