Microsoft seen betting big with Windows 8; New OS expected to help company challenge Apple’s iPad momentum

©IDG Communications, Inc. Photo contributed by Matthew Mikaelian.


Windows 8, which is expected to launch later this year, is supposed to offer dramatically enhanced features, including capabilities commonly found in smartphones and tablets — like being able to boot up instantly or navigating a screen with the touch of a finger.

It’s expected to give a much-needed lift to the sluggish personal-computer market. But analysts also see Windows 8 as Microsoft’s MSFT -0.22%  shot at shaking up a fast-growing tablet market, especially in the highly lucrative corporate market. “The industry is excited as they almost always are around an OS [operating system] launch,” NPD analyst Stephen Baker said in an interview.

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