Microsoft delays WinHEC by six months

Microsoft is delaying its annual hardware engineering conference for 2008 until lthe latter half of next year.

Microsoft is delaying by six months its annual conference for hardware engineers, where it reveals its upcoming software plans to PC makers and other system builders.

The Windows Hardware Engineering Conference (WinHEC) is usually held in March or April, but Microsoft said next year's show will take place in the fall, or around October. The company didn't say why it was making the change, attributing it only to "industry feedback."

It was also vague about the location, saying it would be somewhere on the West coast of the U.S.

Microsoft used this year's WinHEC to announce the official name for Windows Server 2008, which had been known by its code name Longhorn server. The year before it offered one of the first glimpses of what would become Windows Vista.

Delaying next year's show means hardware builders such as PC and smartphone makers will have to wait another six months to get a preview of Microsoft's plans. Microsoft also uses the show to discuss its long-term vision for the PC industry.

The company's most senior executives are usually on hand. This year they included Chairman Bill Gates, Chief Research and Strategy Officer Craig Mundie, and Mike Nash, corporate vice president for Windows product management.

Microsoft said it will hold a series of "technology specific" events throughout 2008 to keep hardware makers and Windows driver developers up to date with its plans.

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