Microsoft has had a lot of learning opportunity from the successes and failures of Windows 8, and that was evident from some of the quick fixes that were introduced with Window 8.1, which was a mere incremental update over the existing operating system. Still, for those who had hue and cry over the stark difference that Windows 8 presented over Windows 7, Windows 8.1 at least made the system usable for them once again. However, any major changes that were expected from the Redmond company, won’t happen until Windows 9 (or Windows Threshold, as it is called right now).
So far, Microsoft hasn’t officially talked about Windows 9, but at the same time, they’re keen on building up user interest. Hence, certain information keeps leaking from a number of sources to keep the users piqued. Just today, Microsoft China made a Weibo posting that not only showed the mockup Windows 9 wallpaper that we saw earlier this year, but also the question, “Microsoft’s latest OS Windows 9 is coming soon, do you think the Start menu at the left bottom will make a come back?”
The post was removed, but not before it was spotted by a Chinese website, CnBeta. And they were quick to share it with the world.
What’s interesting in this entire story is the wording “coming soon”. Microsoft is already expected to introduce Windows 9 around September 30th through a press conference, but the date is not confirmed. However, the company seems to be gearing up for the announcement, and internal sources suggest that the official unveiling will take place somewhere this fall, even if the exact date ends up being different. Soon after, the new OS is expected to enter a public “technology preview” period, post which the retail availability can take place somewhere in the spring of 2015. All said, it’s quite likely that Microsoft will stick with this schedule to ensure retaining user interest.
The new Windows 9 is expected to feature a lot of enhancements and new features to remedy the mistakes that Microsoft made with Windows 8. For instance, a trimmed down version of the Start menu is coming back, and the desktop versions of the OS will be sans Charms bar. Better integration of the modern apps with the desktop environment are expected, and Cortana might also make an appearance in Windows 9. Let’s see when that happens.