Russ: This is The BusinessMakers Show, heard on the radio and seen online at TheBusinessMakers.com. It's guest time on the show and our topic today is Microsoft, Windows 8 to be specific, because with me once again I have Henry Goodrow, Global Technology Specialist with Microsoft; Henry, welcome back to The BusinessMakers Show.
Henry: Thanks for having us Russ.
Russ: You bet. So man, Windows 8 we're seeing and learning a lot about it on televisions but based on my experience with Microsoft boy this is a big operating system change.
Henry: Well actually I would categorize it as an incremental change on what we've done on Windows 7. A lot of the work that we invested on Windows Vista and Windows 7 has really been captured here with Windows 8. What we've done is layered on a new user interface so it allows you to use both keyboard and touch, which is really revolutionary for Microsoft and so you're seeing a lot of advertisements around touch and the ability to interact with your PCs with touch, but it's also good with keyboards.
Russ: Well I've seen the television ads and I think they're impressive and to me it just sort of is monumental what continues to shift in the digital world and that Microsoft is addressing this and apparently it's a pretty significant investment, correct?
Henry: Certainly, in terms of advertising I won't quote an exact number but we're spending a lot of money in advertising to just get the word out there that not only are we releasing Windows 8, but also a whole wave of products. Both Office 2013, and a lot of other products and Microsoft Surface which is our own hardware running Windows 8 as well.
Russ: Right. So Microsoft Surface is a touch pad computer, right?
Henry: Yeah, certainly it's a - what I would call a slate computer that has a keyboard cover that comes with the unit and allows you to it also comes with Office 2013 pre-installed on the machine, so you're getting an amazing deal and I think the sixty four gig version is $699.00 and the 32 gigabyte version is around $499.00. And allows you to run all the Windows apps that get through the store in an amazing touch experience with a browser and a music service and - and obviously office and the ability to add media with a USB interface as well.
Russ: Okay, okay. Well start by telling us about how did you replace the start button? I mean what happens now with all of these touch capabilities?
Henry: Certainly. You know, I think that one of the feedbacks - or some of the feedback we're getting from, you know, corporate customers during the Beta program was it was really difficult to navigate the touch-verse experience and so we did some usability studies, we figured out that if people understand some very basic concepts in Windows that it makes the navigation a whole lot easier and that is if you can navigate for example up here to the top right hand side you'll see the charm bar comes up - comes up. And the charm bar has a couple of things that are on there a search interface that allows you to search through any application that you have and - as well as the internet.
So we've, you know, created a common way for doing searching, a common way for doing sharing, a common way for interacting with devices and a common way for manipulating settings. So if we get to that level of - of interaction both on a keyboard - I mean both in touch and if I do this with my - with my mouse you can see that the same menu comes us. And likewise on the left hand side if I were to do this I have all my running applications; so it allows me to go quickly to a different running application. So if I can do that with my keyboard or mouse I've suddenly unlocked the power of Windows.
Russ: Okay, to a total degree you expect desktop users eventually to migrate to Windows 8, right?
Henry: Absolutely. And I think the natural uptake will certainly be the mobile workforce first because of the work we've done around power and power management and giving you the ability to run a computer for the full day with a keyboard and mouse input is really amazing and then I think we'll also get - capture some of the desktop market because they probably want to have the same experience on a desktop and on a slate.
Russ: Okay. And so, I mean, you know, you're right here in the heart of a big major corporate headquarter locations of Fortune 100 companies, are they embracing it already?
Henry: Certainly, you know, I think that what we've done very early on was have a number of conferences called build conferences and those allowed developers to learn about the Windows ecosystem and learn how to write applications that took advantage of touch and all of the instrumentation that we have inside of these devices and so you're gonna start to see very quickly some applications come on the market that take full advantage of the Windows ecosystem as well as the new touch capabilities of the machines.
Russ: Okay, really cool. Well, show us a little bit. Can you navigate around a bit and show us?
Henry: Sure. So what I'll show you first is this is IE, or Internet Explorer which most people do a lot of their business on and the different thing one of the new features of IE is the ability to manipulate the browser using touch and this is a standard set of web technologies, nothing proprietary here but it allows us to interact with web content in a touch manner. And so if I were to for example bring in a - another application, I can go back to IE just using a swipe. So touch is really a first class citizen here and this is not our first entry into touch but it is certainly our largest splash into touch.
Russ: All right, well show us a search too from - we're at IE, let's search.
Henry: Some again one of the common things that we've added here on the charm bar is a search icon and so this search is different than the search that you're used to. Most people are used to doing searches only in a web browse, but this gives you the ability to search on a term and have that term reflected across every application. So let's search on The BusinessMakers here and if I were to search on this Bing application now you can see so if I click on that it brings up your page. I could also go back there onto the search and do the same thing under email and I would find all the emails that had The BusinessMakers showing up there. So any application exposes search in this same way.
Russ: Cool, cool.
Henry: So no longer do I have to learn search on one application or another, it's all in the same.
Russ: Really cool. Okay. But, if I were, you know, a dedicated desktop user I could do all of that through my mouse and my keyboard as well?
Russ: Okay, really cool, really cool. All right, so, what would you say to a person that was reluctant to upgrade right now?
Henry: I would say first of all I would say that if you're on Windows XP we need to get you up to Windows 7 at Windows XP will end of life around 2015, we need to get you upgraded to Windows 7. Windows 8 is really just a step upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 8 so I would certainly encourage people to look at Windows 8 and with the addition of touch monitors - even desktop users will start to see touch come into the desktop space, I think that you'll get there on through evolution.
Russ: Okay. Well it truly is fascinating times that we live in and it's cool in my opinion to see Microsoft sort of dive in with Windows 8 and Surface right now and it's probably exciting times to be with Microsoft.
Henry: Yeah I think it's the most exciting time that I've ever been here at Microsoft and, you know, I think that, you know, I've given, for example, my children a Surface to use and take to school and they're - they're having lots of interesting conversations with their friends with competing devices so it's a great, exciting time, very proud.
Russ: Cool, cool. Well Henry I really appreciate you sharing this with us today on The BusinessMakers Show.
Henry: Thanks for having us.
Russ: You bet. That's Henry Goodrow, Global Technology Specialist and this is The BusinessMakers Show, heard on the radio and seen online at The BusinessMakers.com.