I recently upgraded to Windows 10 and you should too. I was among the many who hated Windows 8 and eagerly awaited this release. I got together with Jarred, our Technical Director and self-proclaimed Windows Devotee, and put together this list of 6 reasons to upgrade to Windows 10.
Disclaimer: Jarred is so pro-Windows that he uses bing daily, had no issues with Windows 8, and is already mapping out his virtual HoloLens office – but he did offer some great insight into the upgrade.
1. The Return of the Start Menu
This is the number one reason to upgrade to Windows 10. The Start Menu is BACK ladies and gentlemen! I got so frustrated not having that little menu in the bottom left-hand side of my screen that I downloaded a fake Windows Start Menu that luckily didn’t shut down my whole computer.
The new start menu is better than ever. It includes your most used applications, file explorer, settings, navigation to your apps, and “Life at a Glance” showing a few rotating tiles.
Cortana has arrived to the desktop. She’s already on Windows’ phones and now you get to have a personal assistant to tell you jokes and distract you from work all day long. I personally am an iPhone user and was not too impressed with Siri, but have already found Cortana very useful.
- You can search the web from your taskbar with Cortana, and don’t tell Jarred this, but you can even install Chrometana if you want to see Google search results instead of Bing (must have Chrome set as default browser.)
- You can set reminders for people, places and times.
- “Remind me to get paper towels when I am near a grocery store”
- If you ordered something offline, she will search your inbox for tracking numbers and update you on where your package is. You can also track your upcoming flight to see the status at any time.
She can do a whole list of things including set alarms, send emails, show your favorite sport’s teams stats, and more. Check out some more Cortana features here.
3. PDFs Open in a Normal Window
This may not have been a big pain point for many users of Windows 8 but it would make my blood boil. Whenever I went to open a PDF or picture, BOOM – it takes over the whole screen. You couldn’t minimize it and check your email then quickly bring it back up, it was all or nothing. Luckily, now when you open a PDF or image file it acts just like the other applications on your taskbar enabling you to minimize, resize, and drag it around the screen. Whew.
4. The Tiles are Gone (kind of)
Like I said, the tiles show up in your start menu, but they aren’t the first thing you see before you get to your desktop. Once you login you are taken right to your home screen. The new tiles show the weather, email updates, and newsworthy stories, and only take up a quarter of your screen.
This cool little feature can be found when you click the message icon at the bottom right hand side of your taskbar. It shows:
- Snippets of your most recent emails
- Security and maintenance updates
- Any Cortana info
- Tiled shortcuts with important information and common actions
Of course you can customize your action center notifications along with the look and feel of it. If you want to know more on the customization, here’s a helpful blog on how to do it: Here’s how to fine-tune the Action Center in Windows 10.
6. It’s Free and Easy
Finally, the sixth reason to download Widnows 10 is because it is free and easy. The install only takes about 30 minutes and everything on your desktop stays about the same.
I hope you found these tips and tricks helpful, now go download Windows 10!