Back in December, there were a host of rumours leaked about the next version of the perhaps decreasingly popular, yet still, massively dominant Windows OS, appropriately named the successor to Windows 7, in the form of Windows 8. Well, now it seems that Microsoft Kitchen, the team who got a hold of the Windows software roadmap in the first place, have leaked a presentation detailing some further, possibly more concrete rumours detailing some exciting features to come in Windows 8.
First of all, we have a potential feature, which fits in nicely with our recent Future of Cloud Computing commentary, in that users may have the opportunity to store their personal user details and settings in the ‘cloud’. This brings up a whole host of other debates, which we will explore further if and when the plans come to fruition in the next year or so.
Secondly, and perhaps more interestingly, we have the inclusion of an app store. Similar to that we’ve seen recently; an app store on selected ASUS netbooks developed by Intel. Obviously at his early stage it is impossible to fathom what sort of apps will be available on the app store and whether they will, for the most part, be a collection of third-party developed apps similar to that you find on CNET’s download.com, or whether Microsoft will set about developing their own premium apps and tools for Windows. Gone are the days of ‘programs’ my friend.
The app store could also be the focal point behind the next development though in the world of Windows-based tablets. It is claimed that Windows 8 will be more adept to such devices and perform even better, with faster startup times than Windows 7 on tablets such as the HP Slate might have been.
Also, in this modern world where any technology-savvy person will have access to not only a desktop computer but also perhaps a laptop as well as a netbook each running a version of Windows, as well as a smartphone possibly running Windows Phone 7 (or perhaps 8 by then) and you could even stretch as far as a tablet too. It’s rumoured that Windows 8, unsurprisingly, will build definite bridges between the different platforms allowing easy synchronisation, particularly with user settings shared in the ‘cloud’ – perhaps we’ll see a Dropbox-style online sync feature, but not just for files, but for your whole computing experience?
Obviously with the roadmap heading for an initial release in 2012, it is yet unclear whether any or all of these rumoured features will come to be a reality, but so far, even though it is looking likely we will be deprived of 128-bit systems, Windows 8 is looking a promising successor to Windows 7 and no matter what your opinions of Microsoft and Windows as a whole, you have to hand it to them with regard to how far they have come since the downfall that was Windows Vista.