Windows 8 officially launched in New York

2012-10-25 19:58

New York - In one of the most important events in its history, Microsoft on Thursday officially launched the Windows 8 operating system and its Surface tablet computer in a bid to establish a crucial foothold in the booming market for mobile and touch-screen devices.

The software giant has fallen badly behind Apple and other rivals such as Google in these new markets which have already made the company's dominance in traditional PC's far less important than it once was.

In a New York unveiling that Microsoft said was the biggest launch of new devices ever, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer predicted the sale of 400 million new PCs annually in addition to 670 million upgrades to the new Windows 8 operating system.

The new devices are available starting on Friday in over 140 countries, and Microsoft said there were more than 1 000 computer models certified for Windows 8.

These include over 50 purpose-built laptops that feature touch screens to tap into the software's touch-centric Metro interface. The new interface replaces the traditional Windows look with live tiles that group programmes according to user activity, and may require a learning curve for customers used to operating computers via Windows' famous Start button.

Coming three years after Windows 7, the new software comes in Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro versions, as well as Windows RT. This is the first Microsoft operating system intended for use with computers running on ARM processors rather than the Intel-based X86 architecture which has been the exclusive platform for Windows until now.

"Windows 8 PCs are the best PCs ever," Ballmer said. "Windows 8 brings together the best of the worlds." The company said that the new computers are thinner, boot in half the time and sometimes weigh one-third the weight of Windows 7 PCs.

While the software and Microsoft's Surface tablet have earned strong reviews, analysts doubt that the devices will present much of an immediate challenge to Apple's iPad or Android-based machines, both of which enjoy a huge advantage in purpose-built apps.

However the compatibility of Windows 8 devices with Microsoft's widely used Office software could make them popular among business and enterprise users, who have been slower to adopt Apple and Google-based devices than consumers.

  • loki.scribus - 2012-10-25 20:25

    And there's another one. Here's a question I have: if so many people buy Windows, and Office, and if so many people buy Adobe's Creative Suite and other products, why is it so damn expensive?!

  • bruce.williams.1044186 - 2012-10-25 20:30

    The competition is amazing. They need to keep upgrading or they will be 100 steps behind before you blink.

  • trevor.mashilo - 2012-10-25 20:31

    Can't wait to get my hands on W8

      om.nom.nom.01 - 2012-10-25 21:01

      On special for R699.00 @ Incredible connection (W8 Pro).

      mark.schulz.796 - 2012-10-26 06:23

      Buy it online for $40...

      JNaMolefe - 2012-10-26 08:23

      That's so cheap! I prefer to buy it at Dion Wired, will it be the same price as it is?

      mark.schulz.796 - 2012-10-26 09:09

      I think they charge you for the media. The $40 pricetag only applies to the online purchase (which does not include a CD) you can install it after downloading the 2GB file from within your current Windows OS.

      johan.calitz1 - 2012-10-26 10:16

      Get the upgrade for R299

  • gabriel.n.ogbeifun - 2012-10-25 20:42

    I cant wait to get my hand on them,technology is d way d true and life.

  • nwayne54 - 2012-10-25 20:47

    Had a beta version for a month and a bit now and it's been amazing - no clunckiness and works just the way it should! Gaming, internet and file transfer has greatly been improved not to mention a super easy interface. It may take some time for some to adjust to the set up but once you've got it you struggle to go back to 7 or XP. Quite a game changer, whether it will be applauded or burnt to the ground like Vista.

  • lwandile.sobantu - 2012-10-25 21:01

    i cant wait 4 window8, would i be able to use it on my nokia 3310

      fussed.anderson - 2012-10-26 07:54

      Yes ofcourse you can????///

  • jan.matsetela - 2012-10-25 21:21

    I will wait for windows 9 after 2 years

      dewald.galjaard - 2012-10-25 23:43

      so erm. ok then.

      JNaMolefe - 2012-10-26 08:24

      Probably in 3 years or so lol

  • dante.schoeman - 2012-10-26 08:18

    Already using it , very nice. Alot of people might want to know where the start button went... You can go to Stardock website and get one there , install it and you will have a start button again :) enjoy W8 , and dont complain about small changes , get used to it , I bet there will be alot of patches and fixes :)

  • Cayowin - 2012-10-26 11:05

    I will wait for the service pack before installing it. I learnt my lesson with Windows 3, 95, 98, XP, NT, Vista,7...

  • mukosit - 2012-10-26 17:25

    I've been using Win 8 Pro and MS Office 2013 since August 2012 and I'm happy with it. I'll give anyone who has never ran Windows 8 R20 if they can find the "Shut down" aspect within 5 minutes.

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