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Windows 8 coming in 2012 says Ballmer, Microsoft claims he mis-spoke

Windows 8 will be out in 2012, Steve Ballmer let slip on Monday. The CEO later claimed it was a "mis-statement", presumably after receiving a smacked botty from his marketing team.

Windows 8, Microsoft's next version of its PC operating system, will be out in 2012, Steve Ballmer let slip on Monday at the Microsoft Developer Forum in Tokyo.

Despite the company's CEO letting the cat out of the bag, it looks as though that wasn't exactly Microsoft's plan. A company spokesperson later told our sister site ZDNet that Ballmer had made a "mis-statement". Presumably after giving him a smacked botty.

"To date, we have yet to formally announce any timing or naming for the next version of Windows," the exasperated spokesperson added.

Nonetheless, it's the first time anyone has publicly confirmed the Windows 8 name or given a time frame for the operating system. "As we progress through the year, you ought to expect to hear a lot about Windows 8. Windows 8 slates, tablets, PCs, a variety of different form factors," Ballmer said, according to a transcript of his speech posted to Microsoft's website.

Apart from revealing Windows 8 will run on "slates and tablets" -- is it significant that he named them as two separate form factors? -- most details of the new version of Windows have yet to be revealed. Microsoft announced back in January the next version of Windows would run on ARM processors found in most tablets and smart phones.

Ballmer also talked about Windows Phone 7.5 in the same speech in Tokyo. He said the major update, codenamed Mango, will be revealed at a preview event today and that it will add more than 500 new features to the mobile OS.

Microsoft's Windows president Steven Sinofsky is speaking at the AllThingsD conference next week, and is expected to show off an internal build of Windows 8.

Image credit: Gadgetell