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Although all modern operating systems that Microsoft Corp. sells relines on essentially the same Windows 8 kernel, the OSes are actually pretty different and in many ways incompatible between themselves. Earlier this year a rumour transpired that Microsoft was going to unify Windows RT and Windows Phone to get a single operating system for mobile devices. Apparently, the latest plans to unify all client OSes, not just two of them.

“We have the Windows Phone OS.  We have Windows RT and we have full Windows.  We're not going to have three.  We do think there is a world where there is a more mobile operating system that does not have the risks to battery life, or the risks to security. But, it also comes at the cost of flexibility. So we believe in that vision and that direction and we are continuing down that path,” said Julie Larson-Green, executive vice president of devices and studios at Microsoft, during her conversation with financial analytics at UBS Global Technology Conference.

Unification of operating systems and programs is just what the doctor ordered to Microsoft, who wants to maintain its leading eco-system. Unfortunately, Ms. Larson-Green did not reveal when the unified OSes emerge and how the unification can be done, considering the major differences between a desktop and a smartphone operating system.

Earlier this year a number of interesting rumours emerged on the Internet regarding Microsoft further plans regarding OS development. 

According to several posts on forums made by the owner of Wzor web-site, a well-known blog dedicated to Microsoft’s new products and unofficial news about the company with excellent track-record, over past several weeks, Microsoft plans several major changes in the coming years. First of all, the company will cease to release service packs, but instead will offer brand-new operating systems with fixes and new improvements every year; the next major improvement is called Windows 9. Secondly, the firm will merge Windows RT and Windows Phone platforms into one hybrid operating system. Thirdly, the company will reconsider the very nature of “big” operating systems for desktops and notebooks.

The first step that Microsoft plans to take is to regain the lost ground on its home turf, personal computers. In 2014 the world’s largest software developer is projected to release Windows 9, which will be among the last operating systems for PCs as we know them. The OS will be fully modular, but will return Aero interface in a new form. At present it is unclear whether Windows 9 will more resemble Windows 7 tailored for a touch-screen, or Windows 8 fixed for classical usage.

The next step of Microsoft’s come-back will be creation of unified operating systems that is used for smartphone and tablets, e.g., merge Windows RT and Windows Phone. Given the fact that Windows 8, Windows RT and Windows Phone 8 already share Windows NT core, the idea seems to be a very rational one. Previously it was reported that the new OS will materialize only in 2015. It remains to be seen what user interface will the new OS utilize, but most likely it will not be Metro UI in its current form.

Finally, Microsoft plans a major breakthrough with what is currently known as Windows 10. The operating system will rely on cloud technologies and will feature all-new user interface that could be controlled using eyesight. The very first Windows 10 concept assembly for internal use at Microsoft will become available on September 1, 2013, next week. What is unclear is whether Windows 10 is due in 2015, a year after Windows 9, or will be available only in 2016, in case the software giant has Windows 9.1 in plans. Given that a lot of Microsoft innovations are curtailed by hardware manufacturers, it is more logical to expect a cloud-based modular OS with all-new UI and numerous advanced capabilities to arrive rather later than earlier.

Microsoft did not comment on the news-story.

Tags: Microsoft, Windows RT, Windows, Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, Windows Phone

Discussion

Comments currently: 9
Discussion started: 11/27/13 04:56:48 AM
Latest comment: 12/02/13 08:39:01 PM
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1. 
Until 2015 X86 will be everywhere. From smartphones to servers. Yes ARM will also be everywhere, but it will not be that much important. RT was necessary in case ARM was taking over the world. I think it has less chances today to do that than 2 years ago.
0 0 [Posted by: john_gre  | Date: 11/27/13 04:56:48 AM]
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Your opening sentence is senseless.
0 0 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 11/27/13 05:32:48 AM]
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Would you like to explain why? You do have a more detailed opinion right?
0 0 [Posted by: john_gre  | Date: 11/27/13 02:27:00 PM]
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What do you mean "RT was necessary in case ARM was taking over the world." It's not ARM that has the mobile market, it is the companies that license the ARM instruction set or the ARM refrence designs that have the mobile world, and have had the mobile world from the beginning! Intel and Intel's monolithic business model is giving way to the licensed IP business model that ARM holdings introduced to the market! Just like the Auto industry went from building cars, with the auto makers using no third party suppliers, to now, mostly building cars with 3 party contracted made parts! Device OEMs are now licensing the CPU designs from ARM holdings, and the GPU designs for other third party suppliers, and having these designs fabbed by indipendent third party chip foundrys! Device OEMs and ODMs can, and do, have custom designed CPUs/GPUs made to the Device Makers exact specifications and price points, and exclusive rights to the finished CPU/GPU product! Intel and Intel's past business practices, have insured that the OEMs will never return to building all their devices with one supplier's CPU parts! Just as IBM forced Intel to second source the x86 design with AMD, and others, at the beginning of the PC age! Apple has a top Teir ARM instruction set license, and even suprised ARM Holdings itself, with Apple's ability to design a ARM 64 bit clone, that outperforms even ARM holdings refrence ARM 64 bit designs! Apple did the same thing with the ARM instruction set, that AMD does with its x86 instruction License, only better, and Apple does not have to share its custom ARM design with anyone, including ARM holdings! ARM holdings does not care, as long as ARM holdings gets its up front Licensing fee, and CUSTOM/REFRENCE per CPU royalty. Nivida is offering Licensing for its GPU IP too, and the entire CPU/GPU market is going to be a Licensed IP market, with no CPU/GPU supplier in total control.
0 0 [Posted by: BigChiefRunAmok  | Date: 11/28/13 02:09:06 PM]
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2. 
By 2016, I think Linux OSes will finally became mainstream, specially with gaming industry moving to other API's than Microsoft's.
I really hope they will do, because I had enough with this bloatware M$ crap.
1 1 [Posted by: TAViX  | Date: 11/27/13 07:07:08 AM]
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Well, when MS morphs into something resembling Apple but just with a different logo within the next 3 years, then GNU/Linux will be one of the last bastions (along with BSD) of real computing for enthusiasts. So yes, it will go from being a niche OS to being more widely adopted. I could not imagine a world without Linux - a dystopian future perhaps, one where everyone has a shaved head, an iTunes, Google or Windows account and consumes what Big Brother tells them. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2zfqw8nhUwA (How bloody ironic 30 years later).
0 0 [Posted by: linuxlowdown  | Date: 11/27/13 09:23:32 AM]
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3. 
By the time M$ has one OS to screw them all, I will have migrated to Linux, I'll be dual booting windows 7 pro, with Linux, so it it will be just a matter of deleting the Windows 7 partitions come 2020! I do not know who will be running M$, but they better do some purging of thoes behind TIFKAM on the desktop, and some serious groveling in front of their enterprise customers! Remember those big enterprises, who are already moving to Linux for their big data needs, will have plenty of brainpower to convert their desktops/laptops over to a linux distro, and do without all that M$ monkeybusiness that just unnecessarily adds to their retraining costs, every time M$ gits a wild hair!
1 1 [Posted by: BigChiefRunAmok  | Date: 11/27/13 09:44:43 PM]
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4. 
Another mistake from the Bloastsoft. People don't care about you having the same code-base. It will make you job easier at the expense of you clients. As did Win8.
0 0 [Posted by: jasmith007  | Date: 11/28/13 09:07:34 AM]
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5. 
This is the exact kind of myopic thinking that made MS WinCE a failure while iOS flourished. WinCE took all the UI concepts from the desktop Windows and shrunk them down into a mobile device -- making users move tiny mouse cursors to navigate using tiny scrollbars on a tiny screen. Apple wisely realized the user experience on a mobile device was different from a PC, and made a mobile experience with multitouch, automatic app management (you never "exit" from an iOS app, the OS closes down backgrounded apps silently when it needs to free up resources). They realized that things that work on a 20" screen doesn't work on a 4" one, and that people user their phone is 1-5 minute chunks, while they use PCs while sitting down for longer sessions -- the list goes on and on.

MS is still stuck with the "one user experience for all" concept, which is why we ended up with Windows 8 -- a jekyl and hyde mishmash of multitouch (metro) and desktop experiences, a compromise trying to find common ground between two very different user experiences. MS should start design a product thinking about what makes a great mobile experience, and what makes a great desktop/laptop experience, and go from there.
0 0 [Posted by: Joe P.  | Date: 12/02/13 08:39:01 PM]
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