Free Windows 10 upgrade release date announced

Select Microsoft customers will be able to download Window 10 for free from 29th July, the software company has revealed.

Any user running Windows 7 or 8.1 on their device will be able to upgrade to Windows 10 at no cost from this date – provided they reside in one of the 190 countries covered in the terms of the promotion (yes, the United Kingdom is one of them!)

An icon for the upgrade has already started to appear in the taskbars of many Microsoft users, and clicking on it will allow them to reserve a copy now, so it’s ready to download on release day.

What’s new in Windows 10?

windows-10The new operating system promises many exciting new technical features as well as changes that have been implemented in response to user feedback on Windows 8. The much-loved Start Menu will be making a return, but the resizable tiles will still be a feature, displaying weather information, social media messages and new emails.

Continuum, a brand new feature for Windows, will allow mouse and keyboard users to see the system in classic desktop mode until they switch to a smartphone or tablet, when it transforms into touch screen mode.

Microsoft’s brand new browser, known as Edge, will also come bundled with Windows 10, alongside the personal assistant tool Cortana. The new browser, which replaces Internet Explorer, will allow users to annotate web pages and save them so they can be read later. Cortana, on the other hand, will act as a search tool and pass important messages on to users.

Another much anticipated innovation is the introduction of hologram and 3D modelling technology in the shape of Windows Holographic (more in future issues).

When is the right time to upgrade?

There’s no immediate rush, since customers are being given 12 months to decide whether or not they wish to take advantage of the free upgrade. After this time, you’ll have to pay. UK pricing is not currently available, but in the US, Windows 10 Home will cost $119, Professional will set users back $199 and the Pro Pack (for those who wish to upgrade from the Home edition to the Pro edition) will be $99.

As with all new operating system releases, most businesses are expected to wait several months before migrating to Windows 10, allowing time for early bugs and fixes to be reported and resolved by Microsoft.

Once users have upgraded, Microsoft will continue to update the software for the rest of the device’s lifetime. It is envisaged that Windows 10 will become the defacto Windows Operating System and will be compatible across all Microsoft devices, including tablets, laptops, desktops, phones, HoloLens and Xbox One.


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