Today the Verge reports on the rumor that the next edition of Windows is already in the works, named “Windows Blue”.
This would be a set of new UI tweaks and further standardization between the various desktop versions of Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8.
…the update on the Windows side, due in mid-2013, will include UI changes and alterations to the entire platform and pricing. We’re told that Microsoft is aiming to make Windows Blue the next OS that everyone installs
This update might be very cheap or even free to ensure everyone installs it. The next thing they say is interesting, namely that after the update only apps built for ‘Windows Blue’ will be accepted.
Some sources believe this next version would be called Windows 8.1 while others believe Windows 9 is a likelier candidate.
NPD Group analyst Stephen Baker adds:
“I think the world is different than it was 10 years ago, and everybody has to change. Microsoft has already started down that path with Windows 8 to begin with: different interface, something that’s a lot more focused on touch, a lot more integrated with tablets and its cellphone operating system. There’s no reason they wouldn’t go toward an OS upgrade schedule that looks more like what the rest of the industry is already doing.”
Further on, they write, yearly incremental updates for windows will be the norm, as opposed to radical new versions every 3 or so years. This would be in an effort to keep the OS more competitive with OSs from Google and Apple.