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What is an operating system?

operating systemThe operating system (OS) is an essential piece of software on a computer. It is responsible for controlling basic functions and managing other applications.

Computer and laptop operating systems

Most desktop PCs and laptops from brands like Dell, Acer and HP run a Microsoft Windows operating system. The latest version in this OS series is Windows 10.

Apple Mac computers, including MacBooks and iMacs, come preloaded with an Apple macOS operating system. The latest version is called macOS Sierra.

Other computer operating systems include Linux, Ubuntu and Chrome OS.

Tablet operating systems

Most tablet computers from brands like Samsung, Sony and Asus run a Google Android operating system. The latest version of this OS is called Android 7 Nougat.

Apple iPads come preloaded with an Apple iOS operating system, the latest version of which is iOS 10.

Other tablet operating systems include Amazon Fire OS and Microsoft Windows.

Operating system issues

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