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Microsoft skips Windows 9, jumps straight to Windows 10

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp announced its ‘Windows 10’ operating system on Tuesday to replace the largely unpopular Windows 8, skipping a number to mark a leap toward unifying the way people work on tablets, phones and traditional computers.

The next version of Microsoft’s flagship product, which still runs the vast majority of personal computers and is used by 1.5 billion customers worldwide, is aimed at recapturing the lucrative business market, which generally ignored the new-look Windows 8.

windows 10

Windows 10 will be “our greatest enterprise platform ever,” said Terry Myerson, Microsoft’s head of operating systems, at an event in San Francisco. Only 20 percent of organizations migrated to Windows 8, which was released two years ago, according to tech research firm Forrester. Many PC users disliked the touch-optimized interface and bemoaned the loss of the traditional start-button pop-up menu.

He said Windows 10, long known by the project name ‘Threshold’ internally, represented a new type of system for the company, as it seeks to unify computing as mobile devices proliferate. The name represented that leap, he said.

“Windows 10 adapts to the devices customers are using, from Xbox to PCs and phones to tablets and tiny gadgets,” said Myerson.

Microsoft faces an uphill struggle in reigniting excitement about Windows. With the rise of Apple Inc’s iPhone and iPad, and Google Inc’s Android devices, Windows no longer plays a central role in many people’s on-screen lives.

From a virtual monopoly on personal computing 10 years ago, Windows now runs only about 14 percent of devices, according to research firm Gartner.

Reaction to the news was cautious. Microsoft shares fell 8 cents to $46.36 on Nasdaq.

“It’s a bold statement for Microsoft to make,” said Daniel Ives, an analyst at FBR Capital Markets. “So far there’s not as much meat on the bone as we would have wanted, although it’s still very early days.”

An early version of the software, demonstrated on stage by Microsoft executive Joe Belfiore, showed two modes, one optimized for touch-controlled tablets, and one for PCs using a mouse and keyboard. Users can switch between the two depending on the device.

windows 10

Myerson did not say exactly how or when the new Windows would be rolled out, but other executives said Microsoft was aiming for a full release in spring 2015. A technical preview can be downloaded from Microsoft’s website, starting on Wednesday, for users to try out and give the company feedback.

“They were trying to start the messaging for a product that won’t actually ship until sometime around the middle of next year,” said Gartner analyst Steve Kleynhans at the event. “This was to tell the PC installed base that there is a future and it doesn’t have to be covered over in brightly colored tiles, or force them to abandon everything they’ve learned over the past 15 years.”

Myerson said his team toyed with calling the new product Windows One to emphasize the unity of all the companies’ products, but noted that name had already been used.

(Reporting by Bill Rigby; Editing by Meredith Mazzilli, Richard Chang and Gunna Dickson)

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26 comments

  1. I wonder if windows 10 will be any good.

  2. looks interesting

  3. amanda whitley

    looks too similar to 8.. i like the way 7 looks better.

  4. interesting

  5. Like new version Windows 10

  6. I’ve just gotten used to navigating Windows 8, now there’s a 10 coming out?! It doesn’t seem like it’s been 2 years since 8 came out either. Right now I don’t see what upgrades could be done since 8 seems to work perfectly for me and what I use it on but I’m assuming there have to be some little upgrades that would be nice to have. Guess we’ll see when it officially comes out.

  7. Oh, lord. What happened to 9???? Thanks for sharing!

  8. Colleen Boudreau

    I’m interested to see what new features it will have.

  9. I can’t wait for this to come out.

  10. Well I hope its better than windows 8 I have had it since January and it is still hard to get use to and I wish they would bring the start button back makes things a whole lot easier to find. Thanks for the article.

  11. i kinda miss the origial windows.. i find as the create more and more windows they get more and more complicated 😛 i miss the good ol days when it was simple and to the point.

  12. I think we are all still getting used to Windows 8

  13. I hope its better than Windows 8!

  14. I hope it really is as good as they say, Windows 8 is such a pain to use.

  15. I can’t wait to try the new 10, always like new things. Thanks for the info!

  16. i will be excited to see the new features on windows 10

  17. oh no.. they should just leave things alone if they are working great like windows 7 does..With windows 8 they knew people were up in arms and tha is why they came up with a download to change your desktop to the exaxct way that wndows 7 is I spoke to many tecs about this and this is what I was told So if you go into many stores you will see the windows 8 set up like windows 7 was..now windows 10 ugggg

  18. I like that there’s an optimization option for either tablet or PC.

  19. i wonder if it will be good, i really hope so..

  20. Hope it’s better than 8….Looks about the same though…TY for the article…

  21. Sharon Kaminski

    This sounds like a great move. It has to work better than Windows 8 did.

  22. I really like how Windows 10 adapts to the devices its customers are using.

  23. That’s what you call “Jump Start”!

  24. Hopefully, Windows 10 can live up to the expectations. Otherwise, it might lose even more of its market share.

  25. crystal sheckles-gibson

    I still have a laptop with Windows 7. I hope to upgrade soon.

  26. I hope Windows 10 won’t be annoying like Windows 8!

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