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Wednesday, 29 July 2015 08:22

Windows 10 out today - what does that mean for your business?

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Today is the official release day of Windows 10 and Microsoft has confirmed it will be the last major version of the Windows operating system.

What does this mean for you and your business? 

Many PC users, particularly home users on Windows 7 or later versions will get the Windows 10 upgrade for free; a deliberate move from Microsoft to encourage home users to influence uptake in the workplace. Windows 10 has 7 editions, but businesses will only be interested in 3 of these; the Pro (for small businesses), Enterprise and Mobile Enterprise. These editions are not eligible for the free upgrade home users will enjoy.

With the interface of Windows 10, Microsoft has kept elements of the tablet and touchscreen style but has promised to revert back to the familiarity and intuitiveness of Windows 7. Microsoft has also introduced various new features such as the Interactive Digital Assistant Cortana, a new web browser Microsoft Edge and access to more Microsoft apps. Mobile workers (who’s not one of those these days?) may find the Microsoft concept of ‘Continuum’ particularly useful, where Windows 10 offers a consistency of a single OS across all devices. The other productivity gain in business is the ability to multitask more effectively with easy access to multiple, customisable desktops. Whilst not particularly innovative - other Operating Systems have been doing this for years - it is a useful feature to incorporate.

The speed of adoption will ultimately rely on how much more compelling all these new features will be and how intuitive it is to discover and use them. In other words, will upgrading to Windows 10 have a material impact day-to-day to users?

From the IT department’s perspective, the upgrade from Windows 7 (or later versions) to 10 will still require investment and resource in customisation, testing, training and deployment, but it is likely to be less effort than moving from Window XP to 7. The back-end management similar and Microsoft promises that there will be application compatibility.

With Windows 7 supported until January 2020 and Windows 8 & 8.1 until January 2023, there is plenty of time to assess the potential of Windows 10 for your business, and for some organisations having just migrated from XP to Windows 7 in recent years, they may be in no real rush to head into the next upgrade project. For other early-adopter businesses that embrace innovation, they may choose to head to Windows 10 sooner rather than later. More cautious firms may wait until they’ve seen the reaction from the home user demographic and test-cases amongst other businesses. In any event, you can be guaranteed Microsoft will be doing everything it can to help you switch.

As the economic climate has improved, we are finally able to increase our appetite to invest in business improvement and productivity projects. There’s likely to be a few projects stacked up in the IT department, but the last ever major Windows upgrade is certainly one to start considering!

Read 2029 times Last modified on Wednesday, 29 July 2015 08:26
Alan Yin, Senior Infrastructure Consultant at Plan-Net

Alan is one of our Infrastructure Consultants at Plan-Net.

Alan has worked in IT since 2003 starting off in the public health sector and moving on to being Senior Enterprise Engineer for an aviation company based in Heathrow.

He began his role in the Consultancy team at Plan-Net in November 2012.

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