It’s telling that the first Steambox to hit the market, the Alienware Alpha, won’t run SteamOS but rather a gently modified version of Windows 8. Linux might be Gabe’s open platform of choice, but there’s no arguing with the numbers: right now, Windows is where the PC games are.
Which makes Windows 9 very much our concern. The nebulous sequel to Microsoft’s divisive tile-based OS will come as a free update to Windows 8 users, we’ve heard.
Inscriptions in the tech-bloginomicon speak of Windows 9 as a software update, delivered to Windows 8 users in the fashion OS X upgrades have been rolled out for years.
A report on Detik credited Microsoft Indonesia president Andreas Diantoro with the news. Diantoro said the new OS would be offered to Windows 8 users as a free download - but made no mention of whether a similar deal would be available to users of Windows 7 and the now-unsupported Windows XP.
Rumoured Windows 9 features begin with the homecoming of the Start menu and extend to support for multiple desktops, various UI enhancements, and an implementation of Windows Phone’s voice-search assistant, Cortana.
Whether all of the most exciting Windows 8.1 features Steve listed last year will make the leap to the new OS remains to be seen. We’re expecting an announcement at the end of September.
Would you consider an upgrade? How about a free one?