Windows 10 is Almost Here!
If you haven't been following the launch of Windows 10, you may not be aware that it's launch date is right around the corner. On July 29th, Microsoft will open the market to their newest release of operating systems, and there are some interesting new features! I'm sure you have all seen Cortana in commercials on TV, and she is sticking around as a huge part of Windows 10. The start button menu comes back from Windows 7, but in a new and improved way, and a whole new suite of apps helps streamline use across all devices.
Something new for Microsoft corporate, for ONE year after the release of Windows 10, businesses and inviduals who use the "Pro" versions of Windows 7, 8, and 8.1 will receive an invitation to upgrade to Windows 10 for FREE! This is seemingly directed at all of us who would never abandon Windows 7 Pro for Windows 8, in business. That said, some of the Windows 7 functionality returns with the program menu back at the start button, making Windows 10 a little more like a big brother to Windows 7 than Windows 8 was.
As we have all seen in commercials comparing Cortana to Siri, Cortana is an advanced voice assistant between you and your pc or mobile device. Cortana learns your likes and the people you communicate with most, and stores that information for future use in assisting you. For those who don't wholly embrace technology, this may seem invasive, so there is a simplified method to turn Cortana off. We will cover that in one of our new "How To- Windows 10" articles later on. Cortana is a secretary of sorts, allowing you to continue to work, while she takes care of other communications. For those of us who suffer from ADD and CRS, Cortana becomes an important application to jot down random notes of those important little thoughts that pop into your head while you are working diligently on another project, but would certainly forget later on. Now you don't have to!
A new browser app, codenamed "Project Spartan" also has some great new features. The new UI is visually appealing and for those who hate those little sidebar ads, you'll love this new feature! The new "reading feature" crops those annoying ads off of your viewing area so that you can read what you intended to, without having to browse the extras...Best feature ever!!!!!! Also, tab collapsing creates much easier management within the browser. This allows you to expand and collapse tabs to easily navigate between pages and actually see what's on them without having to open the entire page. Built in annotations are another feature in this app. You can edit a page and post it directly to a social media link with the social media sidebar that pops onto your screen. And like Safari, you can now save reading lists for a little bit later on!
Microsoft is adding a whole new suite of apps for Xbox, maps, photos, calendar, and email. The Xbox app will allow you to track your progress as well as your friends. The new map feature is exactly what it sounds like and the new calendar and email app will work with ANY email provider that you use. The new photo app will automatically syncronize photos across all of your devices using the One Drive auto syncing service, similar to Apple's Icloud.
While Microsoft has been riding shotgun to Apple and Google for quite awhile now, it seems like they are finally looking to take the driver seat and maybe take back some of the marketshare that they have been losing for the last several years.
Like many other Microsoft Partners, we are privy to early releases of new products to help us gain insight and prepare us for the next wave of upgrades. This one is one that I am finally excited to see. Windows 10 looks great, feels great, and with a great opportunity for businesses to upgrade from their existing license for free... Well, what's better than free? Take advantage of it!
If you need assistance in upgrading your company to Windows 10, give us a call! --Amy