Microsoft tips & tricks that will help you this Holiday Season!!!

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Microsoft is here to offer you and everyone else this Holiday Season some awesome tips and tricks that will benefit you while you travel. It is so important to stay safe online while you travel and to remember to implement the necessary tools to do so. Rather it’s on your phone or laptop you and your kids need to be safe. Life during the Holidays are very stressful but Microsoft technology is here to alleviate that stress with their useful tricks, tips and devices. So take a moment to read below to learn ways to stay safe this holiday!

TRAVEL BEST PRACTICES:

More than 91 million people will take to the sky, rails and roads this holiday season. With Bing data, we are able to track human migration at the holidays and share where and when people travel the most. Traveling this time of year isn’t always a piece of cake but with Microsoft technology, there are easy to follow tips, tricks and devices that make it easier!

Supporting data:

· When traveling for the holidays, parents typically use their smartphone or tablet to take photos of their trip (48%), map directions using an online website, app, or software (43%), book the arrangements using technology (38%), and track flights and/or train times online (30%).

Microsoft Tips & Tricks:

· Feeling the weight of the world on your shoulder? Lighten your load and save those straining purse straps by replacing your old computer with a Surface Pro 3, it’s lightweight and durable design, all within a powerful package, will have you feeling merry and light.

· Stay in touch with loved ones or make holiday shopping easier using Skype Qik to instantly share videos.

· Keep your travel plans on track and moving forward by letting Cortana do the work for you.

· MSN Travel: Provides you the best combination of destination info and travel tools to help you plan and book a trip, all from your phone. Get inspired by daily trip ideas, learn more with thousands of destination guides, and plan your trip with photos, maps and reviews of hotels, restaurants, and places to see. Search flights to compare prices from multiple providers and find the best airfare. Then pin your flight to your start screen, track your flight status or check our airport arrivals/departures board for the latest schedule. If you travel on the fly, use this app to make last-minute flight or hotel reservations.

PARENTING/MONITORING TECH BEST PRACTICES

For many parents the holidays are stressful not the least of which is striking the right balance of tech use with their children over the holidays. Microsoft has a variety of tips and advance for managing tech use during the holidays.

Supporting data:

• Over half of parents feel it is appropriate to entertain kids with video games during holiday gatherings (57%).

• Nearly 30% of parents feel their children use more technology more during the

holidays.

• During the holidays, one-third of parents try to limit their children’s tech use

during special occasions (33%). One quarter of parents say their children use

technology a lot when they receive technology as a gift (26%) and that kids use

technology more because they have more time on their hands (26%).

A lot of parents are more comfortable with kids spending time in front of screens if they’re creating something rather than passively consuming content. As an example, coding games are a great resource for kids with lots of time on their hands over the winter break. As an example, Project Spark is a learning to code game, available today in beta for free download on Windows 8 and Xbox One.

By understanding what kinds of parental controls are built into your children’s tech you can not only help reinforce boundaries but also keep your kids safe while online. As an example, with a free Microsoft account, you can set limits for each member of the family by creating an individual profile for them. This allows you to set boundaries around and monitor activities on Xbox and Windows PCs. Only about 1% of families take the time to do this, yet it’s easy and free.

Technology doesn’t take a back seat during the holidays. Instead, it continues to be part of the rhythm of communication including holiday thank yous, checking work mail and posting status updates. From Skype Qik to new devices, Microsoft offers a variety of ways to keep the conversation going this holiday season.

Supporting data:

• Three-quarters (74%) of young trendsetters are likely to post a picture or status update to their social media profile during a holiday gathering.

• More than half of consumers have checked their phone secretly under the table during a holiday gathering (52%). Just under half have texted a friend to complain about something (48%) or snuck away from the room to check their phone (47%).

• More than two out of five 18-24 year olds (44%) say their generation does not value holiday traditions more than other generations.

• At least one-third of consumers keep work email on during the holidays so they can keep up to date with what is happening (36%).

• Most consumers send thank you cards after receiving gifts, over half send physical cards in the mail (57%), half send a message via text or social media (49%), and about a third send an email (36%).

• Parents find it more appropriate to post to social media during holiday gatherings (56%) than to answer work email (34%).

Microsoft Tips & Tricks:

• Skype enables you to do more together over the holidays with friends and family members. From sharing special moments together to working through the endless everyday tasks that make the season merry. Additionally, Skype Qik provides a more personal way to send a note or thank you beyond a text message using video texts.

• Pulling together that perfect holiday party? Office 365 templates can help you keep everything on track and planned to perfection, from the invites to shopping list to menu and more.

• Let Cortana be your personal assistant this holiday season so you can put your focus back on your family.

LisaLisa

My name is Lisa and my husband Carl, and I are the owners of the Night Helper Blog. We have been married for over 30 years and we have three awesome children, plus four adorable very active grandkids. From time to time they too are contributors to the Night Helper Blog. We enjoy reading, listening to music, entertaining, travel, movies and of course blogging. The Night Helper blog was created in 2008. Since then we have been blessed to partner with many well-known Brands like Best Buy, Fisher Price, Toys "R" US., Hasbro, Disney, Teleflora, ClearCorrect, Radio Shack, VTech, KIA Motor, MAZDA and many other great brands.

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