The New Windows 8.1 Is Launched.

At a keynote speech at their annual conference to developers in San Francisco Microsoft have unveiled their Windows 8.1 operating system, an update on Windows 8.  There is a free test version already available for people to download but the full version of the operating system will not be available to Windows 8 users until later this year.

Steve Bullmer, CEO of Microsoft, confirmed that the start button had been reinstated into the Windows 8.1 system after it was removed from the Windows 8 when that was released last October.  He said that he wanted users to be able to start applications easily like they used to and this comment met cheers from the audience at the conference.  He confirmed that he would bring back the start button enabling you to boot straight to the desktop if you wanted to.  He confirmed that Microsoft had refined the blend of the desktop experience and also the modern app experience.

Windows 8 was criticised greatly for the controversial “start screen” which gave its users a series of tiles instead of the traditional desktop PC menu which had the start button there.  Many Microsoft users were confused by this and as a result there was a much slower than expected uptake on the software.  On top of this Microsoft also faced increasing competition from it’s rival Apple and the ever growing tablet market.

Ballmer confirmed that he would not be abandoning the start menu and that slowly they were beginning to attract app developers to Windows 8.  He confirmed that within this month they would pass the 100,000 app mark in the Windows store.  Facebook, NFL and Flipboard have also revealed new apps.

Microsoft are launching Windows 8.1 stating that the system now has a vastly improved search function which will allow users to search for apps, documents or items on the Internet from a single search bar, similar to Apple’s spotlight feature.  It also allows its users to see a list of their apps by simply swiping the screen.

Microsoft say they have made had over 800 updates to Windows 8 since they launched it.  They showed a new Acer 8.1inch tablet that runs Windows 8.1 which they believe will rival the iPad mini and an array of touchscreen PC’s running Windows 8.1.

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