When Windows 8 was introduced in 2012, it was a radical departure from its predecessor Windows 7. The familiar Start Menu on Windows 7 — a fixture on the Windows operating system for over 20 years — was replaced with a Live Tile user interface called Metro UI. Many users either didn’t want to learn the new Windows interface or, more commonly, didn't have touch screen devices to make the most of it.
Although touch screens dominate among smart phones and tablets, the majority of desktop computers still have keyboards and mice. And — according to analytics specialist Net Applications — 53 percent of desktops employ Windows 7, while only 12 percent use Windows 8 or 8.1. That wasn't what Microsoft had in mind when it launched Windows 8 just three years after it introduced Windows 7 in 2009.
Now comes the announced debut of Windows 10 (there is, and will be, no Windows 9) sometime this summer between late July and mid-September. Although it has many new features, Windows 10 is in some ways a hybrid of Windows 7 and 8, in that is has both a Start Menu feature and Live Tiles. This feature makes it easier to launch apps, find and manage settings, and reduces training time and costs for businesses.
So what does the Windows 10 launch mean for your small- to mid-sized business? Keep reading to learn about the important factors to consider, including:
- Transition costs and usability
- Hardware requirements