The full fledged release along with the manufacturing process began in August 2012 and is available starting October 2012. Microsoft has introduced significant changes in its latest version Windows 8 and the improvisations were focused towards its efficient implementations in mobile devices and tablets in competition to Android and iOS.
How is it different from the other operating systems produced by Microsoft? In its latest release Windows 8, Microsoft has introduced a touch friendly UI which is based on the Metro design language of Microsoft. The Start screen features a grid of tiles that are dynamically updated representing the applications. Touch input is another innovation introduced in Windows 8 along with a new Windows 8 store that is available for downloading/purchasing applications for its utilization on Windows 8 OS.
It also utilizes the latest technologies like Cloud Computing, USB 3.0, near field communications, 4Kn Advanced Format and low power ARM architecture. Windows 8 is also in-built with antivirus capabilities. It also takes advantage of the Secure Boot feature which digitally signs your operating system and secures it from any malware that intends to alter the boot process. The installation process is also unique from other operating systems through its optimization adopted for digital distribution.
Although the response seems mixed, Microsoft has been successful enough in selling 60 million licenses by January 2013. This also includes the count of PC's upgraded to Windows 8.