Windows 9 To Have Ubuntu-Like Virtual Desktop Feature

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Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s upcoming Windows 9, code-named Threshold, could have the virtual desktops feature. A few days ago, reports surfaced that the second update to Windows 8.1 will be the last major update to Windows 8.x. The software giant is focused on Windows 9 and how its next-gen OS could entice Windows 7 and XP users to upgrade. About 75% of total Windows installed base still consists of Windows 7 and XP.

Microsoft testing the feature in Windows 9

The Redmond-based company has a big challenge. It has to make Windows 9 UI easily recognizable from existing versions while it should feel familiar to those upgrading from Windows XP or Windows 7. The company is set to put desktop in the spotlight while improving the Modern UI for tablet users. Microsoft will bring back Start menu, introduce windowed Modern UI apps, revamp the taskbar and launch Cortana.

But Microsoft is going one step further to attract desktop users. Neowin has learned that the company is working to add virtual desktops to Windows 9. Other platforms like Ubuntu and Mac OS X already offer this feature. Sources said Microsoft is currently testing the feature, which will be similar to Ubuntu in functionality. The improved taskbar will have a button to activate the virtual desktops, and there will be keyboard shortcuts to help you navigate between active desktops.

Will virtual desktop convince existing users to upgrade to Windows 9?

Virtual desktops are particularly popular among business users who need to deal with multiple apps, files and documents at the same time. It will be a good addition to Windows 9 because a large chunk of Microsoft’s user base consists of enterprise users. It will be beneficial to their productivity. The feature creates multiple “desktops,” allowing you to keep open applications and switch between desktops to user other apps.

However, the feature is still in early development stage. So, it may not make it to the final version of Windows 9, or it may be part of later updates. If it makes it to Windows 9, virtual desktop will be one of the more visible features of the next-gen OS, and it will help convince Windows 7 and XP users to upgrade.

Microsoft shares fell 0.77% to $42.75 in pre-market trading Wednesday.

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