Blair Hanley FrankU.S. Correspondent, IDG News Service

Blair Hanley Frank is primarily focused on the public cloud, productivity and operating systems businesses for the IDG News Service, and is based in San Francisco.

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'Meet' Google's new videoconferencing service for the enterprise

Google appears to have accidentally revealed its new group videoconferencing service for businesses on Tuesday, a week before a big user conference.

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HTC Vive’s Netflix-esque VR subscription costs $6.99 per month

HTC is giving users of its Vive virtual reality headset access to a Netflix-like subscription service. Everyone who currently owns a Vive will get a free trial for a month, and the service will cost $6.99 a month thereafter.

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AI scheduling startup launches subscription for businesses

Setting up meetings can be a pain, since they often require folks to send emails back and forth figuring out a time before finally sending off a calendar invitation to block everyone’s schedule. A New York startup called x.ai wants to simplify that with a helpful bot, and they just launched a product aimed at serving businesses.

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Google's new AI aims to end abusive online comments using 'Perspective'

Google and Jigsaw (an early stage incubator at Google parent company Alphabet) are working on a project called Perspective that aims to curb online abuse through Artificial Intelligence

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Microsoft seeks Indian customers with exclusive Skype Lite app

There’s a growing population of Skype users in India, and Microsoft wants to capitalize on that with the launch of Skype Lite, a new app that’s designed to be more useful in that market.

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Redfin CTO says machine learning needs human help

Machine learning can automate the handling of huge troves of data to help companies make and save money. However, they’re not without pitfalls, as the real estate tech company Redfin learned.

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Kubernetes is now generally available on Azure Container Service

Kubernetes is generally available for use with Azure Container Service, Microsoft’s managed cloud container hosting offering, as of Tuesday. ACS support for Kubernetes comes along with the service’s preexisting support for the Apache Mesos-based DC/OS and Docker Swarm.

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Amazon Echo gains support for Outlook calendars

Users of Amazon’s Alexa virtual assistant can now ask her questions about the contents of their Microsoft-hosted calendars. On Wednesday, the assistant gained the ability to interact with calendars from Outlook.com and Office 365, similar to how it works with Google Calendar.

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AWS Roundup: IoT buttons hit the enterprise, Directory launch and more

Amazon Web Services got off to a slow start in January, taking its time to sleep off the New Year’s festivities. But the cloud provider got up to speed by the end of the month, launching a handful of new products for its customers to work with.

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Google’s new cloud service is a unique take on a database

On Tuesday, Google launched Cloud Spanner, a new, fully managed database that’s supposed to provide the transactional consistency of a traditional database plus the scalability and performance of a NoSQL database.

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Microsoft's president wants a Geneva Convention for cyberwar

Microsoft is calling for a “Digital Geneva Convention,” as global tensions over digital attacks continue to rise.

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Amazon's new Chime video calling service takes aim at Skype and WebEx

On Monday, AWS announced the launch of Amazon Chime, a new service that’s designed to compete with the likes of WebEx, Skype for Business and GoToMeeting. It’s a powerful swing at some very entrenched enterprise software players by the public cloud provider.

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HoloLens Spectator View makes it easier to show off AR creations

Anyone who owns two HoloLenses can now offer a third-person view of augmented reality, thanks to a project that Microsoft released on Monday.

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Microsoft unveils a bonanza of security capabilities

Companies concerned about cybersecurity have a fleet of new Microsoft tools coming their way. The company announced a host of new security capabilities Friday morning as part of the run-up to the massive RSA security conference next week in San Francisco.

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Microsoft launches new Azure intellectual property protections

Microsoft wants to help its cloud customers feel better protected from intellectual property lawsuit threats. To that end, the company is launching a new feature that’s designed to give them additional shielding.