After embarking on a course of creating different flavors of the Windows operating system for Tablet and Media Center PCs, Microsoft is thinking of creating one single instance of the software once again with the upcoming Longhorn version.
Last week at CES in Las Vegas, Brad Brooks, director of Windows client consumer marketing at Microsoft told vnunet.com that Microsoft will most likely ship only one version of Longhorn, although there will remain a "clear differentiation between the consumer and enterprise" versions of the product. Windows XP currently comes in a Home and Pro edition for the home and office. Those names will be changed.
Moving back to a single instance of Windows also means it is unlikely that a separate version will be created for the European market,. The European Union might force the software company to ship Windows without the Windows Media Player as a punishment of its past anti competitive behavior. But Brooks doesn't see that as a major issue: "Although unfortunate, that doesn't defer our plans," he said.
OEMs will have the option of adding and deleting features to the product, he added.
A report by IDG News confirms Microsofts plans, and adds that the special editions for the Tablet PC and Media Center are most likely to be merged into the general Windows product.
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