Microsoft Windows 8 to debut next yearNew OS to appear 3 years after Windows 7

23 May 2011

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Steve Balmer, the Chief Executive Officer of Microsoft, has announced that Windows 8 will launch next year. Windows 8 is Microsoft's forthcoming operating system, replacing Windows 7.

Rumours of a 2012 launch have been rife, but this is the first official announcement from Microsoft.

Mr Balmer, speaking in Tokyo, hinted that the new operating system would be seen on a variety of products including tablets. 

Thanks to the success of the Apple iPad, iOS is currently the most common tablet operating system, but Balmer wants to challenge it with Windows 8. 

One change, previously announced at the Consumer Electronics Show in January, is that Windows will support ARM processor technology, the type of processors normally found in tablets and laptops. It's also expected to use a touch interface similar to that of Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 mobile phone operating system.

Read Windows 8: what we know to find out all about Windows 8, including its potential new features.

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