Surface Pro 2 is recommended over iPad Air. Most reviews you’ll see gush over the iPad Air, despite the largely unchanged device from 2010. Conversely, those same reviewers grudgingly acknowledge the Surface Pro 2. In a head-to-head comparison, you generally hear both devices are an equally good purchase with offsetting strong features. Perpetuating such a notion seems like a weak attempt to not offend a major sponsor.
Unlike any main stream media or tech websites, Matrixforce derives no ad revenue from Microsoft or Apple. We also don’t sell either product. However, we have provided technology support nationwide for the past 35 years and thought it was important to squash the current confusion and hype. Our only motivation is less frustration and ease of use for you.
There are 2 main reasons Surface Pro 2 beats iPad Air:
Form - Surface Pro 2 has a two position kick stand, so that you don’t have to always hold it or buy a pillow to stand it up like an iPad Air. Get a Type Cover 2 with a backlight to bang out a document or long e-mail. You just can’t do that with the iPad Air. Nearly 4 years after fist made, the iPad still cannot accept a USB thumbdrive or print to a network like the Surface – much less have a docking station to use as your only device. Yes, iPad Air is a half pound lighter with a few more pixels on a slightly smaller display. For the Surface Pro 2, the weight difference is approximately the loose change in your pocket and people generally appreciate another inch of display over the unnoticeable resolution contrast.
Ecosystem - Starting in 2007, Apple removed “Computer” from its name fleeing the long and dreadfully losing computer software and hardware battle to disrupt the entertainment industry. Beyond iTunes, every cloud service for Apple is fledgling at best. Microsoft provides Surface Pro 2 users 200GB of SkyDrive storage versus Apple iPad Air paltry 5GB of iCloud. iWork for iOS was just released in October 2013, while Office 365 is nearly a $2 Billion dollar per year online service for Microsoft - dominating the globe for businesses and consumers. Infinity Blade was developed specifically for Apple, but Apple has no gaming console or thousands of games like Microsoft’s Xbox Live. After over 65,000 apps in the Windows Store, Microsoft can’t be said to be lacking. Apple even uses Bing as the default search engine, as attempts at services like mapping were a disaster for Apple.
The Surface Pro 2 gives you the power of a full-blown workstation with the versatility for your everyday personal wants and business needs. Unlike iPad Air where you’re pretty much crippled outside of the limited Apple ecosystem, Surface Pro 2 readily accesses all types of systems and third-party programs – even competing products like Google Chrome.
The first Microsoft store in Oklahoma opens at Penn Square Mall in Oklahoma City on Saturday November 15, 2013. The opening is just in time for the holiday launch of Xbox One on November 21st in which Microsoft anticipates selling more than 1 million units in the first 24 hours.
On Sunday country superstar Tim McGraw will perform in celebration of the opening. The concert is free, but tickets are limited to the first 1,500 at the grand opening. Opening ceremony will begin at 10:30 a.m. Saturday and the doors will open at 11 a.m.
Microsoft will be giving away more than $1 million in software grants to local organizations as part of Saturday’s grand opening ceremony. Grant recipients include $100,000 to The Education and Employment Ministry (TEEM); $250,000 to Girl Scouts of Western Oklahoma; $250,000 to YWCA Oklahoma City; $300,000 to The United Way of Central Oklahoma; and $450,000 to The Children’s Center.
The Microsoft store features Surface tablets, Windows Phones, Xbox with Kinect, Office products, and much more. Matrixforce is providing exclusive Microsoft Gold Partner discount cards for 10% off store purchases through June 2014 at the Cox Convention Center for all attendees who visit the Microsoft device bar during the Oklahoma CPA Society Technology Conference November 14-15, 2013.
The future of innovation is both the theme and major reason to attend the 8th annual InnoTech Oklahoma, at the Oklahoma City Cox Convention Center on November 7, 2013 7:30a – 4:00p. If you are a business or technology professional, this is your opportunity to attend a full day of approximately 100 exhibits and 50 special events in:
Cloud and Virtualization
Software / Development
Microsoft has commissioned Matrixforce to provide hands-on Office 365 and Intune demonstrations in Booth 405, as well as the More Agile Business with Office 365 presentation in Room 12 at 11:15a – 12:00p. It’s estimated only 10% of Oklahoma medium-sized businesses are using the cloud, at an average annual savings of over $50,000 per year versus on-premise infrastructure.
Register for InnoTech and see Matrixforce for a 10% savings, exclusively available to attendees toward cloud migration services.
For this Halloween, we’d like to share scary Office 365 tales. While more than 640,000 Microsoft Partners worldwide receive free internal use rights for Office 365, just over 1,100 are currently qualified with the Cloud Accelerate competency. These snippets are cautionary lessons of unknowing customers or unqualified players for e-mail migration:
Outlook intermittently goes offline. A new customer was very frustrated as smartphones and Outlook Web App worked just fine, but all Outlook user e-mail was often delayed or would just go offline. There are additional considerations for firewalls and cloud computing, so once flood mitigation was disabled everything was fine.
Decommission Exchange properly. Even with network DNS changes, Outlook won’t autodiscover Office 365 mailboxes if Exchange is installed. When you uninstall Exchange 2007 and greater, you must disable mailboxes and NOT delete in order to remove Exchange. Otherwise, Active Directory user accounts are deleted and no one can log onto the network, but fortunately an Active Directory restore can quickly put the user accounts back.
Clean up before migration. Several users were more than a year behind moving thousands of inbox messages to appropriate subfolders. These users did their clean up during the migration instead of before, and ended up with a copy of some messages still in their Inbox that were also properly filed. This is generally a non-issue for most users and massive deletions and moves should definitely be done before migration is started.
Don’t work without a net. One customer ran an export cmdlet to make a PST copy of each mailbox, but failed to open one to verify and all PST files were empty. Further, existing Outlook profiles were used so changes were between on-premise cached mailboxes and Office 365 were merged. If users had any concerns about mailbox data, it is a complicated and risky proposition to reinstall Exchange. Luckily, Exchange databases were present and our proprietary tool was able to export mailbox copies without Exchange.
Fortunately, no data loss has happened in any scary Office 365 implementations we’ve encountered. In 5 years of moving Oklahoma customers to the cloud across thousands of subscribers, we’ve only had 2 customers move away from Office 365. Both reasons were because of mergers or acquisition and not any dissatisfaction. We utilized another proprietary third-party tool to migrate, as there is no such capability built-in to Office 365.
Windows 7 or older users must use theupgrade advisor. This utility will check the Windows 8.1 system requirements and allow you to buy and install the $199 upgrade. You will get a fresh desktop and may need to reinstall applications.
Upgrades take approximately 1 – 1.5 hours. Afterwards, Windows 8 users are prompted to make any changes to personalization colors and will notice an updated lock screen picture.
As always, have a backup and these tips are not meant to prevent or cure any disease.
These instructions will help you remove these problematic bits:
Make sure you’re logged into CRM Online as the owner administrator account that installed the Customer Portal solution.
Click Content Management, then Customer Portal, Website tab, and finally Delete.
Click Settings, Solutions, MicrosoftXmCustomerPortal, and then Delete from the ribbon menu.
The next time you log into CRM, the Content Management section will be removed if you had no other content. It seems most of your default views are restored. Separately, you can now delete or re-task the associated virtual web server in Azure.
Linda Tinkel’s last day of a 35 year career at the Tulsa Regional Chamber was Monday September 30, 2013. Matrixforce started working with Linda at the Chamber in 1997, implementing a 16 line fax modem pool. As an Accounting and Systems Coordinator, Linda wore many hats and played vital roles in membership services and operations.
While Linda didn’t have a technology background, she was particularly adept at learning new concepts. During her tenure, Matrixforce has implemented 5 major network, e-mail, firewall, and desktop upgrades. She learned and provided basic administration for all of those systems.
Ten years ago as the technology foot-print became too much for Linda to handle alone, the Chamber utilized our managed services for half the cost of a full-time employee, so Linda only had to answer a few user questions and could focus on operations. From 2010-2012, Linda leveraged advanced technology helping the Tulsa Regional Chamber to be named the best chamber in the nation each year. Recently, Linda was also instrumental in further lowering the Chamber’s cost by eliminating the need for several servers with Office 365.
Linda, we wish you well and we’ll miss a great friend.