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Rumor: Windows 8 Release Candidate out by early June

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The Release Candidate of Windows 8 could be arriving as soon as early June. Apparently citing the details from an unnamed source, a terse post posted on the WinUnleaked.tk blog reads, "We know the Release Candidate of Windows 8 will be shared with the public between the end of May to the beginning of June." While conceding that this is no more than a rumor for now, Lance Whitney of CNET observed that the timing, if true, mimics that of Windows 7.

The beta and RC of Windows 7 were released in January and early May respectively, allowing Windows 7 to be released in October 2009 in time for the holiday season.

Separately, a Bloomberg report last week agreed that being able to target Christmas shoppers is important. The same report also confirmed that Windows 8 will be launched on devices running on Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) and ARM chips at the same time.

While matching the release date of Windows 7 sounds easy, it is not. This is because Windows 8 is far more substantial upgrade than Windows 7 was, with the addition of a Metro interface as well as a version of Windows specifically architected to run on the ARM processor. Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) has tied the success of its tablet platform to the ARM version of Windows 8 and desperately needs it to succeed to gain some tablet market share. In comparison, iPad sales are expected to reach 66 million in 2012.

The signs are generally positive for the Redmond, Wash.-based software giant though; downloads of the Consumer Preview of Windows 8 shot past 1 million downloads in 24 hours after its release Feb. 29. For now, it has been reported that Microsoft will hold an event in April where it will share its Windows 8 release strategy with industry partners. I suppose the final release dates will be made known by then.

For more:
- check out this article at CNET

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