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Windows 8 is focused on your life—your friends and family, your apps, and your stuff. With new things like the Start screen, charms, and a Microsoft account, you can spend less time searching and more time doing. And then there's the Windows Store, a completely new marketplace for apps.
Live updates at a glance
Vibrant and beautiful, the Start screen is the first thing you'll see. Each tile on the Start screen is connected to a person, app, website, playlist, or whatever else is important to you. Tiles light up with the latest info, so you're instantly up to date. In one glance, you'll see that photo you were just tagged in, tomorrow’s weather, and messages from your friends.
It's all yours
In Windows, even the little things are all about you. Like the screen that appears when your PC is locked—it can be any picture you choose. And you'll see quick notifications on your lock screen before you sign in to your PC or open a single app.
With picture password, you can sign in by tracing a pattern on a picture of your choice instead of typing a password. Zigzag over your dog’s face? Three taps on your child’s nose? The choice is yours.
A new look
The Start screen is all you
Each tile on Start is connected to a person, app, website, folder, playlist, or whatever else is important to you. Pin as many tiles to Start as you like and move them around so it's just the way you want it.
This isn't the usual wall of static icons: Tiles animate with the latest information. Status updates, weather forecasts, Tweets, and more—you'll see live updates before you even open a single app.
See something, share something
Your photos, websites, that funny video you just saw: Pretty much anything you're looking at, you can share with others. Instantly. There's no need to interrupt what you're doing, copy what you want to share, open another app, and paste it in. Just swipe in from the right and tap or click Share to immediately send it in email or post it to Facebook.
Your next PC will be amazing
Your next PC will do more and go further, no matter which one you choose. The latest tablets are lightweight and blazing fast, with extended battery life for greater mobility. Convertibles give you the style and mobility of a tablet, and can also be snapped onto a keyboard and turned into a full-power laptop. And our all-in-ones provide a new level of power and style in a desktop PC.
With radically updated designs, more raw processing power, touch-enabled displays, and startup times of less than ten seconds in many cases, it's a brand new era for PCs.
Hit the road in style
Built with innovative, ultra-light materials like duralumin, and with a new focus on beautiful design, the new Windows tablets and laptops are ready to slide into your bag and go where you go.
Many new tablets and laptops enable their apps to react when you tilt or rotate the screen, automatically adapt to changes in lighting, and even let you touch two devices together to share a photo or a web page.
Put yourself on the big screen
New desktops and all-in-ones bring a lean new look to your home and office. You'll get the full power and speed of a desktop—with vast amounts of storage and super responsive processing—in designs that are thinner, lighter, and more stylish than ever.
Many of the new-generation desktops and all-in-ones combine the precision and control of a mouse and keyboard with the fun and flexibility of a touch screen.
Get one to go: Windows RT PCs
Sleek and thin, with truly extraordinary battery life, Windows RT PCs are great for life on the go. They stay connected even in sleep mode, resume quickly, and are perfect for both touch and a mouse and keyboard. Windows RT runs apps exclusively from the Windows Store, and also has great built-in apps like Mail, People, Messaging, Photos, SkyDrive, Music, and Video, so you can stay in touch and have fun.
Every Windows RT PC comes with Microsoft Office Home & Student 2013 RT Preview, so you can do more with Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote. The final version of these applications will be installed automatically when they become available. For more details, see the Office Home & Student 2013 RT product page.
Work & Play
It's a new era for PCs. Sleek and lightweight, with a focus on beautiful design and innovative materials, Windows PCs have reached new heights in performance and battery life.
Entertainment and apps of every kind take center stage. Tap into your creative side, lose yourself in a game with friends, discover and download video and songs, and play them on your TV or Xbox 360.
Catch a movie, take in the latest gossip, and power through your to-do list. Go from full-screen video to spreadsheet in one swipe, or snap them side-by-side for easy multi-tasking. Zoom through your files, do instant searches from any app you're in, and fire up familiar programs—they run faster than ever.
The familiar desktop
The desktop that you're used to—along with the familiar file structure and ways of getting around—is not only still here, it's even better than it was. And things like Control Panel and Task Manager are faster and easier to find and use.
Connected for success
Built-in mobile broadband features in Windows support 3G and 4G. As you move, your PC will automatically find and use available Wi-Fi hotspots. So you can be effortlessly connected and ready to work and stay in touch from anywhere.
Load up on apps from the Windows Store
Windows 8 and Windows RT give you access to the Windows Store, where you can discover a new world of apps for your PC. Just tap or click the Store tile and start exploring. Filter by price, rating, and more. Many apps are free. Others let you try before you buy. So explore and load up on apps—the more you have, the more you can do.
Apps work together
Things that used to take lots of different programs to do now flow together in one simple experience. Use the Photos app to see all your photos from Facebook and Flickr, and then upload them to your blog or send them to friends via email—all without ever leaving the app.
Get to the controls the same way in every app. Just swipe up from the bottom edge or right click with a mouse, and the app commands pop right up. Searching is the same in every app, too—use the Search charm no matter what app you're using to find things within the app, on your PC, or on the web.
SkyDrive: Any file, anywhere
Use SkyDrive to stash your files on your hard drive and in the cloud, and get to them no matter where you are. Your stuff is available on multiple PCs and your phone—even non-Windows devices with the free SkyDrive app installed on them.
Works well with others
Start a project on one PC and finish it on another. Collaborate freely and always have the latest version of your files. You—and whoever you work with—can use free Office Web Apps to edit shared documents on SkyDrive and immediately see each other's changes. You don’t even need to have Office installed. Share whatever files you choose, with whomever you choose, and make the rest private.
Span time, space, and PCs
Sign in with your Microsoft account to any of your PCs running Windows 8 or Windows RT and immediately see everything that makes Windows yours: your background, your display, your settings. You can even get to your apps on as many as five different PCs. And when you get a new Windows PC or Windows Phone, the People app can come to life with info from your social networks.
In short, your stuff and your info isn't limited to any single PC or device. Because you’re bigger than any box.
Internet Explorer 10
Fast and fluid
Built to take advantage of the full power of Windows 8 and Windows RT, Internet Explorer 10 starts and loads sites almost instantly. It brings a fluid responsiveness to the web that feels totally new. Everything you want to do on the web is a swipe, tap, or click away.
Smooth, intuitive controls work just as you'd expect. One Box is both address and search bar for speedier navigation. Pin your favorite sites to your Start screen and get to them as quickly as you access your apps.
Perfect for touch
Truly full-screen browsing: Navigation controls appear only when you need them and quietly get out of the way when you don’t. Internet Explorer 10 lets you flip ahead or back through your websites with the flick of a finger. Tiles and tabs for frequently visited sites are oversized for easy tapping.
Safer and more private
Help keep your PC and your information safer on the web with the industry-leading SmartScreen technology that helps protect against socially-engineered malware. Privacy tools like Do Not Track are built-in and are easily enabled in just one click to give you increased control.