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Windows is dead, oh wait, no it's not. It's reborn !

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There's been a lot of comments about what was said at Microsoft Ignite in relation to Windows 10 being the last version of Windows. Why ? perhaps because Microsoft wants to move away from the cycle of pushing out new versions of Windows every 3 or so years, and instead focus on releasing new capabilities that match the development that is underway every day via talented developers around the world. Those developers are what makes Microsoft new vision a reality.


I'll never forget Steve Ballmers Developers, Developers, Developers speech, it was just awesome, you cannot deny the energy and focus. That speech underscored the importance of developers and today developers are driving the future at the new Microsoft under Satya. Microsoft's new mantra is Mobile First, Cloud First and how that plays out with Windows 10 is becoming clear.


All that development in the cloud can either be put through relentless testing and released as it was previously with a finished legacy product like Windows 7, or Windows 8... or pushed further to the edge of what most consider acceptable. That state, the state of new stuff working/not working is where we are now, it's called Windows 10 Insider Preview.


This is not necessarily a bad thing, rather it's a great thing. For once we are seeing Windows develop 'as it's happening'. We are part of the process, we are making it happen. We are contributing like never before via Windows 10 bug submissions and direct contacts with Microsoft, in essence we are driving Windows 10 development without being a developer. Steve must be shaking his head.




BBC news published an article here explaining their view on the change and it's a nice overview but what BBC and many other sites don't seem to comment about why this new way of doing things is actually a good thing and how Microsoft will probably profit more from this change. Profit from the cloud ? who would have thought...


How can a huge company like Microsoft make more money from cash cow products like Windows ? well the answer might be easy, sell it as a service and that looks like the direction Windows is going. Except, instead of making money by offering new features, they might be making money by letting you use the version you want to use. If that sounds daft, well think about all the companies that stay on older versions of Windows simply because they cannot upgrade to the current version due to lack of support internally for Internet Explorer versions for their SharePoint sites. Yes, it happens.


Things are changing faster now than ever. Today, you can install Windows 7, Windows 8.1 in versions that are easily implemented, once done, you are running Windows and you can update it to protect from viruses and malware. However, that initial install of Windows leaves you running the same version of Windows more or less unless of course you upgrade to Windows 10 for free. Upgrade for free, that sounds great, why don't we all do that.


Why is Windows 10 so important, and why are so many sites saying that Windows 10 is the last ever version of Windows. Well apart from all the new features, this version of Windows brings you to where Microsoft want's you to be, to be running a version of Windows that actually doesn't matter. The version of Windows that will in effect become the Google Chrome of operating systems. Anyone who uses Chrome knows that the version number of that web browser doesn't matter, it updates, so what.


Windows 10 will update in the same way, sometimes with new functionality or sometimes with security related updates when it deems necessary depending on whether you choose the Fast or Slow ring for Windows Updates, and....that updating could move you to a newer version of Windows and you won't even realize it. To most Windows users the idea of 'just updating' to a new version of Windows seems odd, strange, untested, and..... risky. But maybe this is exactly what we need right now, a new way of getting new features and functionality delivered as it's developed, straight from the cloud to your desktop.


This new thinking from Microsoft shows that they are thinking ahead, not only in relation to Windows, but also to how they deliver services for their most profitable products. Office 365 updates all the time and if you use it, you barely notice. New features, bugs fixed, win-win. Windows users will see a similar model, abilities will be added, and you can opt in to get the changes,or opt out to remain on a stable version, and pay for it.


Whatever happens, Windows 10 might be the last version of Windows, or it might not, either way i'm looking forward to the next version of Windows after Windows 10. That might be Windows 11 and if it is that version number will be driven by the desire to upgrade to the latest and greatest regardless of whether Windows 10 already has all those new features added. Microsoft might want to kill the concept of changing Windows versions after Windows 10 but I believe it will be a hard sell. Time will tell.

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