Microsoft will be releasing its much awaited Windows 10 much earlier than expected. The new operating system is revealed to be coming up this summer.
The software will be available in 190 countries and in 111 languages. Microsoft had already announced that Windows 10 would be a free upgrade to PC and tablet users running Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 so long as they downloaded the software within the first year that it is available. (There is no Windows 9.)
The upgrade will also be free for phones running Windows Phone 8.1 as well as those with the company’s Xbox One game system.
The decision to launch Windows 10 in the summer came as a bit of a surprise given the company’s past tradition of releasing new Windows software in the fall. The summer release also looks to put Windows 10 at the heart of the back-to-school shopping season, a traditionally strong computer-buying period.
Microsoft may be hoping that Windows 10’s improved design and new features like Cortana and Xbox integration will appeal to prospective PC buyers. According toresearch firm NPD Group, retail PC sales grew close to 3% last back-to-school season, though Windows PC sales were down 3% compared to the prior year. Rival Apple’s Mac computers were up 14% and Google’s Chrome OS sales were up 37%.