The software giant Microsoft has launched the final version of the Windows 8 beta and has named it the Windows 8 Consumer Preview. Unlike the first edition which was for Developers only, Windows 8 Consumer Preview is available to download for anyone interested in trying it out. The download link of Windows 8 Consumer Preview edition can be found at the end of the article. So you can skip directly to download section at the bottom in case you are not interested in knowing what’s new in the latest preview of the world’s most popular operating system.
With Windows 8, the whole experience of Windows has been reimagined. It’s designed to work on a wide range of devices, from touch-enabled tablets, to laptops, to desktops and all-in-ones. You can get instant access to your apps, your files, and the information you care about most so you can spend less time navigating and more time doing what you actually want to do. You can move between Windows 8 PCs easily and access your files and settings from virtually anywhere. You can get the first-class experience and navigating with a mouse and keyboard fast and fluid, with the tile based user interface. And just like Windows 7, reliability and security features are built in. It’s the best of Windows 7, made even better.
Some key new updates in the Windows 8 Consumer Preview:
- Broad range of product changes and improvements. From completing the user experience for touch, keyboard and mouse to refining the development platform, the Consumer Preview improves performance, quality and reliability across all subsystems. With the added features, it represents a more complete view of the capabilities of Windows 8.
- Windows Store with new apps. The Windows 8 Consumer Preview marks the beta opening of the Windows Store, which is filled with a variety of new Metro style apps from both third-party developers and Microsoft. During the Consumer Preview, these apps are available to try and experience at no cost to users. The Windows Store will offer personalized recommendations, and Windows 8 gives users the ability to take their apps and settings with them across multiple PCs, making it easy to discover and try new apps while offering developers the greatest opportunity of any platform.
- Connecting to the cloud across Windows-based PCs and Windows Phone. The Windows 8 Consumer Preview offers seamless integration with the content people care about across their devices. An optional additional sign-on with a Microsoft account provides access to a host of features, including the ability to roam all settings, use cloud storage, communicate with email, calendar and contacts, and connect to a broad range of services. Your connection to the cloud works across your Windows-based PCs and your Windows Phones.
- Internet Explorer 10 Platform Preview 5. The browser has been re-imagined to create a new experience designed specifically for Windows 8 devices. It provides an edge-to-edge user interface that is all about less browser and more Web. Fast and fluid, Internet Explorer is hardware-accelerated to enable Web performance.
- Preview of new hardware capabilities. At the event, Microsoft also showcased Windows 8 running on a wide range of new x86- and ARM-based reference hardware. This hardware will be available to select developers for trial and testing as previously announced.
See Windows 8 in action (Video):
Windows 8 Consumer Preview: Official Product Demo (Video)
Windows 8 Consumer Preview System Requirements:
Windows 8 Consumer Preview should run on the same hardware that powers Windows 7 today. In general, you can expect Windows 8 Consumer Preview to run on a PC with the following:
- 1 GHz or faster processor
- 1 GB RAM (32-bit) or 2 GB RAM (64-bit)
- 16 GB available hard disk space (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)
- DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver
- 1024 x 768 minimum screen resolution
However, there are some additional requirements to take into consideration in order to use certain features in Windows 8. In order to use the Snap feature, you will need a PC with a 1366×768 resolution or higher. If you want to use touch, you’ll need a multitouch-capable laptop, tablet, or display. Windows 8 supports up to five simultaneous touch points, so if your hardware doesn’t, you may find typing on the onscreen keyboard and using certain controls more of a challenge. You’ll also need an internet connection to try out the Windows Store, to download and install apps, and to take your settings and files with you from one Windows 8 PC to another.
Download Windows 8 Beta Consumer Preview: ISO files (.iso) + Windows 8 Consumer Preview Setup
Note: As always, remember that this is a public Beta, not a final, stable version. Use on production systems is not recommended. Back up everything that is important to you. While we don’t expect any serious problems, regular back ups are a good thing regardless of whether or not you are using beta software.
Interested users can download Windows 8 beta or consumer preview at http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-8/download (Online installer) or go to http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-8/iso for its ISO images (.iso). The download size of Windows 8 beta for 32-bit or x86 systems is 2.5 GB and for 64bit or x64 systems is 3.3 GB. The Consumer Preview build string is 8250.0.winmain_win8beta.120217-1520, which indicates that this build was compiled on 17th February.
Unlike the Developer Preview edition, Windows 8 Consumer Preview needs a Product key for activation. The product key is provided by Microsoft on the Downloads page of Windows 8. While Users with the Consumer Preview setup won’t need a product key as the setup program automatically inputs the product key for you.
Windows Windows 8 Beta: Consumer Preview Product Key: NF32V-Q9P3W-7DR7Y-JGWRW-JFCK8
Sorry for the late for this report. As I am so busy last week.