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We knew by that time that Microsoft would update Windows 8.1 in early 2014 with a service pack/feature pack-type update called Update 1 (or GDR1 internally), and I reported at the time that the most likely release timeframe was April. But the bigger news was Threshold, which would ditch the cursed Windows 8 branding and would add a “Metro 2.0” user experience. Microsoft planned to deliver three Threshold pre-release milestones in 2014-2015 and then ship the final release in April 2015, I was told. And it would be accompanied by Office Touch for Windows, which was codenamed Gemini.

“Threshold recasts Windows 8 as the next Vista,” I wrote. “It's an acknowledgment that what came before didn't work, and didn't resonate with customers. And though Microsoft will always be able to claim that Windows 9 wouldn't have been possible without the important foundational work they had done first with Windows 8---just as was the case with Windows 7 and Windows Vista---there's no way to sugarcoat this. Windows 8 has set back Microsoft, and Windows, by years, and possibly for good.”

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