A couple of weeks ago, Microsoft fed their loyal customers with the latest OS upgrade – Windows 10 – for free. The past few years were not been too kind to this giant. Their struggle to make prime spot with mobile devices and their grapple with Windows 8, all were futile attempts. Windows 8 didn’t pick accolades as the makers expected for it.
So Microsoft is expecting to be back on the buzz with Windows 10. But while Microsoft customers were going gaga over the new OS, the other giant Apple was busy readying their Mac OS X Yosemite.
Now that the rivals have brandished their weapons, let’s see what techies can expect from the two
Apple will be continuing their tradition of offering free upgrades, pushing out Yosemite free for its users. Likewise, Microsoft will be offering their latest OS for free, so long as you use Windows 8/7.
The User Interface
Microsoft seems to have stepped up their game after noticing the confused and often irked customer relation with Windows 8. They have succeeded in blending the keyboard and touch interfaces, with a revamped Start Menu that carries Live Tiles and Search, effectively piecing together a modernized UI that makes the OS more palatable to users.
The Live Tiles can carry notifications although they could do with a bit more work. This is better seen in the Yosemite’s Notification Area. Windows 10 will allegedly carry the Windows Phone Action Centre that would offer notifications and function similar to the Apple OS Notification hub.
Apple’s Yosemite desktop, on the other hand, is a tad more intuitive and has a visual overhaul that looks a bit flat, not quite projecting any jarring differences from the previous versions of OS X. There’s the Dock from which apps can be launched, while Mission Control allows you to view the open apps and documents, enabling you to switch between them.
The App Stores
Another entry into the Windows 10 OS would be Microsoft’s inclusion of the Windows Store. The latest upgrade unifies the Windows Store across all Windows devices, making it easier for users.
Apple had this system in place long back, from first when they introduced the concept of App Store for their OS devices. It’s heartening to see Microsoft get into the same boat as well, simplifying the user’s ability and needs.
Microsoft has also done a makeover to the age-old Internet Explorer. IE has been a joke of sorts, crammed with pace issues and bugs, but Windows 10 would seemingly be able to erase those woes with the new Microsoft Edge.
The browser design is new and seems to work flawlessly with their Bing search engine. Moreover features like a reading mode, ability to add text before sharing, via a keyboard, pen or finger (on tablets), are all welcome additions to the new design.
Yosemite, on the other hand, makes do with the beefy Safari browser, tuning up the speed and clearing up valuable space for browser tabs.
Another notable aspect is the inclusion of Cortana, as a rival to Siri. Clicking on a button beside the Start button would activate Microsoft’s digital assistant.
As of now, Cortana’s service is limited to only a few regions. Microsoft has stated that the service would be made available on a wider scale in the near future. Only time will tell whether Cortana can unseat Siri from her popular status, even though Apple is yet to bring Siri to the Mac.
It’s too early to pass a verdict on which OS is the best. While Yosemite seems to have a lot of tricks up its sleeve, Microsoft does have an air of freshness which the customers were desperately looking forward for.
Only time will tell and ultimately, it all depends upon the customer and his needs.
- Siddhy Shetty, firstname.lastname@example.org
iddhy is a gadget freak and leads the consultative selling platform at findyogi.com