Reviews Operating Systems
It's safe to say that Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system was among the most controversial moves the company (or any company) has made in the past year-plus. A daring (some would say confusing) mash-up of mobile and desktop worlds into a single OS, Windows 8 was a highly polarizing experience. With Windows 8.1, Microsoft has sought to tweak features that irked reviewers (the missing start button, for... View Reviews »
While hardware vendors are always quick to tout specs, the smartphone wars are being won and lost on the software battlefield. BlackBerry's newest operating system, BlackBerry 10, suffers from its late start -- unlike Apple's iOS and Google's Android, BlackBerry doesn't yet have an extensive catalog of must-have apps (a problem that also bedevils Microsoft). Despite this, BlackBerry has brought some novel... View Reviews »
Lost, a bit, among the hype for the new Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 operating systems has been the birth of Windows RT. This operating system is designed to look much like Windows 8, but is optimized for tablets and other low powered devices using ARM processor (as opposed to more robust Intel processors). As such, Windows RT runs specialized versions of several Microsoft software titles, like Office,... View Reviews »
In a mobile field dominated by Apple's iOS and Google's Android, it's up to Microsoft to forge a viable third way for consumers looking for other options. With Windows Phone 8, Microsoft retains the unique, tile-based interface of version 7, while adding new features such as NFC and a "Kid's Corner" to let children browse a restricted version of the OS. Other new additions include a revamped Xbox Music... View Reviews »
Few consumers have shown much interest in straying beyond the big two in the operating system world (that would be Microsoft's Windows and Apple's Mac OS). Yet year-in and year-out, Linux-based systems continue to attact a core following.  Ubuntu is a commercialized (but still free) version of the Linux desktop which is designed to be approachable by the average PC user. It has a guarentee of five... View Reviews »
No sooner did Apple's iOS 6 arrive (on the iPhone 5 and as an update to older iOS devices) than controversy erupted. The newest version of Apple's mobile operating system no longer included a dedicated YouTube app and replaced Google Maps with a home grown Apple alternative that proved to be, in many cases, woefully deficient compared to the Google app it replaced. Apple has called it a work in progress... View Reviews »
With over 200 new features and a measely $20 price tag, Apple's Mountain Lion operating system is being widely hailed for (mostly) successfully merging Apple's mobile platform with its desktop. Among the highlights: the ability to use Airplay to share what's on your desktop (or Macbook) with an Apple TV, a "notifications" bar similar to the one found on iOS, new mail and Safari browser features and closer... View Reviews »
In just a few short months, Microsoft will unleash Windows 8 on the general public. Dubbed the most radical overhaul of the Windows operating system in years, Microsoft is bringing the "Metro" interface first integrated onto mobile devices, into a desktop environment. That decision - more than any other - has sparked a range of reactions - from shock and horror to delight. The "Release Preview" version of... View Reviews »
Google has long been hampered by cries of "fragmentation" - as multiple versions of its operating system proliferate on smartphones and tablets far and wide. While Android 4.1, also known as Jelly Bean, is only heightening this trend, most reviewers gladly gave that a pass for the enhancements on offer. As the ".1" suggests, Jelly Bean isn't a top-to-bottom refresh of the Android mobile OS, but a... View Reviews »

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