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ITPro SnapShot: What Else Happened This Week? (Feb. 2 - 9, 2018)

ITPro SnapShot offers a short and snappy round-up on the week's industry-related announcements and news around the globe. Here's what happened in the last week.

There's a lot of product announcements every week -- and sooner or later, something gets announced that you'll want to know. Every Friday, we'll connect some of these newsy little dots and draw a picture as to what's going on with tech vendors and industry trends.


Microsoft Build 2018 Dates, Venue, Registration Details Announced

For the second year in a row, Microsoft will hold their annual developer centric conference at the Washington State Convention Center in downtown Seattle. The event will be held May 7 - 9, 2018 and registration opens at 9:00 AM Pacific Time on February 15th. Last year's event sold out in about eight hours, so be ready to get your tickets early. This year's conference will cost $2,495, a $300 increase over the BUILD 2017 fee.

The company's catch phrase for this years event is Code Your Tomorrow and I expect we will hear about the release of the Redstone 4 feature update for Windows 10, which is currently expected to wrap up development in March, then be released on April 10th. Of course, we should also hear about what the company is planning for the fall 2018 feature update. 

Developers will likely have a broad collection of sessions that will help them take advantage of the new features in these two updates plus the company's cloud, artificial intelligence, and machine learning services.

By the way, BUILD 2018, Google I/O, and Redhat Summit 2018 will all overlap this year. Plan accordingly.

New Ways to Comment on Microsoft Files (And More) in Google Drive

Google has introduced new features that allow you to collaborate and comment on items like Microsoft Office files, PDFs, and images as they are, and thus eliminating the need to convert other vendors' files to Google Docs, Sheets, or Slides.

According to Google, the collaboration process works just like it does for anything you have in Google Docs. It's one way to make its app ecosystem more sticky for users who want a seamless workflow.

Microsoft: Make the Switch to OneDrive And Save Money

While Google is enticing customers with greater cross-document compatibility, Microsoft announced a deal that will offer current Box, Dropbox, and Google cloud storage users an opportunity to switch to OneDrive for Business at no cost for the remainder of their existing contract.

The deal comes with a few caveats:

- The free period is for a maximum of three years
- Offer is only available from February 6 to June 30, 2018
- Must be new Office 365 or OneDrive for Business customers with a minimum of 500 users

Introducing the AWS Instance Scheduler

This service allows AWS customers to create custom start and stop rules for the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS) so they only run on the customer's say-so and not on a 24/7 basis.

Amazon states that this can result in savings up to 70% . The AWS team will assist customers with best practices to build solutions that make the best return on their investments.

A Secure Web is Here to Stay

Google already considers a website's use of SSL in ranking some search results, but this week they announced that Chrome 68 (released this July) will mark all HTTP based websites as not secure.

According to Chrome usage stats, 68% of traffic on Android and Windows and more than 78% of the traffic on Chrome OS and Mac is secure. 

If you have websites and have not begun planning to make the switch to HTTPS then it might be time to begin that process because seeing not secure next to your website's URL in the Chrome address bar is going to deter some folks from your site.

Amazon DynamoDB Now Supports Server-Side Encryption at Rest

The service uses Amazon's AWS encryption keys and it has no impact on your customers as they access your data through the Web or via apps.

AWS DynamoDB customers in these regions now have access to the encryption at rest feature: European Union (Ireland), U.S. East (northern Virginia), U.S. East (Ohio), and U.S. West (Oregon). Encryption is provided at no charge. However, any API calls to the AWS Knowledge Management System will result in charges.



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