It’s Here: Microsoft’s Windows 10 Now Available As a Free Upgrade

29 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Here’s the Most Surprising Fact About Microsoft Windows.

Released Wednesday, the free update – which comes on the heels of the much-chagrined Windows 8 — allows users to control their PCs with voice commands, doodle on web pages with their fingertips and even stream Xbox One games to laptops and computers. “You never really want to be the first person on your block to get the new version of an operating system,” tech expert Carmi Levy told CTV’s Canada AM Wednesday. Microsoft’s latest operating system Windows 10 is being rolled out to users across the world, with Insider programme members being the first to receive the upgrade.Microsoft’s new Windows 10 operating system debuts Wednesday, as the longtime leader in PC software hopes that giving the upgrade away for free will help it carve out a new role in a world where people increasingly rely on smartphones, tablets and information stored online. Its last attempt, Windows 8, was met with criticism over a massive interface redesign, while Microsoft’s ventures into the mobile market have yet to bear fruit. After that, a less buggy version should be available for download. “If you’ve got a second machine and you want to play with it, by all means absolutely go for it.

Richard Doherty, an analyst with the Envisioneering Group, says some 600 to 650 million users of Windows 7 and Windows 8 qualify for the free upgrade, but most–about two-thirds–will wait a few months before giving it a try. “It’s always the more technically inclined who start the upgrade process for first 6-9 months,” says Bajarin,. “The general consumer will wait.” While Apple computers have a huge prescence on TV shows, college campuses and tech start-ups, it’s good to remember that most consumers and businesses are overwhelmingly Windows based, notes Bajarin. In order to run Windows 10, users need a PC or tablet with a 1GHz processor or faster, 1GB of RAM and 16GB hard disk space for 32-bit machines or 2GB and 16GB for 64-bit machines, a DirectX 9 or later graphics card with a WDDM 1.0 driver and an 800 x 600 display or better. Windows 10 offers one experience that will become available on the broadest range of devices, including PCs, tablets, phones, Raspberry Pi, Xbox One, HoloLens and more — with more than 2,000 devices or configurations already in testing. The launch will be accompanied by a global marketing campaign for an event the company hopes will be pivotal – both for its own future and for a vast audience of computer users around the world. The new Windows Store and Windows Software Development Kit is also now available, opening the door to new and innovative app experiences on Windows 10. “A new era of Windows starts today.

While Apple’s offerings may get more media attention, a whopping 9 in 10 desktops are running Windows operating systems, as shown in the above chart, which uses June 2015 estimates by web analytics site NetMarketShare. And if you’re in the market for a cheap personal assistant, Windows 10 comes with Cortana, a Siri-like voice command feature that can answer questions, draft emails and even sing songs.

From the beginning, Windows 10 has been unique — built with feedback from over 5 million fans, delivered as a service and offered as a free upgrade,” said Terry Myerson, executive vice president, Windows and Devices Group, at Microsoft. “Windows 10 delivers on our more personal computing vision, with a natural, mobile and trusted experience. It has new features, a streamlined Web browser called Edge and a desktop version of Cortana, the online assistant that is Microsoft’s answer to Google Now and Apple’s Siri. This feature, already used by Apple and Linux, is perfect for those who survive on a single computer and are looking to create separate desktops for work and home.

Microsoft encourages people to share how they plan to #UpgradeYourWorld and to vote for a global nonprofit to receive a cash donation by simply mentioning the nonprofit in a post on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter and using the hashtags #UpgradeYourWorld and #vote. Desktop PC markets are saturated even in emerging countries — they’re practically overflowing in developed areas — while worldwide PC shipments expected to fall about 5% in 2015. “Any opportunity for long-term growth depends on reviving growth in emerging regions, and that seems unlikely with the shift toward mobile devices,” said Loren Loverde, IDC’s VP of worldwide PC trackers, in a report. There’s some hope, given Microsoft’s efforts to attract app developers for Windows 10 by making it easier to code apps that will work across devices. But the company’s track record isn’t exactly great: Microsoft’s current mobile OS, Windows Phone, launched in 2010, hasn’t gained any significant market share.

Meanwhile, Microsoft’s last big attempt at becoming a major smartphone player — a $7.2 billion acquisition of Nokia in 2014 the company recently wrote down — is “not working,” Nadella subtly admitted earlier this month, just weeks Microsoft’s disastrous Q4 2015 earnings report. If you haven’t received a notification to upgrade yet, it could be down to Microsoft working on a specific compatibility fix for your particular device, or down to the high volume of devices upgrading at any one time. Some people might not get it the first day; Microsoft says it will deliver downloads in waves, to ensure things go smoothly, but it hasn’t said how long that will take. Executives also believe that if people are exposed to the latest and best Windows, they’re more likely to try other Microsoft products on PCs and mobile devices.

The James Bond-style security feature, called Windows Hello, bypasses passwords and can be used to access applications, data and websites. “It’s a solution that government, defense, financial, health care and other related organizations will use to enhance their overall security,” wrote Joe Belfiore, corporate vice president of Microsoft’s Operating Systems Group, in a blog post. Designed for the precision of a keyboard and mouse, these apps will be optimised for large-screen PCs, laptops and 2-in-1 devices such as the Surface Pro. Ready for corporate deployments, Windows 10 will help companies protect against modern cyberattacks, deliver experiences their employees will love and enable continuous innovation with a platform that keeps companies up-to-date with the latest technology.

Businesses will be able to control the frequency of their updates and select the features and functionality that are right for each group of their employees. Windows 10 includes built-in, enterprise-grade security, so customers can replace passwords with more secure options, protect corporate data and corporate identities, and run only the software they trust. New management and deployment tools simplify device management, help lower costs, and enable companies to power their business with the enterprise strength of the Microsoft Azure cloud. The Windows Store offers one-stop shopping for popular free and paid apps, games, movies, TV shows and the latest music, which can work across all Windows 10 devices. But Microsoft plans to phase out maintenance and security support for Windows 7 over the next five years, and for Windows 8 by 2023, as it did with the older Windows XP.

A: The growth in mobile devices has caused PC sales to decline for more than three years, hurting manufacturers like Hewlett-Packard and companies like Microsoft and Intel, whose products are used with PCs. Jeff Barney, who runs Toshiba’s consumer PC business, said the new software is easier to use than Windows 8 and will complement hardware advances in Toshiba’s newest machines.

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