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Microsoft Windows 8

Windows 8 is the official codename for Microsoft's next generation operating system and successor to the company's Windows 7 OS.  Currently available for download in a final "preview release" that went live on May 31st, 2012, Windows 8 is expected to be launched in late 2012 under a different moniker, as Microsoft wants to emphasize to consumers and businesses that the new OS is more of a revolutionary upgrade from Windows 7 rather than simply an evolutionary release.

Windows 8 has been gaining considerable attention while in development for its "Metro" user interface, which is a significant departure from the traditional desktop interface featured in previous Windows releases.   Microsoft is seeking to implement the Metro interface across a large variety of devices, including mobile smartphones, tablet computers, laptops and desktop PCs, although it remains to be seen how the predominantly touch-based interface will be received by desktop PC customers used to a more traditional mouse-and-keyboard-based interface.

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