We're still pretty stoked about Windows 7, and having called it Microsoft's best operating system to date, we reckon it's a little early to be building the Windows 8 hype machine, but that hasn't stopped an overzealous Microsoft employee from getting the ball rolling.
In a blog post titled "What's in store for the next Windows?", an unnamed member of the Windows Update team shed a little light on Microsoft's next major release and didn't stop short of throwing a few major punches.
Describing the release as "completely different from what folks usually expect of Windows", the anonymous Microsoft employee claims that the Windows team will continue to use lessons learnt from the well-received Windows 7. Specifically, he/she suggests that Microsoft won't make lavish promises and won't reveal a final product name until the next version of Windows is finalised.
Although it has quickly become known as Windows 8 in the media world, Microsoft, at least internally, appears to refer to its 7 successor as Windows.next.
Despite not wanting to float ideas that leave people "frustrated when things don't turn out the way they expected", the Microsoft blogger seemingly couldn't contain the excitement and went on to state that the themes behind Windows.next "truly reflect what people have been looking for years".
"It will change the way people think about PCs and the way they use them. It is the future of PCs," says the blog post.
Certainly enough to get the Windows fanatics to raise an eyebrow, and the Microsoft employee is quick to accredit much of the progress to Steven Sinofsky, senior vice president for Windows and Windows Live Engineering. "I am simply impressed with the process that Steven has setup to listen to our customers needs and wants and get a team together than can make it happen", said the blogger. "To actually bring together dozens and dozens of teams across Microsoft to come up with a vision for Windows.next is a process that is surreal!"
Details regarding the development of the next release of Windows remain practically non-existent, but a recent leak from an ex-Microsoft employee suggests that the software could be made available as soon as July 2011.
The "What's in store for the next Windows?" blog post has since been removed by Microsoft, but it remains accessible via Google cache. In its entirety, it reads:
Whats in store for the next Windows?
One of the great (or maybe not so great) things of being at Microsoft is that every other person wants to ask you why Windows works the way it does. Since I'm part of the Windows update team I get asked even more why does my machnie reboot everytime there is an update and why are there so many updates. So naturally once Windows 7 shipped, my friends, neighbours, relatives, and whoever else you can imagine started asking me So whats next?
Folks started asking me whats in Windows 8 - and the first thing I have to say is that I resonate Steven Sinofsky's interview on who said we're calling it Windows 8? I agree with Steven that till things are baked there is no point floating ideas since it leaves people frustrated when things don't turn out the way they expected. The Windows team promised to deliver a smarter, faster and more user friendly OS with Windows 7 and they delivered just that - the latest quaterly results of Microsoft are a clear indication that Windows 7 has been a success and customers got what Microsoft had promised them! The plan is to use a similar approach for the next version of Windows and till things are finalized you're not going to get a "marketing" name from us:)
So how am I referring to the next version of Windows without saying that many words - well simple - Windows.next:) This is definitely not the official version but a version that is becoming common along my circle. So what are our plans for this next version...
The minimum that folks can take for granted is that the next version will be something completly different from what folks usually expect of Windows - I am simply impressed with the process that Steven has setup to listen to our customers needs and wants and get a team together than can make it happen. To actually bring together dozens and dozens of teams across Microsoft to come up with a vision for Windows.next is a process that is surreal! The themes that have been floated truly reflect what people have been looking for years and it will change the way people think about PCs and the way they use them. It is the future of PCs...
Thats about it for this post for the time being - I know I'm not sharing much at this point but right now I can't as we work towards finalizing that vision. Feel free to post your comments on what you think Windows.net should be like!
As a result of the blog post removal, it's no longer possible to comment directly to Microsoft, but if you want to share your thoughts on what Windows.next should be like, head on over to the HEXUS.community forums and join the discussion.