Whenever a new operating system is introduced, a collective pause usually follows. Will I have to completely relearn the way I interact with my computer? Is it going to take away everything I love about my current operating system and replace it with something new?
Fortunately, for users making the move from Windows® 7 to Windows 8, the answer to both of those questions is “no.” But for businesses still using Windows XP—and there are plenty of them—the transition will take some getting used to.
What’s all the fuss about?
At its core, Windows 8 is about embracing the move to touch technology. The mouse and keyboard shortcuts are quickly being replaced by a touch screen and apps. Double-clicking, click and drag—they’re still around—but eventually swiping, pinching and tapping will be just as ubiquitous.
Sound daunting? It really isn’t. Yes, Windows 8 takes advantage of touchscreen capabilities and has a drastically different interface, but it doesn’t completely do away with the old way of doing things. Learning any new program or system is going to take time, and Windows 8 is no different, but rest assured that you’re not starting from scratch.
Out with the old, in with the new
Many businesses have only recently made the switch to Windows 7, and in reality, it will be another two to five years before they’ll look to refresh their PCs again. Not to mention that many businesses are perfectly happy using the well-received Windows 7.
Furthermore, Windows 7 will be available for purchase for at least two more years, and will be supported by Microsoft until January 2020. That makes convincing IT departments to make another operating systems switch a bit of a challenge.
More than just an upgrade
The saying goes: don’t fix what’s not broken. Right? Not necessarily. One very important thing to realize is that Windows 8 isn’t just an operating system upgrade; it’s a different—and better—way of doing business. As more and more people take their work on the road with them, they need an operating system that works just as well on their desktop PC as it does on their mobile device.
If there’s ever been a time to embrace (and encourage) the habits of the mobile worker, it’s now. That’s not to say that people can’t work on-the-go with Windows 7 or earlier operating systems; they just won’t have as many mobile-friendly tools as they would with Windows 8.
Making the move
Up until recently, touchscreen technology was limited to smartphones and other mobile devices. Now, you’ll find touchscreen monitors on business desktop PCs like the HP Compaq Elite 8300 All-in-One, which gives you the option of traditional mouse interaction or the power of touch with HP’s multi-touch displays that deliver quick and easy access to the information you need. While you’ll miss out on some of the functionality of Windows 8 if you just use the mouse, it’s nice to know that it works well whether you’re ready to make the move to touch or not.
Perhaps the biggest trend in mobile computing these days is the tablet PC; like the new HP ElitePad 900, which gives you the functionality of a notebook in a premium thin and light tablet. You can even expand its potential by choosing from a complete suite of thoughtfully designed accessories like a full keyboard, docking station and smart jacket that extends battery life for when you can’t plug in.
It’s not just about the products, though. Because upgrading to a new operating system can be a challenge, HP offers a number of tools and resources, like a Windows 8 support forum, that support you during your transition to Windows 8, so you can make the most out of every tap, swipe, pinch and zoom with Windows 8.