Microsoft’s Terry Myerson, Executive VP for Windows, recently announced that “sometime late in the year” of 2015 they will be releasing the next version of Windows, number 10 – yes, they’re skipping the number ‘9’ entirely.
A recent preview demo shows that the new version is intent on giving users the best of both worlds – that is, the best of the much-loved Windows 7, PC-based operating paradigm and the best of the touch-based, more mobile-oriented look and feel of Windows 8. That’s a tough combo to pair up.
The version we saw showed a pure mash-up: A Windows 7-like Start Menu arising from the bottom left of the screen set right up against a Windows 8-like screen full of Live Tiles. From there, users can customize these elements to their liking. [See image above.]
Other things you can expect from Windows 10 (parsed from an article by techradar.com entitled “10 great new features in Windows 10” that you can read here) include:
- It hasn’t given up on “touch” – at least not yet. Microsoft purports to want to ‘evolve’ touch (i.e., change it a lot). Rumor has it those right-side-of-the-screen ‘charms’ may go away.
- The Start Menu is back. Paired with live tiles that can be resized. This is the Windows 10 + 8 mash-up we mentioned earlier.
- Task Switcher will be dumped in favor of a new Task View, which you can use to switch between virtual desktops. Apparently, not enough folks knew about Alt+Tab, which will now switch between desktops.
- A new Snap Assist feature helps you figure out the best way to snap apps to, like new screens or tiles.
- The Command Prompt is getting keyboard shortcuts, so you can paste in your commands. Hardly groundbreaking, but handy.
- A new Home location is the default view in Windows Explorer. There’s a new Share button too.
- Improved navigation without a keyboard (something called Continum). We’re waiting to hear more.
- New Universal Windows apps. They’ll run on phones as, by the way, will Windows 10, which is intended to be a cross-device platform from phones to servers.
- Modern (‘Universal’) apps will now float on the desktop. To quote techradar.com: “The new Universal apps also work on the desktop and ‘float’ in their own Windows. Microsoft wants to banish the separation between the Modern UI and the Desktop.”
- Win10 will have a lot for Business and Enterprise. Again, quoting techradar.com: “This version of Windows will have plenty of other features for enterprise, including a customized store and protection for corporate data. Mobile Device Management will be able to be used for all devices.” Microsoft wants to appeal to business users and to show enterprises what this OS is capable of.
For a more in-depth review of Windows 10, also from techradar.com, go here. No doubt you’ll be hearing lots more about Windows 10 in the months ahead.