Microsoft: First Release of Windows 8.1 Will Be in June

Microsoft has confirmed that it will release a public preview of Windows 8.1, also known as Windows Blue, next month. ZDNet cites head of Windows engineering, Julie Larson-Green, who made the revelation at the Wired Business Conference earlier today, as saying Windows Blue will be released as a public preview at the end of June. The preview ill be available to Windows 8 users via the Windows Store.

The news follows hot on the heels of a Q&A post regarding the first six months of Windows 8. The post, published this morning, includes a brief mention of Windows Blue by Microsoft's Tami Reller. Reller described Windows Blue as part of a broader effort to advance devices and services for Microsoft. She also revealed that the update will be available later this year, will continue on Windows 8's path toward the next generation of PC and incorporate customer feedback.

Though Reller said Microsoft is taking customer feedback into account, we still don't have any final word on whether the Start button has found its way back into the mix after being dropped in Windows 8. It hasn't been ruled out, but Microsoft hasn't confirmed it either. We do know that Microsoft is working to bring Windows 8 to a broader array form factors of all sizes, display, battery life and performance, as Reller mentioned earlier, but we'll have to wait a few weeks to see the final product.

  • Aoyagi
    Start button isn't the important thing, Start menu is. And no, it is extremely unlikely MS will do any good, they will just continue in ruining their reputation. Also Tom's seems to be uncomfortably pro-Win8.
  • blurr91
    Can I have the old Windows Start Menu back?
  • gorlacon
    10774316 said:
    Also Tom's seems to be uncomfortably pro-Win8.

    Shills, shills everywhere.. (Or at least, there is certainly a huge change in opinion, and only, it seems, on reports specifically dealing with Windows 8).
  • ssdpro
    The article is rather neutral in my opinion. It is just reporting the facts. It notes "Though Reller said Microsoft is taking customer feedback into account, we still don't have any final word on whether the Start button has found its way back into the mix after being dropped in Windows 8." That is a major obstacle (other than reduced storage performance and functionality) prevent widespread migration to Win8.
    Windows 8 has a 3.1% Market Share as of April 4th. Six months after release Windows 7 had 10.4%, Vista had 5.2%.
  • zenmonk9003
    I don't know why there is all this hate of Windows 8. It is a solid and good OS. Yes it is a little different when starting up and shutting down but it makes a lot of sense too. So instead of clicking the START button to get to the calculator I click in the lower left corner and go to the START screen and click it there, it's faster than going to the button, clicking on ACCESORIES or whatever and then clicking on it there. Turning it off and reseting is different because now you just go to the lower right or upper right corner and click SETTINGS to do it now. It's not that big of a deal at all, some of you might even remember going from 8-track to cassette, to MP3 or from records to compact dscs.
  • southernshark
    10774744 said:
    I don't know why there is all this hate of Windows 8.

    The problem is multi-fold. People on the one hand, hate that MS took our choice away. I think that is what annoys most power users. If MS had given us the option of one or the other, then there would be no anger over this issue. On the other hand, traditional MS fans hate the fact that MS is alienating the 80 percent of casual users who are lost in W8. I have a friend is not good with computers and she described W8 as a "place you go full of squares that you can't get out of.".. .... sadly that is how many casual users see it and it confirms to them, in their minds, that they should have bought an Apple product. To suggest that this opinion is not real is to ignore hard consumer data which shows computer sales down significantly. Either way MS has made a dumb decision which has alienated its customer base and which has significantly hurt the PC industry. MS needs to admit the error and fix it ASAP.
  • danwat1234
    10774370 said:
    Can I have the old Windows Start Menu back?

    Yes you can. Use Start8 or RetroUI
    Wait, what do you mean by old? XP style? 98 style? Probably not but I'm not saying it's impossible. Maybe a deluxe Stardock product can do that
  • computerguy72
    There is not one positive or negative comment in this article. To call them 'pro-win8' citing this article as evidence says more about ***you than Tom's.
  • iam2thecrowe
    is it going to be less sh!t.? or more of the same sh!t? Please give me the option of a windows 7 style UI, I will not buy it otherwise. My dad bought win8 for use on his touch screen, its useless as you have to touch right to the edges of the screen for some functions and the bezel is in the way. So you need a frameless touch screen to even be able to use it properly, and it was supposedly designed with touch screens in mind.
  • Someone Somewhere
    If they made an option to have the start screen/menu appear like the WiFi menu (isn't that a hideous example of mixing UI concepts? Click one icon, desktop style. Click the next; BLOCKS), as a sidebar, I would consider that a step forwards.
    But to those who say that the start screen is great and everybody else just has to "get used to it", remember this: CHOICE is =).
    Best thing I've heard anyone not on a forum say about 8 is that "under-the-hood improvements are worth it, but the UI is stupid", or something along those lines. And I suspect a lot of the under-the-hood bit came from the SSHD he installed it on...