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Windows 8 launch date confirmed as 26th October

Windows 8 launch date confirmed as 26th October

Windows 8 will be launching on the 26th of October, but the European Commission is already investigating allegations of anticompetitive behaviour.

Microsoft's Steven Sinofsky has finally firmed up the launch schedule for his company's next-generation Windows 8 operating system, announcing that the software will be released to the public on the 26th of October.

Although the actual launch may vary by a couple of days in certain markets, the 26th of October marks the day that Windows 8 goes 'General Availability' - product-launch code for 'it should be on shop shelves now.' On that day, buyers will be able to pick up retail and upgrade editions from both high-street and internet retailers, while original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) will be free to start shipping Windows 8 by default with their new hardware.

One thing Microsoft hasn't confirmed is the availability of its System Builders Edition, a special build of Windows 8 which provides a cheaper OEM-style licence for those building their own machines or running a small business that doesn't qualify for full-fat OEM licensing. While this should, theoretically, be available when the standard editions hit General Availability, Microsoft isn't stating categorically either way - and is quiet on how much buyers will save over a retail copy, too.

It's thought that Surface, Microsoft's Windows 8 and Windows RT family of tablet computers, will also be launching at the same time as Windows 8. Windows RT devices from other manufacturers, meanwhile, should follow closely behind.

One thing threatening to rain on Microsoft's parade - aside from some concern from users about the alleged benefits of the new Windows Phone-inspired Metro UI - is the European Commission, which has confirmed plans to extend its investigation into Microsoft's allegedly anticompetitive practises in the software bundling market to include Windows 8.

The investigation, which led to the 'browser ballot' screen that asked Windows users whether they'd like to install an alternative web browser or just use Internet Explorer, will now address concerns regarding the integration of Internet Explorer into Windows 8 and the lack of APIs for adding third-party browsers to Windows RT.

According to a Commission spokesperson, the investigation is being extended as a result of allegations received by unnamed third parties, although none have gone so far as to file a formal complaint against the software giant.

86 Comments

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Snips 19th July 2012, 12:50 Quote
I had read somewhere that the EU was about to kick off because the choice window disappeared when Windows 7 went Service Pack 1. Microsoft have apparently already addressed this but the EU do like to bitch slap Microsoft every now and then so expect a hefty fine.
Tangster 19th July 2012, 12:57 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snips
I had read somewhere that the EU was about to kick off because the choice window disappeared when Windows 7 went Service Pack 1. Microsoft have apparently already addressed this but the EU do like to bitch slap Microsoft every now and then so expect a hefty fine.

I support Microsoft's endeavours to bail out the EU debt crisis. Intentionally or otherwise. :P
fix-the-spade 19th July 2012, 13:17 Quote
So, stock up on Win 7 licenses before mid October...
Gareth Halfacree 19th July 2012, 13:21 Quote
will_123 19th July 2012, 13:27 Quote
Is anyone planning to upgrade? Metro just looks...Naff.
r3loaded 19th July 2012, 13:28 Quote
I wonder if it'll drop on MSDN AA before that...
azrael- 19th July 2012, 14:01 Quote
Like they state over on The Register: "Now Microsoft has 101 days to come up with an explanation for Metro". :p
Tangster 19th July 2012, 14:26 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by will_123
Is anyone planning to upgrade? Metro just looks...Naff.
Not here. None of the people I know who tried the pre-release versions are convinced either, with the most common response to it being "unusable".
Somer_Himpson 19th July 2012, 14:26 Quote
Why didn't they just call it Windows Tablet and not bother releasing it for desktops?
Completely pointless from a desktop perspective, short of confusing you when you click on the desktop 'tile'
loftie 19th July 2012, 14:34 Quote
I think Metro is hit and miss. Some people like it, some don't. Last time I tried it, there was no off for it, and imo MS should have had the option to just use the traditional desktop if you choose to with the start menu.
Petrol head 19th July 2012, 15:06 Quote
I have to confess I will be giving this a miss. I am confused about one thing though. If they do not provide a browser with the operating system, how would you download another browser?
GoodBytes 19th July 2012, 15:07 Quote
I'll be upgrading to Windows 8.
My only complain so far, is that the default Start Screen layout sucks really bad for non-tablet devices. But once you arrange everything, create and name groups, and add folders to it, it's fine.
.//TuNdRa 19th July 2012, 15:09 Quote
They do. IE is integrated into the core of Windows 8, even moreso than in 7, you literally cannot replace it and maintain the same functionality because of just how much it's been plugged into things like the crappy Metro interface.
Shirty 19th July 2012, 15:13 Quote
ViStart worked for me on the RC. Removed metro and made the whole experience feel like W7. I'm sure some more "official" way of achieving this will come along very promptly.
Zero_UK 19th July 2012, 17:51 Quote
Finally took a look at Windows 8..

W8 for desktops is just W7 with fancy animations and a pretty face. A desktop OS should be practical with a user friendly GUI; encouraging simplicity and high performance. The OS should not be jumping out at you every second like some attention seeking child, it should be doing its job in the background making it easier for the user to use applications.

In fact, W8 breaks many established principles on a good GUI design by basing metro around horizontal scrolling, big flashing and changing animations, LOADS of colour that it is difficult to just glance over and spot a file. It looks unattractive on a big screen as it is just wasteful blocks of colour everywhere - smart phones and tablets have tiny displays in comparison making it not so bold.

Metro is a good idea for phones and touch screen tablets as small text/icons are less user friendly to be pressing all day and as there is only 2-6 tiles per screen it is easily read and when one changes it is not so distracting. But wow, on a desktop seeing loads of tiles update at once and sliding along just slows down navigation and is distracting.

W8 built for tablets/phones, but marketed to desktops too for some more sales.
MrJay 19th July 2012, 18:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by fix-the-spade
So, stock up on Win 7 licenses before mid October...

I have a pretty vast stash : )
will_123 19th July 2012, 18:29 Quote
The metro interface is coming to the Windows 2012 server btw! Ridiculous.
fdbh96 19th July 2012, 18:48 Quote
As long as IE 10 is a good enough browser, I dont mind it being the only browser available.

I'll probably give win 8 a miss until its more mature (sp1 at least) or until win 9 comes out. Its hard not to compare win 8 to vista in what its trying to do.
.//TuNdRa 19th July 2012, 19:11 Quote
The ironic thing is that Windows 8 is actually faster and less PC intensive than Windows 7 in some cases, to the point where you even see higher framerates in games from running windows 8 instead of 7.
GoodBytes 19th July 2012, 19:24 Quote
Also longer battery life on laptop, and not to mention the super long list of features it has.
r3loaded 19th July 2012, 19:27 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by .//TuNdRa
The ironic thing is that Windows 8 is actually faster and less PC intensive than Windows 7 in some cases, to the point where you even see higher framerates in games from running windows 8 instead of 7.
It's worth upgrading for this reason alone - Windows 8 is very close in terms of performance to my Arch Linux install, which says it all really. You can mostly ignore Metro if you choose to as well - hit Win+D to jump to the desktop, pin all your apps to the taskbar and don't return to the start screen. It's like using a cleaner, slicker Windows 7.
The_Beast 19th July 2012, 19:29 Quote
If I can get it cheap with my student discount, I will.
GoodBytes 19th July 2012, 19:34 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by The_Beast
If I can get it cheap with my student discount, I will.

Windows 8 Pro Upgrade will be available for ALL at 40$. You can upgrade Windows XP, Vista and 7 to Win 8 Pro.
digitaldunc 19th July 2012, 20:08 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by .//TuNdRa
The ironic thing is that Windows 8 is actually faster and less PC intensive than Windows 7 in some cases, to the point where you even see higher framerates in games from running windows 8 instead of 7.

If this is true I could be tempted. Performance interests me, not a shiny OS with groovy animated menus.

To be totally honest, apart from being aversive to the idea of Metro I am totally ignorant when it comes to Windows 8 -- it interests me that much.

Successive Windows releases are becoming increasingly nannyish to the point of being unusable to a tech savvy user -- I should be telling the operating system what *I* want it to do, not the other way around. Granted Windows 7 isn't too bad, but the interface still seems largely arbitrarily organized to me, despite using it for a good while now.

I admit I'm backwards and come from the Windows 2000 school of interface design. I don't like an operating system and programs that look like they were designed by the teletubbies.

I'm well aware and accept we're not the target audience for Windows -- joe user is.

This is why I like *nix -- you don't like a Window manager? You change it. You don't want any GUI? Dump X altogether.
supermonkey 19th July 2012, 20:51 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodBytes
Windows 8 Pro Upgrade will be available for ALL at 40$. You can upgrade Windows XP, Vista and 7 to Win 8 Pro.
I think this deal is what may finally entice me to finally move on from Windows XP. Yeah yeah, I know - but it just works!
azrael- 19th July 2012, 21:15 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitaldunc
If this is true I could be tempted. Performance interests me, not a shiny OS with groovy animated menus.

To be totally honest, apart from being aversive to the idea of Metro I am totally ignorant when it comes to Windows 8 -- it interests me that much.

Successive Windows releases are becoming increasingly nannyish to the point of being unusable to a tech savvy user -- I should be telling the operating system what *I* want it to do, not the other way around. Granted Windows 7 isn't too bad, but the interface still seems largely arbitrarily organized to me, despite using it for a good while now.

I admit I'm backwards and come from the Windows 2000 school of interface design. I don't like an operating system and programs that look like they were designed by the teletubbies.

I'm well aware and accept we're not the target audience for Windows -- joe user is.

This is why I like *nix -- you don't like a Window manager? You change it. You don't want any GUI? Dump X altogether.
That's the perversity that is Windows 8. You've got this excellent OS which is blighted by the presence of the Metro UX.
Nexxo 19th July 2012, 21:47 Quote
So go Linux. It's hard-core, versatile, powerful and free.
ssj12 19th July 2012, 21:56 Quote
Am I the only one hoping to see this tank like Vista?
Nexxo 19th July 2012, 22:23 Quote
Yes. You just lack vision.
GravitySmacked 19th July 2012, 22:31 Quote
This is the first version of Windows I have zero interest in upgrading to. If I could turn off Metro then my interest would return.
Krazeh 19th July 2012, 22:50 Quote
I'll be upgrading. I like the start screen.
digitaldunc 19th July 2012, 23:17 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
So go Linux. It's hard-core, versatile, powerful and free.

Yeah, but you've got all the caveats that go with it -- lack of user base on the desktop (when compared with Windows), sketchy/non-existent hardware support, the extreme ball-ache that goes hand in hand with setting certain things up, gaming support...

I know die hards will probably contest most of the above points but it's still the case that it's still quite a niche desktop environment and suffers because of it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssj12
Am I the only one hoping to see this tank like Vista?

I wouldn't willfully wish for something to fail, it's just the skeptic in me sees this as a monetizing exercise involving more bloat and UI muddling. I'd like nothing more than Microsoft to attain OS nirvana as they're no doubt proselytizing.
Nexxo 19th July 2012, 23:31 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitaldunc
Yeah, but you've got all the caveats that go with it -- lack of user base on the desktop (when compared with Windows), sketchy/non-existent hardware support, the extreme ball-ache that goes hand in hand with setting certain things up, gaming support...

I know die hards will probably contest most of the above points but it's still the case that it's still quite a niche desktop environment and suffers because of it.
But isn't that what hard-core users want? A powerful, versatile OS that makes no pandering compromises towards ordinary mainstream users?

If you want a mainstream desktop with almost universal support, you will have to accept that it is designed for mainstream users.
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitaldunc
I wouldn't willfully wish for something to fail, it's just the skeptic in me sees this as a monetizing exercise involving more bloat and UI muddling. I'd like nothing more than Microsoft to attain OS nirvana as they're no doubt proselyting.

It's just a bit rough around the edges right now, but in three years' time, everybody will wonder why not all OS' are like this.
.//TuNdRa 20th July 2012, 00:18 Quote
Admittedly, when it comes around to my next OS reinstall; I may consider Windows 8. Although this will likely be a year or two further down the line. More bulldozer performance would be nice, but meh. It does almost everything I want at the moment.
CyberAngel 20th July 2012, 01:55 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by r3loaded
It's worth upgrading for this reason alone - Windows 8 is very close in terms of performance to my Arch Linux install, which says it all really. You can mostly ignore Metro if you choose to as well - hit Win+D to jump to the desktop, pin all your apps to the taskbar and don't return to the start screen. It's like using a cleaner, slicker Windows 7.

Win+D ;)
azrael- 20th July 2012, 06:55 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
But isn't that what hard-core users want? A powerful, versatile OS that makes no pandering compromises towards ordinary mainstream users?

If you want a mainstream desktop with almost universal support, you will have to accept that it is designed for mainstream users.



It's just a bit rough around the edges right now, but in three years' time, everybody will wonder why not all OS' are like this.
I have to ask if you've actually ever used Windows 8 ...on the desktop ...with a keyboard and a mouse? Because, if you have I cannot for the life of me understand how you could classify it as usable. Microsoft hasn't even taken a moments pause trying to make Metro easily accessible with a mouse and keyboard. Some touch gestures could have been easily translated into meaningful mouse gestures, e.g. moving around the start screen. It's very clear that Metro is completely geared toward touch devices with "legacy input device" support added as a mere afterthought.

Yes, I can just skip Windows 8. And as it stands I will. It just pains me to see this excellent OS being handicapped so on the desktop.

And please stop with this "mainstream users" stuff. Mainstream users don't really have a say or choice in this matter. Windows 8 will come pre-installed on whatever PC the buy off the shelf, but that doesn't mean they'll actually like it. More AIOs will probably now be shipped with touch screens, but I can't see this as being an anywhere near ergonomical solution. If you have a desktop PC just stretch out your arm towards your monitor and try "emulating" touch control. Pain in the a**, right? Nothing you would want to do for any length of time.

/rant :)
fluxtatic 20th July 2012, 08:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by .//TuNdRa
They do. IE is integrated into the core of Windows 8, even moreso than in 7, you literally cannot replace it and maintain the same functionality because of just how much it's been plugged into things like the crappy Metro interface.

Sort of...at least, as far as I know. I know it was technically possible to strip IE out of XP (had been somewhat popular with the nLite sort of crowd.) However, it does break some things - .chm help files are dependent on the IE engine and so will not work if you strip IE. There are some things like that, but I can't recall them at the moment.

Personally, I don't necessarily have a problem with IE being integrated into Windows itself - inevitably, I still run across sites that only work correctly in IE (which is just inexcusable in 2012, imo.) Plus, my primary browser being Opera, I do still need a second browser (although IE9 kind of sucks still, so I also have FF.) Storage being (formerly, at least) cheap, I don't mind the space three browsers take up (plus for dev purposes, IE and FF are good test browsers, since they have an enormous chunk of marketshare - things might be written to standards and work beautifully in Opera, but IE is retarded with it, and FF might have some minor funkiness.) And I refuse to put Chrome on my PC.

The stupid thing about the EU being all pissy about the SP1 flaw is that no one noticed for over a year. How big a deal is it, really?

And Nexxo - no. Not everyone wants to spend forever dinking around with configuring the PC. Some of us might dig it occasionally, but mostly prefer to use their PCs. Once there is a desktop distro of Linux that seems to be as mature as Windows (much as you'll hate my having drawn the comparison), I'll look again. Until then, I'll stick with Windows - I used XP for 5 years, I don't see a problem with doing the same with Win7.
james888 20th July 2012, 09:43 Quote
I would like to see a specialized os for my gaming desktop. Maybe steam on linux will one day translate into that. For my laptop, windows 7 is great. Windows 8 is tempting with its lesser resource usage and new features. Maybe windows 9 will be just all out fantastic.
Guinevere 20th July 2012, 10:17 Quote
24 months from now I wager that....

85% of metro haters and win 8 doom sayers will have willingly upgraded for one killer feature or another.

8% will have a win 8 machine in the house and grudgingly admit the OS has some benefits.

5% will have abandoned windows for OSX / Linux / iOS / Android

1% will still be on windows 7 because it's the best OS ever.

1% will still be on XP because it's the best OS ever.
marcamp3463 20th July 2012, 10:20 Quote
I am confused about one thing though. merchant account If they do not provide a browser with the operating system, how would you download another browser?
will_123 20th July 2012, 10:42 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
So go Linux. It's hard-core, versatile, powerful and free.

I use it for everything other than games. Love it.
Quote:
Yeah, but you've got all the caveats that go with it -- lack of user base on the desktop (when compared with Windows), sketchy/non-existent hardware support, the extreme ball-ache that goes hand in hand with setting certain things up, gaming support...

I know die hards will probably contest most of the above points but it's still the case that it's still quite a niche desktop environment and suffers because of it.

I would contest most of this yes :D

And I would like to see some facts to back up the claim for getting better frame rates. Because that is a compelling reason to upgrade just for playing games.
impar 20th July 2012, 10:44 Quote
Greetings!
Quote:
Originally Posted by azrael-
That's the perversity that is Windows 8. You've got this excellent OS which is blighted by the presence of the Metro UX.
Exactly. And the user has no choice on what UI to use.
r3loaded 20th July 2012, 10:47 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guinevere
24 months from now I wager that....

85% of metro haters and win 8 doom sayers will have willingly upgraded for one killer feature or another.

8% will have a win 8 machine in the house and grudgingly admit the OS has some benefits.

5% will have abandoned windows for OSX / Linux / iOS / Android

1% will still be on windows 7 because it's the best OS ever.

1% will still be on XP because it's the best OS ever.
It happens every single time when big changes occur. Windows 95 - everyone went crazy about the new start menu and the loss of program manager. Windows XP - everyone derided it as a bloated Fisher Price OS for the masses and vowed to stick with Windows 2000 forever. At the very least, I'd hold off judgement until Windows 8 goes RTM.

If you still hate it then, switch to OS X or Linux or stick with Windows 7. Use the OS that suits you best instead of complaining about it.
azrael- 20th July 2012, 11:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guinevere
24 months from now I wager that....

85% of metro haters and win 8 doom sayers will have willingly upgraded for one killer feature or another.

8% will have a win 8 machine in the house and grudgingly admit the OS has some benefits.

5% will have abandoned windows for OSX / Linux / iOS / Android

1% will still be on windows 7 because it's the best OS ever.

1% will still be on XP because it's the best OS ever.
I'm not sure if it has eluded your attention, but most people do not complain about Windows 8. They complain about Metro. There's a *huge* difference...
Nexxo 20th July 2012, 11:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by azrael-
I have to ask if you've actually ever used Windows 8 ...on the desktop ...with a keyboard and a mouse? Because, if you have I cannot for the life of me understand how you could classify it as usable. Microsoft hasn't even taken a moments pause trying to make Metro easily accessible with a mouse and keyboard. Some touch gestures could have been easily translated into meaningful mouse gestures, e.g. moving around the start screen. It's very clear that Metro is completely geared toward touch devices with "legacy input device" support added as a mere afterthought.

Yes, I can just skip Windows 8. And as it stands I will. It just pains me to see this excellent OS being handicapped so on the desktop.

And please stop with this "mainstream users" stuff. Mainstream users don't really have a say or choice in this matter. Windows 8 will come pre-installed on whatever PC the buy off the shelf, but that doesn't mean they'll actually like it. More AIOs will probably now be shipped with touch screens, but I can't see this as being an anywhere near ergonomical solution. If you have a desktop PC just stretch out your arm towards your monitor and try "emulating" touch control. Pain in the a**, right? Nothing you would want to do for any length of time.

/rant :)

Again: you have no vision.

It always surprises me how conservative this forum membership is. You're supposed to be geeks, ferchrissakes! But it seems to me that it is the mainstream muggles who willingly embrace new technology, and in doing so drive it forward. Whether it is smart phones, tablets or Windows 8; it's allways the same story: "My old Nokia does me just fine". "It's not a real computer, what's it for? My netbook works just fine". "Windows XP is fine for me". Nope, you'll happily drop £400,-- on a marginally faster GPU to play the same old remixed game with slightly prettier graphics, but God forbid someone out there actually introduces something new.
impar 20th July 2012, 11:03 Quote
Greetings!
Quote:
Originally Posted by r3loaded
It happens every single time when big changes occur.
Not really.
Quote:
Originally Posted by r3loaded
Windows 95 - everyone went crazy about the new start menu and the loss of program manager.
Then, people tried the new Windows 95 Start Menu for an afternoon and they accepted it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by r3loaded
Windows XP - everyone derided it as a bloated Fisher Price OS for the masses and vowed to stick with Windows 2000 forever.
Then, people annoyed by the Luna Theme just changed for a more classic theme, no more Fisher-Pricey look.

With Windows 8 there is no fallback position, its the Microsoft way or other OS.
User choice is no longer present.
will_123 20th July 2012, 11:03 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
Again: you have no vision.

It always surprises me how conservative this forum membership is. You're supposed to be geeks, ferchrissakes! But it seems to me that it is the mainstream muggles who willingly embrace new technology, and in doing so drive it forward. Whether it is smart phones, tablets or Windows 8; it's allways the same story: "My old Nokia does me just fine". "It's not a real computer, what's it for? My netbook works just fine". "Windows XP is fine for me". Nope, you'll happily drop £400,-- on a marginally faster GPU to play the same old remixed game with slightly prettier graphics, but God forbid someone out there actually introduces something new.

So we should just embrace the new even if its gives us no benefit...? No thank you.
azrael- 20th July 2012, 11:16 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
Again: you have no vision.

It always surprises me how conservative this forum membership is. You're supposed to be geeks, ferchrissakes! But it seems to me that it is the mainstream muggles who willingly embrace new technology, and in doing so drive it forward. Whether it is smart phones, tablets or Windows 8; it's allways the same story: "My old Nokia does me just fine". "It's not a real computer, what's it for? My netbook works just fine". "Windows XP is fine for me". Nope, you'll happily drop £400,-- on a marginally faster GPU to play the same old remixed game with slightly prettier graphics, but God forbid someone out there actually introduces something new.
I claim that not every change is beneficial or an advancement. But hey, let's make wheels square. Why? It's NEW! Only reason necessary.

And those "mainstream muggles" you talk about probably do not embrace new technology as willingly as you believe. It gets forced upon them. I have quite a lot of these socalled "mainstream muggles" and regularly tend to their computers and whatnot. Often when there's a major change in the way they have to do stuff I can hear a resigned "Oh well, if it has to be this way...".
[PUNK] crompers 20th July 2012, 11:17 Quote
I'm so comfortable with 7 I would need a good reason to move on (I.e. A new DX or big improvements to interface). To me the interface looks clunky and I'm struggling to find a reason to move on, slight improvements in performance are nice but not enough to convince me to move to teletubby hill
Phalanx 20th July 2012, 11:21 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by will_123
So we should just embrace the new even if its gives us no benefit...? No thank you.

If you believe Windows 8 gives you *no* benefit, then he's right, you lack vision.
will_123 20th July 2012, 11:30 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phalanx
If you believe Windows 8 gives you *no* benefit, then he's right, you lack vision.

I use win7 for playing games. Thats it. Steam, Origin, browser and few other gaming related software packages are the only things I have installed. Unless the latter about increased frame rates in gaming is true then no it does not give me any benefits.

Oh and AVG.
Phalanx 20th July 2012, 11:38 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by will_123
Unless the latter about increased frame rates in gaming is true then no it does not give me any benefits.

Well it is a fact that Windows 8 uses a smaller memory footprint/resource allocation than Windows 7, so that's where the performance boost would come from.
Nexxo 20th July 2012, 11:42 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by will_123
So we should just embrace the new even if its gives us no benefit...? No thank you.
That's just another way of saying: "The iPad? It's not a real computer. What's it for?"
Quote:
Originally Posted by azrael-
I claim that not every change is beneficial or an advancement. But hey, let's make wheels square. Why? It's NEW! Only reason necessary.

And those "mainstream muggles" you talk about probably do not embrace new technology as willingly as you believe. It gets forced upon them. I have quite a lot of these socalled "mainstream muggles" and regularly tend to their computers and whatnot. Often when there's a major change in the way they have to do stuff I can hear a resigned "Oh well, if it has to be this way...".

Yeah, I frequently walk past the Apple shop as they drag in unsuspecting members of the public and force iPads and iPhones into their hands. Oh, the humanity!

Muggles vote with their wallet, like every other consumer. It's why Apple is doing do well, lately. It produces tech that is simple (and dare I say it, fun) to use by the mainstream user. When you tend to people's computers it's because they ran into a wall of user-unfriendly technical stuff that we enjoy, but other people just find a cumbersome hassle. They want simple. They want big friendly icons and simple dialogs spelling out simple options. Muggles will LOVE Windows 8.
impar 20th July 2012, 11:43 Quote
Greetings!
Quote:
Originally Posted by will_123
Unless the latter about increased frame rates in gaming is true...
Probably is.
Windows 8 has had some improvements under the hood. The part about forced Metro (Start Screen, Metro apps, charms) is what damages its reception.
A Windows 8 that allowed for UI user choice would have an enthusiastic recepetion everywhere and by everybody.
do_it_anyway 20th July 2012, 11:50 Quote
Wow!!!

I am actually finding I couldn't care less about Windows 8.

I always thought I would be an early adopter with all OS upgrades. But this time I don't care. I really don't.
Shirty 20th July 2012, 11:51 Quote
I'm going to go out on a limb here, join forces with Nexxo and suggest that Windows 8 will be a big hit, because it's pretty, very accessible and extremely well engineered. For the haters (geeks), there will be myriad customisation options anyway, some from MS and many 3rd party, so anyone suggesting that this will tank because they don't like Metro UI is talking poopie.

It's akin to saying "I don't want this Bentley because it has a bumper sticker on it".

It's easy to remove ;)

Oh, and 95% of users will just leave it there and get used to it. Because 95% of users are "mainstream muggles", and they are the ones filling Microsoft's bank accounts, not us.

EDIT: I'm referring to the home market in this post.
steveo_mcg 20th July 2012, 11:55 Quote
Generally speaking MS care even less for Geeks than "Muggles" and they care very little for them. MS only produce a home OS so they can see volume licences to corporations who use windows at home where the purchasing manager is comfortable with it. Its all about the bulk windows licences so they can sell expensive bulk Office licences the rest is just window dressing.
will_123 20th July 2012, 11:57 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phalanx
Well it is a fact that Windows 8 uses a smaller memory footprint/resource allocation than Windows 7, so that's where the performance boost would come from.

Fair play. If there is gaming related performance boosts then I may well. It would just come down to whether I can be arsed spending £40 and learning that stupid new interface. I like the traditional start bar and interface. That why I use KDE for working.
will_123 20th July 2012, 12:12 Quote
Quote:

So we should just embrace the new even if its gives us no benefit...? No thank you.

That's just another way of saying: "The iPad? It's not a real computer. What's it for?"

No its not.

In my situation I don't see windows 8 giving me anything. Im not jumping on the windows 8 wagon till I can actually get some serious benefit. Smaller memory footprint? Does that really mater on a machine with 8GB+ of RAM? I wouldn't have thought so.

I don't want to stop technology moving forward. I just think win8 is not what I want or need. For somebody that spends little time on windows its not worth the upgrade.

And yes it probably will be a hit with its big flashy buttons but as you said above...

Windows 7 is fine for me


EDIT: Sorry for double post only seen the reply after.
Nexxo 20th July 2012, 12:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveo_mcg
Generally speaking MS care even less for Geeks than "Muggles" and they care very little for them. MS only produce a home OS so they can see volume licences to corporations who use windows at home where the purchasing manager is comfortable with it. Its all about the bulk windows licences so they can sell expensive bulk Office licences the rest is just window dressing.

I don't think you understand Microsoft's business strategy. It's long-term vision is to have their OS everywhere: at work, at home, in your home, on mobile devices, in your car. The main problem has been how to make a brand-recognisable GUI that is familiar to use in each of these environments, which can vary widely in terms of screen size, input devices and processing power.

Microsoft has always tried to cram the desktop GUI into smaller devices and finally realised that it was woefully unsuitable for that. Now it is trying from the other end: start with Metro on small mobile devices, and scale it up to larger, more powerful devices by judiciously adding features without losing the essential user experience. Windows 8 is a bit of a hybrid, and has a few clunky features as a result. But it is a bit like turning an oil tanker. The next version will be much more integrated, and as even small mobile devices become more powerful, a little eye-candy will sneak back into the minimalist design. But Metro tiles are going to be awesome. You haven't seen a fraction of the possibilities yet.
ResCyn 20th July 2012, 12:29 Quote
Has anybody quantified the improvement in gaming performance? Guessing it's not going to be stellar and spending the price of the OS on a better GPU upgrade when the time comes will likely cover it. I'll be staying with 7; zero interest in Metro and 7 suits me fine.
steveo_mcg 20th July 2012, 12:39 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
I don't think you understand Microsoft's business strategy. It's long-term vision is to have their OS everywhere: at work, at home, in your home, on mobile devices, in your car. The main problem has been how to make a brand-recognisable GUI that is familiar to use in each of these environments, which can vary widely in terms of screen size, input devices and processing power.

I'm not entirely sure you can call the MS approach to things strategy, the enormous size of the company means there is rarely a cohesive plan, Plays for Sure being an excellent example.

Yes they've always pushed the windows look and feel, and failed, but this has always (traditionally) been about making sure people continue to use windows at work and continue to use there productivity software.

They may now be looking toward Apple and seeing how well the ecosystem approach has worked for them but MS has also looked at Google in the past and seen how well search has worked. But just this week we've found that strategy hasn't really made them any money either.

They might be pushing growth in other sectors but MS bread and butter is the office and its office suite and if you think this forum is conservative you want to hear the complaints this week when we finally upgraded to office 2010.
GoodBytes 20th July 2012, 13:16 Quote
I cannot agree more with Nexxo.
Beside, even if you hate it, it won't change in Windows 9, nor 10. Get used to it. I sure did, and with a proper layout, and color I find it practical. Not to mention the huge list of features.
My laptop now, only has 1 OS, and it's Windows 8. Use my laptop everyday, including work. (soft development).
Quote:
Originally Posted by ResCyn
Has anybody quantified the improvement in gaming performance? Guessing it's not going to be stellar and spending the price of the OS on a better GPU upgrade when the time comes will likely cover it. I'll be staying with 7; zero interest in Metro and 7 suits me fine.
Some sites did, and they presented increase performance in games. But we have to wait and see for official, full for all GPU's, Windows 8 drivers, with a build of Windows 8 that doesn't have anymore debug stuff, and last build, to really know for sure, and how much.
Bede 20th July 2012, 13:26 Quote
Amidst all the negativity, it's perhaps worth remembering that a full-fat OS like this is a supreme achievement. Tens of thousands of people collaborated over millions of hours to create this.

W8 and Metro will be successful. The Metro UI is an exciting development that really challenges the popular belief that Apple appliances 'just work' - my parents get lost on their iMacs but I really can't see them struggling with Metro once they've learnt it.

I got a Lumia 800 when they came out because, as a mobile UI, Metro is streets ahead of Android and iOS (albeit less flexible than Android). Desktop Metro will be an improvement on this, Microsoft have a lot riding on it and they've learnt from their past mistakes.

Either way, W7 licenses will be available for years, so let's not be too upset.
Nexxo 20th July 2012, 13:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveo_mcg
I'm not entirely sure you can call the MS approach to things strategy, the enormous size of the company means there is rarely a cohesive plan, Plays for Sure being an excellent example.
Microsoft has traditionally taken a blunderbus approach, with a scattering of strategies trying to corner all markets at once. Its huge size allowed it to do that and absorb the penalties for getting it wrong without a sweat (even now). It does not help, of course, that their hardware partners are a scattered and diverse bunch either, who constantly change their mind/strategy.

However there are definite signs that this is changing, in the light of the shining example provided by Apple: one boss, one vision, one hardware manufacturer. Lo: Microsoft suddenly produces its own hardware (Surface) to promote Windows 8: one OS (kernel)/GUI for all platforms. Lo: Google produces its own hardware (Nexus) to promote its one Android OS for all platforms. The times, they are a-changin'.

Microsoft is waking up to the idea that the business sector is not the biggest market. Home consumers are. Apple proved that. Google and Microsoft are now changing tack to the same prevailing winds.
digitaldunc 20th July 2012, 13:46 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
It always surprises me how conservative this forum membership is. You're supposed to be geeks, ferchrissakes! But it seems to me that it is the mainstream muggles who willingly embrace new technology, and in doing so drive it forward. Whether it is smart phones, tablets or Windows 8; it's allways the same story: "My old Nokia does me just fine". "It's not a real computer, what's it for? My netbook works just fine". "Windows XP is fine for me". Nope, you'll happily drop £400,-- on a marginally faster GPU to play the same old remixed game with slightly prettier graphics, but God forbid someone out there actually introduces something new.

You've got a point, I think it's largely down to the fact that as geeks we have some misguided belief that because we generally know more about tech than the general user we should have sole dominion over the tech sphere -- tech is for everyone.

Personally I've happily admitted in the past I'm a luddite when it comes to change in the tech world. I'm trying to break these habits (I've forced the default 7 shell on myself instead of reaching for the nearest shell replacement app) but it's still difficult.

I try and maintain an open mind, however Metro still doesn't make sense to me on the desktop. I'll need to actually try it out to know for sure though, so admit I could be completely wrong.
steveo_mcg 20th July 2012, 14:37 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo

Microsoft is waking up to the idea that the business sector is not the biggest market. Home consumers are. Apple proved that. Google and Microsoft are now changing tack to the same prevailing winds.

While the home market might be larger for Apple, MS is playing for a small chunk of it (the desktop) there hope may be to use metro to sell tablets but that sector of the market is pretty well sewn up by Apple. Google has demonstrated this by launching a near loss leader to try and grab some market share.

In the play to move into the larger home market there is a risk it loses share in the business market which may have slow growth but its constant, and more importantly consistent cash flow has allowed to fail in so many other markets.
.//TuNdRa 20th July 2012, 14:48 Quote
I've decided; I'm going to get Windows 8, use one of the many, many handy tools out there to strip out Metro,(Or at least disable it), and enjoy the smaller running footprint and slight performance boost to my PC as a result.

Metro can go burn in hell for all I care, Microsoft were a bit thick to include it within windows 8 as a forced function, but the rest of the OS is sound from what I've seen of it. Despite crashing the release candidate in my VM because I taxed it too much.
will_123 20th July 2012, 15:17 Quote
Quote:
Amidst all the negativity, it's perhaps worth remembering that a full-fat OS like this is a supreme achievement. Tens of thousands of people collaborated over millions of hours to create this.

W8 and Metro will be successful. The Metro UI is an exciting development that really challenges the popular belief that Apple appliances 'just work' - my parents get lost on their iMacs but I really can't see them struggling with Metro once they've learnt it.

I got a Lumia 800 when they came out because, as a mobile UI, Metro is streets ahead of Android and iOS (albeit less flexible than Android). Desktop Metro will be an improvement on this, Microsoft have a lot riding on it and they've learnt from their past mistakes.

Either way, W7 licenses will be available for years, so let's not be too upset

Is this a sales pitch..?
Nexxo 20th July 2012, 15:34 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveo_mcg
While the home market might be larger for Apple, MS is playing for a small chunk of it (the desktop) there hope may be to use metro to sell tablets but that sector of the market is pretty well sewn up by Apple. Google has demonstrated this by launching a near loss leader to try and grab some market share.

In the play to move into the larger home market there is a risk it loses share in the business market which may have slow growth but its constant, and more importantly consistent cash flow has allowed to fail in so many other markets.

About 90% of home computers are Windows PC's; hardly a 'small chunk' of the home market. Where Apple has dominion is in tablets and smartphones, which are increasingly the go-to devices for ordinary users wanting to use specific web, media and social network applications. That is where Microsoft perceives the next big money to be. It tries to pitch its sales around convergence: "We can give you all the fun of Apple, and all the productivity associated with Windows (Office). We can be the best of all worlds".

Microsoft is big enough to be able to focus a branch on its productivity cash cows, while focusing another branch on domination of all OS ecosystems, which has always been its ultimate goal. To expect Microsoft and Google to give up because "Apple has it all sown up" is naive --it's like expecting Apple to give up in the 90's because Microsoft was the dominant OS. But Apple is showing signs of complacency and stagnation in innovation while Microsoft and Google are busily reinventing themselves in the face of fierce competition (as indeed Apple did, back in the 90's). The saga continues.
steveo_mcg 20th July 2012, 16:11 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
About 90% of home computers are Windows PC's; hardly a 'small chunk' of the home market.

Yes but they already own that market, they're not competing with any one in the desktop market they don't have to, others have tried to compete with MS in desktops and failed. Apple have moved the goal posts and convinced people they don't need a bulky desktop. Google, meanwhile is pretty platform agnostic, it may make money from Android but it also makes, likely, more from Windows desktops and a fair chunk (i would guess) from Apple users. MS are looking for growth in the home market and they can not get that from the desktop, the 10% non MS users are non MS users for their own reasons and they'll never switch.

The small chunk they're trying to get hold off is the tablet/smartphone users who don't want to be tied to Apple/Google. This part of the market will never be as big as the corporate market, not for MS, they're too far behind to make any real market share. I don't expect them to just give up, I do expect them to stop trying to chase Apple or Google and realise their strengths are else where.

Intersting aside MS normal approach of embrace, extend and extinguish has singularly failed them of late.
kenco_uk 20th July 2012, 16:17 Quote
I love the look of the Metro UI and the implementation is cool - most-used stuff being immediately accessible. I wish it was more usable, given the input devices (mouse and keyboard). A touch-screen monitor or even a kinect-alike device imho are daft for a desktop PC. I can see it working perfectly on a tablet through touch, or as a gesture-happy PC through the living room TV. It's a bone of contention until they perfect a way of getting around it flawlessly on a desktop because atm it's largely hit and miss and not very intuitive. It needs to have commonality.

I assume MS have plenty of carrots for app developers? This is what pushed Apple devices into home users hands. MS are incomparison, rather bereft of apps.
GoodBytes 20th July 2012, 17:00 Quote
Actually, Microsoft is fighting to keep it's 90%. What I mean is that now tablet and mobile phones are being an extension of desktop and laptop computer, and are starting to replacement them. That's the future. A single device that is a smartphone on the go, and becomes a computer when connected to a screen with keyboard. Desktop and laptop market as we know it, will be greatly reduce. Already, they are many people with smartphone who barely uses their computer anymore. They use one for work, and just for smartphone maintenance. As they do all they need (e-mail, web surf, IM, etc..) on their phone directly. If they could work on their phone and no longer need to be attached to a desktop or laptop computer for maintenance (upload new music/video, manage phone, update, etc.), they would.
GoodBytes 20th July 2012, 17:03 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenco_uk
I love the look of the Metro UI and the implementation is cool - most-used stuff being immediately accessible. I wish it was more usable, given the input devices (mouse and keyboard). A touch-screen monitor or even a kinect-alike device imho are daft for a desktop PC.
Unless we have computer monitors like this:
http://www.wacom.com/en/Products/Cintiq/Cintiq24touch.aspx
Used with a keyboard.
supermonkey 20th July 2012, 17:14 Quote
Although a lot of the early reviews were overwhelmingly negative, I have to say that the more I read about Windows 8 the more likely I am to finally upgrade. Yes, Windows XP has worked well for me these many years, but it's now holding me back from upgrading. I am an incremental upgrader - i.e., I rarely upgrade an entire computer at once. Instead, I tend to buy new parts when old ones either fail outright or can no longer operate efficiently.

I feel like my experience is somewhere in between geek and muggle. I've tried Ubuntu, I assemble my own systems, but in the end I just want something that works. I don't want to fuss about with too many configuration settings. I want to turn on my computer, easily access programs, and just generally be able to use the darn thing. With that in mind, and considering a motherboard/CPU/RAM upgrade in the near future, I think I'm finally at a point where I want to upgrade.

When I say "Windows XP just works," what I mean to say is that up to now my personal experience has not warranted the need to upgrade. It is not meant as a slight toward Win7 or Win8. To be honest, I think Windows 7 is a great OS, and if I had the need for better hardware than a 32-bit version of Win XP could support, I would have upgraded sooner. Have I spent money on a new video card? Yes, but only because my old one stopped working; it was not to get a marginal frame rate increase.

Now that I'm at a point at which video and graphics output is asking for more power, I'm ready for some new core hardware; therefore I'm ready to upgrade. Considering Microsoft's low-cost upgrade offer, and given the more recent reviews, I think I'll be happy with Windows 8.
steveo_mcg 20th July 2012, 22:10 Quote
Rant in the wrong place, ignore me...
Nexxo 20th July 2012, 23:04 Quote
Always do.



(j/k :p)
Sloth 20th July 2012, 23:32 Quote
After doing a little more research, specifically on how multi-monitor setups work in Win8, I think I'll be picking it up. It's $40, might help in games, and you've still got a desktop.

Having a game playing on one monitor, a desktop display on the second, and the Metro home screen on a third seems like it could be pretty nifty with a bit of tinkering.
Bede 21st July 2012, 00:01 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by will_123

Is this a sales pitch..?

Looking back on it, it reads a bit like an intern's first draft for one! I just get a little tired of backwards-looking hypocrites who will, in the long run, appreciate the changes. UIs will not be tied to physical interaction, either through keyboard and mouse or touch, forever. This is a step forward, and we should at the very least be curious about it - it is pretty original.
Nexxo 21st July 2012, 11:27 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveo_mcg
The small chunk they're trying to get hold off is the tablet/smartphone users who don't want to be tied to Apple/Google. This part of the market will never be as big as the corporate market, not for MS, they're too far behind to make any real market share. I don't expect them to just give up, I do expect them to stop trying to chase Apple or Google and realise their strengths are else where.

Intersting aside MS normal approach of embrace, extend and extinguish has singularly failed them of late.
The mobile device market is huge. Apple went from struggling company to richer than most small countries just by exploiting that niche. And with technology getting smaller, lighter and more powerful it is only going to expand. In 10 years time the desktop PC as we know it is going to be dead. The only stationary devices will be screens too big to carry around --and they will basically be extensions of mobile devices. This is the future: people carrying smartphones or tablet/laptop hybrids which they simply place on their desk to work with a large screen and full keyboard, and then take with them again afterwards; that automatically connect with the car as they get in so they can continue to use it as they drive, using the dashboard as interface; coming home they place it on the coffee table to control the home theatre or function as game console. There will not be a desktop market, console market and mobile market; devices are converging. There will only be one market, for an OS that has to work in all sorts of different configurations, handling productivity, media/web, social networking and games, depending on how the mobile device is connected to peripherals such as your home theatre, desktop terminal, car, coffee table. Microsoft wants to create the one OS that will work on one device in all these different configurations.

Microsoft is basically doing what Apple is doing, and Apple is getting similar flak for iOS-ifying OSX as Microsoft gets for Metro-fying Windows. People just seem unable to see that both are creating an OS not for today's hardware, but next year's. The OS is driving hardware development now, which is how it should be, not the other way around.
kenco_uk 21st July 2012, 15:55 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
There will only be one market, for an OS that has to work in all sorts of different configurations, handling productivity, media/web, social networking and games, depending on how the mobile device is connected to peripherals such as your home theatre, desktop terminal, car, coffee table.

If what you're alluding to is a single, portable device that streams or connects to extenders that are purchased separately, I can see this is a good idea, but it will never happen due to patent court cases and monopolistic practices. There will never be a single device that does everything, however nice it may sound.
GoodBytes 21st July 2012, 16:31 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenco_uk
If what you're alluding to is a single, portable device that streams or connects to extenders that are purchased separately, I can see this is a good idea, but it will never happen due to patent court cases and monopolistic practices. There will never be a single device that does everything, however nice it may sound.

Oh really?
Motorola Atrix
sjZI94VfC1U
(It's a bit old phone) The main problem with the device at the time was the very high price tag.

ASUS PadPhone
Rrh_EwFaZ7I

This is the future, and it's out now, and slowly gaining popularity. I expect with Windows 8 late life or during Windows 9 life, this is be quite popular.
Nexxo 21st July 2012, 17:53 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenco_uk
If what you're alluding to is a single, portable device that streams or connects to extenders that are purchased separately, I can see this is a good idea, but it will never happen due to patent court cases and monopolistic practices. There will never be a single device that does everything, however nice it may sound.

Of course there will be, as GoodBytes shows. They will just be divided into competing brands/ecosystems (with some third-party devices catering to several, perhaps). It is this competition that you see playing out now: Apple vs Microsoft vs Google.
will_123 21st July 2012, 18:03 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bede
Looking back on it, it reads a bit like an intern's first draft for one! I just get a little tired of backwards-looking hypocrites who will, in the long run, appreciate the changes. UIs will not be tied to physical interaction, either through keyboard and mouse or touch, forever. This is a step forward, and we should at the very least be curious about it - it is pretty original.

Ha yeh it was a bit. I just like my traditional desktop always have, along with a healthy dose of command line it makes up my workspace and its really laziness that i cant be arsed learning a new UI.
SpAceman 24th July 2012, 05:05 Quote
I'm looking forward to using Metro on a daily basis. Anyone complaining about it is just scared of change. Even if it is better. The things I like about my Android phone are that I have all the information I need and all the app access I want from the home screen. It is going to be awesome to have that on my desktop and netbook. Sure there are solutions to add better support for features like that to the traditional desktop but they are nowhere near as good as native built in support. You just need to look at the rainmeter crowd to see how features like the ones Metro is adding can be beneficial. Only difference here though is instead of a retrofit of the desktop we get something designed from the ground up.

Moving from CLI to GUI Desktop was often called a backwards step but look how that turned out.
kenco_uk 24th July 2012, 11:02 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
Of course there will be, as GoodBytes shows. They will just be divided into competing brands/ecosystems (with some third-party devices catering to several, perhaps). It is this competition that you see playing out now: Apple vs Microsoft vs Google.

Device convergence is happening, aye. They're lovely but the examples given by Goodbytes, good and exciting though they are, have not exactly taken the market by storm. Given that the iPad and subsequent models sell so much that there must be warehouses full of grandmothers and kidneys, there is the money there to be spent on these devices but if they're no good, well.. Atrix case in point. I'm just being a bit critical, is all.
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