Windows 8 OneNote and Lync App Available; Picture Password Shown; Bing App's Page Snapshots Bring New Crawl Traffic, Explained

Wraping the week, Windows 8 now available across the globe, with a huge kick-off in China followed by New York where the new Microsoft "reimagined" operating system was officially launched to the world. A lot has already been written about Windows 8, in this post we are highlighting some Internet Explorer 10 features as it […]

Wraping the week, Windows 8 now available across the globe, with a huge kick-off in China followed by New York where the new Microsoft "reimagined" operating system was officially launched to the world.

A lot has already been written about Windows 8, in this post we are highlighting some Internet Explorer 10 features as it would be coming to Windows 7 as well and some other tid-bits realted to Windows 8 and Surface including new TV commercials.

IE10 is a huge part of the reimagined Windows experience. It is exceptionally fast and fluid when it comes to performance, and sports an entirely new modern touch-first UI. Most importantly, "IE10 is arguably the first browser that is perfect for touch," Microsoft's IE team stated.

"The underlying platform innovations in IE10 around touch are allowing developers to create new experiences that rival their native app counterparts."

Internet Explorer 10 (IE10) in Windows 8

Here're some of IE10's features:

  • Full-Screen Browsing: IE10 lets you enjoy the web with all of the focus on the sites. The browser appears only when you need it, and quietly gets out of the way when you don't. Once you've experienced sites like Pulse with IE10, it's hard to go back to having any chrome around your sites.
  • Flip Ahead: IE10 makes clicking "Next" obsolete. A simple "swipe" gesture allows you to advance to the next page, or article, or image on sites with "Flip Ahead" functionality. Once you have enabled Flip Ahead and simply swipe forward or backward to navigate your results.
  • Pinning: IE10 allows you to pin your favorite sites to the Start screen just like apps. Simply tapping the "Pin to Start" button in the navigation bar will create a tile on the Start screen so you can put your favorite sites right alongside your applications in a beautiful display that will truly make "Start" your home.
  • Snapping: IE10 makes multi-tasking easy by allowing you to simply "snap" IE10 to one side of the screen, while having another application - such as Mail, Xbox Music or Microsoft Office - open on the other side. It's small but awesome example of how the web, through IE10, just blends seamlessly into your Windows 8 experience.

Check the two videos:

Micorosft Office team launched new versions of existing Office applications including OneNote app and Lync apps, now available through the Windows Store.

Both have been redesigned to take advantage of the touch capabilities throughout and also work well with mouse and keyboard.

In OneNote, "Radial Menu," a new touch-optimized approach give access to common commands - like formatting your notes, making To Do lists and adding pictures directly from your tablet's camera - all right under your fingertips and right next to the notes you are working on. You can see the radial menu in the upper right corner below, and you can see it in action in this video:

Another, feature called "Share charm," lets you just swipe from the right to bring up the Share charm and send the page directly to OneNote. Additionally, if you have a stylus, you can add handwritten notes, like on the map above.

The new OneNote app allows you to do what OneNote does best - capture ideas, gather information, manage action items, create to-do lists and so much more - and you can sync it all to SkyDrive, so they're available from virtually anywhere on virtually any device.

OneNote app for Windows 8

And, the new fast and fluid, Lync app is also available from Windows Store. "Using it you can join Lync meetings with a single touch, participate in multiparty HD video conferences, view shared meeting content, take advantage of background connectivity and leverage a fantastic snapped/filled view experience," the Office team writes.

Lync app for Windows 8

In addition, to the Windows Store, the desktop release of OneNote 2013 as part of the Office 2013 Preview or by getting the new Office when it goes on sale in the first quarter of 2013.

OneNote also comes pre-installed on all Windows RT devices, as part of Office Home & Student 2013 RT (Office for Windows RT or Office RT).

Micrsoft in the new Windows 8 video, highlighting its authentication tool called "Picture Password."

""Picture password" is a new way to help you protect your touchscreen PC. You choose the picture - and the gestures to use with it - to create a password that's uniquely yours," Microsoft explains.

While this is especially useful on Windows RT, "Picture Password" is also available on all Windows 8 machines:

In a blog Bing today highlight one specific feature dubbled "Page snapshot" of the Bing app that will impact the crawl traffic. In addition to traditional web search, "the Bing app for Windows 8 features a visual image search feature, allowing users to swipe conveniently through a collection of thumbnails," Bing writes.

Page snapshots in Bing Windows 8 app to bring new crawl traffic to sites

Explaining bing said,

"On top of this overview of the search results, users have the possibility to switch to a more detailed view by simply tapping on one of the images. The result is a full screen version of the image along with some metadata, including a link to the image source page and a small snapshot of the page.

"Having this page snapshot as part of the "full details" experience is a great way for us to drive traffic to your website as Bing app users look through your images."

This page snapshot is the specific feature we would like to highlight this week, as it is generated by our web crawler. Even though our crawler is intelligent enough to reuse components of your site it has already seen in the past, it will occasionally come and visit your pages again, as requested by a Bing app user, in order to get the freshest and most accurate snapshot possible. Therefore, as usage of the Bing app increases, you should expect more and more of this crawl traffic coming your way.

In order to be transparent on what crawl traffic is being generated, and obtain the best results, we are using a different user agent for this specific "snapshot generation" traffic:

Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64) AppleWebKit/534+ (KHTML, like Gecko) BingPreview/1.0b," bing explained.

Windows Store now generally available has come a long way in less than a year. "From Store preview last December, to Windows 8 Consumer Preview with 70+ partners, Release Preview with 200+ partners, to general availability" --the Windows Store today available in more than 200 markets and 100 languages.

Microsoft writes, that "in the past four weeks alone, a 300% increase in the Store catalog is recorded and the submission trend continues. And, with Windows 8 Developer Camps in early 2012, the company hosted over 400,000 developers in 87 countries."

Windows Store now available in 200 international markets and in 100 languages