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Windows 8 Announcements: The Official and the Unofficial ;) 

By  Prayaas

Hello guys,

Windows 8 has moved forward by so many steps since the Consumer Preview. We’ve got so many more things.. Some official, and some unofficial (If you know what I mean ;)). So, let’s get straight to the official news first!

Microsoft has officially announced the SKUs or editions that Windows 8 will come in. It’ll be available for x86, x64 and ofcource ARM PCs. For PCs with x86 or x64 processors, Microsoft’s gonna’ ship 2 editions of Windows 8, namely, ‘Windows 8’ and ‘Windows 8 Pro’. Yes, the first one’s just Windows 8 and the second is Windows 8 ‘Pro’. And that’s ‘ultimate’. :D (Pun intended) However, China, and a number of other small emerging markets, will receive a single language version of Windows 8, and that’s the ‘Windows 8 for China’ thing we showed in this post. Windows 8 will contain most of the features that were previously available only for Ultimate edition. Some others are offered by Windows 8 Pro. Windows 8 Pro will support a new ‘Media Pack’ which will be cheaply available and will add certain codecs, along with Windows Media Center. It is the same ‘Windows 8 Pro Pack’ that we talked about and showed here.

For ARM processor PCs, a new flavour will be available, which is called Windows RT. Note that Windows 8 is not Windows RT! It’s based on Windows 8, but is a completely different product. It’s lightweight and is available only pre-installed by OEMs, like Nokia. It’s likely to be merged with Windows Embedded Standard 8, but this is still not confirmed. Here is a comparison of the features available in the different editions (but it doesn’t mean that it contains only these features, many more are there). A cross means, Yes, that id there.

Feature nameWindows 8Windows 8 ProWindows RT
Upgrades from Windows 7 Starter, Home Basic, Home Premium

x

x

Upgrades from Windows 7 Professional, Ultimatex
Start screen, Semantic Zoom, Live Tilesxxx
Windows Storexxx
Apps (Mail, Calendar, People, Messaging, Photos, SkyDrive, Reader, Music, Video)xxx
Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote)x
Internet Explorer 10xxx
Device encryptionx
Connected standbyxxx
Microsoft accountxxx
Desktopxxx
Installation of x86/64 and desktop softwarexx
Updated Windows Explorerxxx
Windows Defenderxxx
SmartScreenxxx
Windows Updatexxx
Enhanced Task Managerxxx
Switch languages on the fly (Language Packs)xxx
Better multiple monitor supportxxx
Storage Spacesxx
Windows Media Playerxx
Exchange ActiveSyncxxx
File historyxxx
ISO / VHD mountxxx
Mobile broadband featuresxxx
Picture passwordxxx
Play Toxxx
Remote Desktop (client)xxx
Reset and refresh your PCxxx
Snapxxx
Touch and Thumb keyboardxxx
Trusted bootxxx
VPN clientxxx
BitLocker and BitLocker To Gox
Boot from VHDx
Client Hyper-Vx
Domain Joinx
Encrypting File Systemx
Group Policyx
Remote Desktop (host)x

An Enterprise edition specifically for businesses, will also come.

I hope it wasn’t too boring. Well, for me, official news is always boring, ‘coz I’ve heard it before! And I like to share it. Here’s some good stuff.

Windows 8 will be released on November 6, 2012! A friend, Nawzil, is being thanked for this valuable info. :) Co-incidentally, Halo 4 is also being released on that day! *hehe*

Another piece of official news is that Microsoft has decided to rename Windows Server 8 as Windows Server 2012.

As for your next Windows 8 public preview, that is the RC (Release Candidate), you’ll have the Windows 8 Release Preview. :D Isn’t that cool? Now, we’ve got a couple of screenshots to explain!

We’ll start with the latest noticeable change, that is in ribbon, and the buttons. Here are the buttons from Windows 8 Release Preview Build 832x:

Then, we move on to another really good part of the new UI, and that is uniformity of flat controls. See this comparison (Sorry for Chinese, our source is Chinese :P):

Like it? Love it? Share with us.. :)

Then we have the desktop from the Single Language edition we talked about above:

The Start Screen is like this by default:

The All Apps page contains ‘Windows Anytime Upgrade’ as you can see here:

Also, according to our sources, the latest build from the WinMAIN lab is 8324. That’s all for today. Share your views below. :)
Have a nice day!

–Prayaas.

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