Windows 8 – already?

News: May 2011

Windows 8 – already?

According to Microsoft, more than 7 copies of Windows 7 have sold per second since its launch in October 2009. Unsurprisingly, given the popularity of the windows operating system on home and business PC’s, Microsoft is already developing its replacement – Windows 8.

So what can we expect from the next upgrade to Windows? Apparently Microsoft has taken the lessons it learned from the Xbox and Microsoft Office and applied these concepts to Windows 8. Various technology news sources are suggesting that the new operating system will be optimised to work on tablets as well as traditional PC’s. This is in response to the increasing popularity of tablet computers since the launch of the Apple iPad.

Visually, Windows 8 will be similar to Windows 7 but is likely to come with a Microsoft Office-style ribbon menu system. We will have to wait until the official launch of Windows 8 to make an informed comparison of the advantages of the new operating system over Windows 7, which is likely to be in 2012.

The big question for businesses is, of course, whether to invest in Windows 7 or postpone computer upgrades until Windows 8 arrives. Given that Windows 7 has now proven itself as a stable, secure and reliable operating system, many businesses may choose to stick with Windows 7 and wait until Windows 8 has been around for a year or two (and all the bugs / glitches are sorted out). Also worth considering is that many offices still use Windows XP professional and a jump to Windows 8 may require some training sessions for staff as well as upgrades to servers and network software.

One thing is for sure – the onward march of technology is relentless. Eventually businesses will have to move away from Windows XP which will cost in terms of staff training and hardware upgrades. It will be interesting to see whether Windows 7 or Windows 8 garners favour with business users.

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