Windows 8.1 Update 1 Reportedly Pushed Back To April

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Slipping software release schedules are hardly new. Today ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley reported that she is now hearing, contrary to prior information, that Windows 8.1 Update 1 will ship not in March, but in April. As expected, it will ship as part of a Patch Tuesday event, meaning we’ll most likely see the new code on April 8.

Microsoft declined to comment.

Now, what’s interesting in this is that Update 1 is now a post-Build release, instead of a pre. This makes Build itself tricky for Microsoft, given that on a March schedule developers have had the code out far enough before Build that they would have been well versed with its intricacies in time for the event.

With this new schedule, instead, developers will be clamoring for information on the code that won’t come out until several days after the conference ends. Microsoft can’t very well tell developers during its developer event what is coming in four days. That would cause a riot.

What do we know about Update 1? Mostly that it will contain a number of improvements to make Windows 8.1 easier to use with a mouse and keyboard, which is still by far the most popular way to interact with Windows. Also, the ability to pin and see Metro apps in the desktop task bar is coming. The Windows Store itself will likely now come auto-pinned there, perhaps driving more use of the store itself.

I’d break down the latest application download figures for the Windows Store, but Microsoft yanked the numbers, provided a single blog post as explanation, and has clammed up since. So, it’s hard to tell how things are going.

At whatever rate, if you were hoping for new code in about a month’s time, get patient, because you likely have two to sit through.

Top Image Credit: Dell Inc. under Creative Commons license (via Flickr, Image cropped)