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Microsoft has been in the news a lot lately. Yesterday the company unveiled the Surface Pro 3, and early reviews and hands-on impressions are making it sound like the bee’s knees. And last week it finally unbundled the Kinect from the Xbox One, lowering the console’s price and reigniting its competition with Sony’s PS4. It’s not surprising, then, that rumors of its next big OS launch are gathering steam every day.

A post on Myce today offers up a supposedly leaked screenshot with more details about upcoming Microsoft releases, including a timetable for Windows 9 and Office 2015.

Here’s the screenshot, which supposedly comes from the Facebook profile of a Microsoft employee:


The image was supplied by “Chinese Microsoft leaker FaiKee,” and, as you can see, it seems to point to the work being done on an alpha build of Windows 9. Moreover, the image suggests that the new OS is slated for an early-to-mid 2015 preview release, which jives with earlier reports we’ve seen. There’s also mention of Office 2013 “Gamini,” which would seem to be an attempt at spelling “Gemini.” The Myce post points out that many believe Gemini to be the codename for the touch-optimized Office apps for Windows 8, which ought to be similar to what Microsoft released for the iPad not too long ago.

There’s also mention of OneDrive, Cortana, and Office 2015, which would seem to be the next iteration of Microsoft’s productivity software suite. Will we see all of these programs and features implemented into Windows 9 a year from now?

Of course, let’s also take this image in with a bit of skepticism. I mean – there’s a typo right on it. If this “Microsoft employee” actually worked on a project codenamed Gemini, you’d think that he would get the spelling right…right?

There’s enough reason to believe that Microsoft is, indeed, working on these projects and getting ready for a 2015 release. The company knows that Window 8 hasn’t been embraced, and has been releasing update after update to undo the damage the OS has done to its reputation in the minds of its longtime users. Releasing Windows 9 next year, having learned the lessons of Windows 8’s failures, would seem to be a smart move that’s in line with its current trajectory.

After all, the Surface Pro 3 seems to erase the mistakes of the first few Surface devices, as does the removal of the Kinect. It stands to reason that Windows 9 will be a similar effort to make its customers happy and excited.

[Source: Myce via Neowin]

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