Windows 10 is now available in 190 countries as a free upgrade! Yes, Singapore is one of them and I am upgrading my two computers to Windows 10 now, and will be doing so on my HP Stream 7 a short while later. Termed as the most secure Windows ever, Windows 10 will be delivered as a service and kept automatically updated. If you are using Windows 7 or 8, you would have noticed a new icon on your computer taskbar and the opportunity to reserve your copy of Windows.
Due to the massive worldwide release, the update would be done automatically, but in batches. If you want to be the first few to try the new software, you can force the update by doing the following. Open a command prompt as administrator. Type the following command
. Open Windows Update and you should see Windows 10 downloading / installing.
Update: I received error 80240020 at the end of the preparing for installation bit. I’m trying this next https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10.
Continue reading for my top 10.
1. Gaming, Xbox Compatibility and Experience
The new Xbox app delivers the Xbox experience to Windows 10, and one of the great features is the ability to cast your Xbox screen to your Windows 10 computer. Microsoft did a demonstration at the launch event and the lag seemed non-existent. From a tech perspective, there’s DX 12 on Windows 10, which should boost performance for gamers, which can reduce up to 50% power consumption and a 60% increase in frame rate.
One of Microsoft’s big announcements at its Build developers conference earlier was the ability to turn a smartphone running Windows 10 into a PC. Dubbed Continuum, it’s designed to take advantage of new universal apps that run across Windows 10 on phones, PCs, tablets, and the Xbox One. If you’re running a mobile version of Excel on your phone it will magically resize and transform into a keyboard- and mouse-friendly version for use on a bigger screen. Notifications are synced across devices, so if you dismiss something on a Windows 10 smartphone or tablet, it won’t stubbornly pop up again when you return to your PC.
3. Return of the Start Menu
The iconic start menu is back. After it was removed in Windows 8, the start menu is back with a vengeance as it combines the overlay of the start screen from the Modern UI with the former start menu design and friendliness. Rock on.
4. The New Edge
Move aside internet explorer, Microsoft new Edge wants to redefine browsing. However, add on extensions are limited, so popular add ons such as adblock (although that is what feeds me) are not supported.
5. Editable Webpages
Windows 10’s new browser, Microsoft Edge, makes finger painting on the web a breeze. The new “inking” tools includes digital pens and highlighters that can be applied directly to a webpage. “If you have a static web page and you want to share something, the quickest way to do something is to circle it and send it to your friend,” says Gownder.
Windows 10 gets a new Windows Store, where you can download desktop programs as well as modern Windows apps. Many of those apps will be universal apps that are the same code on a PC, a Windows phone, an Xbox One and even on HoloLens, with the interface changing to suit the different screen sizes. The Office for Windows apps like Word and Excel are universal apps, as are the Outlook Mail and Calendar apps.
7. Cortana for Windows
Microsoft has gone a step ahead of Apple by bringing its personal voice-assistant Cortana to all Windows 10 devices, including desktops and laptops, which is a massive plus point. On the desktop, Cortana will be seen as a search box located beside the Start button. Cortana now supports 7 languages. You can also ask Cortana to open apps on your desktop such as PowerPoint or Word. You can also dictate emails in Outlook using Cortana and send them by voice commands. However, for us in Singapore, you would not be able to use Cortana, unless you are willing to change locale settings and all as a temporary workaround.
8. Design and interface improvements
Microsoft is paying attention to the details in Windows 10. During today’s demonstrations, the icons and look were more polished compared to Windows 8 and the theme appears more integrated, and consistent.
9. Multi-Desktop or Virtual Desktop
Finally, heavy multi – taskers get a much requested feature. Virtual desktops were finally added as a built-in feature in Windows 10. If you’ve used Linux or Mac, you know this can be a very useful feature. If you open a lot of programs at once, this feature allows you to keep them organized and sort them accordingly to your personal or work environments.
For existing Windows 7 / 8 users, Windows 10 is FREE. Otherwise, it would be $229 for Windows 10 Home, and $399 for Windows 10 Pro. Tip: Buy a Windows 8 License and upgrade.