With Windows 8.1 nearing release, focus has been shifting away from Windows 8 and towards the new operating system and what kind of an affect it has on the industry overall. This past week, once again, was mostly about Windows 8.1, with plenty of hardware and mobile news thrown in for good measure.

Here are the five most fantastic stories of the week:

News of the Week

These days, Windows 8.1 is in the news for all the right reasons. Anticipation for this new version of Microsoft’s flagship operating system is high. And the word is that the upcoming OS is on track to hit RTM status anytime now. Expect an official confirmation soon, once it does.

Comment of the Week

Former employees often have the most interesting stories to tell, and the same is true for Microsoft. There was a period a few years back when Redmond was going around in circles, and while the technology titan is doing a lot of things right, some still believe that the company is barely innovating.

Rumor of the Week

Another week, another Nokia tablet and phablet rumor! This one seems rather legit, as Nokia is said to be preparing either a slate of a large screen smartphone for release before the end of the year.  Interestingly, the Finnish telecom giant has scheduled an elaborate and interesting event for September.

Statistics of the Week

Windows Phone Store is the one stop shop for downloading apps for the Windows Phone platform, and while the Windows Store recently cracked the 100,000 milestone, Microsoft’s mobile apps repository is tearing up the charts after having topped 2 billion downloads recoded since launch.

Analysis of the Week

While Windows Phone 8 is clearly out of the woods, the same cannot be said of Windows based tablets. The lackluster performance of Windows RT, coupled with the leisurely adoption rate of Windows 8 means that quarterly numbers are still low. This could change soon, IDC believes.

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