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Microsoft's operating system, Windows, has been a staple in the world of technology for decades. With the recent release of Windows 11, many are wondering what's next for the Windows ecosystem. While Microsoft has not officially confirmed the development of Windows 12, various leaks and rumors suggest that a new version might be on the horizon. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the potential features, release date, and other details surrounding Windows 12.

1. Is Windows 12 Coming?

The possibility of a Windows 12 release has gained traction due to certain indicators and leaks. Microsoft's new update cadence, which aims to release major versions every three years, suggests that Windows 12 might arrive in 2024. While Microsoft has not made any official announcements, leaks from credible sources like Windows Central's Zac Bowden have shed some light on what we can expect from the new OS.

2. Windows 12 Release Date

Although no official release date has been confirmed, the projected timeline for Windows 12 suggests a 2024 launch. With major releases previously occurring every three years, this aligns with Microsoft's new update cadence. The exact month of release is uncertain, but it is reasonable to expect a release in the second half of the year, potentially in September or October, to coincide with the holiday season.



3. Windows 12 Features

While specific details about Windows 12 are limited, it is anticipated that the new OS will incorporate advanced AI features. Windows 11 introduced AI capabilities like Windows Copilot, and these features are expected to be further enhanced in Windows 12. AI integration can improve various aspects of the operating system, including image processing, trend analysis, and color correction in graphics and photos.

4. The Windows 12 Desktop

A glimpse of the potential Windows 12 desktop was showcased at Microsoft Ignite, an IT-focused conference. The image revealed a floating taskbar, a floating search bar at the top, and relocated system icons. While these design tweaks may not warrant an entirely new Windows version, they suggest a more mobile-looking and customizable desktop experience. However, changes to the desktop interface should not be as drastic as the transition from Windows 10 to Windows 11.

5. Windows as a Service

Microsoft's approach to Windows updates, known as "Windows as a service," will continue with Windows 12. This means that the OS will evolve and receive regular feature updates, similar to how Windows 10 transformed over time. Windows 12 will not be a static entity but will incorporate ongoing changes and additions to improve functionality, stability, and security.

6. Subscription Model

Speculation has arisen regarding a potential subscription model for Windows 12. References to "subscription edition" and related terms in the Windows Insider code have fueled this speculation. While it remains unclear whether a subscription will be mandatory for all users, Microsoft may introduce subscription options for business users or offer a free, ad-supported version of Windows 12. However, a subscription requirement could be met with resistance from long-time Windows users.

7. Built-In AI Enhancements

Windows 11 introduced powerful AI tools like Windows Copilot, but Windows 12 is expected to take AI integration even further. The new OS will likely optimize AI features for the latest CPUs and GPUs, such as Intel's AI-focused Meteor Lake CPUs. This enhanced AI integration can improve user-facing tools, back-end functions like code stability, and update delivery.

8. Componentization and Core PC

The concept of componentization, also known as Core PC, has been discussed in relation to Windows 12. This modular approach involves separating OS components to facilitate smoother updates, enhanced security, and tailored versions of Windows for specific platforms and use cases. Core PC can optimize system resources by excluding support for legacy Windows applications in instances where they are unnecessary.

9. Windows 12 Insider Program

To gain insight into upcoming features and developments, users can enroll their test PCs in the Windows Insider program. This program offers four channels: Canary, Dev, Beta, and Release Preview, each offering varying levels of stability and feature readiness. Participating in the Windows Insider program allows users to access preview builds, interface tweaks, new apps, and capabilities in existing OS features.

10. Windows 12 vs. Windows 10

Windows 12 is expected to deliver significant advancements compared to its predecessor, Windows 10. While Windows 10 users have the option to continue receiving updates, Windows 12 will likely introduce new features and optimizations that are exclusive to the new OS. The shift to Windows 12 will provide users with a more advanced and modernized Windows experience.

11. Windows 12 System Requirements

As with any new version of Windows, Windows 12 is expected to have certain hardware requirements. While specific details are not yet available, it is likely that Windows 12 will have higher hardware demands compared to previous versions. This may mean that older devices will not meet the official requirements for Windows 12, potentially limiting their ability to upgrade to the new OS.

12. The Future of Windows

The future of Windows looks promising with the potential release of Windows 12. While Microsoft has not officially confirmed the new version, leaks and rumors indicate that it is in development and could arrive in 2024. With anticipated AI enhancements, a modular approach, and ongoing updates through the Windows as a Service model, Windows 12 has the potential to offer significant improvements and a more adaptable user experience.

In conclusion, while Microsoft has not officially announced Windows 12, various leaks and rumors suggest its existence. The projected release date, potential features, and changes in update cadence indicate that Windows 12 could be on the horizon. As we eagerly await further information from Microsoft, the future of Windows appears to be a promising and exciting prospect.

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