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A cleaner view of People
The People app is part of the unified communications app, which also includes Mail and Calendar. In Windows 8.1 it gets a major overhaul to remove clutter.
A selection of Windows 8.1 desktop themes
It wouldn't be Windows without a selection of desktop themes. The default settings include a new Windows image and a "Lines and colors" slideshow.
A subtle addition to the power menu
The original Start menu is gone, but Windows 8.1 still has the right-click WinX menu. One subtle change in Windows 8.1 is the addition of a Sign Out option in addition to the usual Sleep/Shut Down/Restart functions.