Officially, no one at Microsoft is talking about the next major version of Windows, although we know that the company is working to add a Start menu back to the desktop for a forthcoming Windows 8.1 update. However, that doesn't mean Microsoft isn't working on that project. Indeed, a new Seattle Times story says that the OS will get some input from nearly all of Microsoft's engineering teams.
The story itself is mostly a profile of two of Microsoft's corporate vice-presidents: Joe Belfiore and David Treadwell. Both work in the operating system division, with Belfiore in charge of the user interface for Windows 8.1, Windows RT and Windows Phone, and Treadwell leading the charge on the core OS development, which also includes the software inside the Xbox and Perceptive Pixel hardware.
However, a rather interesting paragraph in the article is found near the end, where it states most of the company's engineering groups got together earlier this year to collaborate on a priority internal memo that describes all of the features Microsoft will put into the next version of Windows. While the memo officially was prepared by the team led by Treadwell, it included input from the Azure, Office, Skype and Bing development teams.
According to Treadwell, this move was made to show Microsoft's divisions could collaborate on one project. He stated:
Before, there was a Windows team, a Windows Phone team, an Xbox team. While there was general agreement of the value of (having a) common core and consistency of design, there were organizational lines that we had to cross to achieve that. There just aren’t these barriers now.
That's an interesting revelation and it might make a difference in giving Windows users the kinds of features they really want in the next version of the OS.
Source: Seattle Times