After hearing this, you might have some questions so, I figured I would put together this post to try to answer them. Keep in mind that some of my answers are based on established facts but some are based on rumors and recent information leaks.
Let’s get started….
Windows 10 Announcement and your Surface: What will be different?
“Windows 10 will run across an incredibly broad set of devices – from the Internet of Things, to servers in enterprise datacenters worldwide.
Some of these devices have 4 inch screens – some have 80 inch screens – and some don’t have screens at all. Some of these devices you hold in your hand, others are ten feet away. Some of these devices you primarily use touch/pen, others mouse/keyboard, others controller/gesture – and some devices can switch between input types.
We’re not talking about one UI to rule them all – we’re talking about one product family, with a tailored experience for each device.
And across this breadth of devices, we are delivering one application platform for our developers. Whether you’re building a game or a line of business application, there will be one way to write a universal app that targets the entire family. There will be one store, one way for applications to be discovered, purchased and updated across all of these devices.
Windows 10 will deliver the right experience on the right device at the right time. It will be our most comprehensive platform ever.”
Translation: If you have a touch-screen on your device, you’ll automatically get Metro (or something like Metro), if you have no touchscreen, you’ll get a traditional Windows 7-style desktop with some new features.
That doesn’t mean that you can’t switch to desktop mode or vice-versa so, for a lot of Surface users, I would guess that the changes will be minor.
I’m sure there will be a few changes you’ll notice but the majority of the changes seem to be addressing the gripes people had about Windows 8 on non-touchscreen and corporate computers.
If you want a quick rundown of some of the new features, check out this leak video from the German site winfuture.de
This post from winfuture.de goes over most of the new features in some detail. It’s in German so be ready to translate.
Windows 10 Announcement and your Surface: Can I Get a Copy?
It looks like there will be a consumer preview available early next year with the final version coming out in late 2015 but, if you’re technically savvy, you can opt for the Windows Insider Program starting October 1st (tomorrow) and get a tech-preview version.
The downside is that it won’t be a finished version of Windows and will certainly have (potentially crippling) bugs. If you want a little more information on the Windows Insider Program, check out the video from Microsoft below…
Windows 10 Announcement and your Surface: Will it be Free?
For some, yes. For others, no….. maybe.
Here’s where I have to draw heavily on conjecture and rumor. There is a fairly famous group of Microsoft leakers from Russia called WZor and they are reporting that the update will be free to people who bought a full version of Windows but, not to people who got a version with their device (be warned, it’s in Russian).
All is not lost, the post seems to hint at a “very substantial discount” for folks who have Windows 8. To collaborate that, the website Myce is reporting that the upgrade would be $20 dollars, if in fact, you have to pay for an upgrade ($30 if you’re moving up from Windows 7).
Windows 10 Announcement and your Surface: Conclusion
So, that’s what I have for now. I’ll definitely be signing up for the Windows Insider Program and I’ll let you know what I find out about Windows 10. I’ll also let you know if it works reasonably well on a Surface Pro or if leads a restore.
Tim Rolston is a professional geek with over 23 years of experience working in Information Technology and dealing with everything from large-scale storage to remote systems management and automation for organizations such as Texas Instruments, Mobil Oil, and the University of Michigan (where he was an Academic IT Director).
He co-founded JTRTech along with Joanna to realize his long-time dream of working for himself.