In a recent public appearance, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates, announced that the next version of Windows, dubbed Windows 7, might be ready for next year. Windows 7 is the successor for Windows Vista and the original schedule was for about 3 years after the release of Vista. A 2009 release would mean almost a year in advance from the proposed schedule and Microsoft has a track record of being late rather than early.
Naturally, not much information is available about the inner workings of Windows 7, but Microsoft maybe trying to speed up the next version in order to correct many of the problems encountered by users of Vista.
In response to a question about Windows Vista, Gates, speaking before the Inter-American Development Bank here, said: “Sometime in the next year or so we will have a new version.” Referring to Windows 7, the code name for the next full release of Windows client software, Gates said: “I’m super-enthused about what it will do in lots of ways.”
Perhaps Bill Gates was refering to the fact that they would have a TEST version available or a first public beta instead of a widespread public release. I think it would be pretty surprising to see another major release in such a short timeframe, but then again, the public reception of Vista certainly requires a little bit of damage control.
I would expect Windows 7 to be somewhat like XP was to 2000: same functionalities but with most of the kinks worked out and a more refined interface.