Windows Blue Is Now Officially Called Windows 8.1, Will Be Free

Oh, boy prepare for a truckload of new details regarding the upcoming upgrade to the Windows platform. Tami Reller is in Boston today speaking at the JP Morgan Technology, Media and Telecom Conference.

The head of the Windows division at Microsoft officially confirmed that Windows Blue will be a free update to Windows 8 that will be available for download from the Windows Store. This should be music to the ears of many who feared that this may be a paid upgrade.

And not just that, Windows Blue is now officially known as Windows 8.1.

Tami Reller also confirmed that the update will also arrive for the company’s Windows RT platform.

There was more than a fair chance that this upgrade would indeed be free, but there were some voices that suggested Microsoft may charge additional money for existing Windows 8 customers. Nevertheless, it is nice to see this rumor quashed into oblivion.

And the fact that it will be available on the Windows Store is just an icing on a very sweet cake.

Regarding release date, Reller stated that the update will arrive by the end of the calendar year. There is a fair chance now that Windows 8.1 will follow the same schedule as Windows 8 — meaning RTM sometime in August and general public release around late October.

Additionally, Microsoft also confirmed that the public preview of the build will be released the first day of its BUILD developer conference, June 26.

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