One of the most highly anticipated software launches of this year is Microsoft’s new operating system, Windows 8. While the OS is still in the pre-release phase, Microsoft has released a Consumer Preview that gives users a glimpse into the features of the new OS. In mid April, Microsoft announced the different editions that will be available when it’s released.
There are going to be four editions of Windows 8 available at launch:
- Windows 8. This edition offers all the features the majority of Windows users will need. It will be comparable to Windows 7 Home and Home Premium.
- Windows 8 Pro. Pro will have Windows 8 components, but also offers more advanced options that businesses and expert users will appreciate. Some of the extras include encryption, virtualization and PC management. Pro will be most useful in a business environment.
- Windows RT. This version of Windows 8 will come pre-installed on mobile devices and tablets with an ARM processor, which is used primarily in mobile technology. Many of Windows 8’s features will be available on RT, although some older Windows applications will not be compatible. If your company uses Windows tablets or smartphones, chances are you’ll use this OS.
- Windows 8 Enterprise. Enterprise is an enhanced version of Windows 8 Pro that will be specifically for businesses with Software Assurance agreements. Noted features include stronger virtualization tools, PC management and deployment, and advanced security. At this time there’s no further information on this version, but it looks like a good choice for IT companies.