Last week at a conference in Anaheim, California, Microsoft’s CEO, Steve Ballmer, gave a preview of Windows’ next avatar. The new operating system will be the first Windows that will be optimised to touch, in addition to mouse and keyboard control. Windows 8 will thus be the software company’s first attempt to bridge the gap between PCs and mobile devices.
The new operating system, promises Microsoft, will provide a completely new experience to copy, move, rename and delete files. It will require the same hardware as Windows 7, or even less, and will be designed to adjust to different hardware types, particularly screen sizes. It will automatically switch between a standard monitor and touch screen display as per the hardware.
This means that for the first time Microsoft is offering an operating system that will run on microprocessors that run tablets and mobile phones, in addition to traditional chips from Intel and AMD. But experts wonder if the new combination on smart phones, however inexpensive and power-efficient, will be as sturdy and compatible as the Windows-Intel combination on PCs.
Experts say Windows 8 will hit the market by early 2012. With this, the software giant wants to eat into the market share of Apple’s iPad and Google’s Android, market leaders in tablets and smart phones, respectively.
“We want you all. Individual developers. 14-year-olds in their home... Small development companies. Websites. Application custom developers. Large websites. Large application developers. Come one, come all. It’s the day and age of the developer. It’s the day and age of the Windows developer,” said Ballmer.