Microsoft has unveiled Windows 10, the latest version of the widely-used Windows operating system that aims to “represent the first step of a whole new generation of Windows” at a San Francisco press event Tuesday.
The company also delivered an early look at an early technical preview for the PC available October 1st. This announcement includes an updated user experience and enhanced security and management capabilities. The company also introduced the Windows Insider Program, ekickit off its largest open collaborative development effort to “change the way Windows is built and delivered to best meet the needs of customers.” Program participants will receive the technical preview of Windows 10 and a steady stream of builds through the development cycle to use and give feedback on.
Terry Myerson, Microsoft Operating Systems executive vice president:
“Windows 10 represents the first step of a whole new generation of Windows, unlocking new experiences to give customers new ways to work, play and connect. This will be our most comprehensive operating system and the best release Microsoft has ever done for our business customers, and we look forward to working together with our broader Windows community to bring Windows 10 to life in the months ahead.”
The operating system adapts ot the device customers are using — whether it’s an Xbox, Pc, smartphone, tablet or “tiny gadgets” — and what they’re doing with a “consistent, familiar and compatible experience, enabling even greater productivity.” Windows 10 willl run on devices from the Internet of Things to enterprise datacenters worldwide. Microsoft is also delivering a converged application platform for developers on all devices with a unified app store. Developers will be able to write an application once and deploy it across multiple device types, making discovery, purchase and updating “easier than ever” for customers.
Windows 10 builds enterprise-grade security and identity and information protection features among other things right inside to help businesses get what they need in an operating system. One area of advancement is in the work the company has done with user identities to improve resistance to breach, theft or phishing. Windows 10 will also help advance data loss prevention by using containers and data separation at the application and file level, “enabling protection that follows the data as it goes from a tablet or PC to a USB drive, email or the cloud.”
Management and deployment have been simplified to “help lower costs, including in-place upgrades from WIndows 7 or Windows 8 that are focused on making device wipe-and-reload scenarios obsolete.” Businesses will also have the flexibility to choose how quickly they adopt the latest innovations and influence continued improvements. In addition, organizations will be able to customize an app store specific to their needs and environment. The intent is an app store that will allow for volume app licensing, flexible distribution, and the ability for organizations to reclaim or reuse licenses when necessary.
The early technical preview of Windows 10 demonstrates “new levels of flexibility, navigation and familiarity through the Windows experience.” Features include;
- Expanded Start Menu: The familiar Start menu is back, providing quick one-click access to the functions and files that people use most, and it includes a new space to personalize with favorite apps, programs, people and websites.
- Snap Enhancements: Working in multiple apps at once is easier and more intuitive with improvements to the Snap feature introduced in Windows 8. A new quadrant layout allows up to four apps to be snapped on the same screen. Windows will also show other apps and programs running for additional snapping, and it will make smart suggestions on filing available screen space with other open apps.
- New Task View Button: The new Task view button on the taskbar enables one view for all open apps and files (similar to Mac OS X’s Expose and Chrome OS’ Mosaic), allowing for quick switching and one-touch access to any desktop created.
- Multiple desktops:
The introduction of the Windows Insider Program demonstrates Microsoft’s continued commitment to working closely with customers to help shape the future of Windows. Windows Insiders will be able to give feedback on early builds of the product throughout the development cycle. The program will include various ways for Windows Insiders to engage in a “two-way dialogue with MIcrosoft,” including a Windows Feedback app for sharing suggestion and issues and a Windows Technical Preview Forum for interacting with Microsoft engineers and fellow Insiders.