Microsoft Corp has released a version of its OneNote note-taking software for Macs, is planning to release a new Office suite for the iPad next Thursday and Pegatron prepares for the iPhone 6 early.
Free OneNote for Macs
According to a new report this morning, Microsoft Corp has released a version of its OneNote note-taking software for Macs and added new features and a free tier for all of the software's users in moves clearly targeted at up-and-coming productivity software rival Evernote.
The moves offer more consumers a taste of its Office 365 suite of software, which normally costs $99 a year. The free version of OneNote keeps some functions that give it an edge over the free tier of Evernote, including offline access to notes and the ability for multiple people to work on the same note simultaneously.
New Microsoft users also get 7GB of free online storage through its OneDrive cloud storage service. Free Evernote users are limited to uploading 60MB of data per month. Evernote's premium users, who pay $45 a year, can upload 1 GB of data per month.
Some new features play catch-up to what Evernote offered already, including a OneNote Clipper button for web browsers that saves web pages as notes, and a universal email address firstname.lastname@example.org that gives users a single destination to email documents to themselves for saving as notes. Evernote has its own clipper and an individualized email address for sending notes to oneself.
Additionally, not all features are free. Microsoft didn't completely open up its latest software developments to other platforms. One new function, which it calls Office Lens, allows users to take pictures of documents or whiteboards. The programme squares up and cleans up the image before saving it as a note, making words recognizable and searchable through character recognition software. The feature comes as a free app only available for Windows Phone.
The premium tier of Evernote has a similar feature that allows users to take photos of business cards. The app automatically saves the information as a contact entry.
Office for iPad to Launch on March 27
The report also covers Microsoft's CEO Satya Nadella reportedly getting ready to launch Office for the iPad next week.
Apple Supplier Pegatron Begins Ramp-Up to iPhone 6
According to the Commercial Times in Taiwan, Apple supplier Pegatron for the iPhone and iPad is reportedly opening up new factory space and recruiting workers in China to meet orders to manufacture the new iPhone 6. Supply chain sources say production would begin in the second quarter.
If production actually starts in Q2, the rumors of an early release of the iPhone 6 could be true. Then again, Apple may be preparing for a massive launch in September and meeting the needs for China Mobile may demand that production for the iPhone 6 start much earlier than normal.