Windows 8 to hit retail availability October 26th

Microsoft has just announced that Windows will be available on October 26th; the announcement came from Steven Sinofsky at Microsoft's annual sales meeting that customers. 

Earlier this month at the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference the company said that the platform would ship in late October and that RTM would occur in early August. Now that we have a firm date, we can officially start the countdown timer.

Windows 8 is a massive bet for Microsoft as they are dramatically changing the Windows 8 experience. With their hybrid desktop/tablet OS, Microsoft is building a unified platform across all of its products including Windows Phone and we suspect (but can't confirm) that next generation of Xbox.

Since the general availability of Windows 8 is now known, we also finally have a target date for the Surface RT tablet as Microsoft previously said that it would go sale when Windows 8 launches. 

Source: Windows Team Blog

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Is there going to be a retail version in stores? Last I heard...there was talk there was only going to be an upgrade version that you download or order...or an OEM?

Jason_Coffey said,
Looks like a fisher price toy.. Windows 8 is a joke.

It's not nearly that bad, but I bet it doesn't do as good as Windows 7 did. Definitely not immediately, for sure!

tried the consumer prolapse version. biggest pile of microsoft turd since windows 1.0. just look at neowin's own poll. vista has nothing on this stinky. in fact. people might just forget all together what vista was after winegg. couldn't wait for the launch. lmao.

Imagine if a poll was done here that asked directs questions about windows 8.
I think some people are scared of the results and there for we won't see it happen.
I thought of this the other day, that if I owned Neowin i would have posted a bunch
of polls by now including straight questions such as "Should the windows 8 start menu be removed ?"
but i guess it wouldn't look to good seeing those results on the front page everyday lol

26th October eh? 1 day later than I think it should've been. 25th October 2012 lands on a Thursday
this year. 25th October 2001, the day Windows XP had its retail debut, also landed on a Thursday.

It'd make sense to launch the retail availability of Windows 8 precisely 11 years to the very day of
the launch of the (still popular) operating system Microsoft desperately wants/needs to kill off!

DJGM said,
26th October eh? 1 day later than I think it should've been. 25th October 2012 lands on a Thursday
this year. 25th October 2001, the day Windows XP had its retail debut, also landed on a Thursday.

It'd make sense to launch the retail availability of Windows 8 precisely 11 years to the very day of
the launch of the (still popular) operating system Microsoft desperately wants/needs to kill off!

And Windows 7 was released on Thursday, October 22, 2009.

The only downside is that individuals/independent uses-developers and other Windows enthusiasts cannot have early access to the RTM without access to MSDN/Technet accounts and cannot take advantage of the early RTM availability or the $39.99 upgrade program when the RTM is available as early as August and they do need to wait until the following October to get their hands on the final build of Windows 8.

Microsoft should give the RTM to public outside the MSDN/Technet and other similar channels and in my opinion the upgrade program for $39.99 should apply and give users access to the RTM as early as August.

Since they are doing Digital Downloads for their upgrade pricing...What are the chances of "pre-orders"?

I know, but it always comes in handy to test and try MS software before putting it to actual (business) use. Either in virtual environment or non-virtual.

Keep in mind it has also been announced that with technet and msdn your licenses now expire when your technet or msdn does. So do not sign up for technet just to get windows 8 licenses.

technet/msdn usually gets windows versions 1-2 weeks after it rtm's if my memory serves me correctly so i guess it will leak on the internet then. I'm hoping we get Win 7 SP2 before then.

torrentthief said,
technet/msdn usually gets windows versions 1-2 weeks after it rtm's if my memory serves me correctly so i guess it will leak on the internet then. I'm hoping we get Win 7 SP2 before then.

I got a Technet subscription, so I'd be save...
at least for my notebook

A week or two after RTM... Perhaps sooner.
(Usually goes through TechNet/MSDN/Vol around the same time...)

That has been the trend with 2000, XP, Vista, 7, etc.

So, if it's true that RTM will happen last week or July/first week August (which is the same week), maybe the week of August 13th?...

Kaos DComo said,
A week or two after RTM... Perhaps sooner.
(Usually goes through TechNet/MSDN/Vol around the same time...)

That has been the trend with 2000, XP, Vista, 7, etc.

So, if it's true that RTM will happen last week or July/first week August (which is the same week), maybe the week of August 13th?...

AFAIK they already announced RTM for the first week of August.

Shyatic said,
Question is when it is available for businesses/enterprises to start testing through volume licensing?
Next month. It was already announced recently.

Shyatic said,
Question is when it is available for businesses/enterprises to start testing through volume licensing?

...and some of Microsoft's enterprise customers got a hand on it well before it went public in beta.

Shyatic said,
Question is when it is available for businesses/enterprises to start testing through volume licensing?

Dates for MSDN and Technet release is August 9th. The GM candidate is due to enter final testing this coming Monday (23rd July).