Windows 8: What is Microsoft's Future?
What is Windows 8?
Windows 7, Microsoft's most recent operating system, was released in late 2009. Ever since then, it has become a wild success with both consumers and enthusiasts alike. It's been nearly three years since Windows 7 was launched, and time for a new Microsoft Operating System. Windows 8 is the next version of Microsoft Windows. I've used both the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, and the Developer Preview, and I like the overall feel of it. On a tablet.
The Issues With Windows 8
Windows 8 is sort of a desktop-tablet hybrid. It has the capability to run on either x86 or ARM, meaning that it was obviously designed to run in either category of hardware. The big difference is the lack of the Start button on the taskbar. Instead, mouse over, and click the bottom left corner of the screen. Why not just add a Start button? Isn't it difficult to "mouse-over" something with a tablet anyway? Come on. Another thing that took me a little while to figure out was the lock screen. On my desktop PC, I had no idea that the bottom of the screen is supposed to be swiped toward the top; and when I finally figured it out, it took me several tries swipe the screen itself to the top of the, um, screen. The one last, yet minor thing about Windows 8 is the Metro Start menu interface. I think this interface is extraordinarily cool, even on a desktop, despite the fact that it feels like it was designed for a tablet. Those tiles just want to be swiped by your finger on a touch-sensitive display.
The Pros, and How To Improve Windows 8
Windows 8 has a lot of cool features that Windows 7 lacks. The Metro interface is a great example, as it is extremely cool. It also offers new app abilities in that you can see alerts, as well as other notifications , without ever opening the app. Another great feature is the ability to "Refresh Your System" without losing any files or programs, to keep your PC from running slowly. Operating System Re-installs are a snap, too. I personally thought that Windows 8 running on a touch-enabled All-In-One PC might be a good idea, because you'd have the power of a PC, but the flexibility of a tablet, but rethinking it, that system might be just a little clunky. To improve Windows 8, there needs to be an option to re-enable the Start button, instead of being forced to mouse over the corner. This feature would be helpful for both PC Power Users, and tablet users alike. Another option would be an alternative lock screen for desktop PCs, maybe something similar to the one featured in Windows 7. Overall, though, that's really about all I can think of in Windows 8 that needs to be addressed, but if any of you have additional ideas, please let me know in the comments.
Will Windows 8 Kill Microsoft?
I read a hub not too long ago that claimed that Windows 8 will kill Microsoft. While I don't entirely disagree with that, I believe such a claim might be slightly misguided. I don't mean that as an attack on any one person, or group either. I just disagree with that claim. I think that Windows 8 has the potential to be a great operating system, though I don't see the reason to go out of your way to upgrade from Windows 7. If you build or buy a new PC, or a tablet for that matter, fine, go ahead and get Windows 8. It really is a great OS, that, though unreleased (changes WILL occur, I'm positive) needs a few wrinkles ironed out, but honestly, if you had to choose between the two operating systems, I think you'd be fine either way.