Microsoft debuts Windows 10 in India and globally

Microsoft on Wednesday launched the latest, and perhaps the last edition, of its much-awaited operating system (OS)Windows 10 in 190 countries, including India.

Microsoft, which has made an upgrade to Windows 10 “free” for users of genuine Windows 7 and Windows 8 operating systems, will not launch more editions of this operating system. Instead, new features or iterations will be made through various upgrades in software, in line with a trend started by Google’s popular OS Android.

The company calls Windows 10 delivered as a service, which will be automatically updated with innovations and security updates.

Bhaskar Pramanik, chairman, Microsoft India, said at a mega event here on Wednesday, “Windows 10 is more personal and more productive. It’s safer and more secure. And it’s familiar and always up to date. In India, more than 1,500 retail stores across the country will help consumers move up to Windows 10.  I am excited that many Indian and multinational partners are ready to offer a variety of Windows 10 devices.”

The new OS, which marks the return of the popular “Start” button that was hugely missed in Windows 8, comes with features such as Windows Defender and SmartScreen to help safeguard against viruses, malware and phishing. It also has Windows Hello, which offers a fast, secured, password-free way to log in. It also comes bundled with voice-based personal assistant Cortana. But, users in India will have to wait for some more time for an Indianised Cortana, as Microsoft is updating the software with “strong” local content, though they can use it for basic services.

“Cortana will be made available to insiders (developers with Microsoft) in the coming weeks and then later to consumers,” Microsoft India Director (Windows Business Group) Vineet Durani said, without giving a timeline. “Cortana is not just an assistant. It understands the context and answers accordingly. It is not just about understanding accents and entertainment. So, there is a strong localisation that needs to be done,” he added.

While an estimated 1.5 billion machines run Windows, Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android based smartphones and tablets have emerged as strong competition to the Redmond-based firm. With its latest launch, Microsoft is hoping to get a billion devices on-board Windows 10 globally.


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