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Microsoft keeps hinting at an October release for Windows 11

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October 20th may be the Windows 11 day

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Microsoft keeps hinting at an October release date for Windows 11. The software giant teased an October date several times during its Windows event last week, including one instance where a Microsoft Teams message says “excited to turn it up to 11... can’t wait for October!” Microsoft has only officially said “holiday” for Windows 11 availability, but the company’s official marketing material strongly hints at an October 20th date.

The Microsoft Teams message is from Stevie Bathiche, a key engineer on Surface devices, to Panos Panay, Microsoft’s head of Windows and devices. Bathiche is either hinting at a Windows 11 release date, new Surface hardware, or the possibility of both Windows 11 and new Surface devices in October.

Microsoft’s first October hint.

Officially, Microsoft has only said Windows 11 is arriving “this holiday,” and the company hasn’t committed to a date or even a month. Sources familiar with Microsoft’s plans tell The Verge that the company is aiming to release Windows 11 in October, ready for new devices from OEMs.

Microsoft’s hints seem to focus on October 20th as a possible launch date for Windows 11. Most of Microsoft’s press images for Windows 11 include the October 20th date in the taskbar, alongside the time set to 11:11AM. Another marketing image also includes an October 6th date, so all eyes are certainly on October over at Microsoft.

October 20th in Microsoft’s marketing images.
Another hint at October 20th.

Alongside Microsoft’s own hints, Walmart is also promising a “free Upgrade to Windows October 2021 when available” on several laptops it’s currently selling. Microsoft has promised to deliver Windows 11 as “a free upgrade for eligible Windows 10 PCs and on new PCs beginning this holiday,” so Walmart is already promoting a likely October date.

Microsoft still needs to clarify which machines will be eligible for the Windows 11 upgrade, though. The company released minimum specifications last week that appear to suggest only 8th Gen and newer devices will be able to upgrade. Microsoft has promised a blog post that will fully detail the upgrade situation for Windows 11, and the TPM requirements.