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Microsoft confirms Windows 8.1 'Blue' public preview due end of June

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Julie Larson-Green
Julie Larson-Green

Speaking at the Wired Business Conference on Tuesday, Windows chief Julie Larson-Green confirmed Microsoft will ship a developer release of Windows 8.1, codenamed "Blue," at the end of June. The release will be available during the company's Build Developer conference, Larson-Green confirmed.

Microsoft is expected to ship a public preview of Windows 8.1 during Build, with a final edition due before the end of the year. Windows CFO Tami Reller recently revealed that the software giant is planning changes for WIndows 8.1 in reaction to some customer feedback. Discussing the requests for a Start button in Windows 8, Reller said, "We've really also tried to understand what people are really asking for when they're asking for that."

Recently leaked builds of Windows 8.1 have revealed a number of changes, including an improved Start Screen and greater customization options for colors and themes. Microsoft has also improved its settings panel on the "Metro" side of Windows 8.1, with more options available without the need to access the desktop mode. The company is also improving its support for 7- and 8-inch devices, with new devices due in the coming months.

Update: Microsoft has confirmed Build developers will receive a public preview edition of Windows Blue.