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If you’ve been underwhelmed by Microsoft’s work with Windows 8 and Windows 8.1, then it looks like the end of September might bring you a small degree of relief: the next iteration of Microsoft’s flagship operating system, Windows 9, is supposedly going to be revealed at a press event held on September 30.

The news comes by way of a post on the Verge, which reports that Microsoft is “tentatively planning” the event for that date, which also happens to be right around when we heard there’d be a public preview of the new OS. The post cites “sources familiar with Microsoft’s plans,” and it goes on to explain that we’ll see many of the features we’ve been hearing about over the last few weeks and months. That will include the revamped Start Menu, a desktop version of Cortana, and the utter lack of the Charms Bar.

That isn’t all. The post also adds some information about new updates to the more mobile versions of Windows. Apparently, Microsoft “is also building a separate combined version of Windows RT and Windows Phone,” which we may see at the same event. That falls right in line with what we’ve been hearing about Threshold for a while: that the initiative is setting out to unify the Windows experience. Blending Windows RT and Windows Phone would be a brilliant move that would help accomplish that goal.

When you think of Microsoft’s competitors in the mobile space – specifically Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS – they’re roughly the same operating system on both smartphones and tablets, giving users more familiarity with one platform across multiple devices. Apps that work on one device will generally work on another, allowing for a continuity of functionality and UI that gives each of those platforms an edge.

By contrast, Windows Phone and Windows RT, are limited in terms of providing that same kind of continuity. Sure, Modern Mode’s Live Tiles can be found across both, but apps that run on one can’t necessarily run on the other. Microsoft is starting to remedy this situation by rolling out “Universal Windows Apps,” a system allowing developers to do less work to bring their applications to multiple versions of Windows. Similarly, the company is said to be bringing a unified Windows Store to allow apps to be accessed and bought on both platforms.

Let’s hope that the report of Microsoft’s plans for a September 30 press event is true. I’m really looking forward to seeing Windows 9 – and I’m somehow even more excited to hear more about a single, smooth platform for Windows smartphones and tablets. Death to Windows RT!

[Source: The Verge]


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