Friday, May 17, 2013

Alert: Microsoft to unveil free Windows 8.1 update on 26 June.

Tonight I read a news article on International Business Times headlined as ‘Microsoft to unveil free Windows 8.1 update on 26 June’. I would suggest that Windows users not get too excited as the release is a preview release and I would recommend that people stick with their current version until the final release is made public. Unfortunately for the public and Microsoft I suspect that will be closer to the end of the year.

Microsoft really have had a bad run in terms of timing and Windows 8.1 is another example. When Windows 8 was released the low power Haswell processor from Intel was reportedly still a few months away and expected around January 2013, according to the press reports I was reading in early 2012. That would have been just in time for Microsoft’s Windows Surface Pro tablet. Haswell didn’t make it in time and thus the low power chip which is desirable for tablets is now due mid 2013. Microsoft’s updated operating system Windows 8.1 won’t reach the general public until closer to the end of the year.

Now is not a good time to purchase a new computer but once the Haswell processor and Windows 8.1 are both available at the end of the year, at last Microsoft’s platform will come together. Will that be too late for Microsoft. I don’t think so. In the past I’ve watched the market and a 2-3 year window of opportunity by other players hasn’t seemed to make much difference. In fact Microsoft has had the advantage that everyone is purchasing a portable device at the moment and extending the life of their PC. Those ageing PCs however will need to be replaced and that plays to Microsoft’s advantage. Haswell plus Windows 8.1, plus smaller form factors for tablets all coming together at the end of the year, is good for Microsoft and Windows users.


Kelvin Eldridge

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