Microsoft has garnered a lot of attention with the announcement of Windows 8, followed by the unveiling of the Surface tablets and Windows Phone 8. Speaking at Microsoft's recently-held Worldwide Partner Conference, Windows Chief Marketing Officer and Chief Financial Officer Tami Reller said that Windows 8 is going to reach the general audience by this October. This also means that the Windows 8 and Windows RT PCs will be available for purchase and upgrades starting this October. She went on to mention that Windows 8 is going to be available in 109 languages across 231 markets across the world – which is quite a reach at launch!
Windows 8 is nearing completion and the final RTM build is expected to be released this month, just a while from now. The RTM build is the final build that goes out for shipping – it’s the final product that ends up on notebooks and desktops; it’s also the final product that you’ll be using when Windows 8 launches.
Microsoft has been proactive when it comes to releasing information on their upcoming operating system. The company first launched their Building Windows 8 blog, which was designed to inform enthusiasts about the progress of the development of the operating system. Later in 2011, a Developer Preview of the operating system was made public and users were able to get their hands on the copy for free. Soon after CES this year, Microsoft released Windows 8 Consumer Preview, a more complete and stable build of the operating system.
New features added
Microsoft’s new operating system is special for a number of reasons. It’s going to be available for both desktops and tablets. It’ll also be available for ARM devices through an operating system called Windows RT, which includes the all-new Metro user interface. PCs, notebooks and x86 tablets will have access to the standard Windows 8 operating system, which will include both the new Metro user interface as well as the traditional desktop user interface. The Metro user interface is designed specifically with tablets and touchscreens in mind.
Microsoft also has two tablets that they’ll be selling along with some of their vendor-partners. They recently took the wraps off the new family of PCs for Windows – the Surface tablet. Microsoft's line-up of tablets included a Surface running on the ARM processor and featuring Windows RT, and another running on a third-generation Intel Core processor featuring Windows 8 Pro.
Microsoft’s Windows 8 operating system is going to be a giant shift in terms of design and interface. We’ve already used the release preview and it is definitely a step up from the current operating systems. However, we’re eager to see what the full picture is all about.
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