Windows 10 arrived in 2015 as the operating system to rule them all, promising to support desktop, laptops, smartphones, tablets and all manner of consumer devices.
This bold claim was accompanied by an ambitious target of achieving an install base of more than three billion - and three years on, Microsoft has made good progress towards that target.
The success of Windows 10 can be attributed to many things, not least the huge range of productivity features that have made the operating system ideal for businesses in all industries – from finance to the creative sector.
Powerful capabilities, along with regular updates from Microsoft, have given early adopters an advantage. And with support for older versions expiring in less than a year’s time, organisations that don’t migrate will not only be missing out on the productivity gains and cost efficiencies but will be putting their data and systems at risk too.
An unacceptable security risk
After January 14, 2020, Microsoft will no longer provide security updates or support for PCs running Windows 7. From this date, technical assistance and automatic updates will no longer be available, meaning that organisations that don’t refresh their device estate or migrate to Windows 10 will struggle with unreliable, aging hardware that stifles productivity.
While the forfeiture of these advances is undesirable, the security risks are unacceptable.
The average cost of a data breach is now $3.68 million, and the reputational damage accrued can be severe and irreparable. Exposure to such an incident is increased through the absence of security updates for aging systems like Windows 7, which will be affected by future threats that exploit weaknesses.
In addition to frequent updates, Windows 10 is more secure by nature. It has built in defences, such as Windows Defender Antivirus, that repel threats, and it also enables biometric security features like Windows Hello. This allows users to log-in using their fingerprint or face.
Some Windows 10 Pro devices also have security built in at a hardware level, such as Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) and Early Launch Anti-Malware (ELAM). This means that only safe, certified software can start during the hardware process.
Windows 10 is a significant upgrade
For end users, Windows 10 is a significant upgrade. Included are interfaces for both PC and tablet use, something which has driven significant innovation in device form factors.
There are usability enhancements such as live tiles and new style Windows applications, as well as support for 3D graphics. Multiple inputs, such as voice and touch, allow for more natural interactions and handwritten notes alongside the trusty mouse and keyboard.
An added degree of intelligence is afforded by the inclusion of Cortana, Microsoft’s personal assistant. Cortana listens to and answers questions in normal, everyday language and learns more about a user over time – automating tasks and helping employees to get more done during the work day.
When used in conjunction with Microsoft Office 365 – which is included with Windows 10 as part of Microsoft 365 – staff become more empowered and productive.
Research suggests that PCs older than four years cost more to maintain than newer PCs and require more frequent repairs than newer systems. Meanwhile, Windows 10 devices offer two and a half times the performance, three times the battery life and 30 times the graphics performance.
Windows 10 systems can handle more applications simultaneously, wake up and boot faster, and enable people to get more done.
Why it’s time to refresh your IT estate
There are benefits for administrators too as Windows 10 systems are easier to manage. New devices are easily set up using Windows AutoPilot, while the use of a single Microsoft account and cloud technology enables a consistent experience across multiple systems.
Administrators can roll out updates on their own schedule with Windows Update for Business and applications can be managed and distributed using the Windows Store. Microsoft 365 also includes Enterprise Mobility + Security to help this process with managed mobile devices.
The clock is ticking and the time to act is now. Insight can offer advice and assistance with your migration, speeding up deployment times and maximising your investment through our licensing services. Contact us today to see how we can help you move to a more modern, secure operating system.