Microsoft will today show off and demonstrate the mobile, and consumer-facing elements of its Windows 10 operating system. The company previously demoed, and released the corporate side of the same OS last year.
Windows 10 represents Microsoft’s attempt to unify its core platform to work across device categories. The “OneCore” effort is something that will bring Windows 10 to your phone, tablet, laptop, and television.
Microsoft is expected to make its pitch that code can stretch far — Apple, of course, currently offers two distinct experiences, based roughly on whether touch input will be present or not. Microsoft, however, is betting that it can do it all at once, without a hitch.
The company’s work to unify the various forms of input, including voice, touch, keyboard, mice, and so forth will be a key element of the reveal. Cortana will be a part of Windows 10, but it is not clear how much of it we will see today.
The event will stream live here, in case you want to tune in. TechCrunch will be covering the event as it unfolds.
Microsoft should have on tap today a touch-based Office, Cortana, a new browser, a better pitch to developers, and a unified core . According to the usually impervious Mary Jo Foley, Microsoft will not be shipping mobile code for some time, however:
But tomorrow will not be the day Microsoft releases the first preview of the mobile version of its Windows 10 operating system, according sources close to Microsoft. Instead, the first public release of the Windows 10 mobile SKU — which sources have said will work on both Windows Phones and smaller Intel- and ARM-based tablets — won’t happen until some time in February 2015.
That is a disappointment — we won’t get our hands on that portion of the codebase for a few weeks. But at the same time, when you are developing in real time, you can’t always get stuff out the door in time to massage the press. The core premise of Windows 10 remains the same.
Some in the media are playing a bit hard to catch when it comes to today’s event. Business Insider’s Matt Rosoff’s take is perhaps average:
PC sales went into free fall through most of 2013, and were down again in 2014. Around the time of the Windows 8 release then-CEO Steve Ballmer and other executives often threw out the figure of 400 million PCs shipped per year. In fact, the number in 2014 was just over 300 million.
You can’t blame this entirely on Windows 8 — the global economy has been weak for most of that time, and consumers have a lot more options. But Windows 8 certainly didn’t help.
So what can Microsoft do to make Windows relevant again?
Microsoft could be slightly worried about today’s shindig. Can it prove that Windows still matters? We’ll find out in just about two hours.