Windows 10: What to expect?

Microsoft will be unveiling the new version of Windows later this week. What can you expect to see?

20 Jan 2015


Microsoft is launching the next version of Windows - and it's designed to give you the same smooth experience whether you're using your laptop, desktop or tablet.

Microsoft will release the full details on January 21st but in the meantime, read on for our round-up of what to expect.

The key points of Windows 10

Microsoft is making sure Windows 10 is easier to use, no matter what device you're using it on. This means it should be just as simple to use whether you're tapping and swiping the screen or typing at the keyboard and clicking the mouse. Expect it to, among other things:

• Be just one version of Windows, whatever device you're using

• Understand whether you're using a tablet or a laptop and automatically adjust to suit

• By popular demand, bring back the Start button!

What was Windows 8?

With Windows 8 Microsoft reinvented its operating system to work with tablets as well as desktop PCs. However, some people felt the radical redesign took away some key features they loved and made it harder when using keyboard and mouse.

Windows 10 - the features we expect to see, in detail

1) One Windows for your PC, smartphone and tablet

In a nutshell: The same Windows 10 will work across all your devices

Windows 10 will run on your laptop, desktop, tablet, smartphone and Xbox. This pledge to synchronise everything under a single piece of software comes after negative reaction to Windows 8 coming in several different versions.
Knowing which version of Windows 8 you needed, or even had, could be confusing. By making Windows 10 a single operating system for all your devices this will be much more clear.

2) Windows automatically adjusts to the device you're using

In a nutshell: Windows 10 will adjust automatically to suit PC or tablet

Windows 8 worked with both PC and tablet, but it felt to some like it was almost two different operating systems in one.

Windows 10, however, will detect what device you're on and automatically adjust the software to suit. The touchscreen and desktop elements of the software are expected to co-exist - there'll be no more manually switching between two separate systems.

3) So apps will run in a desktop window?

In a nutshell: you'll be able to run modern apps in the desktop

With Windows 10 we expect apps will be able to be launched from and run in the desktop without being taken to the touch-screen interface like before. So, you can be working on a spreadsheet or document and using an app at the same time - on the same screen.

4) Return of the Start menu

In a nutshell: The iconic, much-missed Start button is back on the bottom corner of your screen

The Start menu has been a familiar feature of Windows since the mind-1990s. When Windows 8 launched without a Start menu in the bottom left-hand corner of the screen it was sorely missed by many. It was reintroduced in part in the Windows 8.1 update, but now in Windows 10 it's expected to return in its traditional form - with a few features that make it even better.

You will have the familiar menu for your applications and programs, but it will also bring up the touchscreen tiles used to launch apps on tablets. These tiles will show the latest information without you even having to click on them. For example, the Facebook tile will display your notifications and your Outlook tile will show your latest emails.

5) Task View

If you have loads of apps open at once, it can be useful to see them all at the same time. With Task View you will be able to see all the apps you have open alongside each other. Perfect for multitasking.

6) A new "Spartan" web browser

A stripped-back, faster web browser is expected to be unveiled for Windows 10 - codenamed Spartan. However, this browser will be available in addition to Internet Explorer - it won't replace it.

7) A single app store for all devices

In a nutshell: One app store across your laptop, tablet and smartphone

Whether you're using a laptop, a tablet or a smartphone, you will be able to buy and download apps from the same place. By housing all apps in a single store Microsoft says it will be easier for people to find the apps they need, regardless of what device they're using.

TechTalk will have all the main news from the Windows 10 launch event - January 21

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