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Windows 8 Review

 

I went to a preview of Windows 8 at HP.  There were a bunch of HP notebooks and all-in-one (touch) desktops running Microsoft’s latest operating system.  There were Microsoft minions talking about the new OS and it’s features.  I also attended a presentation given by one of MS senior technical trainers.

Here is the net-net;

Windows 8 is Microsoft’s version of Android/iOS sitting on top of Windows 7.  The initial look and feel is just like you have on your Smartphone unless you drill down a bit and then it’s Windows 7.  Windows 8 is made for touch devices.  It will work best on a tablet or desktop touch PC, then touch notebook, then a phone and lastly on a regular desktop or notebook computer.  It runs “apps” like Facebook or Angry Birds and it runs applications like Word and Excel.  It has it’s own app store.

Pros:

  • It’s new.  MS is trying to move things forward  They are adapting many of the features and functionality (touch!) of mobile devices to “mainstream” computing (i.e. desktops and notebooks)
  • Anyone who owned a Smartphone before they owned a notebook will pick it up right away
  • Everything that runs on Win 7 should run on Win 8 it just won’t have any “metro” features
  • Microsoft could eventually have a seamless user experience from phone to tablet to PC that could rival Apples

Cons:

  • It’s version 1 – that’s all I’m going to say about that
  • You really need a touch device to realize most of the benefit of switching to Win 8
  • The longer you have spent using Win 3.1/ME/XP/Vista/7 the harder the change will be
  • Your mom/dad/aunt/average VP won’t be able to close an application.  I am not kidding, there are going to be jokes about this all over the internet.  Some kid is going to visit his Uncle Willy and realize that every app that Willy has ever opened, is sitting in the background, still open on his PC.  The little “X” on the top right of the window is gone.  Willy will resort to turning his machine off to close his app.

So there are some cool features, of course to take advantage of them the apps/applications have to be written specifically for Win 8 and there lies the keys to the kingdom.  Content, content, content.  If the apps are built they will come.  If I had a TouchSmart in my kitchen I would want Windows 8 on it.  I like Android for my tablets and phones but I would try/buy Win 8 if the value proposition was good.  I don’t think I will be in a hurry to upgrade my desktop.  Overall I think Win 8 will be a good thing but I think it will be like Win Vista which took a beating in public opinion but allowed MS to product Win 7 which I think is an excellent product.

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