Friday, November 6, 2009

First Look : Windows 7

Thanks to a good extensive beta program, it feels like Windows 7 has been around for ages. The finished version goes on sale at midnight on 21.10.2009.

Pricing is a good news for most of the buyers; you can upgrade to Windows 7 Home Premium for just 120+ $, as long as you already own Windows XP or some variant of Vista. Most configurations will require you to back up your files and do a clean install, but you may be able to perform an ‘in-place’ upgrade without deleting any personal data.

You also get plenty of improvements over Vista. Windows 7 feels far quicker to boot, to load programs, even to minimize and maximize windows. I found Vista much improved since launch, but it still feels chuggy compared to Microsoft’s new OS.

There are a few neat features hovering over an open program’s icon on the taskbar shows a snapshot of that program’s contents to make it easy to pick the right one, and you can pin frequently-used programs to the taskbar as per OS X’s Dock. There’s also vastly improved speech recognition, which we found to be a credible rival for commercial programs such as Dragon Naturally Speaking.

Pre-order figures seems very good for Microsoft and according to Amazon, the new OS is its biggest-selling pre-order product of all time.