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Windows 8.1 is designed for today’s modern businesses. Offering the latest and most powerful operating system, Windows 8.1 is fully integrated with cloud-services and compatible across a range of devices. Below is a list of some of its features, read on to find out how Windows 8.1 can help your organisation realise its potential.

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Enhancements

Workplace Join

A Windows 8 PC was either domain joined or not. This feature allows a middle ground between all or nothing access, allowing a user to work on the device of their choice and still have access to corporate resources.

Work Folders

Work Folders allows a user to sync data to their device from their user folder located in the corporation’s data center. Files created locally sync back to the file server in the corporate environment.

Open MDM

With Windows 8.1, you can use an OMA-DM API agent to allow management of Windows 8.1 devices with mobile device management products, like Mobile Iron or Air Watch.

Mobile Device Management

When a user enrolls their device, they are joining the device to the Windows Intune management service. They get access to the Company Portal which provides a consistent experience for access to their applications, data and to manage their own devices.

Web Application Proxy

Publish access to corporate resources, and enforce multi-factor authentication as well as apply conditional access policies to verify both the user’s identity and the device they are using resources, and enforce multi-factor authentication as well as verify the device being used before access is granted.

RDS enhancements

Enhanced Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) in Windows Server 2012 R2 with improvements in management, value, and user experience.

Security enhancements

Remote business data removal

Corporations now have more control over corporate content which can be marked as corporate, encrypted, and then be wiped when the relationship between the corporation and user has ended. Corporate data can now be identified as corporate vs. user, encrypted, and wiped on command using EAS or EAS + OMA-DM protocol.

Improved biometrics

All versions of Windows 8.1 include end-to-end biometric capabilities that enable authenticating with your biometric identity anywhere in Windows (Windows sign-in, remote access, User Account Control, and so on).

Pervasive device encryption

Device encryption previously found on Windows RT and Windows Phone 8 is now available in all editions of Windows. It is enabled out of the box and can be configured with additional BitLocker protection and management capability on Windows 8.1 Pro and Windows 8.1 Enterprise.

Improved Internet Explorer

Internet Explorer 11 improvements include faster page load times, side-by-side browsing of your sites, enhanced pinned site notifications, and app settings like favorites, tabs and settings sync across all your Windows 8.1 PCs.

Malware resistance

Windows Defender, Microsoft’s free antivirus solution in Windows 8, now includes network behavior monitoring to help detect and stop the execution of known and unknown malware.

Device lockdown

With Assigned Access, a new feature offered in Windows 8.1 RT, Windows 8.1 Pro, and Windows 8.1 Enterprise, you can enable a single Windows Store application experience on the device.

Mobility Enhancements

VPN

We have added support for a wider range of VPN clients in both Windows and Windows RT devices. We have also added the ability to have an app automatically trigger VPN connections.

Auto-triggered VPN

When you select an app or resource that needs access through the inbox VPN – like a company’s intranet site – Windows 8.1 automatically prompts you to sign in with one click.

Mobile broadband

Windows 8.1 supports embedded wireless radio, which gives you increased power savings and longer battery life, and also enables thinner form factors and lower cost devices.

Modern UI experience

Variable, continuous size of snap views

You have more ways to see multiple apps on the screen at once. When displaying multiple apps at once, you can easily resize the width of the app window to suit your needs.

Boot to desktop

You can now configure Windows 8.1 to boot directly to the desktop after logon.

Desktop and Start screen

Improvements have been made to better support users who prefer a mouse and keyboard experience to access applications.

These are just some of the key features available in Windows 8.1. We encourage you to try and test out these features when evaluating Windows 8.1 for use both in your work environment, and at home.