During the Wired Business Conference today, Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President for Windows Julie Larson-Green confirmed that a major update for Windows 8 — known as Windows 8.1 “Blue” — will be launching this year, with a developer version arriving first during Microsoft’s BUILD conference at the end of the June.
An exact release date for the final version hasn’t been disclosed yet, but Microsoft says that it’ll be out at some point “later this year.” While the preview that the company will release in June will mostly be meant for developers, the company will be providing public preview versions as well for anyone to try out.
We’ve been hearing a lot of chatter about Windows Blue lately, including the possibility of Microsoft bringing back some crucial features that users have missed from Windows 7, including re-introducing the Start button, and including an option to boot straight to the desktop, bypassing the start screen altogether.
Microsoft could also be working on Windows Blue versions for their tablet operating system. We heard hearsay earlier today about the possibility of new HTC tablets coming with an updated version Windows RT. We’re not sure if we’ll hear about Blue updates for Windows RT at BUILD this year, but it’ll definitely be something that we’ll keep in our minds as we go into June.