Looking through new Windows: What’s changed with Windows 8?

Change. All the search engines, social media sites and OS do it at some point. Just as soon as you’re au fait with the features and functionality of working with the latest version of Windows, then Microsoft see fit to update it. Since the latter part of 2012, all Microsoft devices have Windows 8 OS as the default installation. New users will first notice that it looks quite different to Windows 7 because it has been designed to work with touchscreen tablets and computers.

The Windows 8 start screen is now known as ‘Metro’ and has ‘Tiles’ instead of ‘Icons.’ You can use these to open your ‘Apps’ and also download additional Apps from the Windows Store. In this latest operating system, programs opens in Desktop just as it did in Windows 7 and, like its predecessor, also comes with Windows Defender, the antivirus program.

Although the icon interface has significantly changed, the desktop remains appealingly familiar. Traditional programs, for instance, such as Microsoft Word are still found, used and closed in the usual way. Before you choose to customise your browser, Windows also includes not one but two versions of IE10, one which opens from an icon on the desktop and one which opens from a tile. You still have the option of pinning the programs you most commonly use to the taskbar too.

Other notable changes include the ‘Charms Bar’ in place of the Start menu and a new ‘Mail’ app replacing Windows Live Mail. So, Microsoft have really grasped the concept of using your PC on the go rather than just being static. The new ‘People’ app, for instance, groups all your Skype, email and social networking together. Despite the initial jolt of unfamiliarity then, this soon fades into a pleasant exploration of the features of Windows 8 and all it has to offer – be it for playing on the go, or for sitting and working.

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