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Windows 8 and Windows Mobile Review

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Windows 8 and Windows Mobile Review

With the computer industry always moving forward, it is natural for software developers to utilize new technology at hand and streamline their product for functionality and consumer use. With portable computers on the rise and smartphones taking a new prime time slot in today’s technology marketplace, operating systems are now needing to be developed to interface more readily with these handheld devices. Microsoft’s response to this new trend is Windows 8: a hybridization between their already popular operating system and their mobile OS known as Metro. While the individual pieces of the operating aren’t exactly new, the experience it creates is. Windows 8 brings us a whole new level of computing experience and interactivity that is ready for a new generation of mobile computing.
Check out this video released from Microsoft’s Youtube account:
At a glance, Windows 8 looks a lot different from the Windows we all know. There is no more start menu to look to for help. Now you have the start screen. For those of us that have used the Windows Phone, this should look pretty familiar. It has all of your “pins” on it, which are applications or extensions of the operating system, as well as live updating applications that are new to Windows environment, but already existed within the Metro operating system. If you want to access a more traditional view of Windows, there is a shortcut for that within the Metro interface that lets you switch to a view that resembles the previous Windows 7 interface. Through this view you can access legacy applications as well as current applications in a more familiar view, as well as fine tune your Windows experience with more traditional controls and interface options.
But where did all the preferences and settings go? Yet another new feature of Windows 8 is interactive sidebars. These can be accessed through interacting with the sides of the screen with special gestures for touch screens, or mouse motions if you are using a traditional mouse and keyboard interface. On the right side you have your “charm bar” which is where you will access a lot of your application settings, your sharing and search options, as well as device control. You can also navigate back to your start page from this menu bar. The top and bottom bars will show you what window is currently open and show you what other applications you have open. These hidden sidebars will be the biggest challenge in transitioning to Windows 8 as they have not been present in Microsoft’s other operating system releases. With so much information and settings within the charm bar, it is essential that you familiarize yourself with its location and function early on.
What does all of this mean for you, the consumer? You’ve got some learning to do, as Microsoft is teaching this old dog some pretty new tricks. The learning curve on Windows 8 may seem a bit steep at first, but if you even have cursory experience with the Metro environment and working knowledge of Windows 7, picking up the new interface is pretty quick and easy. Consumers who have, or are looking at getting, a touch screen computer definitely benefit the most from this upgrade as every menu within Windows 8 is responsive to touch commands and gestures with very high accuracy. This makes the navigation quick and interactive, and allows for a more natural interface. Either way, it is definitely a new look and a bold move for Microsoft, but it is a move that shows promise and potential for a new, mobile age.

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