Unofficially, it is known as Windows Blue. Microsoft, however, will refer to it as Windows 8.1 and the update will be available free of charge to Windows 8 users through the Windows Store, according to a post on Microsoft's official blog.
The announcement was made by Tami Reller, Microsoft vice-president and chief financial officer of the Windows division. She disclosed this information on Tuesday during the JP Morgan Technology, Media & Telecom Conference taking place in Boston.
Reller used the opportunity to highlight Microsoft's commitment to enriching the Windows user experience through continual updates. Windows 8.1 comes as part of that ambition and represents the next step in the Windows 8 journey, which began in the autumn of 2012. The forthcoming Windows update will help Microsoft and its OEM partners bring out the next generation of personal and tablet computers, providing both enterprises and consumers with the experiences they need and expect, Reller said. Windows 8.1 will be available for a public preview on 26 June, when Microsoft will be holding its Build developer conference in San Francisco.
The blog post once again stressed the fact that Windows 8 was developed to provide a seamless experience in a mobile and constantly connected world. Microsoft is happy with the progress made so far. Windows 8 features on tablets, touch-enabled laptops and convertibles and OEM partners have delivered some outstanding products. Among them are the Dell XPS 12, the Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 13, the Sony VAIO Tap 20 and the recently unveiled Acer Aspire R7. In addition, the Windows Store now offers over 70,000 apps.
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