Windows 8: Is the New Microsoft Operating System a Hit or a Miss?
If you’re in the market for a new PC, you’ve probably noticed that manufacturers have recently switched to Microsoft Windows 8 as an operating system. If you took Windows 8 for a test drive in the store, you might have been bewildered by its user interface. Where’s the Start button? What do you mean the whole screen is Start? What’s this Metro stuff?
Microsoft has attempted to combine the elements of our familiar keyboard/mouse environment with the touch screen environment found in tablets. The jury is still out on whether this combination will be successful. Heck, the jury is still out on the ribbon interface in Office!
We’ve seen this before, where Microsoft introduced a new Windows version and it bombed. Think back to Windows ME and Windows Vista. But Microsoft quickly turned out their successors, Windows XP and Windows 7, which turned out to be hits.
There are several approaches to take with Windows 8:
– Embrace it. Forget everything you know about previous Windows versions and learn how to use Windows 8.
– Ignore it. Put off your next PC purchase until Microsoft comes out with something better. The rumor mill has Windows 8.1 restoring the Start button and booting into desktop mode. If you can’t wait, search for PCs still shipping with Windows 7. Look at the business sections of the Dell, HP, Lenovo, Samsung and Toshiba websites.
– Meet it halfway. Lenovo and Samsung have released Start menu add-ons for Windows 8. Or purchase an add-on program that changes the user interface to something more familiar. Here’s an article about a $5 program that will save you headaches:
Of course, the most drastic approach is to dump Windows and get a Mac. If we all love our iPhones and iPads so much, why not take the plunge?