Microsoft Windows 8.1 Build Leaked Appears Nearly RTM

Microsoft Windows 8.1 Build Leaked Appears Nearly RTM

The Verge reports a leaked build of Microsoft’s upcoming OS release includes new navigation tips for users who had trouble with the interface overhaul in Windows 8.

By Damon Poeter for Ziff Davis

A leaked build of Microsoft’s upcoming Windows 8.1 release includes an array of new navigation tips and tutorials apparently designed to help users who had trouble with the sweeping interface overhaul in the first edition of Windows 8 released last year.

The Verge on Monday published some details about Build 9471, “a near-final build” of the 64-bit version of Windows 8.1 Pro. The tech site said it was leaked online ahead of Microsoft’s expected release of Windows 8.1, also known by the code name Windows Blue, later this month.

Build 9471 gives us a better idea of how 8.1 will look and work, adding to the knowledge we gained when Microsoft released a Windows 8.1 preview in conjunction with its annual Build event in June.

Microsoft Windows 8.1 GUI

Microsoft Windows 8.1 GUI

Per The Verge, Build 9471 “includes some intriguing changes around the usability of Windows 8.1 across touch, the keyboard, and the mouse.” Microsoft is also “changing the way its context menus work in Windows 8.1, and helping users discover how to use the OS,” according to the site.

Blue looks to be borrowing from Microsoft’s Windows Phone interface to aid users in discovering features in the OS, utilizing “a row of three dots that, like Windows Phone, bring up the application bar with additional settings and options in the Mail, People, Calendar, and other built-in applications,” The Verge reported. The touch-optimized platform also features tips for built-in apps that are accessed by swiping, and a new “Help + Tips” app brings up video tutorials “for navigating the OS, accessing files, basic actions, and settings.”

As the tech site noted, the changes to how the menu is operated and the abundance of help tools weren’t in the Windows 8.1 Preview.

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