Windows 8 consumer preview is scheduled to be released on February 29. As we know that Microsoft has recently provided Windows 8 build 8250 to OEM partners. Now we are getting reports from our various sources that Windows 8 consumer preview build 8250 has been leaked and is available for download via torrent.
We know that Microsoft would be releasing Windows 8 consumer preview on February 29 and according to various sources the consumer preview build would be build 8250. Today couple of screenshots has been posted on the Chinese site PCBETA showing that build 8250 has been compiled. Here are the screenshots of build 8250
Various sources are indeed claiming that Windows 8 build 8250 has been compiled though the complete build string of this build is currently unknown. Also according to various sources Microsoft has provided this build to various major OEM partners.
Microsoft Recently detailed the Skydrive Metro app integration in the upcoming Windows 8 operating system,integrating the complete system with the cloud services so that users can connect files and the apps they are using with the cloud courtesy the deep integration of Skydrive with Windows 8.
Talking about the Metro Version of the SkyDrive app built on WinRT,the app will be made available from the consumer preview itself,the interface has been optimized for touch screens.SkyDrive will be available for use from any Metro style app via the file picker (open/save) as well as from the new Share charm in Windows 8.And over the time the Metro app and the web app will converge ,so there won’t be any issue with using the Metro app or even the web version of it,since the performance won’t get affected.
One of the amazing features of this integration is that it enables integration of apps to SkyDrive using charms and contracts.This will also bring a file cloud for every Metro based app,which will allow us to open files in SkyDrive and save them on the same Account similar to the file you used to save on local hard drive.This feature is supported on any app which supports open and save for documents and photos.For this to work all you need to do is register your email address on a PC that’s running Windows 8 and after that , whenever you save files on SkyDrive, every Windows 8 device you use will provide seamless access to those files.
Talking about the desktop version of the skydrive app,by the first look of it,it looks deceptively similar to the dropbox app.Once installed the SkyDrive will start syncing into the folder you choose (the default location is in a SkyDrive folder under your user folder: %userprofile%\SkyDrive\) and it will be up-to-date with the latest changes made to it.
Those who won’t be using Windows 8,no worries the skydrive desktop app will also be available for Vista as well as Windows 7 version.Skydrive will support file uploadd as large as 2GB.We will see the First release of Skydrive app with the release of Windows 8 Consumer Preview which releases on 29th February.
Update: Here is the video showing skydrive integration in Windows 8
With Microsoft’s much awaited release of Windows 8 Consumer Preview around the corner still it looks like Microsoft is already working on builds past Windows 8 consumer preview. According to the reliable source Winunleaked.tk , the Windows 8 has reached build 8284 which is post Windows 8 consumer preview build.
According to the site the latest build compiled in pre Release candidate branch or should we call post Consumer preview is build 8284 with build string as 8284.0.winmain.120216-1840. The build string states that the build was compiled on February 16,2012. This build is the pre Release Candidate build and not the consumer preview build as we know that different teams are working on Windows 8, so they are working on these builds past 8250. One thing to be noted is that these builds have winmain in the buildstring instead of the winbeta which is found the current consumer preview builds.
Although, the final version of Windows 8 consumer preview is not compiled which is expected to be compiled soon. As we all know by now that Microsoft is scheduled to hold a Windows 8 Consumer Preview press event at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain on February 29, where Microsoft will be announcing the consumer preview version of Windows 8 which will be freely available to download from Microsoft’s servers.
We will see the launch of Windows 8 Consumer Preview by the end of this month,but as far as the final version launch goes we haven’t yet got any official word from Microsoft.Though many of us are speculating the launch for the second half of 2012,nothing more specific is known about it.
As spotted earlier by Microsoft News,an italian site has got hold of a leaked roadmap of Fujitsu company,which reveals the product launches from the company ranging from the ultrabooks and the android tablet launch in near future,also reveals the launch of Windows 8 in Q4 2012.
If we take a look at the recent history of big launches from Microsoft,be it the Windows Phone launch or be it the Windows 7 launch,October is the favorite launch month.So it won’t be a surprise if we see a October launch for Windows 8 as well.Hope we will get some news about the same at the Windows 8 Consumer Preview and Windows Store launch at MWC 2012 on 29th February.
We might haven’t got the Windows 8 Store experience which will be released along with the Windows 8 Consumer Preview in less than 2 weeks from now,but that’s not stopping the developers to build apps for the upcoming store with Metro apps.
One of the Windows Phone developer Rick Walrond, who has developed a game for Windows Phone 7.5 named AlphaDrops ,he has successfully ported the game from Windows Phone to Windows 8,as shown in a recent video posted by him on Youtube.It took Walrond two weeks to port the game from Windows Phone to Windows 8 and talking about the coding part,almost 90% of the code was reused while porting it to Windows 8 platform.
The Video Features the Game running on Samsung Tablet powered by Windows 8 Developer Preview.The Windows 8 port can share leader-board information with the Windows Phone 7 counterpart.So no matter on which device you play the game be it a Windows 8 device or Windows Phones,your scores can be updated and can compare them with others using any such devices users.
Though there’s no official announcement about this game from Microsoft about the launch titles for Windows Store but we can expect it to be made available in near future.
One of the most important aspect of any operating system is the accessibility feature.In a recent post on the building Windows 8 blog Microsoft detailed the Windows 8 Accessibility Feature.
Windows 8 has been designed keeping in mind all sorts of users,be it a normal end user or a professional user or be it a user with some sorts of physical disability.So to help the users with disabilities like Visual,Mobility,Hearing and Cognitive Impairments accessing the Windows 9 Operating System.
The accessibility goals for Windows 8 are as follows:
Improve the assistive technologies that are components of Windows, and provide a good experience with the Metro style UI.
Provide developer tools that have baseline accessibility built in, so that accessible Metro style apps are available in the Store.
Engage assistive technology vendors (ATVs) to adopt Windows 8 and build upon the accessibility scenarios.
So to enhance the accessibility of Windows 8 to such users Microsoft has been gathering user feedbacks adding the improved assistive technology components in the upcoming operating system,these components include:
Narrator is Windows’ built-in screen reader that allows people with visual impairments to interact with their system and applications. User feedback on previous versions of Narrator has consistently been that it needs to respond faster, read more controls, and support more languages.
Magnifier is a tool in Windows to make text and graphics large enough to see for people with low vision. This was initially shipped in Windows 98, and was updated significantly in Windows 7 with the ability to magnify the full screen. This change received positive feedback. However, there were still issues with Magnifier, as it sometimes conflicted with settings for High Contrast colors.
Speech recognition initially shipped in Windows Vista to aid people with mobility impairments to navigate and use their PC. User feedback on this feature has been really positive, telling us that the accuracy in speech recognition is good, it transcribes your voice to text quickly, and it is able to handle some uncommon words.
On-screen keyboard has been available to those with mobility impairments since Windows XP.
Windows 8 Metro UI will also see a new and improved magnifier,so Whenever one starts the Magnifier on a tablet (in the Ease of Access panel, set Magnifier to start when you press the Windows logo key + Volume up), a notice a border will appear around the edges of the screen,making it easy to move the Magnifier around the screen using these borders. Simply drag your finger along the border to move Magnifier in that direction. When the border disappears, you are at the edge of the screen.
We already know that Microsoft would be releasing Windows 8 consumer preview on February 29 at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, recently Chinese site Win8China has posted that 8250 will be the final build that would be released on that day. Further couple other sources are claiming that infact final Windows 8 consumer preview build would be build 8250. As Microsoft tends to skip builds during the compilation we believe that this build would be compiled very soon or according to some unconfirmed sources this build has already been internally compiled. We are still trying to get things confirmed whether this build has been compiled or not.
We already have confirmed news that build 8227 has been compiled which according to few is very stable. The recent leaked screenshots show that the build has lot of new features including the much awaited Windows store. Windows 8 Consumer preview would definitely be a treat for Windows users and we hope it would be available on tablets soon.
A couple of months ago the blogosphere was buzzing with rumors about the end of the road for Zune PC client for Windows 8,with some of the leaked screenshots suggesting a new music player app for Windows 8.
But as spotted earlier by Neowin,Microsoft in a video recently showcased the Zune app for Windows 8 and that too in Metro UI.So it’s definitely a sigh of relief for the good o’l zune lovers.As far as the new “Microsoft Music” app goes,it’s still there in the list of Metro apps but the app is now being renamed to “Music” most probably the alternative for Windows Media Player desktop version.
This may come as a surprise to many as some of the rumors were suggesting a new dedicated app for Windows Phones and the end of the Zune Era for good,but as of now it seems that Microsoft is in no mood to discontinue Zune.
Windows 8 Consumer Preview will be released on 29th February along with the Windows Store which will feature many exciting Metro based apps and games.Stay Tuned for more Windows 8 Coverage.
With the release of Windows 8 “Consumer Preview” nearing Microsoft is busy doing the finishing work on Windows 8 finalizing the preinstalled application list. According to sources, who are familiar with Microsoft’s plans mention, that the company will assemble a number of Metro style applications for the consumer preview.Following applications are known to be preinstalled surely for the consumer preview:
Alongwith these, possibly a few more will be available for the Consumer Preview release, with the option to update from the Windows Store. Mail, Calendar, People, and Messaging are designed to be core Windows communications apps and are not branded with Windows Live. Another source has revealed that Microsoft is working to enable SMS support for the Messaging app which operates as a Windows Live Messenger equivalent in its current form. The Music and Video applications are currently branded with Zune, which are built by the Xbox team. According to this source its branding is slated to be removed ahead of the Windows 8 release, moving to Xbox Live for Windows as the primary entertainment brand for Windows 8 Music, Video and Games.
Although the applications are built into the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, Microsoft is about to make a final decision on whether the apps will be bundled at launch later this year. The company previously removed Outlook Express, its built-in mail client, from Windows 7 and replaced it with the downloadable Windows Live Mail application in a broader effort to separate core Windows apps to make updates easier. Windows Store can handle separate Metro style app updates from the operating system, and Microsoft is said to be considering bundle plans for OEMs along the lines of the current preinstall option for Windows Live Essentials. Microsoft has also built an Xbox Live Companion application, similar to the Windows Phone version, that may come preinstalled in the Consumer Preview version too.