Unlike many of our competitors, we’re still offering all versions of both Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 on our desktops. Our ability to provide customizations like this is one of the advantages we have over those larger, overseas-produced brands. But that extra level of customization can breed confusion for some customers. Which OS is best? Stick with what you know or take the plunge with the newest thing? The shortcomings of Windows 8 have no doubt been greatly exaggerated, but are there real issues to be wary of?
Those answers really depend on what type of user you are. Let’s break down both options to get to the bottom of which OS is best for you.
Windows 7 Home Premium/Professional/Ultimate
Probably Microsoft’s most successful Operating System ever, Windows 7 is the current market share leader by a significant margin and still our most requested OS on new builds. Windows 7’s popularity stems from a few key areas – ease of use, stability, and familiarity.
- Classic Windows GUI means no learning curve even for users of older operating systems like Windows XP
- History of being stable, reliable, and secure
- Approaching 4 years old, Windows 7 users may find themselves in the same boat in a few years as XP users did earlier this year
- Does not integrate well with touch devices
- Home Premium version only supports 16GB RAM max
- Former Windows XP users
- Users who tend to avoid change
- Users of non-touch enabled devices
Windows 8.1/8.1 Professional
Still struggling to gain traction even 18 months post release thanks to some mostly unfairly negative press, Windows 8.1 is Microsoft’s latest OS. Despite overall performance improvements over 7 and usability improvements on the release version of 8, Windows 8.1 still sits at just over 12% market share for one main reason – a dramatically redesigned user interface.
- Faster boot, sleep, shutdown times as well as slightly better gaming benchmarks
- Standard version supports 32GB+ RAM
- Simple integration with the cloud via Microsoft’s OneDrive
- Intuitive and easy to use for touch enabled devices like notebooks, AIOs, and tablets
- New interface is intimidating for many Windows users, creating a bit of a learning curve out of the box
- Users who want to stay up to date with the latest PC options
- Users running 32GB+ RAM
- Users of touch enabled devices