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Rumor: Windows 8 rushed for April 2012 to fight iPad

updated 11:25 am EDT, Mon June 27, 2011

Microsoft said pushing Windows 8 RTM to April 2012

Microsoft may be stepping up the schedule for Windows 8 to help counter the iPad, a new tip from a reliable source says. Most have it shipping in late 2012 to keep with Microsoft's usually rigid three-year schedule, but ZDNet has been told Microsoft was pressing for a Release To Manufacturing (RTM) schedule of April 2012. The timing would have the OS shipping, not just mastered, by the mid-point of the year.

The expected beta at September's Build conference, on this timetable, would be the only beta Microsoft releases. One release candidate will also purportedly be available before the RTM version goes out to PC builders.

Microsoft's schedule, if accurate, cuts its usual external testing process by as much as half and reflects an increasingly conspicuous admission from the company that it has failed in the tablet market so far. The company once tried to claim Windows 7 tablets would win as a preemptive strike in January 2010, before the iPad had even been unveiled, but found its OS increasingly marginalized. HP and others eventually limited Windows tablets to business as it became clear Apple's formula was not only much more popular but outsold eight years of Windows tablets in nine months.

Windows 8 is a radical break for Microsoft that abandons the basic layout it has had since 1995 in favor of a more Windows Phone 7-inspired tile interface. Traditional apps will run, but the interface is designed at most if not all levels for finger-based touch. The OS is likewise the first from Microsoft since 1996 to run on a non-x86 platform and will support ARM to get closer to the iPad in slimness and battery life, albeit at the expense of legacy apps.

Officially, Microsoft has only committed to a generic 2012 release schedule and is non-committal even on the Windows 8 name.

by MacNN Staff



  1. bonaccij

    Joined: Dec 1969


    As with all thing in this category...

    I will believe it when I see it.

  1. Paul Huang

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Too little, too late

    By that time, MSFT is going to be able to maybe...maybe...fight iPad, but definitely NOT ***iPad 3***.

  1. Wingsy

    Joined: Dec 1969


    One-Quarter Baked

    Nnow that they're so rushed to get to market, they'll release a half-half-baked OS

  1. Eldernorm

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Just a thought

    I do not see windows 8 being used for anything but tablets. Touch Screen desktops are just not a huge selling point.

    Just a thought,

  1. BigMac2

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Microsoft got no vision for tablet market

    Microsoft worked on tablet for a decade now, and all we got is mediocre product and OS, after a while they lost hope and completely stopped talking about tablet until Apple come out with the iPad one years ago. Since Microsoft come back claiming their Windows 7 for tablet was so amazing and showed a bunch of Windows tablet last year mean to compete with the iPad.

    After this major fail, Microsoft come back this year with a half-baked windows 8 that introduce more question than answer like: Do already existing Windows software with run on ARM version of windows? Will you have acces to the file system on tablet? How you install stuff and organize thing in their Metro UI? Their is a lot of unknown from Microsoft on how they envision UI usability on tablet for using softwares means to be use with a real keyboard and mouse.

  1. SockRolid

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Windows users: just stick with XP

    It took a year and a half for Windows 7 to catch up to Windows XP in terms of installed base. And there are only two reasons why it did even that well:

    1. XP is 10 years old (released before 9/11, before the first iPod, and back when Macs were shipping with OS 9.2.1.) XP users were just sick and tired of the same old same old.

    2. Vista was a complete disaster, and Windows 7 was the service pack that fixed many of the problems.

    And the real reason why XP is still doing so well is because it was the last Microsoft OS to offer any real improvements. It was the first consumer Windows OS based on the NT architecture, replacing the "GUI on top of DOS" Windows 98 architecture.

    Good luck trying to get un-stuck from that rut, Ballmer. A tepid half-desktop / half-mobile approach will fail. Desktop Windows is the boat anchor that keeps you from moving into the 21st century.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: Windows users: just stick with XP

    Another reason it has stuck around is that newer computers can still run it. As oppposed to, say, Macs, which are restricted to the version of the OS currently shipping.

  1. Foe Hammer

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Why Not?

    It worked for Vista.

  1. jdonahoe

    Joined: Dec 1969


    re: Windows users: just stick with XP

    I just recently attempted to set up a new iMac to dual boot. The problem is, the latest bootcamp will only allow you to install Windows 7. This sucks. I hope Apple hasn't done some under the table deal with Microsoft to force people to 7.

    "Another reason it has stuck around is that newer computers can still run it. As oppposed to, say, Macs, which are restricted to the version of the OS currently shipping. "

    Is this a fair knock against Apple? In most cases, an upgrade in OSX is usually looked forward to and is not a gut wrenching decision like it is under Windows.

  1. BigMac2

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: Windows users: just stick with XP

    Being fair, it's a driver issue. Most of brand name PCs doesn't offer XP drivers for their latest model anymore. They doesn't offer XP downgrade anymore either (being force to do so after Vista fiasco). And because Microsoft doesn't have any responsibility against their indirect customer who bought a PC without having any choice of OS beside Windows, I know no one who buy a OS upgrade for their PC pass the initial version that come initially with the PC. Most of the time PCs dies with the same OS that is coming with.

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