When Microsoft first released the new Windows 8 operating system consumers had mixed feelings, to say the least. The operating system was clearly designed with touch-screen devices in mind, which was great if it was actually used on a touch screen. Users still using traditional PCs and laptops found the interface unresponsive and hard to navigate, primarily due to the new and "improved" home screen.
The new home screen for Windows 8 was littered with tiles that offered you quick access to different things. The Windows 8.1 tile screen had things for apps and even links to sign out, switch users or lock windows. You were allowed customization options for the appearance of the Start screen but not much else and you certainly couldn't add features of functionality.
Start Screen Unlimited, however, aims to change all that. Start Screen Unlimited is a program for Windows 8 that allows you to add things to the Start screen. Some of the changes you can make include adding the date and time, a link to the Windows control panel and additional power options. In addition to that, you can also add a Google search bar directly to the start page as well.
After installing the program you will notice a tool bar in the upper right hand of the Start screen. Pressing the infinity logo allows you to move the toolbar anywhere you want on the screen with power options including hibernation, sleep, reboot and power off. In addition to that, the configuration options also provide you a link to the control panel as well as allow you to close the toolbar. Finally, the "i" button allows you to send user feedback, buy the deluxe edition or check for updates.
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The addition of the Google search bar is nice as it allows you to search for things directly from the Start screen, though a physical keyboard is required.If you use the official Google search app for Windows then a touch keyboard is automatically brought up, which is a better option for touchscreen users.
There are currently two versions of this program for Windows 8, the Lite version and the Deluxe version with the Lite version being free. Ponying up some money for the Deluxe version will allow users to use the program for commercial use while also adding more customization options for your menu.
If you hate Windows 8 then this program probably won't appeal to you, though users who are moderately happy with the operating system or are simply looking for more ways to customize their Windows 8 Start Screen will find many uses for this program. Determining whether or not you need the Lite or Deluxe versions completely depends on how much customization you want or need for your personal preferences.
Acer recently revised its estimates and, as of right now, doesn't expect "explosive growth" for Windows 8 devices when the operating system launches in October. The CEO of Acer also cited a lack of consumer interest as one of the primary reasons for the new estimate. Acer CEO J.T. Wang was cited saying, "We are still waiting for the signal of the consumers' enthusiasm."
Acer is currently the world's third largest PC vendor and originally expected high growth for the company during the second half of this year. In particular, Acer believed that Windows 8 would help usher in a plethora of new notebooks and tablet devices to the market.
However, the rocky global economy and the uncertainty of the Windows ecosystem have Wang believing that the company will most likely see medium growth. "We see that a lot of PC brand companies and also the channels have a cautious attitude," Wang added. "Although everyone is preparing for the Windows 8 launch, but still there is a lot of reservation, and so we do not see the momentum for very explosive growth has been accumulated."
These "doom and gloom" remarks from Wang don't really surprise anybody though. Wang was quoted earlier asking Microsoft to not sell its own Windows 8 tablet, known as the Surface tablet, as it would hurt the PC vendor partners that Microsoft does business with, including Acer.
Apple currently dominates the tablet market with its juggernaut iPad. Things like iPad rentals have been soaring recently, along with other tablet and laptop rentals, and I would expect that number to increase with the release of the Surface tablet. Rentacomputer.com sees the influences that certain products have on the technology industry and the iPad definitely paved the way for things like Microsoft's Surface tablet.
Many people are looking to the Surface to dethrone Apple's iPad. Many have tried and the closest (in my opinion) anyone has come has to be Samsung and the Galaxy Tab. Unfortunately, Samsung and Apple are in a huge patent war right now so we can see how well that worked out. But maybe the Surface tablet has what it takes, we can only wait and see.
Source: PC World - Acer Does Not Expect 'Explosive Growth' for Windows 8 Later This Year