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August 15, 2013

Everything you need, right from (the) Start

Microsoft is focused on delivering one experience across all the devices in your life. The centerpiece of that strategy and experience are the Microsoft services and apps that come right from (the) Start on your new Windows device.

This is the first blog post in a series that will highlight the apps and services driving toward this “one experience” vision. This experience comes to life through more than 20 new and improved Microsoft apps and services that come as part of Windows 8.1, including a new one that we are announcing today – Skype, right from (the) Start!


It’s where you want to go today….

Staying connected, expressing yourself, getting stuff done, having serious fun: these are some of the most important things we all do, every day, and we believe your Windows device should reflect that right from the first moment you power it on.

Today’s new Windows experience really is quite an evolution. From the operating systems of yesteryear, asking “Where do you want to go today?,” Windows 8 and the soon to be released Windows 8.1, are the start of a fresh perspective, delivering a complete experience that focuses on the things people value most.

We have been building an expanding base of consumer apps and services. Bing, Skype, Internet Explorer, SkyDrive,, Xbox Music, Video, and Games are just a few of the experiences that are now part of your new Windows device. Each service itself is compelling, and the magic really happens when they smoothly flow together to create one experience.

SkyDrive is a great example of our new approach. As many have had a chance to take an early look at the 8.1 preview they are really struck by the “secret sauce” behind SkyDrive’s integration into Windows – fundamentally changing the game when it comes to offline access to all your files in the cloud.

Here’s what is being said about our new approach:

SkyDrive is just the beginning. Windows 8.1 is delivering rich cross-app search results with Bing that might just change how you think about searching the web and your stuff. New experiences for your photos and memories, seven rich Bing content apps for things like recipes, sports and news, are all built to work in perfect unison with your new Windows device.

Skype, Right from the Start. We believe that connecting and sharing should be a seamless part of every Windows experience. Over 300 million people today use Skype for the most personal connections in their lives, sharing those everyday moments big and small across messaging, audio and video calling. With Windows 8.1, Skype is included right from (the) Start, making your new Windows device the best way to stay close and connected.

As Steve Ballmer said, we know “Microsoft has the clear opportunity to offer consumers a unified experience across all aspects of their life.” With our apps and services that come with Windows 8.1, we bring to life the things that matter most to you. Connecting with your family when you’re on the road, preserving and sharing the memories, getting what needs to be done – fast and efficient, and providing an experience for some serious fun along the way.

We aspire for Windows to stand for the best set of consumer’s experiences on any device – the best music through Xbox Music, the best web through IE, the best cloud-storage with SkyDrive, the best mail with, the world’s most robust productivity suite in Office, and so on. Below you’ll see an overview of apps and services that will be a core part of your new Windows device.

Over the coming months we will share more about the new connected experience that comes from Microsoft as part of Windows, but for now, check some of the new and improved apps and services with the Windows 8.1 Preview.

Ryan Gavin
General Manager
Microsoft Apps & Services

Microsoft Windows - Final Design 08.15.13