Posted By C.Lucia 3/22/12
Microsoft states, “With Windows 8, the whole experience of Windows has been re-imagined” – and they’re not aggrandizing. This isn’t your daddy’s Windows. This is the first version of Windows designed as much for tablets as it is for laptops and desktops. It will work on everything from touch-enabled tablets, to laptops, to desktops and all-in-ones. They’ve designed it so you can move between Windows 8 PCs easily and access your files and settings from virtually anywhere – and that’s the primary difference between Apple’s iPad strategy and Microsoft’s Windows 8 approach. Apple makes complimentary devices, while Microsoft’s Windows 8 software is designed to make the user experience across devices compatible. So, let’s take this new model for a drive around the block and see what it has to offer.
Less browser, more web: Microsoft does this by making the desktop itself into an app. The PC boots to the Metro interface, which serves as the “start screen” and main backdrop for Windows 8. With Windows 8 your entire screen is dedicated to your sites. There when you need them, tabs and navigation controls appear at the swipe of a finger – or click of your mouse. It works just as well with a keyboard and mouse as it does with a touchscreen. The stunning “Metro” interface just whispers “touch me, interact with me”. Beautifully designed apps, ultra-simple navigation, and instinctive commands make it engaging and easy to use.
Speaking of the new Metro apps: Some of the apps are pre-installed and others are available in the Windows Store. The highlighted apps included Xbox Live Games; Video and Music stores; a People app that integrates contacts, social media and mail; Bing Finance; Cut the Rope; USA Today; and iCookbook, a recipe app.
The Windows Store: The Windows Store is part of Windows 8 and the distribution point for Metro style apps. They incorporated it in the hopes of making the user experience of finding new software even easier. The Windows Store has all the features of typical app stores including featured apps, lists of top paid and free apps, and user reviews.
Built for speed:Internet Explorer 10 platform preview 5 brings you a faster web. Whether you’re loading sites, sharing sites, or going from sites to apps, it all runs at a speed comparable to apps on your PC.
More security, more privacy, more peace of mind: Building on innovations like SmartScreen and Tracking Protection, Internet Explorer is designed to give you greater control over your personal info and help keep you safe from the latest online threats.
Type to search function: Windows 8 has no search box at the bottom of the Start menu. Actually, it doesn’t even have the trademark Start menu! That doesn’t mean there isn’t a search function available. All you need to do is to type anything, and a search box will appear from the right and give you the results. The search capability is even stronger this time, displaying all the matching apps and files instantaneously.
Windows 8 is “charmed”: “Charms” is a new implementation of the traditional Windows start bar. Charms can also be used to quickly configure settings for individual apps. The charms sidebar offers five sets of options, supporting both app-specific settings and system settings such as volume and brightness. The options include Start, Search, Share, Devices, and Settings. The Start option returns the user to the home screen. The Devices option presents a list of connected devices. Under the Share option, users can see social network sharing apps.
Cloud connected: Your entire PC is cloud-connected. You’ll have new Mail, Calendar, Microsoft SkyDrive, Photos, People, and Messaging apps that are connected to the services you use, just by adding them to your Microsoft account.