Microsoft to relaunch its WinHEC hardware engineering confab

After a more than six-year hiatus, Microsoft is relaunching its WinHEC Windows hardware engineering conference, with a March 2015 debut planned for Shenzhen, China.
Written by Mary Jo Foley, Senior Contributing Editor

Microsoft's WinHEC show is back.


After its last Windows Hardware Engineering Conference in 2008, Microsoft officials have decided to relaunch the show. Microsoft will hold the first of its new series of WinHEC shows aimed at Windows hardware engineers in Shenzhen, China on March 18 and 19 in 2015.

Microsoft is changing what the WinHEC acronym stands for. Going forward, it will be the Windows Hardware Engineering Community, according to a September 26 blog post about the relaunch. But the intended audience for the show will be the same as it was before: Engineering managers, engineers and technical product managers at OEMs (original equipment manufacturers), ODMs (original design manufacturers), IHVs (independent hardware vendors), and IDHs (independent design houses).

There's a new countdown site for the new WinHEC show, with a mention of another WinHEC coming to Taipei (but no dates). But a blog post about the relaunch of the show notes that Microsoft is planning to turn WinHEC into a series of events that will occur more than once a year.

From the WinHEC 2015 countdown site:

"Mark your calendar and be part of the Windows Hardware Engineering Community Summit in Shenzhen, March 18th and 19th, 2015. Learn about the latest Microsoft products. Get hands-on engineering training to develop the best possible Windows based hardware products. Meet partners and customers within the Microsoft hardware community. Participate in technical community events that help to drive device innovations in the Windows hardware platform."

Microsoft is in the midst of developing its latest version of Windows, codenamed Threshold/Windows 9. Sources have indicated Microsoft's goal is to make a first enterprise-focused preview build of that operating system available by early October. Microsoft will be showing off that preview to invited press and analysts on September 30 in San Francisco.

A consumer preview, with support for ARM-based phones and devices, is rumored for January or February 2015. Sources have said Microsoft's goal is to complete Threshold by the spring of 2015.

Microsoft officials have not yet announced the dates for its next Build conference, but the company has said it will hold a consolidated show aimed at IT professionals (the successor to TechEd and several other Microsoft shows) the first week of May in 2015 in Chicago.

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