Microsoft talks publicly about Blue and Build 2013

Microsoft talks publicly about Blue and Build 2013

Summary: Microsoft officials are going public with positioning around Blue, as well as about the next Windows development conference, Build 2013.


It's a new world at Microsoft these days. The latest proof points: Company officials are talking about both the next wave of Windows releases (Blue) and the next Windows developer conference (Build 2013) in a timely manner.


First up is Build. The next Microsoft Build conference is happening June 26 to 28 in San Francisco. Registration for it will open on April 2 at 9 am PDT. According to Microsoft's Build site, early bird registration (for the first 500) will be $1,595. Full registration will be $2,095.

That seems like perfect timing if rumors about Windows Blue and its timing have been on the money (which they have, so far). Windows Blue could be ready for a preview build of some sort right around late June. Word is there would be two Blue milestone builds, followed by a public preview and then release to manufacturing around August 2013.

(Update: The not-so-perfect part about the timing, as a couple readers have noted, is that Build 2013 is overlapping with TechEd Europe, which is June 25 to 28 in Madrid.)

There've been a lot of leaks about Blue -- including this past weekend's leak of a recent internal Windows Blue build that shows off some of the user interface changes coming to the next version of Windows. It's also known that other "Blue" wave products are in the pipeline, including Windows Phone Blue, several Windows Server Blue variants, and Blue versions of Windows apps and services like Skydrive and

But the way we've known all this -- up until today -- has been thanks to leaks and tips. Now Micorosft officials are starting to tell the Blue story publicly, as a March 26 blog post from Corporate Communications Vice President Frank Shaw make clear.

Shaw's post reiterates a lot of what I've been trying to make clear in my posts about Blue, namely, that Blue is about more than a set of interrelated products that are timed to ship within a specific window (pun intended) of time. Blue is also significant because it signifies a move by Microsoft officials to turn Redmond into a devices and services company that is delivering updates in a more timely fashion.

"Our product groups are also taking a unified planning approach so people get what they want – all of their devices, apps and services working together wherever they are and for whatever they are doing," Shaw noted. (There's that collaboration theme, again.)

It should be an interesting Build this year, with plenty of new goodies to keep the (hopefully this time) less soggy developer masses busy. 


Topics: Windows 8, Microsoft, Windows, Windows Phone, Windows Server


Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • deliberate overlap with TechEd Europe?

    That way hey can cover Blue content for European devs at close to the same time
  • This is not your father's Microsoft

    Info Dave
    • Wow

      Love my job, since I've been bringing in $5600… I sit at home, music playing while I work in front of my new iMac that I got now that I'm making it online.(Click Home information)
      • Wow

        What's it take to get a comment deleted around here? @UsherJohn has 12 flags, and almost a day later his vile, obvious spam continues to exist. Yet more evidence that the ZDNet comment system is seriously broken.
        Info Dave
    • My father's Microsoft gave us XP...

      ...this Microsoft gave us Zune, Kin and Windows Phone.... not sure which one I like the most... LOL...
      • Your father's

        Microsoft gave us XP, the most hated version of Windows at release, until Vista came along...
        • Yup

          People seem to forget that XP was not exactly greeted with great enthusiasm when it was released. People complained about everything from interface changes to memory requirements, not to mention application compatibility and driver issues for old hardware. It's a "the more things change, the more they stay the same" kind of deal.

          Of course XP went on to become wildly successful and is still entrenched on a large number of machines even today. Heck, I'm still trying to get some extended family members to upgrade from XP.
          • XP is flawed, but it's far better than 8 or BLEW (it)

            The complaints about XP were due to the fact that MS released it in a flawed state. The interface itself was welcome. Win8 is both extremely flawed, far worse than XP was, and its interface is INSANE:

            Stripped (of customization options, good mail, DVD) and Schizoid
            Apish (of Ubuntu, Apple)
            Egregious and Eat-Your-Time

            I bought my XP machine, didn't upgrade from Win98. Took me a month to customize, maybe more. I can't do in Win8 what I could do in Win98, even. So why would I move my business backwards, and have to pass on the price-in-time-spent, to my customers?

            Then I would also be, INSANE.
          • Changes, turn and face them...

            Don't mind most changes. Do mind changes for the sake of change that are not well thought out. There are two trends, the dumbification and the technophilication of settings and management. Most times, simplifying things so users who e-mail and tweet and occassionally edit a pic can get more done in a day is not a bad thing, but like actual training wheels, please, please let us take them off when we've learned to ride, Ok ? The opposite trend is to make "Admin Friendly" tasks out of things that needn't be so freaking tedious. Most admin style tools are designed to hide and obfuscate details of inner workings so only IT professionals can manage them. When these come set, out of the box, it can be a royal nightmare to get them back to their pre-admin state so I, the power user, can get at them.

            The problem occurs when things that used to work one way now require the Left Handed Suzuki maneuver to accomplish them. The learning curve is not supposed to be a saw blade.
      • What about Windows 7?

        You conveniently left that out.
        • Old News...

          Windows 7 is old news. And quite frankly fewer and fewer people are caring about Windows 7. After bashing Windows 8 on the desktop myself I finally installed it and now have completely switched to Windows 8 everywhere. It's much better than most think on the desktop (non-touch screen) Much better.
          • totally agree

            much much better.... even without touch.... really dont understand other's angst...
          • Old News...

            Windows 8 is much better than most think...

            Well, tell me, because I am very curious. How in hell is Windows 8 much better than windows 7? Please list your reasons.
          • Here a few things

            -Fast boot time (much faster)
            -Much better overall performances.
            -Totally integrated with skydrive and the cloud.
            -Xbox music (10$ per month unlimited music access).
            -App store (some apps are really good).
            -Most WinRT apps, work all across you devices (desktop and tablets , you just buy once).

            and many other really interesting things, as long you want to try windows 8 and give it a chance (take me around 1 week to get use it, and now I find it much more efficient than the classic windows )
          • Point by point

            -Fast boot time (much faster)

            Most of my Win 7 machines boot in 15 or so sec, but it's due to the SSDs I have, not the OS. That's too slow?

            -Much better overall performances.

            ...once you figure out how to get to the desktop (if you haven't upgraded to Win 7 right away, that is). When you're staring at the incomprehensible Metro screen, you really don't need much in the way of performance.

            -Totally integrated with skydrive and the cloud.

            But I will never be part of MS's ecosystem. So, this means nothing to me.

            -Xbox music (10$ per month unlimited music access).

            I stream unlimited music for free. Win 8 is useless for me here, too.

            -App store (some apps are really good).

            I use *programs* on a PC, not apps.

            -Most WinRT apps, work all across you devices (desktop and tablets , you just buy once).

            Oh, now we're not even talking about Win 8, we're talking about some kiddy-light version of something that looks like Windows. I have even less use for that!

            Now, if someone could actually come up with a good argument why anyone should deal with the mess that is Win 8 over staying with Win 7, please let me have it!
          • interface

            How's the metro interface working compared to win7 interface

            1. Which one more user friendly

            2. Which one more intuitive

            3. Which one easier to find stuff

            Bear in mind user spend almost 100 % time interfacing with their PC
          • Good for you!

            Mmm, yummy kool-aid!

            (And, lots of people care about Win 7, as it's the only MS OS we'll have until MS fixes the big pile of doo that Win 8 is. And if they don't we'll probably move over to Linux.)
          • @justthisguyyouknow

            Agreed with everything up until the "we'll probably move over to Linux" part. If Microsoft doesn't bother fixing Windows 8 on the desktops, there's no point downgrading from Windows Se7en to Windows 8 nor Linux, unless you so want to complicate your life.
  • Interesting

    I figured they would movie build so that the 3 major developer conferences would be near each other (WWDC, Build, and I/O) and that they would lay a clear vision for their holiday plans. Just makes sense.
    Jeff Kibuule
  • Wow!

    Moving BUILD up to late June from October is a big step for Microsoft!