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Windows 10for Windows

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Windows 10 is widely regarded to be one of the best Windows versions for quite some time. With clean lines, familiar-yet-cool interface, and many technical upgrades, it’s already the most popular version of Windows and effectively makes up for the travesty that was Windows 8, seemingly having taken the most jarring features and rounded them out until they’ve become truly useful.

For many, the best version of Windows we’ve seen since XP

Microsoft’s back on form with an ever-improving version of Windows

Windows 10 has been with us since 2015 and in that time it has had a chance to help Microsoft claw its way back from the brink. After the unmitigated disaster that was Windows 8, Microsoft seems to have done exactly what you would hope a company would do after extensive feedback take a close look, decide what needs to be done, and fixed, improved, removed the most troublesome aspects. What has resulted is one of the best Windows operating systems in years.

From the moment you first fire up Windows 10, it looks and feels slick and fluid. If you enable it in the initial set-up process, you’ll be able to log on with your finger or biometric data, which means you can kiss old-school passwords goodbye. Windows Hello also works on tablets, phones, and exercise bands running Windows 10.

The Live Tiles are still present, unfortunately, but they can be disabled through a time consuming but doable manual process. Pleasingly, Microsoft seems to have accepted feedback that the initial version of the Live Tiles was not entirely friendly for traditional keyboard and mouse users, and in this version have made sure that although they’re still present, they’re much easier to use when you’re not in tablet mode.

If you’re a fan of voice control the changes that Windows 10 has brought to Cortana, the Microsoft voice assistant, will be right up your alley. Previously, Cortana was closely linked to search, but can now be used in the same way that you’d use a voice assistant anywhere else to open apps, find contacts, start emails, and more. Of course, if you’re not a fan of voice control, you can disable the service so that the lovely Cortana doesn’t make a peep.

The evolution of Windows 10’s browser, Edge, is also proving an interesting one. Describing anything as the follow on from Internet Explorer isn’t really fair, but Microsoft persisted and polished until Edge became... well, actually a pretty legitimate browser option. It came to iOS and Android in 2017, Mac in 2019 and now, as it stands as the default browser on Windows 10, it is actually worth a look, especially as it is fully integrated with Cortana.

From a visual perspective, Windows 10 is arguably pretty. It also offers loads of tweaks for power users, including the ability to change an individual display on multi-monitor set-ups. If you’re opting for the polar opposite, there’s a handy tablet mode toggle, so as soon as you detach your tablet (if that’s how you roll), tablet mode will activate automatically. It’s also pleasingly fast and fluid, no matter what mode you’re using, with the startup being especially rapid.

Windows 10 also has a good relationship with other apps and platforms you might be using in conjunction. Universal apps, programs that can be used across all Windows devices, feature and they are many and varied. The Microsoft app store makes it very easy to install apps, as long as you’re happy using the app store rather than downloading a stand-alone Windows app and, finally, if you're a gamer you’ll like the Xbox games pass, as it lets you play your Xbox games on any device running Windows (within reason) via the Xbox app. It’s a paid service, but if you’re already shelling out, you’ll appreciate the flexibility.

In all, Windows 10 is a breath of fresh air for the Windows user. Mircosoft may have stumbled in the past, but when it comes to operating systems, they seem to be firmly back on the right path.

Where can you run this program?

Windows 10 can be used on PCs, tablets, smartphones, embedded systems, Xbox One, Surface Hub and Mixed Reality.

Is there a better alternative?

Unless you’re a hardened Mac user, no! Windows 10 is the best Windows OS that’s been launched in quite some time.

Our take

Windows 10 was exactly what the world needed from Microsoft. It’s a great operating system that’s flexible, slick, and practical. Sure, haters gonna hate, and Mac fanboys gonna fanboy, but anyone with a reasonable approach to operating systems has to realize that as they go, Windows 10 is an excellent option. Given that most people don’t have a huge degree of choice when it comes to operating systems, we should be really pleased that within the range of what’s on offer, we’ve got Windows 10.

Should you download it?

Absolutely. If you're using a Windows PC, there's no conceivable reason you shouldn't.

Windows 10for Windows

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