I’m already a Windows 8 user because I’m silly like that. Last night, I installed The Big Update: Windows 8.1. A few thoughts:
–Win 8.1 essentially acknowledges that Microsoft was too optimistic in its fervent hope that desktop users would go all touchscreen-y. That day is coming — touchscreen laptops have become far cheaper in the past year — but it isn’t here yet, and this specific issue was stopping some pepole from upgrading. Now, a desktop/laptop user can set up Win 8.1 to boot with the familiar Windows desktop, which really does work well in a keyboard/mouse world.
–Hey, the Start button is back! Win8’s initial failure to include it — and to offer an option allowing me to boot to the desktop — caused me to buy Start8, a utility program that solves both problems. I’m still using Start8 because I prefer its interface to the Win8.1 default. However, that default will be just fine for most folks. Just remember that the right mouse key is more important than it used to be on the start button.
–The Store has matured nicely over the past year and probably has most of the software you truly need. I’d have no hesitancy now in getting a Windows phone, which is a good option because they represent some of the best bargains in the cellular world.
–Many other options just feel like they have a better fit and finish. That’s to be expected.
Still, for most folks, Win8.1 isn’t really a reason to move from, say, Win 7 or earlier to the current OS. In my option, these people would be better off just waiting until they needed a hardware replacement to make the switch. For my part, I’m fairly certain I’m currently using my last Windows Frankenputer and will move to a laptop world in the next year or so — at which time I also am likely to leap to an all-touchscreen world.