Starting the morning of October 17th, you’ll be able to purchase and download Windows 8.1, or update your existing Windows 8 device for free. On October 18th, retail packages of the software will be available in stores, and that’s when dozens of laptops and tablets running the latest Microsoft OS will probably also start to go on sale in stores.
The new software brings the return of the Start Button (but not the Start Menu), offers new Live Tile options, offers a more consistent visual experience by letting you use the same wallpapers for the desktop and Start Screen, and offers support for running more than two apps in side-by-side windows using the new Modern UI.
Microsoft’s also been publishing a series of blog posts explaining some of the changes in the web browsing eperience, search, SkyDrive cloud storage, and other features. If you just can’t wait to get your hands on Windows 8.1, you can find out an awful lot about it by checking out the official Windows Blog.
Here’s a roundup of tech news from around the web.
- Microsoft updates its photo, video editing apps for Windows 8.1
Windows 8.1 will be available for download starting October 17th, and Microsoft is also promising a series of new and updated apps to go along with the new operating system. [Windows Blog]
- Intel’s next-gen “Broadwell” 14nm chips could be delayed by about a quarter
Sure, Intel’s 4th-gen Core “Haswell” chips are still pretty new, but the company’s already hard at work on the next-gen, 14nm chips called Broadwell. Unfortunately a temporary roadbump could push back their launch by a few months. [CNET]
- Netflix 3.0 for Andorid brings slide-out navigation, smoother operation
Netflix has rolled out an updated Android app with slide-out navigation, improved graphics, and a smaller lock screen widget when you use the app with a Chromecast. It’s a staged rollout, so it might not be available for everyone yet. [Android Police]
- Google promises to support Chrome browser for Windows XP through at least April 2015
Windows XP is already pretty long in the tooth, but Microsoft hasn’t officially pulled the plug just yet. That’ll happen in about half a year — but Google says its web browser will continue to support Windows XP users for at least another 18 months or so. [Chrome Blog]
- Single-board computer for embedded applications with Ti OMAP 5 ARM Cortex-A15 CPU
Texas Instruments may not be making chips for consumer devices anymore, but the company’s TI OMAP5 ARM Cortex-A15 chip is alive and kicking in niche devices like this tiny embedded computing board. [LinuxGizmos]