We were surprised this morning to see that, only a few hours before the Windows 8 Consumer Preview is scheduled to be released, Microsoft posted its Product Guide for Business for the new OS. 16 pages long, the guide is Microsoft's first sales pitch for the new operating system and highlights 10 of its key benefits. While these of course include the new touch-based user interface and start screen, Windows to Go — a new feature to Windows 8 — gets a lot of coverage as well. Windows to Go lets companies give workers a bootable, managed Windows 8 installation on USB, making it easy to set up offsite or temporary workers with all the software, data, and settings they need to get to work. Microsoft also points to its new system-wide SmartScreen Application Reputation as a benefit to its business customers; the feature warns users when they're about to open a download that has a high risk of being malicious, but drops the warnings when the download is from a trusted source.
The guide is an interesting preview to what Microsoft will be talking about today, though we're expecting a slew of other new features as well. Stay tuned!
Update: It's important to mention that the guide notes your IT department won't have the same kind of control over an ARM tablet as they will over an x86 one. The guide reads:
"Although the ARM- based version of Windows does not include the same manageability features that are in 32-bit and 64-bit versions, businesses can use these power-saving devices in unmanaged environments."