It's hardly a surprise, but the name of Microsoft's next big iteration of its smartphone platform has sprung up online - Windows Phone 9.

A couple of mentions of Windows Phone 9 have been spotted by MSFTKitchen, which pretty much confirms the platform is currently being tested.

First up, a Microsoft employee mentions they are "currently testing Windows 9 OS on Nokia, HTC and Qualcomm devices" on their LinkedIn profile.

Now it has been suggested that this particular employee - a Test Engineer in the Windows Mobile Team - may have simply forgotten to put the word "Phone" in the post, but could it be a hint that Microsoft is planning on formally unifying its operating system regime? Probably the former, but we can hope.

Thrilling stuff

Up next in the Windows Phone 9 investigation is another employee revealing details on their LinkedIn page, but this time the person is question works for Microsoft's gold partner iSoftStone.

In the job description it talks about "automating the test of Deployment of XAP/APX application from Microsoft Store to Windows Phone 9" - sounds thrilling, whatever it may be.

As for when we may be able to expect Windows Phone 9, well that's anyone guess, but the sensible money points towards late this year - 12 months on from the Windows Phone 8 launch.