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    • By +Frank B.
      Microsoft set to unveil Windows 9 on September 30th
      Microsoft is planning to unveil its Windows 8 successor next month at a special press event. Sources familiar with Microsoft?s plans tell The Verge that the software maker is tentatively planning its press event for September 30th to detail upcoming changes to Windows as part of a release codenamed "Threshold." This date may change, but the Threshold version of Windows is currently in development and Microsoft plans to release a preview version of what will likely be named Windows 9 to developers on September 30th or shortly afterwards. The date follows recent reports from ZDNet that suggested Microsoft is planning to release a preview version of Windows 9 in late September or early October.
      The early technology preview will give developers a first look at the new mini Start Menu in Windows 9, alongside the removal of the Charms bar feature and several UI changes. Microsoft is currently compiling builds of Threshold ready for the preview that include an early version of Cortana, but it?s not clear if this particular feature will be made available as part of the technology preview.
      While Threshold is likely to be named Windows 9, it?s unlikely that Microsoft will name its upcoming Windows release at its press event. Instead, Microsoft is said to be planning an overview of key new features of the upcoming operating system, with a technical preview ready for developers and enthusiasts. Microsoft is also building a separate combined version of Windows RT and Windows Phone, and the company may take the time to detail this work during its press event. Either way, Microsoft?s next version of Windows is nearing completion and the company will be ready to talk more about it next month.
      Source: The Verge
    • By FaiKee
      WZOR has posted a blog about IE11 with Enterprise mode for win7, guess it's because people are not interested in win7 IE11, let alone enterprise mode, so didn't notice his side-note on Win9:   Since the blog has a link to the leak of win7 IE11, I covered the URL in compliance with Neowin rules.

    • By Avatar Roku
      Paul Thurrott recently published an article condemning Windows 8 to failure status on the basis of an inside tip claiming that only 25 million people have upgraded for free to Windows 8.1. This false report of 25M upgrades has been republished and quoted on every major blog from Gizmodo to BGR without any thought or investigation.
      Paul Thurrott erroneously reports:

      A simple look at the data we have publicly available reveals that Paul Thurrott's numbers have no basis in reality. is a widely used and published data tracker that reports OS usage every month. They report that about 3.6% of PCs worldwide are currently running Windows 8.1 during the first 3 months of availability. In order for Paul Thurrott's 25 million upgrades figure to be correct that would mean that there are fewer than 700 million PCs in use worldwide.
      3.6% of 700M = 25.2M (Windows 8.1) Thurrott Claims 
      In reality most estimates place worldwide computer usage at over 1.6 billion users (more than double, possibly 3 times the amount of users as what Thurrott's number indicates). IDC and Gartner data indicates 315M PCs were sold last year alone (almost half 700M).
      Computer Industry Almanac: Over 1.6B PC users
      MS Says Over 1.3B Windows Users (July, 2012)
      Important to remember that the Netmarketshare stat (3.6%) is of all computers including millions of Mac and Linux PCs worldwide. That means it is not 3.6% of 1.3 billion Windows users, but 3.6% of 1.6 billion computer users.

      3.6% of 1.6B = 57.6M (Windows 8.1) Closer to reality puts the combined Windows 8.0/8.1 usage at about 10.5% of worldwide PC users:
      10.5% of 1.6B = 168M (Windows 8/8.1 active users) 
      168M active users of Windows 8.x in the first year of availabilty is hardly the complete disaster that Thurrott describes in his "Threshold" article.
    • By +Frank B.
      "Threshold" to be Called Windows 9, Ship in April 2015
      Microsoft tries to put Windows 8 in the rear-view mirror
      At the BUILD developer conference in April 2014, Microsoft will discuss its vision for the future of Windows, including a year-off release codenamed "Threshold" that will most likely be called Windows 9. Here's what I know about the next major release of Windows.
      As a kind of recap, we know that Microsoft will update Windows 8.1 in 2014, first with a service pack/feature pack-type update called Update 1 (or GDR1 internally). I wrote a bit about this update recently in Windows 8.1 Update 1 (Very Early) Preview but the expectation is that it will ship in April 2014 alongside Windows Phone 8.1, the development of which Microsoft will soon complete.
      Also in April, of course, is BUILD 2014. That show will hit just weeks after Microsoft completes its corporate reorganization and will surprisingly be very much focused on Windows Phone and Xbox, according to my sources. But I think Windows watchers will agree that the biggest news from the show will be an announcement about Microsoft's plans for the next major Windows version, codenamed "Threshold."
      I previously wrote about Threshold in Microsoft to Take Windows to the "Threshold", Further Changes Coming in Windows "Threshold" and Big Changes Are Coming to Windows. This is the release my sources previously pegged as being the one that will see the return of the Start menu and the ability to run Metro-style apps on the desktop alongside desktop applications.
      But Threshold is more important than any specific updates. Windows 8 is tanking harder than Microsoft is comfortable discussing in public, and the latest release, Windows 8.1, which is a substantial and free upgrade with major improvements over the original release, is in use on less than 25 million PCs at the moment. That's a disaster, and Threshold needs to strike a better balance between meeting the needs of over a billion traditional PC users while enticing users to adopt this new Windows on new types of personal computing devices. In short, it needs to be everything that Windows 8 is not.
      Here's what I've learned about Threshold.
      Windows 9. To distance itself from the Windows 8 debacle, Microsoft is currently planning to drop the Windows 8 name and brand this next release as Windows 9. That could change, but that's the current thinking.
      BUILD vision announcement. In case it's not obvious that the Sinofsky era is over, Microsoft will use BUILD to provide its first major "vision" announcement for Windows since, yes, Longhorn in 2003. Don't expect anything that grandiose, but the Windows team believes it needs to hit a happy middle ground between the KGB-style secrecy of the Sinofsky camp and the freewheeling "we can do it all" days that preceded that. As important, the firm understands that customers need something to be excited about.
      No bits at BUILD. Microsoft will not be providing developers with an early alpha release of "Threshold" at BUILD, and for a good reason: The product won't even begin development until later that month. Right now, Microsoft is firming up which features it intends to deliver in this release.
      Metro 2.0. Maturing and fixing the "Metro" design language used by Windows will be a major focus area of Threshold. It's not clear what changes are coming, but it's safe to assume that a windowed mode that works on the desktop is part of that.
      Three milestones. Microsoft expects to deliver three milestone releases of "Threshold" before its final release. It's unclear what these releases will be called (Beta, Release Candidate, etc.) or which if any will be provided to the public.
      April 2015 release. Microsoft is currently targeting April 2015 for the release of Windows 9 "Threshold."
      In some ways, the most interesting thing about Threshold is how it recasts Windows 8 as the next Vista. It's an acknowledgment that what came before didn't work, and didn't resonate with customers. And though Microsoft will always be able to claim that Windows 9 wouldn't have been possible without the important foundational work they had done first with Windows 8?just as was the case with Windows 7 and Windows Vista?there's no way to sugarcoat this. Windows 8 has set back Microsoft, and Windows, by years, and possibly for good.
      These things don't happen in isolation?the big and slow Vista arrived inauspiciously just as netbooks were taking off and Windows 8 arrived just as media tablets changed everything?and it's fair to say that the technology world of today barely resembles that of 2006, creating new challenges for Windows. Threshold will target this new world. It could very well be a make or break release.
      I'll let you know when I've learned more.
    • By FaiKee
      A Taiwan MS guy said something about win9, it's not much,
      Translation: Current build he got in his office is a alpha, build No. 9622
      There's only some difference in the kernel, the general UI is still win8, which is expected to remain, and the desktop UI would become flatter, so there shouldn't be aero-glass coming back.
      The guy added in a a later post, the kernel is expected to be 6.3.