Microsoft announced Tuesday an update to its Windows 8.1 OS known previously by the code name “Windows Blue.” Windows 8.1 will be a free update for Windows 8 users when it debuts later this year, said Tami Reller, CFO and CMO of Windows, in a presentation today at JP Morgan’s Technology, Media and Telecom Conference in Boston. The update for both Windows 8 and Windows RT will be available via the Windows Start Screen through the Windows App store later this year. Microsoft has said that a public preview of the new software will be available on June 26 for those that want to try out an early version.
“By making the Windows 8.1 upgrade free, Microsoft is indicating they weren’t satisfied with the experience,” Patrick Moorhead, an analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy, told ABC News. “This is a very good step toward improving the somewhat negative sentiment about Windows 8 as a whole. But to turn the entire Windows 8 ship around, the market will need smaller, more-cost effective touch-based tablets and more titles in the Windows store, like Facebook.”