Microsoft announced at a conference in Orlando, Florida that the next version of Windows will arrive within three years. This new Windows version was previously codenamed Vienna but it looks like Microsoft is now calling it Windows version 7.
While the company provided few details, Windows 7, the next client version of the operating system, will be among the steps taken by Microsoft to establish a more predictable release schedule, according to sources. The company plans a more "iterative" process of information disclosure to business customers and partners, sources said.
Windows Vista, the oft-delayed most recent release of Windows, shipped to businesses in November and to consumers in January after more than five years of development. Vista's gestation period was marked by shifting product details as internal priorities changed and problems arose with development.
Like Vista, Windows 7 will ship in consumer and business versions, and in 32-bit and 64-bit versions. The company also confirmed that it is considering a subscription model to complement Windows, but did not provide specifics or a time frame.