In a blog and at its annual sales meeting, Microsoft (News - Alert) announced that Windows 8 will be launched in October as predicted. Specifically, the new OS will debut on October 26.
An upgrade to Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7 will cost $40. For customers who purchased a Windows 7 computer after June 2, the upgrade will cost $15. The downloadable upgrade will be released on the same day that resellers are allowed to start selling computers that feature Windows 8.
PCWorld is reporting that the release-to-manufacturing (RTM) date for Windows 8 is scheduled for August. When RTM commences, Microsoft will turn on its commerce platform, which will allow software developers to begin to make money from their apps.
Currently, users can try apps for free within the Windows 8 Release Preview. However, some of the Release Preview features will actually be improved upon with the launch. For instance, the actual release will include new apps such as Sports, Travel and News that make use of information and photos from Bing.
In addition, the release version of Windows 8 will allow users to pin both apps and subsections of apps to the main screen. For instance, if you want to pin the Mail app to your desktop, you can also pin a particular inbox so that changes are visible on your desktop.
Within the Windows Store, Desktop Apps as well as Metro Apps will appear. Also, the Metro Web Browser will display limited Flash capability in addition to the full Flash capability of Internet Explorer.
Multi-monitor support enables a single desktop wallpaper and taskbar to be featured across multiple screens. Additionally, Metro Apps and Desktop Apps can be moved between screens.
To work with the Windows 8 preview, simply download it.
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Edited by Brooke Neuman