“We want to move people from needing Windows to choosing Windows to loving Windows.”

– Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella

Before I begin, I want to make one thing clear: this isn’t a review or how-to guide. There are plenty of those around the internet and I’ve linked to some of my favorites at the bottom of this post. What I want to do instead is provide some insight into the changes Microsoft has been making as a company and what they means for people like you and me.

Tonight at 11

When you grow up, there are these pillar moments in history where the whole world stops and focuses on one thing. Memories of the new millenium and Y2K stick vividly in my mind. The media encompasses these events, highlighting them as everyone watches.

When I was 13, I remember seeing headlines about the launch of Windows 95. People lined up for a midnight release to have the latest and greated version of Microsoft’s operating system. They couldn’t wait to experience the “revolutionary” start menu and better multitasking design.

In a day where midnight releases have become an everyday event, this probably doesn’t seem like a big deal, but on August 24, 1995 it was “Tonight at 11” material.

The Future Starts Now

It’s taken nearly 20 years for us to see Microsoft put so much effort behind marketing a new version, but with the launch of Windows 10 it’s hard to not witness product placement or advertisements in your everyday life.

Introducing Windows 10 – The Future Starts Now

Microsoft has taken to social media, television and even movies (there’s not an Apple product in sight in the newest Mission Impossible movie, where other installments were laden with them).

An Inside Perspective

While marketing is important, there’s one other piece to this launch that Microsoft has excelled (is that a pun?) in: customer service. They want your feedback. They want to know what you like and what you don’t like. Further, they’re making changes based on what they’re hearing.

It Happily Awaits Your Feedback

A few months ago, Windows launched the Insider program where anyone could experience Windows 10 in it’s beta stage. While it’s not for everyone – you have to be okay with experiencing prominent bugs and quirks – it allows users to experience their new product early and provide feedback. In fact, the insider build of Windows 10 went as far as prompting you to rate specific aspects and changes were made in future builds based on what people submitted.

You actually see the same thing with the release of Office for Mac 2016. Built into the interface is an icon that allows you to provide instant feedback to Microsoft. You don’t like something? Let them know. And it all takes less than a minute.

Office for Mac 2016: Top 10 Reasons To Get the New Version

A New Outlook

So what does this all mean? Why does it even matter?

In a day when life is full of choices and various companies are all vying for even a moment of your attention, there’s one thing that will make them stand out: how they treat you. Customer service matters. Listening to what people want matters. Giving them what they want shows that you’ve listened and that you care.

Introducing Windows 10 Highlights Reel

The Microsoft of a decade ago isn’t the same Microsoft of today. 10 years ago (around the time I bought my first MacBook), Microsoft was adamanent about doing things their own way or no way at all.

You can see that in the technology behind their built-in web browser Internet Explorer. Want to know why everyone will tell you to not use IE and to use Firefox of Chrome instead? It’s because it wasn’t compliant to the defined standards of the internet making things not work.

But that’s an discussion for a different day. (Internet Explorer has been replaced in Windows 10, by the way.)

The point now is that the paradigm has changed. Microsoft has changed their approach and we’re the ones who get to benefit from it.

Microsoft wants to hear what you think and – more importantly – cares about what you think, so take advantage of it and get ready to #UpgradeYourWorld.

##Helpful Resources I know there will be plenty of questions about Windows 10. I’ve found the following resources to be really helpful.

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