Even though Microsoft remains completely tight-lipped on the first major refresh of its newly released Windows 8, more evidence points to a so-called Windows Blue update that could arrive as soon as this summer.
A new software development engineer job listing confirms that Windows Blue is currently under development, but also reveals some new details about the upcoming software.
It appears that Windows Blue will be based on the existing user interface, but will feature major improvements to many aspects of the operating system.
“We’re looking for an excellent, experienced SDET to join the Core Experience team in Windows Sustained Engineering (WinSE). The Core Experience features are the centerpiece of the new Windows UI, representing most of what customers touch and see in the OS. Windows Blue promises to build and improve upon these aspects of the OS, enhancing ease of use and the overall user experience on devices and PCs worldwide,” the job ad spotted by ZDNet reads.
A recent rumor indicated that Microsoft is planning to push the Blue update beyond the Windows platform, so major changes are very likely to spread across the company’s product range, including Windows Phone, SkyDrive and Internet Explorer.
A Microsoft job reference to Windows Phone Blue suggests that the Redmond-based technology giant is working on what is being called “Excel MX,” a touch-optimized version of the spreadsheet app capable of running in Metro mode.
“As a development lead you will hire and manage a team of top-notch developers, be personally involved in the designing and coding features, and work closely with PM and Test counterparts across multiple orgs to help realize the vision of building high quality excel app for Windows Phone Blue,” the job ad states.
This isn’t the first time when Microsoft is believed to prepare a Metro-based version of its productivity suite, as the company is already offering both OneNote and Lync as standalone downloads for Windows 8 devices.