Windows 8.1, codenamed Blue is the first major update after Windows 8 and expected to arrive here for public review on 26th June 2013. It has lots of improvement and added functionality to mitigate drawbacks of Windows 8 such as start button returns, more personalization settings, improved apps store and more. Microsoft will provide this update for free to Windows 8 and RT users,available from the Apps Store.
Microsoft has implemented these updates to Windows 8 after receiving feedback and reviews from the avid PC users and has high hope to provide uniquely build OS for both consumers and businesses. Needless to say, this time Microsoft won't want users to be disappointed and doesn't want the charms of Windows 8 get ruined.
Let’s talk about some leaked features of Windows 8.1, the upcoming version. In depth details about all the features will be available only after putting it in the live test environment.
Start Button Restored
Much awaited and long missed traditional start button is likely to be placed again in Windows 8.1. However, the functionality may differ as compare to start button in older version of Windows. New looking start button will alike as latest Windows logo and is placed at the bottom exactly where it exists in the previous windows versions.
However, unlike its functioning in previous Windows copy, press start button in Windows 8.1 a. k. a. blue will take user to the metro-style start screen or UI interface. Sources also confirmed that the so called new start button will not be visible on the metro-style/ Windows app store screen but can be accessed by hovering over your mouse to bottom left corner of the screen.
Though, user may able play with start button settings and can set it to open in old fashioned manner in which, all programs were available on the single screen. That will makes it easier for user to find installed programs that is not pinned on the start screen or has quick launch icon on the desktop screen.
Directly Boot into Desktop
This one would be best news for users who hates the modern start screen which appears just after starting Windows 8. In the so called “Milestone Preview” release of Windows 8.1, users may able to boot directly into the desktop environment instead of seeing the bogus UI screen filled with apps.
In this upcoming release of Windows, users have the full capability to bypass infamous UI screen and see their traditional desktop screen on startup. Metro apps screen distracted windows users to a great extend and becomes the primary causes of not so much success of Window 8.
Since the said features are still not confirmed by Microsoft, anything can be change when it ships finally to consumer hands.
Option to Set Personalized Wallpaper on Start & Lock Screen
There is much more added to make your PC more customized exactly in the way you want it to be. Now you can your own set of wallpapers to lock screen or change background and accent colors to start screen or apps screen. In the current running Windows OS, you can only change the color scheme and accents, but these limitation would likely be lifted with Windows upcoming release. For the lock screen, you can create a slide show of photos that is stored in the PC or hosted on the cloud. You can also take pictures using built in camera from the lock screen apps without logging in.
This is not over, to slim the confusion between start screen and your desktop screen, you can set your desktop background as your start screen background or vice versa and makes both screen highly looks alike.
Customize Tiles with easy
Windows 8 has large tiles button at the start screen that looks ugly and distracts users by default. Things get even worse as the user won't provide with any option to make tiles large or small for apps or programs which they use most or which they'll use less frequently.
Many flexibilities were also added in customizing tiles such as rearranging group or tiles, select multiple apps at once to resize, uninstall or rearrange them. This will allow adding more tiles or pinning more apps to your start screen and starting digging them.
Unified Search Screen
Search feature in Windows 8.1 is completely revamped and feature rich. You'll get the search results from the web, apps, skydrive or settings in a simple to read, hierarchy form and available without tapping menu's that makes it easier for you to find almost anything, either from the web or from your local computer.
P.S. This search feature will use Bing search to fetch results from the web.
You can scroll down at bottom for search queries that yields many results. In Windows 8, user gets the results only from apps by default. To see results from settings or files, you'll need to tap it, available at the bottom of apps button.
Inbuilt apps get redesigned and Good Looking Windows apps store
Whenever we talk about tablet or smart-phone, we can't forget about apps. But now windows 8.1 have everything that you could find on tablet and much more to offer in near future. Windows 8 inbuilt apps like “Music” or “Photos” app were updated to helps you make the most of it in Windows 8.1 a k a Windows Blue. Such as, photo apps will let you quickly edit or adjust pictures or open them directly from other placed like mail, cloud server or camera apps. Whereas, music app is redesigned to help you quickly pick and play music from your great music collection.
Microsoft is planning to offer more inbuilt apps with Windows 8.1 which will launch very soon.
Unlike Windows 8 apps screen where only one app could be seen at a time, now you can have at most four apps on one single screen. You can also view the double window of same app on one screen, such as two running window of Music app can be seen on one single screen.
Windows 8.1 apps store would get also updated where large number of apps in top free, new release and picks for you would available that help you decide more suitable apps from the huge list. Apps screen will constitutes more information and an extra area is added to help you choose more related apps.
There are still much more to explore in this highly redesigned Windows OS. We can't predict about its success or failure as like Windows 7 which is a very successful release of Microsoft just after failed Windows Vista but can presume that It'll going to tougher the operating system marketing challenges as well as brings revolutionary change in the apps history. Let’s wait and watch!!!