Microsoft kicked off 2016 with the announcement that there are now more than 200 million devices running Windows 10, and that the rate of adoption is increasing with around 40% of new devices becoming active since Black Friday. At Kensington we recently conducted a survey of IT professionals to establish the top IT priorities for 2016. At the top of the agenda, along with network security and infrastructure refreshes, were OS updates, with almost two-thirds of respondents declaring that they had either already deployed Windows 10 or had plans to do so in 2016. Given the high demand for Microsoft’s latest OS among enterprise and IT professionals, we wanted to remind professionals of a few simple tips and tricks that will help increase daily productivity through the use of Windows 10.
- Adjust the Start menu
A customizable Start screen isn’t new, but the return of the Start menu has won over many users. With Windows 10, users can customize the tiles by right-clicking, changing their size or removing them from the menu altogether. Businesses can also customize the appearance of the Start menu, and using AppLocker, they can control which apps and files users can run.
- Track battery use
Business users who travel can monitor the battery on their device with the Battery saver feature on Windows 10. Go to System in Settings to find turn on Battery saver mode and to see how long your device’s battery will last. You can also change the settings so that the Battery saver comes on automatically.
- Divide your workflow using virtual desktops
With Windows 10, it’s now easier to manage your workflow. Instead of having a single desktop, which can soon become cluttered with different windows and apps, you can run multiple ‘virtual’ desktops simultaneously. To create, remove or view virtual desktops, simply press the Windows Key and Tab, or use the Task View button.
- Secure Authentication with Windows Hello
Windows 10 is an increasingly secure, password-free experience, powered by Microsoft Passport and Windows Hello. The latter supports biometric authentication with your face, iris or fingerprint, providing a convenient and fast way of logging on to a Windows 10 device and strengthening security. For enterprise level security, Windows Passport can secure access to High Business Impact (HBI) data and resources.
- Personalize default apps
One reported problem with Windows 10 deployment is that it affects default apps. This means that when you want to read a PDF, for example, the new OS may open Edge instead of Adobe Acrobat. These new associations can cause frustration, therefore the easiest way to change them back to familiar applications, should this be an issue, is to visit the Settings folder and click on the System link. Here you’ll be able to edit the Default apps, ensuring your preferred apps are used for particular tasks.
- Go straight to the Control Panel
Sometimes you may want to bypass the new Start menu and go straight to the Control Panel or another important part of the system. One of the quickest ways to do this is to right-click on the Start menu. This brings up an alternative, pared-down Start menu which provides direct access to the Control Panel, Device Manager and command prompt window. Windows 8 users familiar with this menu can still use the keyboard shortcut Windows Key and X.
- Use video capture for smarter presentations
Originally intended for gaming, Windows 10 has a screen recording function that can also come in handy for business users who have to prepare a presentation or simply demonstrate a process to a client or colleague. This function could, for example, if you wanted to prepare how-to videos for particular Excel tasks or help videos, taking colleagues through necessary steps. The recorded clips are saved to the Xbox app, and are easy to share.
How are you finding Windows 10? How does it positively impact your daily workflow? Let us know by commenting below or join in the conversation over on LinkedIn.