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Microsoft has released Windows 8.1, the latest update to its Windows 8 operating system, which is designed to run on both tablets and customized laptops. Many tech observers are noting that the new update makes the OS more intuitive and noticeably faster. It's a free download that can be accessed by visiting the Windows Store on Windows 8 machines. While the system won't look much different aesthetically, there are some important changes that users can look forward to.

Here are the most notable differences between 8.1 and the original Windows 8:

  • Better Browser Syncing: Internet Explorer 11 now allows users to open tabs and browse on one machine, and sign in on another to continue where they left off, with the same tabs and sites open.
  • Improved Mail App: The email software that comes packaged with Windows 8 has been significantly updated with a better interface and faster performance.
  • Reintroduction of the Start Button: The Start Button has been an integral part of Windows since Windows 95, so it was quite controversial when it was removed from Windows 8. Microsoft added it back in, although it doesn't really perform any special functions other than taking users back to the startup tile screen.

Shopping for a Windows PC these days can be a bit daunting, as there are so many manufacturers and configurations to choose from. We recommend checking out the online store at PortableOne and viewing our selection of Asus, Toshiba and Sony VAIO laptops, which offer top-of-the-line performance for an affordable price. Whether you're looking for a touch screen convertible notebook or a high-powered desktop replacement, we have a system that meets your needs.

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