The president of Compal, a Taipei based manufacturer who makes laptops for HP and Acer, said that Microsoft could have Windows 7 shipping on PCs by September.
"According to current planning, it should be late September or early October," said Compal president Ray Chen during an investors' conference yesterday
Chen also said that the release of Windows 7 might help to spur sales of PCs, which remained flat last year amid the economic crisis.
When asked for comment, Microsoft was quick to sidestep the release timeframe for Windows 7, saying that it would be released about three years after Windows Vista went on sale - January 2010, in other words.
Despite this though, we're not convinced that Microsoft will wait that long to release the operating system.
When you factor in that the Windows 7 beta was feature-complete, the rumours suggesting that the release candidate will hit in April and leaks detailing the company's upgrade programme plans
, the public January 2010 deadline looks to be deliberately conservative.
Moreover, Microsoft's fourth quarter financial performance wasn't brilliant and it was one of the first quarters where the company saw a significant decline in Windows revenue.
The hesitation surrounding Vista and the fact that nearly all netbook manufacturers are opting for Windows XP because it's less of a resource drain on this new class of performance-limited devices has clearly hurt Microsoft's core business. Windows 7 should go some way to fixing that, as it not only improves performance but also the user interface as well - it's designed to run much smoother on Atom-based devices.
Do you think Microsoft's release timeframe is as conservative as it looks? Discuss in the forums