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Windows 10: What’s happening?

Earlier this week we tweeted the news that Windows 10 will be available free for existing Windows 7 and 8 users – but we haven’t really gone into what we can expect from the new operating system expected to be released later this year.

Microsoft revealed a number of details in an event last week – for the most part it seems like it’s business as usual, but there are a few features that will tempt Windows 7 and 8 users across, as well as those currently considering alternatives:

Display and UX

Users of Windows 8 will immediately notice a massive improvement – Microsoft has returned to its single-interface structure, combining the Control Panel with its modern UI for a much simpler user experience. There will also be the new Continuum feature, which shifts the UI to the desktop depending on whether you’re using a PC or mobile device.

Digging in a little deeper, PC World reports that users will be able to make the Start menu fullscreen, and notifications from the Action Center can be expanded easily. The Action Center itself has received a makeover; increased functionality and ease-of-use will be key, and we’ll get a glimpse of that when the preview comes out next week.

Cortana

A new pieces of software will be shipping with Windows 10; Cortana, Microsoft’s highly-rated digital assistant, will be making the jump from mobile to PC. Cortana is essentially a search taskbar based on the Bing engine, and here it’ll be responsible for searching your PC, your cloud-based files and the web. Even better, it’s retaining its voice-activated command system.

Mobile and universal apps

Finally, Windows 10 will also be rolled out to phones and tablets, and Microsoft is aiming for a seamless experience from PC to touchscreen – universal apps and touch-friendly Office apps mean you should be able to shift from one platform to another with little to no interruption to your working environment. Whether you’re using Windows for work or leisure, this should be good news – and it’s certainly a good sign that Microsoft’s development teams are still on the ball.

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Communications Intelligence, IT Consultancy and Support, Brighton, Sussex