Thursday, November 8, 2012

Windows 8: Microsoft Wins the First Round; Second Seems Easier

Windows 8
I am not sure if a fortnight is time enough to analyze the changes. Especially when it is about a product and the impact it created on the market. Here the name that I refer is Windows 8, the latest entrant from the lineage of Microsoft. Two weeks have passed by after the vivacious debut of the operating system.  As the initial brouhaha is now done with, let us now see what’s in with Windows 8.

First up is the flexibility to deploy apps in Windows 8 that, according to Microsoft, has really caught the eye of companies from various spheres across the world. As per a statement from company sources, several global brands including Twentieth Century Fox Television Distribution, Johnson & Johnson Services Inc., Rooms To Go Inc., Bank of America Corp., PCL Constructors Inc. etc. have started deploying Windows 8 apps to meet their business needs. Remember how this very flexibility made Apple iPad an instant hit. Similarly, Microsoft is quite optimistic that its business apps will change the way businesses interact with their customers.

It is strange that even being so well advanced and finely packed with sophisticated features that can keep the users go raptured, Windows 8 is criticized from certain corners. A big accusation is that Windows 8 works fine only on touchscreen, and with a mouse and a keyboard, the OS fails to score any points. However I rather put a question mark to such claims as my experience with Windows 8 is really enchanting. As its user for the past two weeks, I can vow that the OS functions flawlessly even with a mouse and a keypad (by the way I own a Dell desktop). And above all, the OS is far more secure than its predecessors.

Windows Phone 8
Any talk on Windows 8 is incomplete without mentioning Windows Phone 8. Launched just eight days back, the second generation Windows Phone mobile operating system has already succeeded in grabbing the hearts of tech geeks, thanks to the enticing features bundled in it. Speaking about Windows Phone 8, there is no doubt that this gadget is a perfect gift for its highly sophisticated look and functions. The pre-launch doubts on its capability to take on Apple iOS 6.0 and Android 4.1 has now vanished. Some may argue that apps in Windows Phone 8 are inferior to iOS 6.0 and Android 4.1. Personally I prefer to disagree with this. The Mango successor carries numerous features that can keep a normal tech savvy chap engaged. For example; look at the recently introduced Slacker Radio app that lets you create and share your own custom music stations. Experiencing music is now no more the same. And who can forget Kids Corner, a unique feature designed to keep your kids engaged without misusing it. And of course, Microsoft has promised to roll out more apps so as to make the mobile operating system perform better.

The memory storage in Windows Phone 8 is expandable, whereas you can’t do this on iOS 6. I feel Microsoft scores better here. When we speak about high resolution displays, the phone OS is no inferior. Even when it comes to playing music and movies on mobile phones, my choice will be Windows Phone 8, for its classy features.  To add further, Windows Phone 8 has hardware specifications including multi-core processors and near field communications (NFC). Now you can make payments with your smartphone and can connect the phone with other NFC-enabled devices without any difficulty.

There was a bit of confusion among the users in the beginning on how to use the Windows 8 copy. This was because the company went for slight different appearance. Though many eyebrows were raised on this neo-look, users found the features friendlier and advanced than the prior versions. If the claims of Microsoft are to be believed, the new version of Windows reached four million people in just three days; an unbelievable record. No wonder Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer was so animated at the Redmond-BUILD where he revealed the sales figures. From the words of wisdom that Ballmer uttered during the BUILD, the new Windows Store will make it easier for the developers to market their apps. So the next in line is the comment by developers.

The whopping support that Windows 8 has garnered from around world has compelled the company to push its target to 400 million. Yes, the company now wants to sell out 400 million OS copies by the end of the year. If things go as planned by Microsoft, hitting the target is no big deal at all.

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