8.1 reasons to love Windows 8.1

8.1 reasons to love Windows 8.1

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Windows 8.1

As you probably know by now, Windows 8.1 has arrived.

If you’re running Windows 8 on your PC,  you can update to Windows 8.1 for free. Just open the Windows Store and download the update like you would any other app. If you’re running Windows 7, you can still upgrade to Windows 8.1, but if you have an older version of Windows, you should take look at the selection of new tablets and PCs. There are some great new devices out there.

At any rate, there are a lot of reasons to love Windows 8.1. We've made a list of the top 8.1.

1. Bing Smart Search
It's rare that something truly new comes to search. And this is new. Instead of one way to search for files on your PC, another to find websites, and a third to find apps or settings, Bing Smart Search lets you search once for whatever you're looking for, wherever it is. Results come up in a big, super-clean display. And you can actually do stuff from the results. If your mom's info comes up, you can start a Skype call with her with just a click or a tap. If your favorite song comes up, you can play it right from the search result—no need to open up your favorite music app first.

2. More multi-tasking
Depending on your screen size, you can now see up to four apps on your screen at once. You can change their size relative to each other, and use one app to launch another one. It's hard to describe the effect of these enhancements. To understand it, you have to experience how easy it is to flow from one task to another. Chat while gaming, shop while watching, or work while listening. It's not about separate apps anymore. It all becomes a single, seamless experience.

3. A better app store
There are now hundreds more apps in the Windows Store. And with Windows 8.1, the Store has been redesigned to make exploring and discovering new apps easier, with community favorites and personalized recommendations. Windows 8.1 also comes with a crop of new built-in apps like Reading List and Health & Fitness.

4. More choices
Windows 8.1 gives you more tile sizes for apps on your Start screen, and there are also more color options and animated backgrounds. And now you can also use the same background for both your desktop and Start.

5. Better touchscreen typing
This might not be the flashiest feature, but it’s one of my favorites. Not to mention one of the many little details that makes Windows 8.1 feel so solid and responsive. When you type on the touchscreen keyboard, it learns as you type, making suggestions based on what you've written before. If you use more than one language, you'll find that you can enter text more easily with the new keyboard layouts. And those Emoji that everyone loves so much? They're now in color. :-)

6. Automated online storage
The tech world sometimes has peculiar ways of describing things. This feature has been called "deep SkyDrive integration." All that means is that you don't have to go through a separate process to save your docs to SkyDrive (AKA your free online storage). You can save stuff to SkyDrive automatically, as easily as you’ve always saved stuff to your PC. Then you can get to the latest versions anywhere—even when you’re on the road or another device. And since it’s all online and backed up for you, it’s always safe, even if something happens to your PC.

7. Browsing by touch
Internet Explorer 11 is different from other browsers in that it's designed specifically for touch screens. You'll notice it has larger tabs, simpler controls, and responds fluidly to your gestures. Internet Explorer 11 also has faster load times and lets you browse full screen or put sites side-by-side. 

8. A lock screen you’ll love
Your lock screen is now like a digital picture frame, as you can set it to show a slide show of your favorite photos. The Windows 8.1 lock screen also behaves more like your phone’s lock screen. You can immediately answer Skype calls and take photos without having to unlock your PC.

8.1 The return of an old friend
It's true. The Start button is back. When you're on the desktop, you can use it to get back to Start anytime.

That's only for starters. Learn more about Windows 8.1.

19 Comments
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  • kevinmd
    0 Posts

    Its promising. Thank you Microsoft for referring me here. Let me come up with updated Windows 8.1

  • well I'm not getting any problems with this OS release! it's faster than 8.1 and very good :)

  • I am trying to use Windows for my blog http://fixarfarsan.se and I like it but after 8.1 upgrade the image app has started to grey out my pictures while editing them?

    One more thing i miss is to be able to straighten pictures and not just rotate them 90 degrees.

  • TroySch
    5 Posts

    I haven't been able to find Sype.. but Skype on the other hand hasn't been a problem. I've updated half dozen devices of mine mostly without issue.

  • maxal
    0 Posts

    I downloaded Windows 8.1 and installed it on my Asus Vivobook S200e everything whent good untill I wanted to use Sype.When I clicked the tile to open it, it hung then closed, as I use Skype alot I had to go back to Windows 8

    Has anyone else had a problem with Sype?

  • I think theres is a big Bug in Win 8.1 with Apps/Memory: All Apps i closed resides in Memory and must closed manually with Task-Manager; otherwise some Apps crashes and/or acting slowly over time.

    i.e. if i open IE it opens the last Website and not a blank Site (Start-Site)....

  • I have updated to windows 8.1 and it works perfectly but my battery live has been reduced to half!!

  • I am using windows 8 now & Still i didn't get the 8.1 update ........... i live in Bangladesh. So how can i get the update ?

  • I think there is place for both OS's in the world.

    I love Windows 7 and it is a superior culmination of everything MS has created. Solid, tweekable, easy to make yours and what you want it to be you can dignity the inner workings how ever you want. Perfect for the novice as well as the power user like me.  Windows 8 is completely the opposite it's great on touch screen PC or tablet, very suitable for you web social user.  Both are good things. But both are totally separate things.  2 different flavones would have been the best way to go. Like a version for those who want a desktop all the time and those who want the tiled interface all the time. I will hold on to Windows 7 till they pry it from my cold dead hands.  MS give use a real choice one or the other or both on the same OS with a boot the desktop with the start menu we are used to or the new interface so we can just click and go to what we use and not feel like we are on a computer.

    I think that's the real thing here.  Do I want it to look and act like a computer or do I want it to look and act like a mobile device.

  • d20dad
    0 Posts

    Pst...got news for you start screen haters. IT'S BASICALLY A CUSTOMIZABLE START MENU. Don't be stupid. Just because it looks different does NOT mean it has to function any differently.

  • ZeeCee
    0 Posts

    thysb: You didn't read the fine print. Windows 8.1 Preview documentation *explicitly stated* that there would not be a simple upgrade path from the Preview to the RTM builds (like there is for upgrades from Win8 RTM).

    It's not a #FAIL, it's a #Preview... as in "not the finished product". Please lighten up.

  • One reason not to upgrade is if you have an Nvidia graphics card that requires legacy boot. Since 8.1 wants you to be on a secure boot. If you don't enable secure boot. Windows 8.1 puts a watermark on the bottom corner of your desktop to remind you everyday that you need change it. Well guess what MS. My card won't work with boot secure enabled. So how do I get rid of this annoying watermark?

  • thysb
    0 Posts

    One HUGE reason not to upgrade to 8.1 is because your data will be lost! I upgraded from Preview to RTM yesterday and have lost a LOT of information, most importantly all my SQL Server databases! I didn't do any backups as I thought this was an update, not a clean install. I only got a message saying I might have to reinstall my applications, which I also got when installing 8.1 Preview and I didn't have to reinstall anything, so I thought this would be the same. Is Microsoft going to help me find my lost data??? #FAIL

  • Really, people are still complaining about the Start screen. Why not try this, instead of wasting your energy on complaining about the Start screen, why not embrace the new and different. The Start screen is way much better than the old boring Start button menu.

    Dont fight the Start screen, work with it.

  • I have some feedback in regards to Windows 8.1. First, Microsoft needs to bring back a classic start menu and stop trying to force everyone to use a touch interface. Second, the OS is bloated and if Microsoft wants to place it into a small form factor device then they need to start reducing the amount of space that the OS uses. Lastly, please get more applications on the Windows Store.

  • Thanks Brandon, I appreciate the updates in 8.1 you guys have done a great job making logical updates, but it seems to be two steps back with SkyDrive this time around.

    I want it to work.

    I want to make it my solution for storing files, but I can't have duplicate files being created for no reason (creating extra work for me cleaning them up) and I can't have it saying it is downloading files, chewing up bandwith and CPU cycles when those files are already on the system.

    SkyDrive has the potential to be a real difference maker but files are the most important thing to most users and it appears that the some details implementing the solution in 8.1 were overlooked.

  • Start button on windows 8.1 is joke.They are just schortcut to usless metro start,no classic start menu.I dont understand why microsoft dont make choice for users?

  • - thanks for the comment and for the feedback. The SkyDrive Team is monitoring the support community and feedback.

  • The SkyDrive integration in Windows 8.1 is deeply broken.

    Just search follow this link to the support community.

    There are at least 10 pages of issues dating back to the preview version of 8.1.

    SkyDrive is a great service in Windows 7 & 8, but has multiple unresolved issues in 8.1.

    answers.microsoft.com/.../Search