Today at Microsoft’s Build event Windows Division President Steven Sinofsky finally showed off Windows 8. Sinofsky started out by saying that finally Windows 7 consume use has overtaken Windows XP, which is about time and 450,000,000 Windows 7 licences sold. Some of key things he say where that Windows 8 is about re-imagining Windows but still maintaining compatibility with Windows 7 and that Windows live will be big part of Windows 8. The start screen, picture password and the metro UI look fantastic, I love how you can drag and drop the tiles around. The full screen browses, new search and spell checker are going to be great as is the sharing via Windows Live. The UI is really beautifull and I can wait to try it.
I am sure there will be plenty of videos showing Windows 8 off soon.
While the keynote was in progress Microsoft published Steven Sinofsky latest blog post where he explains some of the changes in Windows 8, including the full ARM support and some the developer options.
The best thing is that you can download the preview release in either 32 or 64bit version starting later today (8PM Seattle time), I am going to be downloading a build and getting that on my Touchsmart!
If you’ve been following this blog, then you know today is a big day for the Windows team. At the BUILD conference we are about to preview Windows 8. There’s a ton to see in the product and so we’d really encourage everyone to check out the available streams on http://buildwindows.com, where we will webcast the keynote. The BUILD conference this week is focused on developers and hardware partners, and there are over 100 sessions (all of which will be available from the link above within about a day of the scheduled presentation time). In that sense it is good to keep in mind that today is the launch of the developer opportunity for Windows, not the launch of a product (and certainly not the launch of new devices).
Many are interested in Windows 8 for ARM processors. Everything we showcased today at BUILD also runs on the ARM-based Windows PCs being created by ARM partners and PC manufacturers. Windows 8 running on ARM will ultimately be available with ARM-based hardware that you can purchase. ARM requires a deeper level of integrated engineering between hardware and software, as each ARM device is unique, and Windows allows this uniqueness to shine through. The new development tools enable you to start today to build Metro style applications that will seamlessly run on x86 (32 and 64 bit) or ARM architectures. Even if you use native C/C++ code, these tools will enable Metro style apps to target specific hardware if you choose. As new PCs become available for testing, PC manufacturers will develop seed programs for developers.
You probably want to try out the preview release—and you can. Starting at 8PM today, Seattle time, you can download all of the code that attendees at BUILD received. This includes 32 or 64 bit x86 builds, with or without development tools. The releases also include a suite of sample/SDK applications and the SDK (please note these are merely illustrations of potential apps, not apps that we intend to ship with Windows 8). The ISOs are linked to from http://dev.windows.com. You download with a Windows Live ID (which you might want to use to test out some of the new roaming features).
Ian Dixon is a Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional), founder of TheDigitalLifestyle.com tech site and producer of the weekly The Digital Lifestyle Show podcast. Ian has been writing and talking about Windows for over 10 years and has over 20 years in IT as an IT Manager. Ian has thousands of followers on Twitter and Facebook and over 4 million views on his YouTube channel.