updated 02:30 pm EST, Mon January 28, 2008
Windows 7 in 2011
Microsoft's next version of Windows may not be due until as late as three years from now, the company says in an e-mail response to inquiries about its launch. While recent news had claimed version 7 of the operating system had been moved up to 2009 and that a milestone release had already been seeded to developers, a spokesperson for Microsoft has refuted the idea and says that the company is still in the planning stages for its sequel to Vista. An actual release will take "3 years to develop," the official says, though when development began is unspecified. This places a release as early as the start of 2010 but as late as 2011.
The Microsoft representative also denies assertions made in the earlier reports that Windows 7 is being hastened to compensate for poor sales of Vista, citing the 100 million copies of the software sold in 2007 and businesses moving to the OS at rates "similar to past releases." Recent statistics have suggested that the software was preloaded on only 37 percent of new PC sales in 2007 and that the rate of growth is disproportionately slower than for Windows XP, which sold into a much smaller PC market.
Though other sites have not confirmed the statement, the specified timeframe would support rivals such as Linux and Mac OS X, both of which have made modest gains against Windows in those same statistics.