Windows 8 is the upcoming operating system from Microsoft – a much hyped and much awaited version, that intends to change the way people computer. With Windows 8, Microsoft changes the user interface completely and makes it best for operating on devices with touch-screens. It drops the Start button and Start menu – native to Windows line of operating systems, since Windows 95, and introduces a start screen and a tiles system that are easy to handle.
The product has not been released in the market, yet the debate is already on. “Windows 8 will rock“, “Windows 8 will outsell Windows 7” or “Windows 8 will be the next Vista!”
Today I will talk of a few reasons that make me feel Windows 8 will succeed.
The Metro User Interface
The first time you see Windows 8, you will find it to be dramatically different from Windows 7. The new user interface, borrowed from Windows Phone, is being called the Metro user interface and Microsoft is sure it will create positive support for the new operating system.
In fact, Microsoft is so much confident in the Metro user interface that it is extending it to other products so that everything is in line with the interface. It is updating Hotmail user interface to Metro and if rumors are to be believed, the next version of Microsoft Office too will have the Metro interface. The best thing about this interface style is that it can be operated using multiple touches and hence, would provide for faster navigation.
Replacing the icon graphics with metro applications, provides information on the desktop itself. The desktop looks “live” with the interface and hence, appeals most to the small screens with more whitespace. History has shown that users of Windows operating system have always liked newer interfaces. I believe the Metro user interface too will be accepted gladly on devices – perhaps more readily on touchscreens devices.
In the words of Steve Ballmer:
Metro will drive the new magic across all of our user experiences.
Already different companies providing software are developing their software in line with the Metro interface for Windows 8. These applications are a step ahead of their desktop versions as they are already open and all you need is to highlight the particular tile to use it. All these features of the new Metro interface make Windows 8, a welcome candidate for newer computers.
Ready For Cloud
Cloud is being termed as future of computing. More and more businesses are integrating cloud into their infrastructure – be it for storage needs or hosting programs and applications. Cloud services form an essential part for individual users too. For example, users want an extension to store their music files and photos so that they can access it from any computer.
Windows 8 integrates SkyDrive with the operating system. SkyDrive is available as a Metro style app on the Start screen. This means SkyDrive is always open on your computer and you can access it simply by highlighting the SkyDrive tile. Not only this, SkyDrive is available from any application running on Windows 8 and from the Share Charm, making it easy to store files to SkyDrive and to share them with others. Thus, SkyDrive brings the cloud right to your computer – allowing you to open files from SkyDrive and allowing you to save files to SkyDrive.
According to MSDN Blog on SkyDrive and Windows 8 integration:
For app developers, this means that, so long as your app supports opening and saving documents and photos, it will automatically support SkyDrive without any additional work.
This, in my opinion, is a feature that will appeal to many as there are around 17 million SkyDrive customers who store their files on SkyDrive and use it to share their files and photos with others. Integration with Cloud services would thus make Windows 8 really desirable for many. The operating system’s Cloud integration could well be one of its most attractive selling points!
Safety and security has always been at the core of Windows, and more so in this new operating system. Windows 8 has integrated several new security features into the operating system, making it ideal for almost all types of computing devices.
Windows 8 has built-in antivirus and anti-spyware so users need not install a third-party anti-malware. The free security might appeal to the generations that welcome good security for low-cost. The task of choosing different security software and installing, updating it, has been removed, with the presence of the built-in anti-malware.
Though Windows 7 is also good at security, Windows 8 is a step ahead – integrating family safety into the operating system core. This is a feature that will appeal to parents who wish to secure their kids by stopping violence and adult-site exposure; monitoring their kids’ Internet usage; and more. The best thing about the Family Safety in Windows 8 is that the operating system can enforce a set of limitations across different computers using the Windows Live ID – making it easier for parents to monitor their kids’ activities.
Offering effortless multi-tasking, syncing across devices, introducing Xbox Music, being feature-rich, attractive, lean, fast, secure and with its powerful new collection of Windows apps and the Windows Store, Microsoft could well have a winner in its hands!
… but then there are voices of discontent – the most vociferous gripe among them being – hating the fact that the new start screen keeps flying in their face …
Tomorrow, we will see the other side of the coin … and touch upon the reasons on why Windows 8 could just possibly fail!
Till then let us have your views, observations and comments about this post on Windows 8.