Microsoft is all set to launch its new Windows 10 operating system meant for mobile phones on Jan. 21, 2015 at an event in Redmond where its headquarters is located.
The event is not open as is the case with Microsoft always and the invitations were sent to few press entities. The unveiling of the event was confirmed but it is not known whether CEO Satya Nadella would do it or leave it for the actual developing team to launch it.
The consumer preview of Windows 10 from the event in Redmond on January 21 will be livestreamed. The new OS Windows 10 will be available in two versions, one for regular PCs and the other for smartphones and tablets, according to sources.
The new OS is reportedly touch-based and user-friendly. Another feature is that it is restoring the START button in PC versions. The new OS will be available for download on all Windows 8.
Coming to the mobile version, it is still not named and leaked either by the company while guesswork is that iw will be called Windows Mobile 10. Microsoft Lumia to be launched this year may sport the new OS.
Here are some features leaked so far and compiled by Wikipedia:
User interface and desktop
Windows 10’s user interface changes its behavior depending on the type of device and available inputs, and provides transitions between interface modes on convertible laptops and tablets with docking keyboards. When a keyboard is attached, users are asked if they want to switch to a user interface mode that is optimized for mouse and keyboard, or stay within the touch-optimized mode.
For non-touch devices, a new iteration of the Start menu is used as part of the desktop interface, with an application list and search box on the left side, and live tiles on the right. This menu features a responsive design that allows the user to set a custom menu size, by dragging the top of the menu up or down with the mouse.
The Start screen is still used in touch environments: current Windows 10 builds use the same Start screen layout as Windows 8.1, but Microsoft has demonstrated a newer Start screen design that includes a column at its left to display shortcuts and the “All apps” button, similarly to the Start menu.
A new virtual desktop system known as Task View was added. Like OS X’s Mission Control function, clicking the Task View button on the taskbar (or alternately swiping from the left side of the screen) displays all open windows and allows users to switch between them, or switch between multiple workspaces. Windows Store apps, which previously could only be used full-screen, can now be used in desktop windows. An “App Commands” menu on the app’s titlebar is used to activate functions previously seen on the charms bar, or to switch between windowed and full-screen modes. Program windows can now be snapped to quadrants of the screen by dragging them to the corner. When a window is snapped to one side of the screen, the user is prompted to choose a second window to fill the unused side of the screen.
Windows 10 is expected to incorporate Microsoft’s intelligent personal assistant Cortana, as introduced on Windows Phone, Reports also indicated that Microsoft was developing a new web browser for Windows 10 codenamed “Spartan”, which will serve as a replacement for Internet Explorer (Internet Explorer would still be bundled with the operating system for backwards compatibility reasons).
Multimedia and gaming
Windows 10 will ship with DirectX 12.Unveiled March 2014 at GDC, the new version aims to provide “console-level efficiency” with “closer to the metal” access to hardware resources, and reduced CPU and graphics driver overhead.
Windows 10 adds platform-level support for the FLAC, HEVC, and Matroska media formats, allowing them to be opened in Windows Media Player and other applications natively.
Console windows such as Command Prompt now provide a new set of “experimental options” which modernize their functionality, including word wrapping of console output and the ability to use standard Control key keyboard shortcuts in consoles, such as pasting text using Ctrl+V.
Windows 10 will be serviced in a significantly different manner to previous releases of Windows. While Microsoft began to distribute a larger number of updates for Windows 8 that added features (such as interface improvements) beyond security patches and bug fixes, Windows 10 will adopt a tiered rapid-release approach. By default, users receive critical updates, security patches and non-critical updates to the operating system and its functionality as they are released, but can optionally opt out of or delay the installation of non-critical updates. Stella Chernyak explained that “we have businesses [that] may have mission-critical environments where we respect the fact they want to test and stabilize the environment for a long time.”