Windows 8 will go down in history as one of the worst operating systems Microsoft has ever made.
With Windows 8, Microsoft slapped its traditional userbase in the face while trying to appeal a new userbase of people who liked colorful squares, touchscreens, and limited functionality.
It clearly didn’t work.
Now, Microsoft may be ready to admit its failure. A new rumor states that Microsoft has “internally designated” Windows 8 as EOL, which means End Of Lifespan.
In other words, Windows 8.1 Update 2 will be the last update the OS receives before it vanishes into obscurity.
The rumor comes from Wzor, a Russian leaker who likes to talk about Windows topics and appears to have an inside source at Microsoft. Wzor posted on a Russian forum stating (in Russian):
“After release of Windows 8.1 Update 2 new updates will be released, but no new features will be added to the operating system. Update 2 is the final rebuild of all SKUs”
According to the rumor, Microsoft is currently working on Windows 9 and is preparing to release a preview this fall. Microsoft’s focus right now is to develop “new activation methods” that will closely tie a copy of Windows 9 with a specific PC in order to prevent piracy.
Microsoft has had trouble limiting piracy in developing markets. A few years ago, that didn’t matter much. But with countries like China and India representing hundreds of millions of computer users, Microsoft has realized it needs to focus on securing its distribution.
Wzor even gave details about the new activation system, saying that Microsoft is working on a system where users would have to detach Windows 9 from a PC via the Microsoft Store before installing it on a new operating system.
I don’t know about you, but I like the sound of that distribution model.
Microsoft is also likely trying to encourage a more regular update cycle like its main competitor, Mac OS, where users receive annual updates for free.
If Microsoft does designate Windows 8 EOL externally, expect them to reward Windows 8 adopters with a generous upgrade deal. If I was a Windows 8 user hearing about this news, I would be extremely upset.
RIP Windows 8? We barely got to know one another.