March 24, 2015

Get Ready For Windows 10

Microsoft bet big that Windows 8 would ride the tablet wave to prominence, but the company lost. A return to business as usual, or at least a familiar business desktop design, should reassure users frustrated by the new interface, apps, charms, and widgets of Windows 8. Todd Swank, senior director of product marketing for Equus Computer Systems Inc., a Minnetonka, Minn.-based custom PC maker, says, “Microsoft almost threw out the baby with the bathwater when they wanted to be so focused on the mobile touch world and abandoned the traditional keyboard, mouse, etc., world.”

 Microsoft has yet to finalize the hardware requirements, but all indications are that any system that runs Windows 7 or 8 will also run 10. In fact, says Swank, “The past couple of releases have seen hardware requirements almost become more lenient.” During in-house testing, Equus engineers have had no hardware issues caused by the early releases of the new operating system.

But Microsoft’s announcement of free operating system upgrades to Windows 10 from Windows 7 and 8 caught Swank by surprise. “Five years ago they would have laughed if you asked for a free upgrade.” He assumes the change of heart has to do with Microsoft trying to keep people in the Windows environment and away from iOS and Android. “Future revenues won’t be as tightly tied to the OS,” he says. 

Being a PC maker, Swank notes that Intel and Microsoft seem to be converging new product releases. “Intel’s new Skylake processor architecture doesn’t have an official release date, but the timing should be right for the new OS and CPUs for desktops to appear together.” The successor to the Broadwell architecture, Skylake will be fabricated using a 14 nm manufacturing process and will fit into LGA1151 sockets.

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