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Windows 8 PCs are 'simply the best', Ballmer insists

Microsoft executives were in New York City yesterday morning to officially take the wraps off Windows 8, which will be available globally today.

Windows users have been able to download the revamped OS since 12:01 local time today, with new Windows 8-enhanced PCs and tablets already on sale. Overall, Windows 8 will be sold in 140 markets and 37 languages.

Windows chief Steven Sinofsky said Microsoft has had 16 million installations of the pre-release versions of Windows 8, resulting in 1.2 billion hours of pre-release testing.

"Windows 8 is simply the best release of Windows 8 ever," Sinofsky said.

Steve Ballmer took the stage later and echoed Sinofsky's sentiments. "Windows 8 PCs are simply the best PCs ever," he said.

Ballmer said Windows 8 "lights up with your life," allowing for easy access to "everything and everybody that you really care about."

A number of PC makers have unveiled their Windows 8 line-ups, but for more, check out Sebastian Anthony's take on why you should up upgrade your PC to Windows 8.

Microsoft is also making a big push on the tablet front. "For the first time, Windows also has first-rate tablets in addition to desktops and notebooks," Ballmer said.