Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) Releases Windows 8.1

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Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) has announced the global availability of Windows 8.1, which adds many new features to the Windows 8 operating system.  Starting today, consumers that have Windows 8 in over 230 markets and 37 languages can download the free update through the online Windows Store.  Windows 8.1 will also be available on new devices and boxed software starting tomorrow at retail locations across the world.

Start Screen

The Start Screen in Windows 8.1 can be customized with new tile sizes, new background designs, and colors.  This lets you make the Start screen unique and personal.  The Start button is back and there is an improved Apps view that lets you see all your apps the way you want.

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You can now have four apps side-by-side with flexible windows sizing for each app.  There is also multi-monitor support in Windows 8.1 so that you can view your desktop or apps from the Windows Store on all of your monitors.

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Bing Smart Search

Microsoft’s Bing Smart Search lets you easily find what you are looking for and it was built for touch, swipe, or type from the Start Screen and Smart Search.  It can find documents on your PC, photo albums in the cloud, specific apps, or websites.

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Improved Microsoft Apps

Microsoft has improved their apps and services built into Windows 8.1.  Microsoft updated the Mail app to make using e-mail easier for personal and work e-mail.  There are two new Bing apps called Food & Drink and Health & Fitness.  There is also updates to News, Weather, Finance, Travel, and Sports apps.  The Xbox Music app has been updated in Windows 8.1 so that you can watch TV and movies with Xbox Video.  Windows 8.1 comes with Internet Explorer 11, which is optimized for touch and speed boosts.  IE 11 also lets you sync history, favorites, and settings across all Windows 8.1 devices.


Windows 8.1 has deep integration with SkyDrive.  You can create/edit/save/share files anywhere so that you can access them while on-the-go online and offline.

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Windows Store

The Windows Store has been redesigned.  The Windows Store has a New & Rising section so that you can see the hottest and newest apps to arrive on the Windows Store.  The Windows Store now has a live tile with personalized recommendations powered by Bing.

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If you are using Windows 8.1, let us know what you think in the comments.

[Source: Windows Blog]

This article was written by Amit Chowdhry. You can follow me at @amitchowdhry or on Google+ at
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