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What can we expect with Windows 9 and Windows 9 RT?

When it comes to Windows 9, things could certainly go quite a few different ways. If Windows 8 is a failure (doubtful), it could see a stronger focus on the desktop and improvements there. If Windows 8 does manage to be a success? We could see an even bigger push away from the desktop altogether.

And then there is Windows Blue, expected to arrive sometime in 2013. What is it? A service pack with a few extra features or Windows 9 coming so soon? Personally, I believe it is more than likely just a service pack with a few extra freebies, but it’s hard to say for sure.

With Microsoft already working on Windows 9, they have likely chosen to stick with the Start UI path they began with Windows 8, but it is hard to say what kind of role the desktop will play with Windows 9.

There’s also a whole other side of the equation: Windows RT. Let’s focus on Windows RT 2 for the rest of this article, since honestly I think this is a much easier topic to speculate on.

There have been some who speculate Windows RT will not last long, and eventually the ARM side of things will just merge into a future version of Windows. I agree this will eventually happen, when the desktop is fully ditched. I don’t see this happening with Windows 9, though.

There will be a Windows RT 2, I can almost bet on it.

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Upgrading to Windows RT 2: Likely Scenario

More than likely, Windows RT 2 will not be sold as an upgrade. There are two likely scenarios for Windows RT 2 distribution, and that’s either it only comes with new ARM tablets/laptops or it is also a free upgrade for existing compatible devices.

Although Windows Phone 7 devices weren’t allowed to upgrade to Windows Phone 8, alot of it had to do with kernel changes and the switch from single to dual-core processors. For Windows RT 2 (or Windows 9 RT?), there probably won’t be as many massive changes, so an upgrade might be an easier affair.

Windows RT 2: Ditching the Desktop

One of the biggest complaints I’ve heard about ARM-based Windows devices so far has to do with duality of Windows RT. I’ve actually managed to finally get my hands on a friend’s new Surface RT and must agree, the idea of switching back and forth between the desktop and new Start UI is frustrating on tablets.

With Windows RT 2, the desktop needs gone. The next version should be a pure Start UI experience. Yes, that means building a Windows Store version of Office– but I think it is certainly possible.

Removing the bloat from Windows desktop will likely result in a smaller OS partition, instead of how Surface RT’s 32GB is about half-used up before you even get it thanks to system files.

Summing it Up…

Okay, so this is all pure speculation but the removal of the desktop makes sense. So does the idea of treating RT upgrades similarly to Windows Phone and other mobile platform upgrades. I suspect that Windows RT and Windows 9 will look “less similar” than RT/8 (Because of desktop removal), but will still work with the same Windows Store apps.

What do you think, should Microsoft continue with Windows RT into the future? And if they do, should the desktop be removed or not?

Any other ideas or guesses about what we might see with the next major version of Windows RT?

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  1. Windows 8 is a complete failure worst system since windows vista

    • I think it has a lot of potential, but it was not ready at all. Maybe Blue will change it, but there are so many bugs still in it, that I don’t think it will really catch on totally. Plus, it will take a while for the Change-haters to catch on.

  2. i think winRT devices will be updatable to winRT2 (or whatever it will be called) because they recently did that major cernelchange and for sure they won’t do that again in the next few years that would be really stupid.

    • Good point. I agree, that I think they will go ahead and allow updating, especially considering how long the Surface is said to be supported. I don’t think it will be a paid update though. It sounds more likely that they will follow suite with Android/iOS and make it free.

      Thanks for commenting!

  3. I think the desktop will go away in all flavors of Windows once they perfect the modern UI and/or enough of the old applications are available in the store or easily ported.

    • I agree. Just not sure if it will happen by Windows 9. Windows 10 or 11 seems more likely in my personal opinion. What about you, how quickly do you foresee such a move?

    • I actually doubt it will happen, any time soon at least. You saw how irritated the change-haters were that they made the start UI in the first place, and I think changing it into the whole OS won’t happen in the mouse-and-keyboard-only age. Maybe once every computer is touchscreen, or they completely overhaul the start UI, do l think they would do it. Maybe 10 years.

  4. RT comes with Office, right? I would think it would be rather easy to make the apps metro. Just make them take the whole screen, and make autocorrect on the keyboard instead of the program, and you’re done. They wouldn’t need to put it in the windows store. They could just pre-install it.

    I think the worst part of abandoning the desktop in RT is that all the accessories, like MS Paint, would go away. There’s something they should make a metro app for.

  5. it look like Microsoft is ready to play like android players just ………..every month new

    vanilla ice cream,mango pulp ,citrus with honey.now they start window may be we can expect in December 2013

  6. RT2 SHOULD come with the desktop because I foresee the next version of Windows (RT2 & 9) being a single OS that is installed on everything from Phones to Tablets to Laptops/Desktops (no more Phone specific OS). Developers will be able to create a single app that’ll work on not only phone devices, but also a Tablet/Laptop/Desktop device (at the very least in Metro mode). This’ll be possible if MS updates Visual Studio to allow developers to create apps not only in Landscape/Portrait/Filled/Snapped layouts, but also Phone Landscape & Portrait modes, all in a single app, just like you’re able to now. Namespace differences could be easily taken care of by MS in their API (old Namespaces re-directed to new common ones behind the scenes so old, or even new, apps don’t require updating).
    The need for a Desktop environment is so that one could take a phone and plug it into a docking station to convert it into a full blown desktop computer (think long term, ARM is getting more powerful with every release). When used as a phone or small tablet, you would use the Metro version of an app (like Office which already has a lite Metro version available now on Phone). When plugged into a docking station to allow for connectivity to a large monitor/keyboard/mouse/etc you would use the Desktop environment to enable using the full application as you would now. For this to work, MS MUST open RT desktop to 3rd party developers. RT applications would be downloaded via their online store just like now to ensure desktop applications meet MS’s strict performance guidelines.
    The only thing holding back this vision is short sighted thinkers who don’t think it’s possible.

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