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The next big Windows update might not arrive until 2015

Windows 8
Will Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 eventually merge?

Windows 8.1, the first major update to Windows 8, will be released tomorrow as a free download for existing W8 users. So what's next?

Potential disappointment - ZDNet's sources have it out today that the next big Windows update won't arrive until spring 2015.

That puts more than a year between the Windows 8.1 release and the next big overhaul - plenty of time for Microsoft to whip up something good.

And plenty of time for Windows users to dissect and critique every single aspect of Windows 8.1, which they'll no doubt do.

Windows Phone 8.1: another puzzle piece

Before that, though, Microsoft will reportedly release a smaller spring 2014 Windows 8.1 update to coincide with the launch of Windows Phone 8.1.

Some expect the next major Windows update to arrive in fall 2014, but today's report said that's looking unlikely.

When the big Windows update does arrive in 2015, it will supposedly further unify Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8.

That could be when the combined Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 app store, previously rumored for spring 2014, will arrive as well.

And as ZDnet pointed out, the recent rumor about Windows Phone 8.1 devices growing up to 10 inches makes more sense if Windows Phone and Windows RT eventually merge; otherwise they'd encroach on one another.