President of Microsoft’s Windows division Steven Sinofsky announced at Microsoft’s annual sales meeting that Windows 8 will be available from 26 October 2012.
The new operating system will be available as an upgrade or pre-installed on new PCs purchased from that date. With no reference to retail versions, it appears predictions that Microsoft would scrap on-the-shelf versions of Windows have proved true.
Windows 8 will be available in 109 languages across 231 markets worldwide, as previously announced by Tami Reller, Windows’ chief marketing officer and chief financial officer.
An upgrade to Windows 8 Pro from Windows XP, Windows Vista or Windows 7 will set users back US$39.99, though pricing for other versions is yet to be revealed.
The Windows 8 Release Preview is currently available for download.