Windows 8 has been hyped to high heavens and beyond for a while now. Whether or not the operating system lives up to the hype, we are yet to find out. Opinions vary, naturally, but there is one thing every camp can agree on: Windows 8 is the biggest change to Microsoft’s OS we’ve ever seen.

Windows 8

Windows 8

Come October 26, notebooks, desktops, and other devices powered by Windows 8 will be on sale, and you can judge for yourself – if you do end up purchasing a device. In the meantime, here’s a quick go at what you can expect from Windows 8, based on the immense amount of information one can find about the operating system that is being touted by some as Microsoft’s hope to gain a bigger share in the market.

It’s all about Metro.

Some people go for looks, and if what we’ve seen so far is anything to go by, Windows 8 does make for some pleasant viewing. Metro UI – all those tiles fitting in nicely together – is the biggest and most obvious change that Windows 8 brings.

The interface is optimized for touchscreen devices, which tablet and phone users will find brilliant. The question is whether this optimization will work just as well with the mouse, which a lot of people still use. Microsoft has addressed that point saying no compromises have been made in this regard, and they have even announced keyboards and mice specifically for Windows 8. As positive as that may sound, I can’t help but compare the idea of using a touchscreen tablet with a mouse and keyboard. It just won’t be the same, would it?

It will have an app for “that” – maybe.

The line “There’s an app for that” has quickly gotten old, but Microsoft seems to realize that apps are still the way forward, hence the emphasis on apps in Windows 8. Well, a supposed emphasis. There is an App store, but as of August, there is still a dearth of choices. Of course, Microsoft says that there will be more to come, especially when the release date draws near.

It might push you to go for Mac.

Or some other operating system. While that may be an exaggeration, it seems like Windows 8 is not as user friendly as it is meant to be. The interface is eye candy, to be sure, but eye candy is nothing if it doesn’t work seamlessly or (almost) effortlessly.

Got five minutes or so? This video of Chris Pirillo‘s dad using Windows 8 for the first time tells all.

Is it really Vista all over again?

Remember when Vista was first announced? Remember how everyone was all excited about the new OS? What happened when it was finally released? How many people wanted to downgrade to good old XP?

Not to be all negative here, but aside from the pretty looks of Windows 8, I am afraid that the latest OS might very well go down Vista’s path.

[Image via winbeta]