Windows 8 charms

Microsoft to unveil Windows ‘Threshold’ in September, reports say

The much-maligned charms menu (pictured right) will be dropped for Windows 9

22 August 2014

Our first glimpse of Windows 9 may be right around the corner, as the new rapid-fire Microsoft scrambles to put the stigma of Windows 8’s disastrous launch in the rear view mirror.

Microsoft is set to officially unveil Windows ‘Threshold’ – as it’s currently codenamed – at a press event on 30 September or soon thereafter, according to the Verge’s Tom Warren. A week ago, ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley reported that Microsoft was targeting a “technology preview” for Windows Threshold in late September or early October. Both Warren and Foley are well-connected Windows watchers with a firm track record; the duo was the first to report on the Windows Blue update that eventually evolved into Windows 8.1, for instance.

Rather than being a sweeping overhaul in the vein of Windows 8, Windows Threshold actually appears poised to dial back the gargantuan changes found in that operating system. Microsoft has already announced that the Start menu is coming back to the OS, joined by the ability to run Metro apps in discrete desktop windows. Recent leaks (including Foley and Warren’s own reports) suggest other, mostly pro-desktop tweaks are inbound, including virtual desktop support, the removal of the Charms bar, and – possibly – the introduction of Windows Phone 8.1’s sassy virtual assistant, Cortana, to Windows proper.


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