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Windows 9: One OS to rule all devices

Published Jul 23rd, 2014 2:00PM EDT
Windows 9 for Desktop, Smartphone and Xbox
Image: Microsoft Corporation

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Unlike Apple, which thinks merging iOS and OS X would be a “waste of energy,” Microsoft wants one single Windows operating system to be available to all its device users, whether they’re Windows Phone handset owners, Xbox fans, or rely on a Windows computer for work or play. Business Insider reports that CEO Satya Nadella said on the company’s FQ4 earnings conference call that a future version of Windows will merge all current Windows versions, becoming an “operating system that covers all screen sizes.”

“In the year ahead, we are investing in ways that will ensure our device OS and first party hardware aligned to our core,” Nadella said. “We will streamline the next version of Windows from three operating systems into one single converged operating system for screens of all sizes.”

“We will unify our stores, commerce and developer platforms to drive a more coherent user experience and a broader developer opportunity,” he added.

Microsoft already revealed at Build 2014 in early April that it will let developers create apps that will work across devices, including Windows Phone smartphones, Windows computers and Xbox consoles, but the company is apparently ready to go even further.

However, that doesn’t mean Microsoft will have a simpler way of selling Windows products to users.

“Our SKU strategy will remain by segment, we will have multiple SKUs for enterprises, we will have for OEM, we will have for end-users,” Nadella added. “And so we will – be disclosing and talking about our SKUs as we get further along, but my statement was more to do with how we are bringing teams together to approach Windows as one ecosystem very differently than we ourselves have done in the past.”

Microsoft is expected to launch Windows 9 next year, although the company did not disclose any details about it during the conference call. “We look forward to sharing more about our next major wave of Windows enhancements in the coming months,” Nadella said while explaining the company’s “one Windows” vision.

The full Microsoft conference call is available at the source links below.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.