Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) has dropped a bit of a bombshell with regard to its new operating system. The existence of the operating system itself does not come as a huge surprise; this has been on the cards for some time since Windows 8 turned out to be a rather disastrous release for the corporation. However, pretty much everyone who follows what Microsoft are engaged in actually expected the successor to Windows 8 to be called Windows 9. This would seem to be a logical progression! Instead, Microsoft has announced that the next Windows operating system will be called Windows 10.
Windows 8 business issues
Windows 8 was particularly unpopular with the business community, and many prominent organisations completely refuse to use it. In fact, Windows 7 is still seen as very much the standard for businesses that utilize PCs in their work, with only 13 percent currently running Windows 8 or Windows 8.1, according to research firm NetMarketshare. By contrast, over 50 percent are currently powered by Windows 7, and even Windows XP, a version of the operating system which Microsoft has abandoned completely, is still used by nearly double the number of businesses that have adopted Windows 8.
Microsoft has built its reputation and status as the world’s largest seller of computer software almost completely on the basis of selling to business, so clearly something had to be done rather quickly. Windows 10 is apparently that solution.
According to Terry Myerson, head of the operating systems group at Microsoft, Windows 10 will be the “most comprehensive platform ever,” and that Microsoft considered that “it wouldn’t be right to call it Windows 9.” Thus, the name Windows 10 has been selected due to its rounding off nature. Human beings, of course, do not think in nines, we calculate in tens, and therefore this particular title is intended to indicate a new dawn for the operating system; pretty much a reboot of the whole Windows concept.
Start menu back in Windows 10
The most notable addition to this new operating system will be the inclusion of the Start menu. This had been expected for quite some time, given the overwhelmingly negative reaction that Microsoft was forced to endure when they removed this well-known feature from Windows 8. Reinstating the Start menu should make this new version of Windows much easier to navigate for people who have grown up using the operating system.
However, according to early reports regarding Windows 10, the software has been designed to run on a wide range of devices. In this respect, it has a great deal in common with its predecessor Windows 8, which was really intended to enable Microsoft to establish a meaningful presence on mobile platforms as well as desktop.
Unfortunately, the previous version of Windows perhaps bit off a little more than it could chew. By trying to create a unified platform which was as compatible with mobile devices as Microsoft’s traditional desktop market, Windows 8 literally alienated its core audience instead of being all things to all people.
Thus, it will be interesting to see what approach Microsoft takes with Windows 10, given that it has already indicated that this will run on smartphones, tablets, Desktop PCs, and even the Xbox video games console. The last of these is an intriguing proposal, not least because it’s hard to imagine why you would want to run Windows on the Xbox One. But with Microsoft attempting to make its video games console more of a multimedia system than a mere games playing machine, and offering such functionality as Skype chats, perhaps Windows 10 will fit into this long-term goal and ethos of the Xbox series.
Although Microsoft has reinstated the Start menu in windows 10, the functionality of Windows 8 has not been abandoned completely. The menu will still enable users to produce resizeable tites, which is an obvious similarity to those featured in Windows 8’s touch-centric interface on PCs and tablets. So it is clear from the existing information regarding Windows 10 that Microsoft isn’t entirely ready to abandon its Windows 8 vision just yet. Nonetheless, when revealing Windows 10, Microsoft executives indicated that the software had been designed to be familiar to those accustomed to Windows 7 and Windows 8; so this is evidently an issue which has been given due consideration.
Windows 10 has also been optimized to ensure that it reacts intelligently to the type of device which is being used. Windows 8 required users to switch between Desktop Mode and the touch-focused alternative; a feature which didn’t exactly meet with widespread approval. Obviously Microsoft has listened to peoples opinion’s on this subject and decided to amend this unpopular feature.
New features of Windows 10
Other new features have been included in Windows 10 as well. The task view button now offers one-click access to all ready apps and files. Microsoft has also included a new quadrant layout within the software, which will allow users to arrange four applications on the same screen at the same time. There is also a new button on the taskbar which enables users to view all open apps and files, making switching between them easier. This also applies to desktop screens, which can now be arranged with a variety of similar work, and then selected individually. This is extremely similar to a system already in operation on Apple’s operating system for its Mac series.
Early adopters of Windows 10 will be able to get their hands on a preview version of the software later this week, which will run on laptops and desktops. Thus, it won’t be long before we can see how successful Microsoft has been in rebooting Windows.