Microsoft Windows 10 Keynote: Nine of the best features

Jessica Morris
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Microsoft unveiled Windows 10 (Source: Getty)

Today Microsoft has unveiled the new Windows 10 Consumer Preview from its Redmond headquarters. It's whipped up a lot of excitement - not only will Windows 10 be much more mobile friendly, it's going ditch Windows Explorer and instead opt for the enticingly titled "Project Spartan."

Windows 10 for free?

A ploy to encourage take-up or a friendly gesture to existing users? Either way, within the first year of Windows 10 being released, anyone who uses Windows 7,8/8.1 will qualify for a free upgrade.

Microsoft Office will be free on Windows 10 phones and tablets:

The oh-so necessary Microsoft Office bundle - which includes Word, Excel and PowerPoint - will be free on Windows 10 phones and tablets. "Our office team has been hard at work creating killer universal apps for Windows [which] will delivery a highly rich and highly complete version of Office on these devices," Microsoft’s Joe Belfiore said. Just think of all those killer presentations, emails and important documents you can now produce on-the-go ...

Move over Internet Explorer, "Project Spartan" is here:

Internet Explorer's twenty-year reign as Windows' default browser will come to an end, as it's replaced by "Project Spartan". The new browser - named after the ancient Greek city state famed for its military prowess - is designed to take on Google Chrome. It'll have a number of similar features such as tabs in the title bar and the address bar inside the tabs.

... and the start menu is back:

Anyone who has had trouble navigating Windows' 8/8.1 will be please to hear that the much-loved start menu is back.

Cortana is coming to PC and tablet:

Cortana - which is a digital assistant previously limited to Windows Phone handsets - will now work on PCs and tablets. It can be used to search the internet and that device, look for information such as flight statuses, and write and send emails or launch apps. Microsoft's Joe Belfiore said "Cortana, we're excited to welcome you to the PC."

Office for Windows is getting a face-lift:

Windows 10 will bring with it need versions of World, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote and Outlook - and the new features will deliver a better customer experience.

"Tailored" version of Windows 10 for phones and tablets

Microsoft 10 is so much more mobile-friendly than its predecessor and it even comes complete with a specially designed version for smartphones and tablets. "It's designed to go with your PC as a great companion," said Joe Belfiore, vice president of the operating systems group for Microsoft.

All hail the "Continuum":

It's not quite a laptop and it's not quite a tablet ... it's actually a bit of both. Windows 10 has a feature called "Continuum" which lets users use a mouse and keyboard, but when you switch it into tablet mode, the laptop/tablet will operate just like a tablet.

Windows 10 for Xbox:

Xbox on Windows 10 will let players capture, edit and share their best gaming moments with one another. They will also be able to stream games directly from their Xbox One consoles onto their Windows 10 tablets or PCs.

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