There has been a lot of talk about Microsoft Windows 9 in the past few months, mostly about how Microsoft plans to merge the Metro UI with the classic desktop, complete with the beloved Start menu. As Jason pointed out, the Metro UI is a great interface for mobile applications such as phones (which we love), tablets, and other segments where touch screens are the norm. So what is the plan then?
Well, the rumors are starting to take shape with specific dates and plans of action, instead of vague guess-work. Now it seems Microsoft will be issuing Release Clients as early as the end of September 2014 for beta testing. If the past RCs are any indication, we can expect to see PCs running the new Windows OS as early as Fall 2015. That is moving rather fast for Microsoft, but Windows 9 isn't exactly full of new concepts.
Where does this leave Windows 8? Once again, historically it is not in Microsoft's nature to just abandon their software. We may see Windows 8 taking the role of mobile OS, while Windows 9 takes over the desktop space. The question should be what will happen to Windows 7? Windows 8.1 has a clear advantage in speed, performance, features, and gaming over 7. The only thing keeping Windows 7 alive is the Start menu and cost. This could be the beginning of the end for Windows 7.