Microsoft formally launched its Windows 8 operating system today, sabering the champagne bottle (so to speak) on one of its two cash cow software platforms. (The other is the Office productivity suite.)

The event, which was live-streamed on the Web, featured chief executive Steve Ballmer, Windows chief Steven Sinofsky, Windows program management chief Julie Larson-Green and Windows client and ecosystem chief Michael Angiulo.

Heavy on pomp and light on substance, the presentation nonetheless gave us a view into what kind of bet the Redmond, Wash.-based tech company is making with the announcement.

Five key quotes and what they tell us:

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Microsoft's Windows 8 event: 5 key points | ZDNet