Microsoft has decided not to charge users of Windows 8 for an eagerly awaited update to the new operating system which has been criticized for confusing customers.
Tami Reller, Microsoft's chief financial officer, announced the welcome news in a speech at the JP Morgan Technology, Media and Telecom Conference in Boston, according to a Microsoft blog posting.
The update will be known as Windows 8.1 and will be a free update to consumers through the Windows Store. A public preview of the new software will be released on June 26, Reller said.
Windows 8 has been widely criticized for the radical change to the graphical user interface that it introduced. The software, introduced last year replaced the traditional start button with a mosaic of tiles that work well on touch screens but feel confusing to many users of laptops and desktops.
Microsoft has not committed to a return of the start button, but the move is widely expected.
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