So under quite a muffled announcement on Sept 30th Windows 10 was announced by Microsoft, were church bells ringing over 8.1’s demise? The sound of sobbing heard from people who just downloaded the 8.1 upgrade from the Windows Store? Er well no actually, it was very much a time to reflect and move on, and rightly so….
A quiet launch
No fan fare, no dancing girls, just a very laid back announcement that it wasn’t going to be called Windows 9, Threshold or Mavis for that matter, followed by an overview by Joe Belfiore. In a very honest opening, Joe explained “this isn’t finished” and went on to display Windows 10, much of which the pre launch rumours got spot on.
Crowd pleaser, and two into one will go
So basically a much happier desktop fan base got their precious start menu back. Both desktop and mobile users were in awe of the app window sat next to desktop window on the desktop in harmony and could be resized, snapped into position finally the UI and the desktop were together at last.
Okay it was never neat but it baffled me the opposition to working between the UI and desktop, obviously power users could easily get the “grumps” (and often do!), but it was hardly climbing Everest adjusting between the two, and worst came to the worst you could always snap the two side by side by means of the desktop.
WIndows 10 Continuum concept displayed when you separate a 2 in 1 from laptop/netbook mode to tablet showed a smooth transition, even allowing a prompt to the user to say “hey I’m changing mode is that okay!” Mobility and desktop are now as simple as hitching/detaching a trailer to a car
The Verdict ?
Way too earlier to comment, or even criticise. Windows 10 is in transition and will be over the following months. What was displayed on the 30th September, may change even more.
So will they get it right this time? The answer must be an undoubted YES. As the Insider program is open to trial by the users themselves, they’ll be testing Microsoft’s suggestions and voicing their opinion with yea’s and neighs no doubt, to a degree development of the OS assisted by end users and consumers, what could be better (other than have a politician actual listen to your views and doing something about them!)
But, Joe Belfiore also showed that so much of Windows 10 relied on the back bone of 8.1. Certain features still will remain in mobile/touch view although probably evolve. Everyone tipped Charms for having its head on the block for touch, but really you do need something like Charms when working touch/mobile style. So it touch Charms will change over time, but the principle makes Windows 8.1 ugly duckling will become a swan over the next few months.
Was 8.1 a waste of time and investment, certainly not, the concept was right but not put in practice to maintain the harmony for all users! The reward for making the move to 8.1 looks highly likely to be a straight upgrade from 8.1 to 10 via the store (this has yet to be 100% confirmed), onto what appears to be a very familiar landscape.
The angry mob with torches
The “death” of Windows 8.1 is exaggerated, instead of being canned, it’s very similar to a Vista to Windows 7 transition that took place years ago (which I elaborated on in an earlier post)
So the IT specialists that shunned Windows 8 have now put out their torches, and will have to walk back to the village forelorn, as instead of killing the monster, they have to reflect on how to make the move from 7 to 10, with a distinct lack of transferable skills from not dealing with 8 no doubt they’ll still be mumbles. As said there’s many that trip over the XP to 7 changes still over base concepts as user account control!
For those IT and users who took the step, they became pioneers, already familiar with the lay of the land, able to use the operating system on various devices keeping both o/s requirement and data associated across multiple windows devices. 8.1 users will hit the ground running with 10.
One operating system to find them and in the darkness bind them …
A true united operating system experience across the 10 platform, offers a “promised land” (hobbit and orc free!) making multiple devices such as Computer/Tablet/Phablet and phone a transparent transition when changing between devices. Hopefully annoying little differences will disappear (VPN not being the exact same is my personal gripe), to provide a “one ring” in mobile computing for business and personal use alike.
Has it been done before? Well yes, partially. But, uniting devices across devices, and over Enterprise is a lot more different to what’s gone before, by anyone’s standards. Windows experience has finally gone mobile, but by natural progression from the 8 and 8.1 platform… It’s always good to look back at your ancestry