Microsoft might be lining up a hardware and software extravaganza sometime in spring of 2017 if the latest ZDNet report by Mary Jo Foley is to be believed. And, all of this might be centered around Windows 10 Redstone 2 release, which is reported to have been pushed back to early 2017 from the earlier expected late 2016 release schedule.
The reason for Microsoft to push back the release of Redstone 2 is that it wants the RS2 to show up on the new wave of Windows 10 devices that it intends to launch during the time. Needless to say, devices coming right off the blocks with the latest build of the software it runs to add their long-term appeal.
The above is even more appropriate considering the way Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book fared post their launch in October 2015. While both went for critical reviews owing to their superior build quality and performance, what marred the feel-good factor with the devices were a few nagging issues affecting both. Moreover, the primary amongst these being the sleep/wake issue though those have since been taken care of thanks to a major firmware update that Microsoft had released recently.
With that in mind, it is quite natural for Microsoft to ensure its next hardware releases is closely tied to Windows 10 Redstone 2 it intends to run on. Another reason for Microsoft to hold back on releasing Redstone 2 to spring 2017 is that it wants enough time for the next major Intel chip, Kaby Lake to evolve as a fully matured architecture before manufacturers could hinge their bets on it with major hardware designs.
Off late, Microsoft had a tough time — handling power management issues — with Intel’s Skylake chipsets, which power the Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book. Dell too resorted to releasing several BIOS updates to deal with power management issues on devices built around the Skylake chips.
Microsoft’s other major release intended to showcase the capabilities of Windows 10 Mobile because the Lumia 950 and 950 XL haven’t fared too well either. The reason for this is again related to the OS not being mature enough; something that again prompted Microsoft to remedy with a major software update launched just weeks back.
This again brings the focus back to the rumored Surface Phone, which is also believed to be part of the several devices that the Redmond giant intends to launch during spring 2017. The priority for Microsoft right now is to present a platform that presents a unified operating experience be it a smartphone, a tablet or a PC that it runs on.
It is this that has also prompted the Windows and Devices Groups within Microsoft to work closely under Executive Vice President Terry Myerson in developing the new Windows 10 devices due out by early 2017. The focus here is to ensure the new hardware has the Windows 10 features it needs to take on the competition.