Microsoft Windows 8 Released to Tablet Makers

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Microsoft fans anxiously awaiting the arrival of Windows 8 sit tight, for the company has confirmed that the operating system has been released to the companies that will manufacture tablets, laptops, and desktops, bringing the platform one step closer to its October roll-out date.

Windows 8 start screenWith development and testing of Windows 8 complete, manufacturers now have the final code to begin building new tablets, laptops and desktops powered by the Microsoft platform. The company is also launching the Windows Store commerce platform, which developers can publish and offer paid apps on.

Microsoft has promised an October 26 release date for the operating system. That is also the day that the Microsoft Surface tablet is going to be released.

Early Looks

Specific audiences are going to be granted an early look at the Windows 8 RTM code prior to a commercial launch. Developers will be able to visit the Windows Dev Center to access all the tools and resources necessary to design, build, and sell apps in the Windows Store on August 15.?IT professionals testing Windows 8 in businesses and organizations will also be able to access the final version that day via a TechNet subscription.

Customers with existing Microsoft Software Assurance for Windows will be eligible to download Windows 8 Enterprise edition on August 16 through the Volume License Service Center, while Microsoft Partner Network members will also get access to the operating system. Microsoft Action Pack Providers will get to experience the platform on August 20, though Volume License customers without Software Assurance will have to wait until September 1 to purchase Windows 8 through Microsoft Volume License Resellers.

Starting October 26, consumers will be able to purchase Microsoft’s latest operating system for $40 or customers who buy an eligible Windows 7 PC today will be able to purchase the upgrade for $15.

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