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Print 114 comment(s) - last by mwarner1.. on Mar 8 at 8:31 AM

New version of Windows 8.1 would be free or "very low cost"

Things aren’t going exactly as planned for Microsoft with Windows 8/8.1. The operating system hasn’t kept up the sales pace with its predecessor, Windows 7, and has come under fire for user interface decisions that have infuriated users.
 
Microsoft, however, is countering by appealing to customers’ wallets. Microsoft is reportedly cutting Windows 8.1 license fees by 75 percent (on budget hardware priced $250 and below) in an effort to past cost savings on to the end-user.
 
Now, according to separate reports from The Verge and ZDNet, Microsoft may be taking things a step further.

 
Microsoft is reportedly developing a version of Windows 8.1 that will come bundled with Bing services strewn throughout the operating system. For now, this variant is simply known as “Windows 8.1 with Bing.”
 
According to The Verge, there are two possible avenues for Microsoft to offer this free version of Windows 8.1 to customers. The first would be as an upgrade to customers that are still using Windows 7. The second option would be to allow PC makers to offer Windows 8.1 with Bing on even lower-cost hardware to customers.
 
Either option (or both if Microsoft so chooses) would hopefully allow Microsoft to boost Windows 8.1’s market share.

Sources: The Verge, ZDNet



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You can't even give it away
By mike66 on 2/28/2014 11:04:32 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Windows 8.1 that will come bundled with Bing services strewn throughout

Who the hell uses Bing anyway (should be named "Bling")
and who but an idiot would upgrade their owned windows 7 (with MCE) for a limited version of windows 8.1.

My comments are written on a laptop using windows 8.1 which has boot to desktop turned on and I never use or care about the metro-sexual interface or Apps. Oh yes I hate your new explorer features as well. MS you have no ideas in windows 8 or .1 that are useful.




RE: You can't even give it away
By Omega215D on 2/28/14, Rating: 0
RE: You can't even give it away
By otherwise on 2/28/2014 11:26:39 AM , Rating: 2
There is a site that microsoft set up to do blind Bing vs. Google comparison of search results. The site is http://www.bingiton.com/.

I took the challenge a while ago with 10 search terms I use at work, all technical and/or industry specific. Google won 10/10.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 2/28/2014 11:32:23 AM , Rating: 4
Just did that "test", and I picked Google 4 out of 5 times.


RE: You can't even give it away
By AMDftw on 2/28/2014 11:53:20 AM , Rating: 4
5 out of 5 for me. Google wins.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Mitch101 on 2/28/2014 12:11:37 PM , Rating: 4
Draw for me 3 of 5 on the bing side. I can see the link I would choose within the top 3 of both.

You want to talk about disasters how about the new google maps interface. Way to ruin a good thing. Google if its not broken don't fix it. Its like a horrible copy of Here.com

I also view bing as an application more than just search. Finding cheap airline flights and whether the price is going up or down Bing wins hands down.

Google certainly stole the forever scroll on images from bing except google images messes up a lot when you click on an image it open in an area of the screen where you have to scroll way up to get to it thats if and when it chooses to stay open.

Who doenst like searching for videos on Bing. Hands down the best for finding videos.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 2/28/2014 12:13:48 PM , Rating: 2
Umm, "videos". For research, right? ;-)


RE: You can't even give it away
By Mitch101 on 2/28/2014 12:19:00 PM , Rating: 4
LOL Caught me one handed. ;)


RE: You can't even give it away
By Souka on 2/28/2014 12:39:19 PM , Rating: 2
Hmmm....

I did 5 searches using the bingiton website and noticed something odd with the results.

The Google side of the page looked very dull, plain, low contrast fonts and grainy. Whereas the Bing side was neat, bold, and sharp.

I took my same searches, went directly to google.com, and did the searches. The results were formatted and fonts looked better compared to bingit on.

Hmm... go figure... the bingiton makes the google search look like crap.

Google should put out its own version... call it googleiton.com :)


RE: You can't even give it away
By retrospooty on 2/28/2014 12:58:10 PM , Rating: 4
"Google should put out its own version... call it googleiton.com "

That just isn't needed. Bing has an inferior product, next to no market share, and no chance of ever being a threat unless something dramatically changes with Bing's engine. Why even acknowledge them.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Reclaimer77 on 3/1/2014 9:59:28 AM , Rating: 2
What a shock, Google wins for everyone here BUT Mitch. How convenient!

quote:
You want to talk about disasters how about the new google maps interface.


Way to stay on topic bud!

quote:
Google certainly stole the forever scroll on images from bing


Are you running against Apple'tards for most annoying and obnoxious fanbois ever? Accusing everyone of "stealing" from you is a staple of theirs. Microsoft hardly invented this concept, come on.

quote:
Who doenst like searching for videos on Bing. Hands down the best for finding videos.


Most every video of any consequence is going to be on YouTube anyway. I use YouTube to search for videos. Why would I fire up Bing to find videos?


By inighthawki on 3/1/2014 4:09:19 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Most every video of any consequence is going to be on YouTube anyway. I use YouTube to search for videos. Why would I fire up Bing to find videos?

Bing videos is famous for searching for porn ;)


RE: You can't even give it away
By Samus on 3/1/2014 2:11:36 AM , Rating: 2
I also just did it, 4/5 wins for Google.


RE: You can't even give it away
By SpartanJet on 2/28/2014 12:01:44 PM , Rating: 1
4 out of 5 Bing for me.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Wererat on 2/28/2014 4:02:08 PM , Rating: 2
For me, it's split; but you can make any side 'win' at will because the search result formatting is very distinctly different between Bing/Google. If you can't tell which result belongs to which engine, you're not trying. It's not a blind test.

My impressions:

For most purposes, including scientific/technical info, they both win. Almost invariably, the thing I wanted is at or near the top.
For product capability searches (e.g., "does phone X support AptX?") Bing usually deprioritizes some of the vendor chaff, so I prefer that.
If I'm actually looking for vendors that sell product X, Google triumphs.

Really, the slight variances in result prioritization are minute, and people pick the engine that they're used to (which, of course, is why Bing can't 'overtake' Google).


RE: You can't even give it away
By Mint on 3/1/2014 11:08:16 AM , Rating: 2
I like everything about Bing (esp homepage/videos/images) except their technical results, and unfortunately for MS, that means you, I, and many other have no choice but to stick with Google.

It'll take a while for MS to catch up with results for less mainstream topics.


By Shadowmaster625 on 3/3/2014 9:01:28 AM , Rating: 2
3 googles and 2 draws for me. Bing got 0. At least they are honest....


RE: You can't even give it away
By ranran on 2/28/2014 11:35:59 AM , Rating: 2
sorry, I'll have to disagree. Whenever I search in Bing, it's just......awful. When setting up new systems, I sometimes forget to change IE's default search to Google. I notice it right away when I search for something from the titlebar and all these sites not particularly relevant come up - "oops, forget to change default search" is my immediate thought....


RE: You can't even give it away
By retrospooty on 2/28/14, Rating: 0
RE: You can't even give it away
By kmmatney on 3/1/2014 10:57:57 AM , Rating: 2
Great post. Completely and 100% agree, and the same thing happens to me. Most of the time, in this situation I'm searching for a driver or a specific program, and the Bing results are utter crap. Switch to Google - suddenly I find everything I need.


RE: You can't even give it away
By JediJeb on 3/2/14, Rating: 0
RE: You can't even give it away
By CaedenV on 2/28/2014 5:07:46 PM , Rating: 2
I find that Bing does a much better job when I am looking for a local business, or something in current events. Google still seems to have a large edge when I am trying to more of a topical search... the more technical, the more Bing seems to get lost and confused.

Still, I have been using Bing as my default at work lately and I am pretty happy with it... especially now that it has earned me a few years of sky/onedrive.


RE: You can't even give it away
By kmmatney on 3/1/2014 10:40:25 AM , Rating: 2
I guess I'm so used to Google, that I know exactly what to type in, and can filter my searches quickly. With Bing, I always get a bunch of crap on my searches. I've tried to use Bing, as recently as a few days ago, but I can never find what I need. Most of my searches deal with science or programming - Google is much better.


RE: You can't even give it away
By wordsworm on 2/28/2014 11:41:01 AM , Rating: 1
Maybe they're not new ideas, but booting in 10 seconds is a great old one. Making it capable of running on low powered devices is great, too. XP started on 64mb and ballooned to 500+ for the minimum. I think that Windows 8 is the first OS MS has ever made that had less requirements than the one before. Great ideas. Maybe not new ones, but very welcome. Why so many people don't appreciate those things is beyond me. Bling? I can disable it. I can control my PC. Not a big deal.


RE: You can't even give it away
By retrospooty on 2/28/2014 11:43:14 AM , Rating: 3
"Why so many people don't appreciate those things is beyond me"

I don't think anyone hates those things... Its the UI. It's so gutwrenchingly awful that people hate the OS as a whole. Simple as that.


RE: You can't even give it away
By FITCamaro on 2/28/2014 12:40:19 PM , Rating: 2
It's a great UI for touch screens. It's only a bad UI with a keyboard and mouse.


RE: You can't even give it away
By retrospooty on 2/28/2014 3:34:06 PM , Rating: 1
"It's a great UI for touch screens. It's only a bad UI with a keyboard and mouse."

Yup... But MS's phone and tablet sales are anemic... The vast majority use kb/mouse, thus the masses of unhappy users.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Mint on 3/1/2014 11:13:37 AM , Rating: 2
This article is about offering Win 8.1 free, and will undoubtedly target tablets first and foremost.

For a convertible device, which is the only tablet I would ever buy aside from my phone, Win 8.1 is unmatched.


RE: You can't even give it away
By wordsworm on 3/1/2014 11:20:56 AM , Rating: 2
What is popular and what is best aren't always the same thing.

PC sales are also anemic right now, which is where MS is tied. But they are in this fight for the long haul. They make money on Android, if you haven't noticed. I believe Apple does, too.

The companies need to make a phone with no OS on it so that you can install your own. If that ever happens, it will be a game changer.


By retrospooty on 3/1/2014 2:44:01 PM , Rating: 2
OK, agreed, but I am not seeing what that has to do with the fact that Win8 puts a touchscreen UI for kb/mouse users. That is the issue.


By EricMartello on 3/1/2014 3:32:01 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
PC sales are also anemic right now, which is where MS is tied. But they are in this fight for the long haul. They make money on Android, if you haven't noticed. I believe Apple does, too.


PC sales are reverting back to where they were pre-tablet. The spike in PC sales was due to them being the only option...but a lot of people do not use the full capabilities of a desktop (or even a laptop) when all they want to do is post bathroom selfies on instagram and write dumb sh1t on twitter. A phone or tablet suits this purpose and can be had "for free" when purchased with a cell service contract. Even with PC sales declining they will not evaporate. The market is always going to be there and it's still quite large.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Argon18 on 2/28/14, Rating: 0
RE: You can't even give it away
By retrospooty on 2/28/2014 3:31:51 PM , Rating: 2
"The UI is your only interface to the OS. Outside of geek web sites like this, nobody cares what happens under the hood."

True, but even most geeks despise Win8.

"Microsoft is on a real turd streak as of late"

I agree with you on that... Too much pushing their own internal agenda, and not enough making products and features that people want. They do have a long history of screwing hte pooch, getting millions of complaints and fixing it 1 to 2 product cycles down the road. I am betting Win9 is released with swaggar like WIn 7 "How do you like me now?"


RE: You can't even give it away
By wordsworm on 3/1/2014 10:16:21 AM , Rating: 1
Oh, I don't really care. I've learned to deal with it like I learned to deal with previous versions. I can customize several schemes for organization at any of the levels that I want. In the past I had to wait and hover, wait and hover, wait and hover, or double click. With Windows 8, you can essentially customize the launch button, which makes some things easier.

Under the hood things like booting in 10 seconds and running on lower powered machines means nothing to a lot of the folks who put it down. Other things like its actually sound security is really the best out-of-the-box I've ever seen from them.

When the power went out for a second last week, I hit the on button and restored myself in 10 seconds. Turning it off and turning it on has never been like that with any previous version of Windows. And for me that is really huge. I don't know why people get hung up over it because of stupid things like the launch button. I've hated having it back and wish I hadn't taken the 'upgrade' to .1.

Speed and hardware management are not trivial things to put into an OS.

You guys are nuts to care so much about a ribbon.


RE: You can't even give it away
By hughlle on 2/28/2014 11:59:14 AM , Rating: 2
It's all great that it works on low powered devices, jsut a shame that a lot of these low powered devices are also old devices with hardware not supported under win 8. I installed win 8 on a couple of older pc's a short while back. There were no driversavailable, and one of the results was nothing higher than an 800x600 resolution. I reverted back to windows 7 where the machines were quite content.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Camikazi on 2/28/2014 1:33:08 PM , Rating: 2
Windows 7 drivers work rather well in Windows 8 you know.


RE: You can't even give it away
By hughlle on 2/28/2014 2:00:12 PM , Rating: 2
Hence why i installed it. And it would not play ball whatsoever. So i went back to 7 and used vista drivers which it was quite happy to let me use.


RE: You can't even give it away
By mwarner1 on 3/8/2014 8:31:59 AM , Rating: 2
Update your hardware, you slack-jawed goon :)


RE: You can't even give it away
By nafhan on 2/28/2014 12:05:25 PM , Rating: 2
For me: Windows 7 works fine, Windows 8 wouldn't solve any problems I have, and it would create some new (minor) issues. Even for free, that's a negative value proposition.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Argon18 on 2/28/14, Rating: -1
RE: You can't even give it away
By mike66 on 2/28/2014 11:11:34 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
booting in 10 seconds is a great old one.

I can do that with windows 7 as that is mostly because of UEFI, when I upgraded my PC bios to UEFI I got the 10 second boot.


RE: You can't even give it away
By chripuck on 2/28/2014 11:46:22 AM , Rating: 2
I develop software for a living and upgraded to Win 8.1 from Win 7 for the multi-monitor support alone. As you noted, it's dead simple to turn off the tablet functionality (which I wonder why Microsoft didn't do in the first place) so it was a no brainer.

I also use Bing, mainly for the Bing rewards, which I just used to get 100 GB of OneDrive for free until 2021. I also have this nifty little thing called a Bookmark, which lets me quickly switch to Google for searching if Bing doesn't give me what I want.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Wolfpup on 2/28/2014 12:04:21 PM , Rating: 5
Yeah, I find 8's multimonitor support better too. Yet another little improvement.

And I use Bing for the same reason LOL. I find it just fine usually, I find it totally competent. And while a decade ago I thought of Microsoft as the bad guy and Google the good guy, I sure don't anymore.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Argon18 on 2/28/14, Rating: -1
RE: You can't even give it away
By KiwiTT on 2/28/2014 12:49:26 PM , Rating: 2
I have no problems with Multi-monitor support in Windows 7. I just extend my desktop to two screens. It is enough for me.


RE: You can't even give it away
By inighthawki on 2/28/2014 1:13:48 PM , Rating: 3
I think he is referring to things like the extended taskbar support.


By Reclaimer77 on 3/1/2014 10:02:20 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
I also use Bing, mainly for the Bing rewards, which I just used to get 100 GB of OneDrive for free until 2021.


Translation: Microsoft offered me a bribe to use Bing, and I went for it.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Wolfpup on 2/28/2014 11:49:20 AM , Rating: 2
I like a lot of 8's changes. I do use some Metro stuff-basically stuff that works better as a sandboxed 'app' than a normal program the spews stuff all over the place. And explorer generally is better than in 7 IMO. Lots of nice improvements all over the place that make using 7 a little annoying when I have to on some of my older systems.


RE: You can't even give it away
By SpartanJet on 2/28/2014 11:55:43 AM , Rating: 4
I stopped using ANY google ad supported services and now use 100% Microsoft services and I couldn't be happier. I feel like im not supporting an Ad company and not having Ad+ shoved down my throat or having to constantly confirm googles insistence that I use my real name for things is a double bonus. So long Ad company, hello Microsoft.


RE: You can't even give it away
By nafhan on 2/28/2014 12:45:24 PM , Rating: 1
And now you're supporting a software + ad company instead of an ad + software company... If you're concerned about your privacy, you haven't done much of anything to improve the situation (the opinion on whether you've made things slightly worse or slightly better will vary based on who you ask).

As far as the "real name" controversy... was anything major, other than Youtube comments, really effected by that?


RE: You can't even give it away
By SpartanJet on 2/28/2014 1:23:21 PM , Rating: 3
Actually now I use a company where I BUY the software and I'm not assaulted by Ads, nor am I constantly assaulted by a company trying to push their Ad+ social services on me. Outlook is far superior to Admail, and with VERY minimal effort I have 150GB of storage in Onedrive making it far superior to Addrive. Yes Bing has ads that support the service but every search engine uses ads to support it.

As far as the real names, its not just AdTube, its Admail as well. If I wanted to use my real name for things I would without their help and I dont want to join Ad+ for the millionth time.


RE: You can't even give it away
By nafhan on 2/28/2014 2:39:09 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Yes Bing has ads that support the service but every search engine uses ads to support it.
So, privacy is not a concern for you. Your other post kind of sounded like it was, sorry for misunderstanding. Having a preference for Bing vs. Google is fine, even if you don't give very strong or clear reasons.

Side note: you seem to know what products you dislike. If you use their real names, your posts would be a lot easier to read.


RE: You can't even give it away
By SpartanJet on 2/28/2014 2:53:58 PM , Rating: 2
Key: gogle=Ad. Pretty simple.

Any of course I have security worries with that Ad company. You have to be living under a rock to not notice all the news about them violating privacy. Its what that company does for profits after all unlike Microsoft which sells its products. The other company has """"""free"""""" software which you pay for with hidden costs in privacy and intrusion of adds. At least Bing has rewards making the ads more tolerable.


RE: You can't even give it away
By nafhan on 2/28/2014 3:21:24 PM , Rating: 2
Guess what? MS=Ad, too. Anyway, I'm not saying you shouldn't have privacy concerns online; I'm saying if you don't have the exact same worries about MS, you're living in a dream world. You feel like MS doing the same things as Google is OK because:
a) they sell software
b) they give you "rewards" for looking at ads

Those aren't good reasons... If this is a real concern of yours, stop using free web services whether they're from MS, Google, Yahoo, or whoever. If it's not a concern, use the one that works best for you.


RE: You can't even give it away
By SpartanJet on 2/28/2014 4:38:29 PM , Rating: 3
Actually, I dont have the same concerns about both the companies as I stated early. I trust Microsoft more than the alternatives as I know they are a product maker not an Ad server. If you can't understand (or refuse to acknowledge) the difference between the two then there is no point to the conversation. You keep using what you like and I will stick with Microsoft.


RE: You can't even give it away
By nafhan on 2/28/2014 5:36:34 PM , Rating: 2
I acknowledge and understand the difference, I just don't have any reason to believe "we sell software!" is an adequate basis for trust.


RE: You can't even give it away
By inighthawki on 3/1/2014 4:11:10 PM , Rating: 2
Because it means their revenue stream is based off of sold products, not advertising. They have significantly less motivation to sell your privacy.


RE: You can't even give it away
By nafhan on 3/3/2014 10:08:25 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Because it means their revenue stream is based off of sold products, not advertising. They have significantly less motivation to sell your privacy.
I guess you didn't notice but the whole point of this article is MS potentially selling an ad supported low cost/free version of one of their primary products.

MS is a for profit company running an advertising network. Pretending they have more concern for consumer privacy because they also sell software is not an argument based on fact. That's wishful thinking.


RE: You can't even give it away
By inighthawki on 3/3/2014 11:19:54 AM , Rating: 2
Except integrating Bing doesn't mean that the OS will be ad supported. We don't even know how "integrated" bing will be. It could just take 5 minutes to go uninstall a toolbar and set a new default browser.

quote:
Pretending they have more concern for consumer privacy because they also sell software is not an argument based on fact

No it's not fact, but it's somewhat common sense. If your revenue stream is not dependent on advertisements, then you (as a company) have less reason to sell off user data to improve that revenue. This is the reason why not every company in the world sells off their user's data first chance they get.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Reclaimer77 on 3/3/2014 5:11:36 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah you don't get it. Microsoft want's BOTH!

Microsoft wants money from software sales, licensing, device sales, AND they want to be every bit the targeted ad seller that Google is.

No, they DON'T have less of a "reason" to sell your data. If there's a profit in doing it, they'll do it. They're doing it now!

Given their track record, how exactly does that help you sleep better at night?


By inighthawki on 3/3/2014 11:06:02 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Given their track record

What exactly is their track record?


RE: You can't even give it away
By nafhan on 3/4/2014 9:24:36 AM , Rating: 2
So, you'd prefer I call wishful thinking "common sense". That says as much about your argument as anything else I might say would.


RE: You can't even give it away
By Argon18 on 2/28/14, Rating: -1
RE: You can't even give it away
By kmmatney on 3/1/2014 10:52:54 AM , Rating: 2
I've been generally happy with my $15 upgrade from Windows 7 home premium to Windows 8.1 Pro (and removing or ignoring everything Metro), but it also caused a lot of problems. I have to remote connect to several customer computers, and the secure programs or doing this always have problems with Windows 8. A lot of VPN software also won't work. I now have to use a virtual machine to accomplish things that were easily done with Windows 7 or XP. So not recommended for work if you use secure VPNs or remote connections.


RE: You can't even give it away
By p05esto on 3/1/2014 7:41:32 PM , Rating: 1
BING is amazing, and I'm not kidding at all. Go do some image searches on Google and then try Bing... you will NEVER go back to Google. The ability to sort images by color, type, category, size, etc etc is great stuff. The results are just better too. Live videos, slideshows. The regular search is good too, absolutely as good or better than Google.

Your comment sounds exactly like people that speak but have not tried. Those blind Scroogled tests you can do prove it. They lists the results side by side and you have to pick the best one... it's almost always Bing. Go try it, open your mind. At least TRY.


RE: You can't even give it away
By talonvor on 3/7/2014 4:34:09 AM , Rating: 2
Who will do it? People that are still using XP (there are millions), but want to upgrade so that they can receive system updates.


Dear Microsoft
By inighthawki on 2/28/2014 11:29:23 AM , Rating: 5
The desktop is ugly. Give me aero glass and a Windows 7 style start menu in Windows 9 or don't bother, I'm not interested.




RE: Dear Microsoft
By FITCamaro on 2/28/2014 12:41:27 PM , Rating: 3
I kinda laugh when I see this because of how much everyone whined when Aero came out.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By atechfan on 2/28/2014 1:03:39 PM , Rating: 4
So true. When XP came out, Win 98 users hated it because it had poor DOS compatibility and broke a lot of old software. Win 2000 users hated it because they thought adding Direct X and other consumer and gamer oriented stuff was bloat. They people loved XP when Vista came out, and everyone hated Aero because it was a system hog and needless eye candy. Now that Aero is gone, it is missed. No matter what MS does, people will complain.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By inighthawki on 2/28/2014 1:11:11 PM , Rating: 2
Actually when Aero was introduced I loved it right from the start. Everyone I knew that used it also loved it right away. We all had decent computers though, so perhaps this was only an issue on really low end systems.

When I first saw the Windows 8 theme I figuratively puked. It is by far the ugliest OS UI I've seen in my life.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By Camikazi on 2/28/2014 1:29:21 PM , Rating: 2
You weren't looking online then cause the outcry over Aero was big also I like WIndows 8 look more than Windows 7, I just don't like all the eye-candy and bling personally.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By therealnickdanger on 2/28/2014 3:08:12 PM , Rating: 3
The difference is that you could fix the problems with Aero (turn it off) but you can't fix Windows 8. On second thought you can... install Windows 7.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By SpartanJet on 2/28/14, Rating: -1
RE: Dear Microsoft
By nafhan on 2/28/2014 2:46:36 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
there is a reason like half the top apps are things that make it less ugly
Yes, and that reason has a name: choice! Your opinion of less ugly may be different from mine, and my opinion may be different from MS's. On WP8/W8, you get to go with MS's opinion, which you sound happy with.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By SpartanJet on 2/28/2014 4:42:52 PM , Rating: 1
Oh, I guess I'm imagining using programs like ModerMix and Start8 which allow you to customize JUST like in Android and for the same prices. Its crazy people moan about having to spend 5 bucks on a start menu, yet have no problem plucking down much more than that for their cheesy phone OS.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By nafhan on 2/28/2014 5:33:09 PM , Rating: 2
I don't personally know of anyone who's plunked down $5 for a new launcher on Android, but I'd guess the complainers and the people willing to pay may be completely different groups.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By SilthDraeth on 2/28/2014 7:28:29 PM , Rating: 2
Classic Shell is free and gives you a classic start menu of your choice, and can make other changes as well.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By max_payne on 2/28/2014 8:49:27 PM , Rating: 1
Yes thank God, I am not alone. That thing looks like a chick's kindergarten fantasy. It's ugly and primitive, either on PC, phones and tablets, I don't care. At least you don't have to ever see it again with a classic start menu. Anyway for those missing aero, if you are willing to shell a few bucks, there is two solutions available ; Stardock Windowsblind or the more elegant Aero Glass for Windows 8(.1). I use the later on all my (forced) Windows 8 machines. That ease the pain from the original ugly desktop.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By inighthawki on 2/28/2014 10:05:12 PM , Rating: 2
I am currently using ClassicShell with the 8Plus theme with BigMuscle's aero glass mod and this visual style:
http://xxinightxx.deviantart.com/art/Aero-8-1-Wind...

All combined, it actually makes 8.1 look exactly like 7 (optional rounded corners too). I'm pretty pleased, although I would like MS to add glass back for two reasons:

1) Making it an official part of windows improved operability and MS will like do it with better perf/battery life

2) It is a step in the direction opposite of where they're going now which is the flat metro look on desktop. I don't want things to be metrofied, so adding aero glass is like a small token of "don't worry we won't f*ck it up further"


RE: Dear Microsoft
By inighthawki on 2/28/2014 10:08:53 PM , Rating: 2
Forgot to add: OldNewExplorer - Add back the glass frame, remove the ribbon, add the details pane, and importantly for me, retain proper driver groupings - Not sure who in their right mind thought that was a good idea.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By bug77 on 2/28/2014 2:22:28 PM , Rating: 2
Nobody hated windows skins because they were ugly. They were hated because they were perceived as resource hogs. Metro is the other way around: it looks like a skin from 1990 because it's limited to whatever mobile GPUs can do, even when running on $200+ desktop GPUs (you want me to dig that comparison to an AOL page again?). To add insult to injury, WinXP could mimic Win98/2000 LnF, Vista and 7 let you turn Aero off if you don't like it. But not Metro.
Call me spoiled, but coming from a Linux world, I have reflex reaction against things shoved down my throat.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By jardows on 2/28/2014 3:43:09 PM , Rating: 2
I suppose you use Slackware, and not Ubuntu?


RE: Dear Microsoft
By bug77 on 2/28/2014 4:51:46 PM , Rating: 2
Kubuntu and Fedora (KDE) atm.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By nafhan on 2/28/2014 5:09:39 PM , Rating: 2
Why Slackware? If you're referring to the Ubuntu Window manager controversy, swapping out the window manager is simple, and starting off with something other than Unity is even simpler (i.e. Kubuntu or Mint).

I personally prefer OpenSUSE.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By HoosierEngineer5 on 2/28/2014 1:22:10 PM , Rating: 2
Still whining. I can't seem to see where one window begins and one ends. I am probably holding it wrong.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By inighthawki on 2/28/2014 1:29:26 PM , Rating: 2
You're free to turn it off. Unlike in Win8, Microsoft gave people a CHOICE in Win7. Uncheck a box and appease both parties.

Also, you don't seriously think it's worse than Windows 8? 8 has a nearly unnoticeable window border which on inactive windows is barely visible at all and blends in with the gray color that many applications use as the background color. Every window in Win8 blends together like one giant block of gray.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By Argon18 on 2/28/14, Rating: -1
RE: Dear Microsoft
By inighthawki on 2/28/2014 3:24:39 PM , Rating: 5
Your counter-argument makes no sense. In fact it might be one of the stupidest things I've ever heard.

On top of the fact that you are arguing that a feature should be removed because some people will never turn it off, your IE example isn't accurate because glass can be disabled with a checkbox. The different themes are already installed. You don't need to go through some complex task to go find, download, and install software to change the default. You just click a checkbox and click "OK."


RE: Dear Microsoft
By HoosierEngineer5 on 3/1/2014 8:01:37 PM , Rating: 2
For Micorsoft Office applications, I haven't yet found the "OFF" button.

On the products that support it, this is Microsoft's best feature.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By HoosierEngineer5 on 3/1/2014 8:16:07 PM , Rating: 2
And I HATE when Windows 7 rearranges the taskbar.


RE: Dear Microsoft
By HoosierEngineer5 on 3/1/2014 8:04:31 PM , Rating: 2
I haven't yet exposed myself to Windows 8. Thanks for the warning!


RE: Dear Microsoft
By Reclaimer77 on 3/1/2014 10:06:16 AM , Rating: 2
People complained about Aero because they were on computers that shipped with 512mb of system RAM at the time. Now we have so much memory we don't know what to do with it.

Anyone who actually had a problem with the visual style, was in the extreme minority to be sure. "Everyone" was not whining about Aero.


I'll Bite
By jardows on 2/28/2014 11:02:25 AM , Rating: 4
I kinda like Windows 8. Haven't messed much with 8.1. Though whether I would keep it or not depends on how much Bing is integrated with the system - I'm not much of one for the Internet being a primary part of my operating system. Same reason I'm staying away from Chromebooks.




RE: I'll Bite
By Chadder007 on 2/28/2014 11:21:30 AM , Rating: 2
Considering how much the "cloud" is getting hacked on now Im staying away too.
Windows 8.1 isn't too bad for touchscreen devices, I just don't like the mouse/keyboard interaction still and I miss the taskbar showing at all times to click and flip to the other programs I have open.


RE: I'll Bite
By Fritzr on 2/28/2014 2:01:10 PM , Rating: 3
Right click on the taskbar
Click Lock taskbar and a checkmark appears
The taskbar stops hiding when there is no alert.

I forget when this option was added, but it used to be called auto-hide and you turned it off to lock the taskbar :)


RE: I'll Bite
By CaedenV on 2/28/2014 5:02:59 PM , Rating: 2
Been a feature since win98 I believe


Consumer Version
By Flunk on 2/28/2014 11:21:11 AM , Rating: 4
I still think the Home version of Windows should be $50 at retailers and $40 digital delivery. With current PC prices and the competitions prices (Linux/Android/ChromeOS are all free) they need to be more competitive.

Also they need to fix their stupid activation rules. I recently replaced the motherboard in my computer and it was a living hell to get it re-activated. They made me feel like a criminal for paying for their software.




RE: Consumer Version
By Just Tom on 2/28/2014 2:10:21 PM , Rating: 3
I've never had a problem re-activating a system. Call the number and they give me a code. There is no way around not demanding re-activation when a motherboard is swapped, since that is effectively a new computer.

Did they change the process or did you run across a bad phone rep?


RE: Consumer Version
By marvdmartian on 2/28/2014 2:22:13 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed. All I do is wait until it's after working hours stateside, so I get "Bob" in India, who asks me if I'm absolutely certain I didn't load the OS on more than one computer (not that he cares!). I tell him NO, and he gives me the new activation code. Usually takes 2-3 minutes.


RE: Consumer Version
By Newspapercrane on 2/28/2014 4:55:56 PM , Rating: 2
I've done it with windows 8 a number of times. When I do it it's completely automated. The robot asks me how many computers this version of windows is installed on... and just say 1.


Still not interested
By drlumen on 2/28/2014 10:52:41 AM , Rating: 5
lol




RE: Still not interested
By Chadder007 on 2/28/2014 10:55:13 AM , Rating: 2
Oh teh lulz


RE: Still not interested
By retrospooty on 2/28/2014 10:56:28 AM , Rating: 1
+1

Not even if they gave me the $ to use it.


RE: Still not interested
By StormyKnight on 3/1/2014 3:28:36 AM , Rating: 2
No way, no how.


Maybe I'm the only one..
By StraightCashHomey on 2/28/2014 11:38:46 AM , Rating: 3
I love Windows 8.1. You can throw it on any computer and it automatically picks up the drivers and works. Going back and using Windows 7 now feels like going from 7 back to XP. 7 just feels like an "old" OS when I use it now.

Even on my desktop computer, I can fly around in 8.1. I guess there was a learning curve, but just like Office 2010, once you're used to it, you're more efficient. On my Surface and touch laptops, the productivity comparison isn't even close. 8.1 wins hands down.




RE: Maybe I'm the only one..
By Dr K on 2/28/2014 2:03:21 PM , Rating: 3
"...just like Office 2010, once you're used to it, you're more efficient."

If this is an apt comparison, I have no interest in Win 8.1. I use office a lot and there's no doubt that after Office 2010 was forced on me by my IT department, my familiarity has never recovered. There are still features that I find very useful and equally difficult to get to in Office 2010. My 2 cents...


RE: Maybe I'm the only one..
By Argon18 on 2/28/14, Rating: -1
RE: Maybe I'm the only one..
By inighthawki on 2/28/2014 3:26:45 PM , Rating: 3
Is that a joke?


RE: Maybe I'm the only one..
By NicodemusMM on 2/28/2014 7:13:52 PM , Rating: 2
Please tell me you're kidding or outright lying, because no one can be that stupid.


By ET on 3/1/2014 9:34:21 AM , Rating: 2
Being able to build a new PC with free Windows would be a major change, and I"m sure it would cause a lot of people to adopt Windows 8.1. On the other hand if this is limited to OEM's, like Office Starter was, then it would be interesting because it would allow lower pricing, but it won't be as revolutionary.




Rebrand it
By wordsworm on 3/1/2014 11:25:13 AM , Rating: 2
They shouldn't call it Windows at all. They should rename it 'Freebing'.

I will be installing it on old computers that can't run XP bloat any more to see if other people's anecdotes can be my own. If someone has a problem with an XP machine, like it's too slow, I can say to them, hey, load Freebing on it and it'll do everything you want, faster and you won't have to wait for the computer to boot in 5 minutes, either.' They'll say 'How much' and I can then reply, 'just give me some sugar baby.'




I Still Won't Get It
By Tuor on 3/3/2014 3:56:59 AM , Rating: 2
I don't care if MS gives the POS away for free, I still won't put that on my computer. I'm happy with Win 7 Pro, and I've used Win 8 enough at work to have no desire to see it on my home system -- none at all.

Nice try, MS, but you can keep your POS.




Not sure how I feel about this
By CaedenV on 2/28/2014 5:33:46 PM , Rating: 1
I don't really want Windows to be free. Granted, I don't want to pay $100-140 either... but surely there is a middle ground to be had here.

I feel like the $40 I paid for win8 was just about right (even $50 would have been fine I think). The cost barrier give motivation for MS to put a product out that is worth paying for, and then MS would have an ongoing motivation to make sure the app store has a good enough experience and offerings to make people want the apps that can be had there.
Obviously, they are not there yet... and I still don't understand why we can't have windowed apps on the desktop, or desktop apps in the MS store... both feel like no-brainer things to offer at this point. But with the way win8 has matured over the last 2 years, it is surely getting there (as quickly as a large organization can anyways).

But free... I have a little issue with that, because it is not free. The temptation would be to make it free... but if you want specific features for the OS then you buy them piecemeal in the store (as DVD playback support already is, granted for other reasons). Obviously MS would be watching your every move with Bing services... which personally I would not mind opting in for, but I don't like the idea of it being a standard feature.

Rather than free, let's just put a sane price on the OS. Something in the $25-50 range for the full version of the OS and no strings attached. Then have an opt-in for Bing services with the carrot of Bing Rewards program. And have a sensible app store that is in itself usable, and has useful things on it that are worth buying. MS has tried to be apple, and is bad at it. Now they are going to try and be Google... and they are going to be bad at it. MS simply needs to be MS and they will do just fine.




"If a man really wants to make a million dollars, the best way would be to start his own religion." -- Scientology founder L. Ron. Hubbard














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