Even though Windows 8 has only just been released, it seems that speculation over the next version of Windows is already in full swing. If you thought that the next versions of Windows would be Windows 9, Windows 9 RT and Windows Phone 9 then it looks like you are wrong. According to various sources close to Microsoft, the Redmond company is changing the way it will package up and sell Windows. The sudden departure of Steven Sinofsky, the head of Microsoft’s Windows division, now doesn’t seem so coincidental.

The new Windows strategy is called Blue. Whether this will end up being the actual product name, only time will tell. But with Windows Blue Microsoft wants to standardize on a single approach to Windows, Windows RT and Windows Phone and along the way it will shift to offering yearly, low cost updates the same way as Apple does.

Windows 7 was released in 2009 and it took Microsoft three years to get Windows 8 out the door. In that time frame Apple released OS X 10.6 “Snow Leopard” (2009), OS X 10.7 “Lion” (2011) and OS X 10.8 “Mountain Lion” (2012). This means that Apple made a whole extra release in the same period. Also Apple upgrades are normally around $29 meaning that users are happier to upgrade more frequently.

As for Android, Google released Android 2.0 at the same time as Windows 7. From then until the release of Windows 8, Google shipped Android 2.2, 2.3, 3.x, 4.0, 4.1 and 4.2 – a very different release cycle.

It is also thought that once Windows Blue is out, the Windows SDK will also be updated with support for the new standardized platform and that Microsoft will stop accepting (in its app store) programs that are built only for Windows 8. This bold move is meant to push developers into creating apps for Blue, which presumably will work on Windows, Windows RT and Windows Phone if coded correctly.

It is all a bit vague at the moment and there is no official word from Microsoft, but with Sinofsky leaving and Windows 8 RT failing to become an overnight success, it looks like it is all change at Microsoft. What is more, this could all happen by mid-2013!

Gary Sims
Gary has been a tech writer for over a decade and specializes in open source systems. He has a Bachelor's degree in Business Information Systems. He has many years of experience in system design and development as well as system administration, system security and networking protocols. He also knows several programming languages, as he was previously a software engineer for 10 years.
  • MasterMuffin

    Already speculating when w8 was announced month ago!?

  • Roberto Tomás

    “What is more, this could all happen by mid-2013!” I just bought windows 8! (*smirk*)
    Well it looks like 2013 will be an amazing year. AMD’s unified architecture is happening 2-3 years early .. ARM’s 64 bit architecture is also 1-2 years early and so they’ll both be the same year. Nvidia’s Maxwell might not be happening, and their “Project Denver” that was originally pushed back to 2016 is now being forcast for late 2013/early 2014. Intel is giving up socketed processors in 2013, and Samsung is already in production now to release NAND flash built on 10 nm — apparently 4 years earlier than anticipated!

  • Johnny 5

    LOL and I thought the Google april fool’s gag was just that.. Now i see they were making fun of Microsoft, I appreciate the joke much more now :)
    As for this release, I think MS needs to calm the hell down, I am sick and tired of upgrading every other year, it’s a waste of time and money! What every happened to the days where if you had something new to add the OS it was made available through a service pack or an additional purchased download. Ohhh ya I forgot, I’m talking about the corporate pigs (more like corporate leeches.) Apple is just as guilty if not worse.
    Geez with the amount of upgrading one has done in the past 5 years, you would think that MS office would be apart of the OS by now. I’m just waiting for the day that society wakes up and turns to these companies and says “We made a new OS just for you too it’s called Windows FU.”