Microsoft released a public preview of Windows 8.1( download link below ) yesterday at the company's annual BUILD event. It was unveiled by Steve Ballmer and the corporate vice-president of Windows Julie Larson-Green said "With Windows 8 we built a new Windows, reimagined from the chipset to the experience. It was an ambitious vision, and with Windows 8.1 we refine it".
The update will be made available free of charge for Windows 8 and Windows RT. There is a catch, however: all those tech savvy, windows lovers installing the public preview will not be able to upgrade to the final release without reinstalling all of their applications. Those who choose to not participate in the preview, meanwhile, will be able to seamlessly upgrade to Windows 8.1 without having to reinstall anything.
Here is a list of improvements you can look forward to :
1. The Return of Start buttonThe start button has been introduced in this new build of windows(which you can't disable). Clicking on it won't give you the old-school fly out menu but the modern start screen only.
3. More personalized lock ScreenWith Windows 8.1, you have the option of running a slideshow on your lock screen, with photos coming from various places, like your PC and SkyDrive . You can also accept Skype video and voice calls from the lock screen, similar to the way you can answer your phone without punching in a pin first.
4. Snap more apps
With windows 8.1 you can now snap more apps depending upon your computer's screen resolution. Before you could only use two apps in the snap app mode in which one app took 70% of the screen and other 30%.But now this restriction has been removed and the apps can take upto 50% of the screen each.
5. Skydrive IntegrationSkyDrive is now the default location for saving documents. So you always have your files wherever you go, even when you're offline. And with the included SkyDrive app, you can manage both local files and SkyDrive files in one place.
There is a lot more in store for us. To experience all this and a lot more, download the Windows 8.1 Preview here.