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Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Windows 8.1 RTM to Launch in August

EnglishBlogVNSoftware maker Microsoft has just confirmed that the full version of Windows 8.1 will be sent to OEMs in August, indicating that the update will be released for end users later this year.

While no details have been provided on the launch date, Tami Reller, Microsoft's chief financial officer, said during the WPC 2013 that Windows 8.1 would go live six weeks after the OS update reaches RTM, so the full version should be here just in time for the holiday season.

Previous reports suggested that Windows 8.1 was projected to see daylight in October, but Microsoft refused to comment on these rumors.

At the same time, Reller has also promised that Windows 8.1 will spawn a new wave of devices, including tablets and hybrids specifically designed to make the most of the new operating system and its “great touch support.”

Windows 8.1: the pitch to partners

Of course, Ballmer and Microsoft have faced a backlash of sorts over Windows 8, and the radical overhaul of the Windows interface that the operating system includes.

“Windows 8 was nothing short of the most remarkable replatforming from Windows,” he told partners.

Microsoft did “a heck of a good job on Windows 8,” Ballmer said. However, he also said that the company has “listened to the feedback” from enterprise customers on Windows 8, and hoped that those questions would be answered by Windows 8.1

Reller, who took over from Steven Sinofsky after Sinofsky unexpectedly left the companysoon after the launch, had the job of convincing partners that Windows 8 was a hit. Unfortunately, she still didn’t back off Microsoft’s party line that the company had sold over 100 million Windows 8 licenses, and that enterprises had downloaded more than 20 million "enterprise evaluations." In total, Windows 8 had been used over 60 billion hours, she said.Over 100,000 Windows 8 apps have been released on the Windows Store.

”Now is the time for enterprise to consider Windows 8 with Windows 8.1,” Reller said. “It is only 273 days away until the end of Windows XP support, she said, adding some urgency to the transition.

Reller also announced a design competency to train designers on how to design apps for the new Windows 8 interface, launching in January. Via another program, “Touch Wins,” Microsoft will provide incentives to customers and partners who sell touchscreen-enabled PCs.

Finally, Reller also said that Windows 8.1 RTM would be released by late August. Last year, OEMs had access to Windows 8.0 in the first week of August, with the public launch on Oct. 25—implying that Microsoft will launch Windows 8.1 to consumers, in its release version, before then.

It’s not clear how much testing Microsoft needs to do to push Windows 8.1, but the list of features that Microsoft is building in is huge. If you want Windows 8.1 now, however, follow our guides to how to download and install it.

Softpedia, PcWorld
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