Some pretty big milestones for Microsoft, a few notable changes, and an important new release. Windows Phone 8.1 Update 1 is now available in developer form, while Windows 8.1 itself is gaining a lot of steam at Steam (yeah, I know). The situation in China, however, is far from resolved.

Five highlights from the past five days:

Announcement of the Week

Now we know why there was not much excitement from Microsoft regarding the second update to Windows 8.1. While initially this refresh was expected to bring back the Start Menu, Redmond decided against it, and instead is releasing it as the August Update, with just a handful of small features.

Launch of the Week

The Surface Pro 3 is going places. Microsoft’s illustrious new tablet is to be available in 25 new markets by the end of the month, including several key places across Europe. The United Kingdom is also in this list, and we will soon have an idea of the international prospects of this laptop replacement slate.

Opening of the Week

While the actual store will be open for business in due time, but Redmond finally has a presence in New York City proper. There is credible news that a Microsoft Store is being set up a few blocks away from the Apple one, in the busy shopping district of the city.

Milestone of the Week

Things very much slowed down on the Windows Phone front these past few months, but the arrival of universal apps has provided the mobile OS with welcome new additions. The latest is that the Windows Phone Store now hosts more than 300,000 unique applications, with thousands added daily.

Rename of the Week

Although Patch Tuesday was, by no means, an official name, it stuck. Microsoft used it for more than a decade. However, the company has now decided to change the name of this release cycle to Update Tuesday, with hints that we can now expect regular feature updates along with fixes and patches.

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