This question comes up every time Microsoft releases a new version of Windows – Do I upgrade, or not?
It is not a simple question, and one that has real business ramifications. I'll make this one simple for most of you – if you are NOT using touch screen computers, and you are NOT interested in being on the latest and greatest thing for the sake of being on it, then NO, you don't need to jump on the bandwagon of upgrading your PC's right away. Windows 8 is a big change for the OS, and one that absolutely represents the future of computing. Trust me, you will all be using Windows 8 eventually, and will wonder how you got by without it. But perhaps not today for many of you.
It is likely you WILL experience it in other ways, such as Windows 8 phones (I am VERY excited by the OS as it relates to smart phones) and tablet computers. Windows 8 will take the tablet experience to a new level for business users in my opinion, offering the business user a tablet with complete Microsoft Office functionality. That is HUGE for me and will be for many of you. These mobile devices will let us cut our teeth on the OS and get used to it, and as we go through our next hardware replacement cycle, many of us will start considering touchscreen enabled desktops. There is huge potential for productivity increases in these devices with the proper operating system.
So, upgrade if you like. Upgrade if you have a touch screen currently. But don't feel that you are being left behind right now if you don't. You will… soon enough. I will say, however, if you are on XP, its time to move on. Windows 7 is a powerful and stable environment and holding on to the comforts of the soon to no longer be supported XP just does not make sense… but that is another topic all together.
I'll be using a Windows 8 tablet soon. I believe it will be a critical mobile productivity tool. I look forward to talking more about it next month!
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Stay tuned… I think I'll discuss the differences between RT and Standard Windows 8 for tablets in my next blog entry!
And keep practicing Happy Computing!