Microsoft File For 'Windows 365' Trademark; Windows 10 RTM May Drop June
Trademarks are no big thing for major American corporations, but a recent filing by Software giant Microsoft has raised a few eyebrows in the world of technology. It's been uncovered by Neowin that Microsoft recently applied for a trademark for 'Windows 365', an obvious mirroring of their successful Office 365 service but for their front-line OS.
Immediately discussion has focused on the already mooted idea of 'Windows as a Service', the concept that rather than a one-off product a modern Windows OS is a life-time supported software platform with all the associated strengths and costs. This is reinforced by calling the service 'Windows 365', and as with Office 365 neatly dispenses with version numbers and knock-on confusion.
Windows as a Service also neatly dovetails with Microsoft offering Windows 10 free to all current owners of Windows 7 and 8/8.1. If everyone is on the same platform version numbers become irrelevant and life-time support is already assumed.
So, where's the controversy? One minor niggle - Office 365 is a subscription model, whilst for most users Windows doesn't incur a similar reoccurring fee. As recently as May experts cast doubt on such a payment plan for mainstream Windows users. It's possible that Windows 365 refers to a future product, or one more tailored to businesses (with a greater level of support), but in general moving to subscription model would (for now at least) meet with push-back from home users and enthusiasts.
Following this news The Inquirer reported that the Release To Manufacturer version of Windows 10, i.e. the version which manufacturers could start customising and incorporating into their products, may be ready as early as June this year. In the past a Windows OS RTM has typically been August for general release in the following October, a timetable which many had assumed for the Windows 10 release. The RTM point isn't always a great milestone to indicate the release of boxed products which the average user can buy, but an August 'back to school' release timetable is not beyond the realms of possibility.