Microsoft have revealed that Windows 8 will be released on the 26th of October. The declaration was made at the firm's annual sales meeting and was  published on its blog  shortly after. The firm has described the update as the most important redesign of its interface in more than a decade.

Part of Microsoft's goal in the initial months will be to eat into sales of rivals' tablet computers.Apple's iPad and Amazon's Kindle Fire have dominated the sector while Google's new Nexus 7 has also attracted positive reviews.

Microsoft hopes to make the most of the fact that it can offer a single system that can power both desktop PCs and mobile devices - allowing progams to work on both - as opposed to Apple's decision to offer different Mac OS X and iPad iOS systems.
Microsoft has also taken the out-of-character step of announcing its own hardware - the Surface family of tablets - to compete with other companies' products on the Windows 8 platform to maximise its chances.

But since announcing the news chief executive Steve Ballmer has sought to reassure his company's hardware partners, describing Surface as "a design point" that would have a place within a "broad Windows ecosystem".

Source:  BBC News - Microsoft confirms Windows 8's October launch date