Computerworld - Microsoft's decision to sit on Windows 8.1 for two months after engineers wrap up work was driven by the year's biggest sales cycles, analysts said.
On Wednesday, Microsoft announced it would release Windows 8.1
, the first of what's expected to be annual updates to Windows 8, through the Windows Store on Oct. 17. The next day, retail copies of the updated operating system will hit retail, as will new Windows 8.1-powered devices from Microsoft's OEM (original equipment manufacturer) partners.
But with a late August completion date for Windows 8.1 still on track -- what Microsoft calls RTM, for "release to manufacturing" -- some have wondered why the Redmond, Wash., developer plans to hold the update for eight or more weeks.
The questions are justified: Microsoft has made much of its accelerated development and release schedule for Windows updates. Those updates are far more than collections of bug fixes, like the now-discarded service packs, but include improvements, enhancements, and new features and software.