Windows 10: First Impressions [☝]

Sunday, August 09, 2015

I just upgraded my laptop to Windows 10. I have been looking forward to doing this since I found out that I am eligible for a free upgrade (find out if you are too). I love software upgrades (that's one of the reasons why I chose to get a Nexus phone) and so I was curious what this new Windows upgrade has to offer. Here's what I got from the first few hours since installing Windows 10.

Is it worth upgrading?

UI Changes
There's a bunch of new designs here on Windows 10, Below are a few that stood out to me.

Welcome Screen. The first thing to notice after the upgrade is the new welcome screen. It looks nice, I liked it.

Start Menu. Everyone was raving about the changes on the start menu, and I got to confirm the reason for myself. It was worth the hype after all.


The start menu setup is similar to Windows' previous versions (Windows 7 and earlier). You can now do a lot of things on it too (add/remove, rearrange, resize tiles) I had to remove several of the default tiles though. I don't need most of them anyway.


New Features
Together with the new look, there are new apps and functionalities available on W10!

Photos, Music, and Videos Apps. There's a whole set of new apps that are set by default to open your multimedia files for Windows 10 (i.e. there's Groove Music for your audio tracks). So far, I'm liking the Photo app because it lets me straightforwardly edit photos without opening another application!

I can now edit photos on the fly!

Groove Music's UI layout kind of reminds me of Spotify, actually.


Microsoft Edge. This is the new browser for the Windows 10. Internet Explorer is still available, though I am expecting it to be dropped off in the future altogether. On this new web browser, you could do several new things like doodling on the page, or attaching notes. I don't know yet how Edge compares to IE, but on first look, the browser looks promising.

Doodles and notes can be applied on web pages through Edge.

Game DVR. (I got to discover this thanks to this article!) Okay so this is a screen-recording tool made for gamers. However I'm finding this very useful for other things, especially if I want to do some tutorials online! I won't need to install a third-party app!


Here's my screencapture of using the doodle 
and notes feature of Microsoft Edge


OneDrive for Android. This is not entirely new in Windows though. This is the first time it's introduced for the phone. The one for photo synching got my attention! I thought the phone synching would only be advantageous for those who also have a Windows phone, but apparently it's available for Android and iPhones too!



I tend to transfer photos a lot from my phone to my PC (for blogging purposes) so this feature is just so neat! Photos I take from my phone would automatically be uploaded and saved to my PC. How cool is that (though I'd appreciate it if there's a feature to select specific photos that I want to be synched. This kind of reminds me of the problem on photo syncing that I've also encountered back then).

That one for music synching is also interesting too (great for managing my morning playlists!). However it requires downloading the Groove Music application to your phone. Hmm I don't think I would like yet another music app to be installed on my device. I skipped that one.

Notification Center. There's a new icon now on the right side of the task bar, which looks like a notepad. I believe this will work like the one on phones and tablets. Apps that need to be updated will appear here, as well as other updates needed to be done for the PC.



Downsides
I understand Windows 10 is still in its beginning stages and of course there's a lot of things to improve.

Cortana is not available in my country. Cortana is a personal digital assistant, Window 10's version of Siri. I got a bit dissappointed that it's not available for me to use.

Built-in Twitter App looks so old-school. I'd prefer using the browser version anytime I'm on my PC.


The Guest account is gone! This one kind of got me puzzled actually. I mean why? My sister has files on my computer on that Guest account and now there's no way she could log into the account on my PC. The files are still accessible though thankfully! (just navigate to C:\Users\Guest\Desktop).

Movie player is a bit crappy. And the captions are being displayed on the upper left of the screen! VLC would still be my choice for viewing then.
How am I supposed to watch my Korean dramas using this? (」゜ロ゜)」

The apps and screen randomly freeze. Hope this stabilizes on future updates.

The wifi and sound icon on the Task Bar are a bit confusing. In the few hours that I got to explore Windows 10, I found myself mixing up these two icons.

Those waves are to blame. :p
So far these are all the observations I have from the first three hours of using Windows 10. Overall, I am satisfied with what I found. Hopefully Microsoft would fix the bugs soon!

~o~

If you have installed Windows 10 also, you may find these Lifehacker articles helpful to know:

Windows 10 Uses Your Bandwidth to Distribute Updates, Disable It 
The Best Windows 10 Features You Probably Haven’t Heard About

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