Monday proved to be a very busy day for Microsoft followers, as the company announced a lot of interesting projects, releases, and products for all industries. Two highlights on Monday focused around the arrival of Bitcoin on Bing and a possible Xbox Reading App On Windows 8.
The two announcements while different point to Microsoft looking forward in its product cycles. The acknowledgement of the Bitcoin being a probable real currency and a future Xbox Reading app point to interesting products on the horizon from Bing and Microsoft.
Bitcoin On Bing
The first surprise of Monday focused on Microsoft adding the Bitcoin currency conversion tool to Bing. The Bing currency conversion tool currently has over 50 different currencies, which are based on real currencies, and now have Bitcoin ass well. The figures are based on Coinbase figures, and can be accessed with “x btc to currency” in the box.
This move is by Microsoft is available to several countries including the US, UK, Australia, Canada, and India. While the other currencies are based on real-life currencies that most of us can use, the Bitcoin addition shows that Microsoft sees Bitcoin as a future. It is just a conversion tool, but it gives Bitcoin has a home on Microsoft, and not on Google.
Xbox Reader App For Windows 8
The other noted item from Monday focuses around a reading app for Windows 8. The item is still in production, and is not a product release, but points to a job posting on Microsoft’s site. This potential reading app will incorporate books, magazines, comics, and other multimedia.
Microsoft does ship a Reader app on Windows 8, but this could be the next generation product to replace it. An Office Reader app for instance could be used for PDF files, textbooks, and other media and could be a one program tool for all reading on Windows devices, from tablets to mobile. While Microsoft had teamed up with Barnes & Noble on the Nook in 2012, that didn’t pan out well for either. I think this could be a huge potential market for Microsoft and one that could battle Google and Apple on theirs.
I like this move by Microsoft and shows that they are forward thinking. Apple and Google have textbook reading apps, and getting one for Windows 8 or 9 could get them into the textbook market quickly and profitably.