Why in the World Would Anyone Upgrade to Windows 8?
Trick question. The actual question should be: Why in the world wouldn’t everyone upgrade to Windows 8? There are so many reasons to upgrade to Windows 8. Windows 8 is by far and away the most robust and secure operating system Microsoft has ever created – bar none. Used to be that every second version of Windows they made was a nightmare – anyone remember Windows Vista or better yet, Windows ME? So the basic premise was Windows 7 was awesome so Windows 8 will suck. Microsoft has officially broken that trend. Smashed it into little tiny pieces. So… why upgrade to Windows 8? Let’s just see…
Here are at least a half a dozen of the many reasons why you should upgrade to Windows 8:
- Faster and more robust – My boot time went from 40 seconds down to 20. Granted I do have a solid state drive and that makes all the difference in the world in overall drive performance to begin with but still – half the boot time. I know, once you boot up you shouldn’t have to boot again for a while but boot time matters to me (and everyone else I know). And maybe its just me but IE10 seems waaay faster to me – both to load and to browse.
- Security – The new Internet Explorer has Do Not Track built-in to prevent web sites from tracking you and then targeting you with advertising. Tracking means that although you and I may search for the exact same search terms we may get drastically different results based on your browsing history. Not exactly a “pure” search. Do Not Track doesn’t make the advertising world overly happy but frankly, I don’t care. I want to browse privately. And Windows 8 is built on Windows 7; a proven secure operating system. Keep Windows 8 up to date and run a decent flavour of anti-virus and you really are in good hands.
- Look and feel – this is more than a fresh coat of paint even though the underlying operating system is very much based on Windows 7. I didn’t care for the “Metro” interface at first – the tiles just looked like giant icons – but after using it for a few days I’m starting to get it. Between that and the hot-corners – which was one of the reasons to like Linux Ubuntu – my productivity just went up. And lets face it, your ride should look good too and Windows 8 nails it. Panoramic desktops (dual monitor only), heavily stylized Start page, colour schemes that complement the predominant desktop colour of your desktop slide show – very slick; nice piece of eye candy. And the Taskbar on both my monitors is worth the price of admission by itself.
- Speaking of price – Microsoft has made it easy and cheap to upgrade. I mean $39.99? OK –I’m in.
- And speaking of upgrades – it took all of 30 minutes (again, I have a solid state drive) but the process was fall-off-a-log simple. It came up and told me what I had to uninstall first most of which was unimportant and could be reinstalled after the fact anyway. After the upgrade, everything still worked: my home network (printing and file sharing), wireless, all my apps – everything. Simplest and least painful upgrade ever! Took me a while to figure out how to navigate but 3 days in and I’m stylin’!
- The Windows 8 ecosystem – Microsoft has a plan, a good plan. How many iPhone and iPad users rue the fact that they can’t run their Line of Business applications? All of them. Why? Because you can’t run 99% of LOB applications on an iPad, that’s why! With Windows 8, that all changes now. Windows 8 for PC, Windows 8 for Tablets (Enterprise not RT; think Surface), and Windows 8 for phones (just around the corner) means you can run everything on anything. Need to run Office on your tab? Ok. How about on your phone? Ok. And do you need to run your ERP or CRM on your tab. Ok for that too. Try that on your iPad. Don’t get me wrong, I am not anti-Apple (ok, maybe a little) but I want / need to be able to run my LOB apps on a tab or that tab just becomes a toy; a device better suited to my coffee table than my travel bag. Sorry Apple, but Microsoft is poised to kick your butts this time.
That leaves but one question: apps. Microsoft will need the application development community to adopt Windows 8 for it to be any kind of success on a tab or a phone. There is no question that Apple and Android have more apps than God has little green apples (no pun intended) but I don’t see it as a big stretch to convince appdev people to create apps specifically for Windows 8; just can’t see that being a problem given Microsoft’s track record for encouraging creativity in the world of apps. You can get anything for Windows and I don’t see that changing.
At the end of the day, I cant see a single reason why you wouldn’t upgrade to Windows 8. Next step for me is to upgrade my work PC to Windows 8 and I’m counting the days to Windows 8 Enterprise tabs and phones. If you are running any older version of Windows, be it XP or Windows 7, just do it – you won’t ever look back.