Today's post comes from PTG Project Engineer Matt Banning.
On July 29th, Microsoft released Windows 10 to the general public and I can honestly tell you that it is well worth the wait. Windows 10 is Microsoft’s newest Operating System designed to encompass all the best features from Windows 7 and Windows 8. I’ve been running beta versions of Windows 10 for almost a year now and wanted to give you a quick rundown of the features that I enjoy the most:
One of the first things I noticed after turning on my Windows 10 PC is that it retained its Windows 8 predecessor’s ability to quickly turn on. It booted up in a matter of seconds. Other than that, Windows 10 looks and feels like the Windows 7 interface, but with a facelift.
The Start Button
One of the most noticeable improvements in terms of functionality and aesthetics is the Start button – it's back! Instead of the traditional popup windows that expand to the right as you delve into folders (like on a Windows 7 PC), Microsoft streamlined the start button using a vertical format. This allows Microsoft to use the same Operating System, providing the same user experience, across all platforms: Phones, PC and tablets.
Another favorite feature of mine is Cortana, the digital personal assistant. This is Microsoft’s version of Siri. Cortana is available on select Windows devices and tablets, but comes preinstalled on Windows 10 PCs. Cortana is a personal assistant that can help you remember tasks, remind you when to leave for appointments, and reschedule your meetings. Cortana also uses Bing to provide relevant information like current weather reports, local news, and traffic information.
Personally, I use Cortana the most to take notes and to remind me about upcoming appointments. Recently, when traveling, Cortana let me know several hours before my flight that it was still on schedule and recommended when to leave for the airport based on traffic.
Last, but certainly not least, is the Action Center. Instead of the Charms bar from Windows 8 (the screen that comes from the right side of the screen with search, share, devices and settings), Windows 10 has a notification center. The bar that slides in from the right side of the screen displays a rollup of all of the notifications your device has to offer. Notifications are shown in broad categories: News, Security and Maintenance, Settings, System Notifications, and Outlook Notifications. Instead of having to hunt through all of the different applications you have, you can use the notifications area to quickly view it all.
From the simple improvements in the start menu all the way to the new Edge browser – Microsoft really spent a lot of time and effort on this operating system. All in all, Windows 10 is the best OS I’ve seen in a long time. Its feature-rich, super-fast, and extremely user friendly. You can expect this to be the new standard in both business and home use. Great job, Microsoft.