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Windows 10: Are you ready for the change?

4th Jun 2015

PC or tablet users with Windows 7 or 8.1 can upgrade to the new Windows 10 for free from July 29th. It is possible to reserve your free upgrade now using the ‘Get Windows 10’ app that has appeared on the task bar, but what is it all about?

No More Major Upgrades
Microsoft have called Windows 10 the last major version of Windows, with any updates being released in regular instalments and automatic upgrades. This means that upgrading to Windows 10 could be the last big upgrade users need to do.

Welcome Back to the Start Menu
The latest version sees a return of the start menu, a welcome return for many Windows 8 users who found documents and applications more cumbersome to locate with the Start screen than the familiar menu options. In fact Windows 10 claims to be taking the best features from Windows 7 and Windows 8, whilst adding some extra applications and upgrades to make it ‘the best Windows ever’. It has been designed to start up and resume quickly, and has added built-in security.

Do More at Once

Windows 10 also allows up to 4 applications to be snapped within the one view, allowing users to see multiple items at once. Different applications can also be grouped and saved as ‘virtual desktops’ for easy access.

One Experience on Multiple Devices
One of the main aims of Windows 10 is to streamline the user experience, syncing applications and documents across different devices, so the experience will look and feel the same whether on a PC, tablet or mobile. Windows 10 will also be available on Xboxes, and even augmented reality googles in the future. Using the Cloud, users will have the ability to pick up where they left off regardless of the device being used, and apps will look great in all modes and on all devices. In fact the need for powerful computers is reducing as more and more is moved onto the cloud, and Microsoft envision a time when the only device we need is our smartphone which can be connected wirelessly to your screen, mouse and keyboard. Users won’t be required to stick with Microsoft hardware either, as Office 365 and other applications are available on IOS and will be soon available on Android devices too. To create a smooth user experience Microsoft have also introduced Continuum, a feature that makes it easy for users to switch between touch and non-touch environments that are better suited to a keyboard and mouse.

Goodbye Internet Explorer
Windows 10 comes with a new web browser called Microsoft Edge that has been designed to improve the web experience. Users can take notes directly on webpages to share with others, and webpages will be viewable in a clean, distraction-free lay-out.

Your Own Personal Assistant
With the addition of ‘your own voice-activated personal assistant’, Cortana (Microsoft’s answer to Apple’s Siri), users will get instant access to certain key actions such as finding a document, performing a web search or making a reservation/viewing reviews without leaving the webpage they are on. Cortana can also be used to remind you to do things at the right place and time, and will learn more about you the more you use it to help you get things done. The BETA version has been met with mixed reviews based on accuracy and usefulness, but the concept is great and hopefully any issues will be ironed out.

What’s missing from Windows 10?
When upgrading, users might notice a few Microsoft items that are no longer available in Windows 10. The Windows Media Center has been removed, as has DVD playback, desktop gadgets and games such as Solitaire and Minesweeper. However there are other apps that can be downloaded via the store to replace these features, so users should still be able to use their PC for home entertainment, customise their desktop or find multiple ways of procrastinating if they wish to do so!

We are looking forward to trying this on July 29th! How do you feel about the change?

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