The latest Windows 8.1 version comes with a host of new features. The popular feature of Windows that was the Start button has been reintroduced. Despite the presence of the button, however, there is still no Start menu. Instead, clicking the button will bring up the tiled Start Screen that made its debut with Windows 8.
The Start Screen has the ability to load variable tile sizes along with more backgrounds and colours. Also the users also have the ability to choose whether Windows boots up into the Start screen or the legacy mode desktop now.
Another feature added is the Bing Smart Search, which allows users to find content and apps on the device and also on the web.
Windows 8.1 is bundled with app both new and updates of previous apps. These include Skype, Mail, Xbox Video, Xbox Music and Bing Food & Drink.
Microsoft also updated the operating system for the new Internet Explorer 11, which the company claims brings enhanced performance increases and synchronised browsing history, favourites and settings across all devices running Windows 8.1. It also natively supports 3D printing, which essentially means that 3D printers are now plug-and-play.
Installing Windows 8.1
In case you performed a clean install of the Windows 8.1 Preview OS, you’ll need to go back to Windows 8 and then upgrade, unless you’re ready to shell out some cash for buying a new Windows 8.1 license.
Users running Windows 7 on their PCs will be able to upgrade to Windows 8.1 but they would only be able to retain their files and will need to reinstall desktop apps including Microsoft Office.
Upgrading form Windows XP and Windows Vista is not supported and you will need to do a clean install of the Windows 8.1 OS on systems running these legacy operating systems.
Important Notice from Microsoft: Microsoft is investigating a situation affecting a limited number of users updating their Windows RT devices to Windows RT 8.1. As a result, we have temporarily removed the Windows RT 8.1 update from the Windows Store. We are working to resolve the situation as quickly as possible and apologize for any inconvenience. We will provide updates as they become available.
Windows 8.1 has got some noticeable changes in the OS update. Performance feels generally faster and the new features will definitely prove worth upgrading.