Microsoft is aiming to smooth the transition for users switching to Windows 8 from its earlier predecessors. The upcoming operating system is a major change in direction for the software giant, which includes touchscreen technology, "charms" and desktop tiles.
(Screenshot by Dara Kerr/CNET)
In an effort to help users get the knack of the new OS, Microsoft is apparently training sellers and others in how to use the system. According to tech news site Neowin, a handful of Windows 8 demo videos (see below) have been leaked, which show just how the system will work.
One video focuses on how to navigate the start screen, called the "customisable hub for everything you do". The demo shows that users can use the touchscreen technology to open their desktop tiles, such as email, weather and news, while also swiping through different screens and apps. There is also the capability to use two apps simultaneously, such as photos and Facebook.
Another video explains how to organise the desktop tiles to personalise a computer to each user's needs. The apps can be resized, removed, added, grouped and more. Microsoft calls the desktop "your personal bulletin board". The final video looks at "charms" ,which are helpful icons to carry out desktop commands, such as search, share and start.
A number of early adopters have claimed that the new interface may be difficult to understand for new users, and was not designed with traditional desktop PCs and laptops in mind. Many reviewers and tech blogs and sites — including CNET — have noted that the navigation is tricky and the learning curve is "steep".
With such a departure from its traditional operating systems, Microsoft has the challenge of teaching people this entirely new language. It seems that the tech company is aware of this endeavour and created these training videos well before the release of Windows 8 — which is slated for 26 October.
Besides gearing up to teach people how to use its new OS, Microsoft is also working on other Windows 8 nuts and bolts. Last week, it announced that many of its built-in apps, including Bing, photos, news and weather, could be updated even before the launch of the new OS. And just yesterday, the company said that it is rolling out a massive update to Windows 8, and finely tailoring its core apps.
Another Windows 8 video was leaked this week that was thought to be an advertisement for the new operating system. According to Neowin, it was actually part of the company's training materials, as well. Microsoft has pulled the video, however, due to a copyright claim.
Here are Microsoft's training and demo videos via Neowin: