Microsoft’s mission at its BUILD conference was clear: get the world—and especially developers—excited about Windows 8. Whereas Windows 7 simply needed to best its loathed predecessor, Windows Vista, Windows 8 has the much tougher task of taking on the iPad. To do that, Microsoft’s new OS features an entirely new interface that’s highly customizable and touch friendly, plus a bunch of new features both of Apple’s platforms lack. It even works well on laptops, though there are certainly some kinks at this very early stage. Here’s everything we learned about Windows 8 this week.
Our in-depth Windows 8 hands-on revealed a ton. including nifty new multitouch gestures, engaging full-screen apps (especially Internet Explorer 10), a smarter touch keyboard, and much smarter integration with the cloud.