OK, now the rumors are no longer rumors, and the launch date, aka GA (General Availability), is out thanks to Steve Ballmer’s keynote at Computex (much) earlier today in Taipei, Taiwan, and Brandon LeBlanc’s “Date for General Availability” posting to the Windows 7 Team Blog yesterday.
Here’s the deal, in broad strokes:
- Windows 7 hits store shelves on 10/22/2009, ostensibly to have it ready for the holiday buying season (lots of others outside MS are speculating it’s more of a pre-emptive strike against Android which becomes available at the end of October)
- The Windows 7 Upgrade Option will kick in “soon” which permits those who purchase a new and qualifying PC to exercise “…a special deal to upgrade to Windows 7…” Look for Brandon to blog about this program with dates and more details as “soon” becomes “real soon,” I guess! (According to TechARP, a usually reliable source for leaked MS secrets, this will happen on July 1.)
- RTM should occur some time in mid-July, with Windows Server 2008 R2 following in the same time frame.
OK, now what I want to know is when MSDN and TechNet subscribers can lay hands on the RTM version. I hope we’ll see some more information on that very soon. Not only am I itching to get and use this code, I’m also working on a book that we’re going to have to review very thoroughly to make sure it agrees with the RTM version in all respects and in every screenshot. Stay tuned!