Microsoft Build 2021, an annual conference for developers who work with Microsoft products, has just begun. During the opening keynote, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella talked about some of the plans for the future of Windows, referring to them collectively as “one of the most significant updates to Windows [in] the past decade,”
This year, Microsoft hasn’t given us much to go on in regards to the future of Windows. While an anticipated update dropped recently, the big plans remain under wraps and the company hasn’t dropped any major announcements. However, signs point to a larger update in the fall. The rumored update is said to contain huge changes to the UX of Windows and has been code-named Sun Valley. Today’s teaser at Build tells us more about what we can expect to see within the next few months.
In his speech, Nadella talked about the importance of Windows and other Microsoft products, saying: “Across all the opportunities I’ve highlighted today, Windows is implicit. It’s never been more important. Windows 10 is used by more than 1.3 billion people to work, learn, connect, and play. And it all starts with Windows as a dev box. Windows brings together all developer and collaboration tools in one place. It lets you choose the hardware you want, works with Linux and Windows as one, and has a modern terminal.”
Moving on to talk about the future of Windows, the Microsoft CEO said: “And soon we will share one of the most significant updates to Windows of the past decade to unlock greater economic opportunity for developers and creators. I’ve been self-hosting it over the past several months, and I’m incredibly excited about the next generation of Windows. Our promise to you is this: We will create more opportunities for every Windows developer today and welcome every creator who is looking for the most innovative, new, open platform to build and distribute and monetize applications. We look forward to sharing more very soon.”
There are a few implications here, and they fall in line with what we already know of the update. A recent job listing posted on Microsoft’s career website further confirms these rumors. Evidently, the company is searching for a program manager to work with the Interactive eXperiences Platform (IXP) Team. The team is responsible for “the core Composition, Rendering and Input platforms that the UX of Windows and all Windows apps [are] built upon — from the Windows Start Menu to Office, from Edge to your favorite Windows apps”.
Combine this with Microsoft’s Chief Product Officer Panos Panay stating that “it’s going to be a massive year for Windows” during Ignite 2021, and it seems clear that Windows users are about to see some exciting changes. It remains to be seen whether all of the above is going to be implemented as a Windows 10 update or perhaps an entirely new version of Windows.
While all we have to go on right now are rumors and small pieces of information, we may learn more soon. Microsoft is likely to hold an event dedicated to Windows in the next few weeks that will hopefully tell us more about the future of the Sun Valley project and Windows as a whole.