Microsoft has released a video showcasing some of the improvements that will feature in the Windows 8.1 preview, releasing on 26 June 2013. The final release to consumers will be happening later in 2013.
Previously, Microsoft announced that the venerated Windows “Start” button would be making a return.
Some of the new features Windows 8 users can expect include:
- Redesigned lock-screen that draws photos from connected devices and cloud accounts;
- New tile sizes for Start screen;
- Customisable app groups on Start screen;
- Start screen personalisation options, such as colours, “motion accent” backgrounds, and placing the desktop background behind the Start screen;
- Improved “all apps” screen with browsing by categorisation;
- New Windows 8.1 search feature returns curated results from PC and web presented in an “app-like” style; and
- New multi-tasking features that dynamically opens apps side-by-side – e.g. opening the Pictures app through e-mail attachments without losing focus on the e-mail app.
Additionally, today (5 June 2013), during Microsoft’s keynote at Computex Taipei 2013, Windows CFO and CMO Tami Reller announced that Outlook 2013 RT will be coming to Windows RT tablets as part of Windows 8.1.
Check out the video below to see the changes in action.