To upgrade to Windows 10, or not to upgrade?

Microsoft wants us to upgrade to their new Windows 10 operating system and as we know, change isn’t always easy. This could definitely be one of the reason why thousands of users are hanging on so tightly to older versions of Windows.

Despite the resistance, Microsoft has announced that they will begin automatically upgrading users and in some cases, this installation process is automatically triggered for users of Windows 7 and 8.1. If you are not yet ready for the change, you need to ensure that the settings on your PC are set correctly to prevent this.

According to the Windows Blog, Microsoft has stated that this automatic installation is part of their commitment to making it easier for their users to transition to the new OS. They have however also stated that while a user’s Windows Update settings might cause the upgrade process to automatically initiate on a device, a user will definitely be prompted to choose whether they would like to continue with the installation of Windows 10 or not. In addition, the software giant is also giving users 31 days to roll back to their previous version of Windows if they are not loving Windows 10.

Will Windows 10 bring the PC market back to life?

The increased focus on Windows 10 is Microsoft’s way of trying to rebuild the loyalty among their users who are increasingly turning to smartphones, tablets and other operating systems. According to International Data Corp (IDC), the sale of PCs has been declining over the last few years and it has been forecast that this declining trend will continue. In fact, analysts at IDC have predicted that 2016 will mark the 5th consecutive year of declining PC sales worldwide.

So what does the new Windows 10 offer that should encourage you to make this transition?

To start, Windows 10 faster than its predecessors, especially when it comes to boot-up and waking from hibernation, which has always been a sore point for many users. The next notable feature is that it runs on the broadest types of devices including game consoles and even holographic headsets, and it also offers the familiar Start Menu which was not included in Windows 8. In addition, the desktop version comes with a personal assistant called Cortana. Cortana can be viewed as Microsoft’s answer to Apple’s Siri or to Google Now. For convenience, Windows 10 also offers ‘One Store’ which merges a variety of app stores into one platform and brings the familiar feel of being able to download and install apps as you would with your smartphone.

In addition to a complete makeover to the operating system, Windows 10 comes bundled with Microsoft’s latest and greatest browser called, Edge which replaces Internet Explorer. Combined with the personal assistant Cortana, Web browsing is made much simpler. Also, the ‘Web Note’ feature enables users to easily write or type directly on a page, make comments and then easily share this via social networks or email. According to Microsoft, Edge has specifically been designed to be clearer, more secure and faster.

For gaming enthusiasts, Windows 10 also includes a new Xbox app. This app enables users to easily share with friends, and is very similar to Microsoft’s Xbox One console system. Another perk of upgrading to the company’s new OS is the fact that Microsoft has stated that they will continue to keep it up-to-date for the supported lifetime of the device at no cost at all. Gamers can also boost their gaming experience by getting their hands on a HoloLens which runs the software and enables users to integrate high-definition holograms with their world.

A long road to 1 billion users.

According to Microsoft, as of January 2016 just over 200 million desktops were running Windows 10, with the bulk of these being upgrades as a result of the free upgrade offered by Microsoft. The free upgrade offer, is expected to expire at the end of July 2016. Microsoft have set their sights on having 1 billion Windows 10 users by this time. Microsoft strongly believes that once users are exposed to their latest operating system, they will definitely be tempted to try out other Microsoft products on PCs and mobile devices.

One window closes and another one opens.

In case you noticed, Microsoft did skip the name Windows 9. The reason behind this was to distance themselves from the unsuccessful release of Windows 8 and interestingly, the new Windows 10 software marks the biggest update the tech giant has ever made to its software. While many analysts have stated that Windows 8 played a vital role in negatively impacting PC sales, the big question now is, will Windows 10 spur the PC industry back to growth?