By Nafisa Akabor
Windows 10 officially launched globally on the 29th of July 2015, and Johannesburg was included as one of the 13 cities which hosted a launch event for the much-hyped release. The Windows 10 upgrade is free to existing Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1 devices, provided it is done within the first year of release.
Unprecedented free upgrades
“This is something we think consumers and many small businesses will be really excited about, given it is the first time we have offered a free upgrade on this scale. This will allow hundreds of millions of customers to upgrade to Windows 10 soon after launch, create a broad opportunity for our ecosystem partners to drive innovation, and deliver value to all Windows 10 customers,” says Jim Alkove from the Windows Enterprise Program team via the Windows blog.
Get in line
The rollout of the update will work on a queue system, with Windows 10 beta testing getting priority on launch day. If you purchase a machine for your business on the 29th of July or after, you will get to jump to the top of the queue, according to Yusuf Mehdi, VP of Windows and Devices Group.
This significant free upgrade isn’t a once-off deal; all devices that upgrade will subsequently receive the Windows Update for the supported lifetime of the device, at no cost.
“We think of this as Windows as a Service, and think that it’s remarkable news for many of our customers and partners.”
Windows 10 comes with a range of features businesses require, which have been built into the core of the operating system. These include enterprise-grade security, identity and information protection features, and simplified management and deployment to keep costs down.
Windows 10 is a unified platform that scales across devices whether it’s a desktop/laptop, tablet PC, and smartphone. This means developers are able to create universal apps with same user experience across all devices, including the Xbox One.
The biggest advantage of universal apps for businesses is that once you buy an app for your PC, you don’t have to purchase it again for your smartphone or tablet. Everything should sync through the cloud.
App Store for Business
Windows 10 will bring a new app store aimed at businesses only. Corporates will be allowed to purchase by volume, based on ‘existing organisational identity, flexible distribution and the ability for organisations to reclaim or re-use licenses’. If you have a big enough organisation, you will have the ability to create a customised store and curate the experience to show your company’s own apps for a unique employee experience.
If you’re in a corporate environment and need to look at multiple apps or screens at once, the revamped Snap feature has new features on Windows 10. This windows management system allows you to view four screens within one by snapping each window to the four corners of your screen, giving you a split screen view. Certain apps can snap to either the left or right of the screen, if you use it on Desktop mode, and not in full screen. Ultimately, this allows modern apps to exist in your desktop space seamlessly.