The long-awaited official Windows 10 launch has happened – what can you expect?
As promised, the Start menu returns. When Windows 8 ditched it, it caused a public outcry and led many to spurn the new OS and stay with their Windows 7 devices. The screen is now divided into a Windows 7-style interface on the left-hand side, vertically listing your most-used apps. A neat “File Explorer” feature allows you to find lost files on your device in moments. The right-hand side of the screen hosts a Windows 8-style interface with the emblematic live tiles.
You’ll also discover a super-secure new browser called “Edge” that comes with some seriously cool new features. It allows you to convert text-dense webpages into a much easier-to-read format and lets you annotate webpages by giving you the options of a virtual pen or highlighter (if your hardware includes touch sensitivity, you can do this with your finger, but Windows 10 is also mouse-and-click friendly). You can then click the “Save” button and share with friends or colleagues via the “Send” button.
A button on the taskbar shrinks all running apps, allowing you to see all of them simultaneously. You can then use “Select” to shuffle between them. Not only that, but you can also create multiple vertical desktops with the click of another button; when you switch from one desktop to another, the apps you’ve just been using will automatically transfer to the new desktop.
Windows 10 also brings Cortana, the virtual personal assistant who gets to know you and your preferences, out of her isolation in Windows phones to all Windows devices. The “News” section directly below Cortana will automatically display news stories she thinks are relevant to you. Ask Cortana a question (such as when your dental appointment is) and she’ll instantly draw data from your emails and your calendar to answer it.
Unlike its predecessors, Windows 10 will run across all devices from smartphones to tablets to laptops and PCs, automatically adjusting itself for the appropriate platform.
The era of numbered Windows OS upgrades is officially over. Whether your poison is content writing or video production, you’re now in the Windows 10 era. It’s here to stay.