We wouldn't be surprised if you missed it in all the Windows Store hubbub, but Microsoft also just confirmed that the public release of Windows 8 Beta will come in February of 2012. We'd previously heard competing rumors of a late January or late February launch, so it looks as though Microsoft is doing a good job of hitting its development goals for the new OS.

The Windows 8 Developer Beta has already seen over three million downloads, but a public beta is something else entirely and we expect that the OS will be much closer to what will finally be released. Hopefully the question about whether or not ARM-based tablets will be keeping the "no-compromise" Windows desktop experience will be resolved in February as well — you can be sure that we'll let you know either way.