Microsoft has presented their new Windows operating system, and I’m ready to continue the coverage after I getting over the shock of the new name. While I don’t have anything against it, it just doesn’t make sense to me. Doesn’t have to, Windows 10 is on its way.
Microsoft wants to empower novice users to get better at multi tasking and are introducing the new Task View. A new button is placed on the taskbar and when pressed it that launches the function by the same name. Mac OS X users will see this as a very familiar option.
We see multiple desktops at the bottom of the interface and it also shows all the apps that currently are open. You can switch between the different desktops with multiple apps running in their own separate areas. There’s also a new Snap Assist UI at the side where you can grab apps from multiple desktops. This might not be a world-changing feature as they said during the presentation, but it is a great addition.
Microsoft is really trying to reach all users better with the new Windows 10, may they use keyboard and/or mouse or touch interfaces to control it. Ease of use and productivity have been key words the Microsoft developers as they worked on this new version.
The command prompt has been improved as well. While it still looks the same, it has gained a new very useful feature. You can now paste with CTRL+V into the prompt. Up until now you had to access a context menu via the right mouse button, something that really interfered with productivity. A minor addition, but one that will be loved. Microsoft wants to deal with all these different input methods in a way that works for them all, not just the most popular.
A thing I think many Windows 8 users would like to see gone is the charms bar. But no such luck, the charms bar is still present in Windows 10. Lets just hope that it’ll be easier to turn off or disable for those who don’t need it, as it can be a real pain on multi-monitor setups. We were told that it was an early version, so it’s most likely going to change before the final product.
Up until now it’s been mostly focused on the desktop version, but we also get a peek at the new design for the two-in-one models. Microsoft calls this new design study the continuum and below we see the start menu as it looks for touch devices. Essentially it switches mode depending on your input. Microsoft are trying to be thoughtful about the user interface of their new cross-platform operating system.
Microsoft is launching the Insider Program tomorrow as well as the technical preview build for laptops and desktops. The preview versions for servers will follow later at an unspecified time. They’re also inviting enthusiastic fans to evaluate the new Windows with them, as they said: “We know they’re a vocal bunch.”
Microsoft is also planning to share more than ever before and earlier than ever before. “We can build a product that all of our customers will love.” We’ll be hearing more about the consumer story beginning of next year and there will be a build conference in April that will show more about the new universal apps. The actual product will be shipping sometime late 2015.
The first thing that was asked in the following Q&A round was about pricing and upgrades for Windows XP and Seven users. But no such luck at this time, this event was about the product family and the presentation of the new direction they’re taking. The naming choice was the next thing that was asked, to which the response was that once you see the improvements, you’ll agree with the decision to skip a number.
To the question about what insiders would get access to we got this reply: “We’ve never done this before. Hopefully you become an Insider, you’ll see things you haven’t seen before. There will be forums available for discussions amongst insiders, and our engineering team will be available.” So it’s a direct feedback line. Microsoft doesn’t want a repeat of the Windows 8 fiasco, and getting the users involved early seems a great way to avoid this.
Some one also joked if we would see Windows versions named after big cats now that we’ve gotten to version 10, but the answer to that was: “Probably not.” This wraps up the news surrounding the event in San Francisco, but we’ll keep you updated with the newest things about this operating system as they become available.
Thank you TheVerge for providing us with this information
Images courtesy of TheVerge