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Windows 7 Will Be the Next Operating System from Microsoft

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Chris Flores, a Microsoft director on the Windows Client Communications Team, talks about the future of Windows. First of all, Chris assures us that there will be a next Windows, and it's called Windows 7. But it seems that Microsoft has changed the communication policy, and does not want to reveal too much about it. Chris said:

So, why the change in approach?  We know that when we talk about our plans for the next release of Windows, people take action. As a result, we can significantly impact our partners and our customers if we broadly share information that later changes.  With Windows 7, we're trying to more carefully plan how we share information with our customers and partners.  This means sharing the right level of information at the right time depending on the needs of the audience.

Windows 7 will be, of course, a major release, and will be built on top of Windows Vista:

Windows Vista established a very solid foundation, particularly on subsystems such as graphics, audio, and storage. Windows Server 2008 was built on that foundation and Windows 7 will be as well. Contrary to some speculation, Microsoft is not creating a new kernel for Windows 7. Rather, we are refining the kernel architecture and componentization model introduced in Windows Vista. 

Microsoft will try to avoid the compatibility issues existing during the transition from XP to Vista:

In fact, one of our design goals for Windows 7 is that it will run on the recommended hardware we specified for Windows Vista and that the applications and devices that work with Windows Vista will be compatible with Windows 7.

One of the new features that will be included in Windows 7 is Surface introduced to the public by Bill Gates a year ago. Microsoft has released a video demo of its Surface technology showing how one can interact with a touching screen using simultaneously several fingers to perform new and interesting actions in more natural ways.

The plan is to deliver Windows 7 about 3 years after Vista's launch, and Chris says they are on track. Since January is not a good month to launch a new OS, it will be probably delivered during the spring or summer of 2010.

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