From the blog spot comes this announcement from Microsoft:

“I know a lot of folks are eager to find out when they will be able to get Windows 8.1. I am excited to share that starting at 12:00am on October 18th in New Zealand (that’s 4:00am October 17th in Redmond), Windows 8.1 and Windows RT 8.1 will begin rolling out worldwide as a free update for consumers with Windows 8 or Windows RT devices through the Windows Store.  Windows 8.1 will also be available at retail and on new devices starting on October 18th by market. So mark your calendars!”

You might, however, ask why did Microsoft choose New Zealand time to introduce the update?   I’m not really sure why… But I can say that the release date and place is no more mysterious to me than the operating system itself is!  If you have never used Windows 8 then you will have little appreciation for why there would be an eagerness to update this operating system.  If you are a Windows 8 user, I have to believe that the update was hoped for, no begged for, as soon as the first user saw Windows 8 come up on their display screen and shrieked in disbelief!

So, if you are running Windows 8, then this upgrade is probably good news for you. From what I’ve read, the upgrade – Windows 8.1 – is stable and corrects a lot of the controversial changes that Microsoft unleashed with Windows 8. If you’ve been holding off buying a new Windows device, then waiting till the rollout begins in October is probably a good strategy.

Without going into detail about the many changes, the ones that are probably the most asked for are the option to start with the familiar “desktop” screen and a return of the “Start” button, denatured as it is. For a more complete list of changes made by Windows 8.1 see

But are the changes enough to get Microsoft out of the doghouse for this most controversial operating system? I like the way David Cardinal from puts it: “If you’re running Windows 8 or need to, then Windows 8.1 is a slam-dunk improvement over Windows 8… If you’ve held off on moving to Windows 8, waiting for a silver bullet that will make all its problems disappear, this isn’t it. If you are a Windows 8 hater, nothing in the new release will change your mind.”

There must be some reasons why Dell and HP sales took a dive since last fall (all ship with Windows 8 installed) and Apple sales have soared. I can remember when people didn’t want to go to Apple devices because they didn’t want to learn a new way of working.  Microsoft fixed that argument with Windows 8…