Windows 9 developer launch date set for 30 September

The update will include design tweaks and the re-introduction of the Smart Menu

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Microsoft has hinted it will be launching Windows 9 to developers on September 30 at a press preview event.

The tech giant told The Verge it was planning to announce the new version of Windows, codenamed Threshold, and it would include a number of new, previously rumoured features.

In addition, it will scrap the Charms bar feature, include the Cortana personal assistant as seen on Windows Phone devices and there will be a number of other UI changes, including the re-introduction of Microsoft's much-missed Start menu.

Microsoft's mini smart menu is the biggest new feature to arrive with Windows 9, featuring Metro apps providing information like weather and news headlines pinned to the Start screen alongside other app icons.

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The apps are similar to Google Now's cards, although it's not yet clear if the information presented will be specific to the user. IT Pro assumes it will work with Cortana to present contextual information to the user.

Microsoft is also said to be trying out virtual desktops, allowing one user to have access to a number of different desktops - for example, one for work and one for personal use, taking it further towards a mobile-style operating system.

Last week, ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley revealed Microsoft would probably launch Windows 9 as a beta in September or October.

It's not clear who revealed the information about the September 30 release date to The Verge, but the website has previously been correct with its predictions.

In July, it was revealed that Microsoft may remove the desktop view from mobile devices with Windows 9 and the Metro view from PCs.

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