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Microsoft overhauls language support in Windows 8, UK gets its own display language

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Microsoft has revealed it will support 14 new additional display languages in Windows 8, alongside a new interface to download and install language packs.

Windows 8 display languages
Windows 8 display languages

As the world celebrates International Mother Language Day today, Microsoft has revealed it will make installing additional display languages on Windows 8 a lot easier than current versions of Windows. Microsoft has created a new languages preferences section as a one-stop place to find and download all display languages in Windows 8. The consolidation means that Windows 8 users will not have to hunt around websites, Microsoft's Download Center or Windows Update to find their language pack of choice.

The language center in Windows 8 will surface all the available language packs and display languages supported in the new operating system. Windows 8 users can then choose to add packs and use them as the display language across the entire OS. Microsoft will offer 109 display languages in Windows 8, 14 more than Windows 7, including a new United Kingdom version of English. Brits will now see "colour" instead of "color" throughout Windows 8, along with some other key favourites. "This is something we should have done a long time ago," admitted Microsoft's Ian Hamilton, recognizing that British Windows users have had to make do with US English in previous versions of Windows.

Microsoft is also extending the support to 13 other countries, including Punjabi (Pakistan), Sindhi (Pakistan), Central Kurdish (Iraq), Uyghur (People’s Republic of China), Belarusian (Belarus), Kinyarwanda (Rwanda), Tigrinya (Ethiopia), Tajik (Tajikistan), Wolof (Senegal), K’iche’ (Guatemala), Scottish Gaelic (United Kingdom), Cherokee (United States), Valencian (Spain). The additions are designed to target emerging markets that are experiencing PC growth, and provide a native language version of Windows for over 4.5 billion people.