We've been running a competition with two prizes up for grabs, supplied by our friends at A.C.Ryan. The main prize is an A.C.Ryan Playon!HD2, valued at $219, which lets you insert your own hard drive to store your video, and operates as a media NAS with Full HD Gigabit streaming, USB 3.0, and support for lots of codecs.
The secondary prize is an A.C.Ryan Playon!HD mini2 valued at $169. Like its bigger cousin, the Playon!HD mini2 plays a variety of codecs, only this box operates as a 1080p media streamer.
To win, we asked you to tell us what features would make you excited about Windows 8 and why. Knock $100 off the price of the upgrade so it's more like an Apple OS upgrade? Something special for gamers?
There was a range of suggestions. Jaker1993 wants boot times as fast as Mac and Google machines. Camstatic thinks returning to a single version of Windows is a good idea. Unknown2 says Microsoft should be working on system performance. Nato wants DirectX via Windows update. Yarrago suggested multiple simultaneous user logins for each PC.
The message we got from all this? There's not one obvious thing Microsoft can do to impress you all. You want a lot of things, and you want it done better.
As we mentioned, there were great suggestions from everyone who posted comments, which made choosing a winner difficult. In the end, we awarded the main prize to blockcentre, whose suggestions ranged from virtual desktops, to better security (an obvious one, but a big one), and some little bugbears (like accurate estimations of how long it will take to copy files). The second prize (the A.C.Ryan Playon!HD mini2) goes to petergoldsmith who, among other things, asked for Bitlocker encryption on all versions of the OS.
Congratulations to you both, and to everyone for their excellent suggestions. Stay tuned for more competitions.