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  1. #1
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    Default Five things Microsoft must do for Windows 8 in 2013

    Microsoft's ambitious Windows 8 gamble may have launched this past October, but it's 2013 that will make or break the new operating system. I have five recommendations that Microsoft should implement sooner rather than later to keep Windows 8 from going the way of Vista.

    Make the case for Windows RT

    "That's right, it filets, it chops, it dices, slices, never stops, lasts a lifetime, mows your lawn, and it mows your lawn and it picks up the kids from school..." --Tom Waits, "Step Right Up"

    Waits wasn't talking about Windows RT when he wrote and recorded "Step Right Up" in the mid-'80s, but he could've been. Microsoft wants the tablets that run the OS to be unifying devices that are portable like a tablet but powerful enough for the heavy lifting of Microsoft Office. Claiming that the OS can step up to that challenge, and actually proving that it can, are not the same thing.

    Here's the problem with Windows RT: Even after writing CNET's FAQ on Windows RT, I still have problems clearly explaining what it is and why people should want it. It's "Windows 8 Lite," but it's so much more complex than that. Sure, the Surface is a nice piece of hardware, but besides its utility as a tablet-and-skateboard combo it's a hard sell.

    I have a semibaked theory that Windows RT will become Windows 9, especially because of its ability to run on lower-powered, more secure ARM chips, but right now RT is closer to being the next Kin than the next Xbox.

    Focus on apps

    Though some Microsoft defenders point out that it took Google years to bulk up Android's app catalog to 500,000-plus titles, Redmond doesn't have that kind of time when it comes to Windows 8.

    Windows is not some in-development mobile operating system; it's the mature senior statesman of the computing world. It's on more computers than any other OS, and that's not going to change anytime soon. We know Microsoft wants the world to move as quickly as possible to Windows 8 -- there's no other explanation for the soon-to-expire $39.99 upgrade and the push for new, interesting, touch-screen hardware.

    While it's true that Windows 8 can run legacy software just fine in Desktop mode, Metro apps are what will sell people. Some good apps currently available demonstrate the possibilities of Metro, but they don't offer a compelling reason to change your entire work flow.

    The strength of iOS is that Apple's operating system is the cleanest around. Android basks in the glow of Google's best apps and services, from Gmail to Goggles to Translate to search. The Windows 8 app experience has yet to be defined, which could benefit Microsoft in that it has an open canvas to paint on.

    The bad? Don't expect competitors to look the other way as Microsoft refines its app pitch to developers.

    Convertibles and hybrids need a Surface, too

    The Surface hardware went a long way toward drumming up interest in Windows 8 and Windows RT, not to mention a lot of sturm und drang from Microsoft's hardware partners. While it could be interesting to see a Redmond-designed convertible or hybrid laptop, it's not strictly necessary. But what the burgeoning, occasionally confusing category does require is a hybrid or convertible that Microsoft can point to and exclaim to the public, "This!"

    It may not want to, but right now all that we've seen are oversize tablet-tops with hinges. You can't easily tell people why they must have a new category of hardware without a signature device.

    Wherefore art thou, settings and preferences?

    Settings aren't sexy, but they shouldn't be confusing, either. Microsoft ought to make some decisions, and fast, about cleaning up the confusing mess of its under-the-hood options.

    Sometimes they're behind the Settings charm in Metro. Other times they're buried in some Desktop mode window. Currently, I find it easiest to simply start typing for what I'm looking for, and let the powerful search tool do the hard work. But if Microsoft wants Windows 8 to have long-standing appeal for nonexperts, it's going to have to demystify this stuff.

    Get people and businesses excited about Windows 8

    Microsoft has done itself a great disservice by coming up with a fairly interesting, unique approach to the ecosystem problem, and then letting substandard marketing heighten people's questions and uncertainties.

    Solving the above problems alone won't work without helping people realize what's so great about Windows 8. And without the massive license buys that businesses can provide, Windows 8 will struggle in a consumer marketplace that is increasingly turning to Macs to solve its problems.

    How Microsoft can best do that I'll leave to greater marketing minds than myself. On some level, though, it would seem easiest to have compelling hardware that people want to use. The interest in the Surface is a step in the right direction, just as Samsung's Galaxy S3 and Google's Nexus 7 did wonders for Android. Maybe there's a killer "laptablet" coming at the beginning of next year, but there's little doubt that Windows 8 has a hard path to trek in 2013.

    Source: Cnet

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Five things Microsoft must do for Windows 8 in 2013

    I feel that MS has done a lot to promote Windows 8 Pro to a wide audience of users. At the still current promotion, at least in the US, those who felt the need to pirate Windows 7 (& earlier versions) of Windows to come clean & get legal (those who ran 8 RP/CP has a straight upgrade path). Anyone who cannot scrape up $40 + tax over the course of 6 months (since pricing was announced from the end of the current promo) either is really down & out, or doesn't want Windows 8 Pro.

    Windows 8 & 8 Pro runs fine on a wide variety of hardware, on most computers since the Vista release (some netbooks excluded), even if not all functions works, the major being the touch screens. Still, even w/o a touch screen, Windows 8 Pro has a lot of inbuilt features & cannot be considered on the same level as Vista. Those who doesn't care for the Modern UI has choices, Start Menu 8 & Classic Shell being two of them, there is no loss of function in using them (especially Classic Shell).

    For the time being, Media Center is free, there are other free & paid options also, that some users already has a license to use. Office 2010 & 2007 works perfectly with Windows 8, for those who cannot afford a new Office suite.

    Free security in Windows Defender, though I still feel that security MUST be multi-layered, if the user cannot afford MBAM Pro on promo at Newegg or Fry's, the Free will do, as long as the entire computer is scanned with it weekly, & a minimum of 3 times a week with Windows Defender. Also, WD does it's own scans in the background. Absolutely no excuse, I mean none, not to run security.

    Fast cold boots of Windows 8, loads faster than any OS that I've ran. The hybrid sleep mode is what enables this, all one needs to do is make sure that the machine has power at all times. This doesn't help reboot, however many computer users powers down while asleep or at work/school (the home unit), this is a notable feature.

    Longer battery life for portables, mine averages 45 minutes to 1 hour more, though the SSD that I installed contributed also. Still, Windows 8 has fantastic power management, can run on less powerful computers with ease, & those with more robust specs, the sky is the limit.

    Contrary to many prior reports, the PC isn't dead, many new desktop PC's comes with Windows 8 preinstalled, & is actually the least expensive option if one wants a desktop & doesn't need/want to be portable (I prefer one of each, a portable & a PC). It's been estimated, according as to whom is doing the counting, that 20 to 35% of all new Windows 8 computers sold are in fact desktop PC's. Many of which are in reasonable price range, a budget model for as low as $400, one with more powerful specs (i5 quad core, 8GB RAM, Intel 4000 HD graphics & sometimes up to a 2GB discrete card) for around $800.

    Too, for many business users, the PC is a must. Though many has a portable on the run, there's a more powerful PC at home. Tax season is soon rolling in, I've yet to see a true tax accountant using a notebook on the job, though I have seen some in kiosks at malls & Wal Mart to use portables. But I & many others doesn't want a rushed through tax job, skipping over valuable deductions that can place money in the taxpayer's pocket in the form of a refund, rather than writing a check for taxes owed, to speed up the line waiting. I prefer to drop my documents off & pick them up in a few days.

    This is only one example of the need for a PC, there's plenty more. One must be open to all avenues to see Windows 8 grow, not just portables. The PC market cannot be left out of a growing Windows 8 one. Every install (or new computer sold, regardless of type) counts.

    While it's true that Windows 8 needs more market share, let us not forget that Windows 8 (mainly Pro) smashed Windows 7's first month of sales square in the mouth, with 40 million copies sold. If that trend continues, expect more Windows 7/XP users to adapt to Windows 8.

    With everything that Windows 8 to offer to most all computers of today, I cannot see it being held back. As soon as the OEM's has their distribution plans in place, & plenty of choices, Windows 8 will sell.

    I personally feel that Windows 8 will be a success, as with anything, it's going to take time. Had MS held on a little longer with their new phones (in past years), they would have a larger slice of the pie. It takes more then 2 to 3 months on the market to increase share, MS cannot make the same critical mistake with Windows 8 & their phone division & expect to grow.

    Windows 8 will be fine. Just give it time.

    Cat

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  4. #3
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    Default Re: Five things Microsoft must do for Windows 8 in 2013

    I apologise, but, in my opinion, you are not right. Let's discuss. Write to me in PM.

  5. #4
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    Default Re: Five things Microsoft must do for Windows 8 in 2013

    Who's not right, myself or threeone? You do have the right to add to the discussion & are fully entitled to your opinion, as long as it's civil.

    We don't discuss open threads through the PM system. For the best interest of everyone, threads are discussed in the open Forum, were we all can read & learn. I very much look forward to your participation in this discussion & welcome you to the Forum.

    Cat

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