Dear Windows-Help.NET Subscriber,
This week at the Windows Hardware Engineering Conference (WinHEC), Microsoft demonstrated the next version of Windows, currently known as Whistler, a minor upgrade to Windows 2000 that will ship next year.
According to Bill Gates, one of Whistler's key goals is simplification, as is speeding up the slow boot-up time. "One of the issues that is particularly important to us is fast boot. If you're going to make the PC something where you just turn to it to look at the latest weather, the latest news, you're going to have to be able to either have it on all the time, or coming out of hibernate or boot very rapidly", according to Gates. "With Windows Millennium we get the boot time down to 25 seconds, and that's a real milestone. We can do better than that, and in fact with the next release of Windows based on Windows 2000 we're working very hard on that. It is interesting to compare other devices, other consumer devices. Sony PlayStation, which of course is not a hard disk based device, but rather boots off of the CD ROM drive, it has a 33 second boot time. So we're already underneath that, but as I said, we're not going to stop there. The Apple iMac boots in a minute ten seconds, and we could have demonstrated that, but we just didn't have the time for it. So there's a real issue here where we have to come up with technology that literally gets boot time down into the ten second range, I would say, in order to fulfill all the scenarios that we're interested in".
According to Gates we will have a microphone built into every PC. The camera will also start to be popular, but that's probably a year or two later before it becomes pervasive on every PC. Gates also said: "We're also going to start to build in the voice annotation on document capability, and voice mail capabilities in a very rich way". Voice chat for MSN is also planned in the next few months.
Gates also talked about the wireless area, where he said that Microsoft will probably make the transition from infrared to Bluetooth that can connect up peripherals, and is a short cable replacement. According to Gates this isn't a competitor to the wireless networking standards, which he thinks will coalesce around the wireless 802.11b. So wired Ethernet and the wireless are really going to be the standard LAN type connectivity capability.
The full text of the April 25 "remarks" can be found on the Microsoft Web site.
Windows Me RC1 due May 5, RTM on June 9
According to information posted by Paul Thurrot, Windows Millennium Edition is set for Release Candidate 1 (RC1) build on May 5th, while Release To Manufacturing (RTM) has been pushed back to June 9th.
Windows Me will be sold primarily as a bundle on new machine purchases and marks the end of Windows 98.
S P O N S O R
"I thought I'd tip you off to a piece of software that turns your RealAudio player into a real sound system. I'm sitting here clicking the on/off button to hear the difference between the signal and the iQ enhanced version and the difference is not like night and day -- it's like night and several days." -- R. Curtis, USA