Expect to see new Windows 8 operating system installed in new PCs by late October. Windows CMO/CFO Tami Reller told the annual Worldwide Partner Conference on Monday that the new operating system should be released to manufacturing (RTM) in August with the new Windows 8 PCs expected to be available a couple of months later. Also revealed at the conference was that Windows 7 has sold over 630 million licenses since its release in 2009.
The timing of the Windows 8 release makes sense given the proximity to the holiday season. The late October target puts the release of the new Windows 8 PCs about a month before Black Friday—the biggest shopping day of the year that takes place annually the day after Thanksgiving. Windows 7 was also released in October.
A previous blog post puts the price of upgrading to the new operating system (Windows 8 Pro) at $39.99 for current users running Windows XP, Vista, or 7. Users must purchase the upgrade through the Microsoft website by the end of January to take advantage of the pricing. The blog post also noted that users who purchase the upgrade can then add Windows Media Center for free. The in-store upgrade will run at $69.99 throughout the promotion, according to Microsoft.
Previews of the new operating system have been widespread around the web for some time now, with a preview of the new OS, a developer preview, and a consumer preview released by the company at varying points since last year. The new OS has been widely discussed across Internet forums and in Usenet newsgroups, where new technology is often a hot topic.