A Microsoft product roadmap intended for partners' eyes only has been leaked online - and it hints at a few interesting dates for key software releases.
Screengrabs of the roadmap were posted by Maarten Visser, CEO of meetroo, who tweeted the shots claiming that the documents were openly available. "For who want to know: I got the roadmap from the Microsoft Partner Network, where it can be downloaded without logon," he posted on Twitter.
Microsoft is less than impressed, citing that the publication of the grabs contravenes confidentiality agreements. "We often provide forward-looking information to our partners and customers under our confidentially agreements with them," it said in an email to ZDNet. "This information contains our best estimates and is, in no way, final or definitive."
The information may not be final, but it's certainly interesting.
For starters, Internet Explorer 10 is listed as coming for the middle of 2012 (or the start of q3). It seems like only yesterday that IE9 came out, although the beta launched back in September 2010, so it is natural for a new version to appear some time this year.
And Office 15 is believed to be heading our way for the beginning of 2013, not November 2012 as some have previously speculated.
Windows Phone exploits are also listed but are, perhaps, more vague. At the end of 2012 (start of q4) there is box marked "Future Investments". This could be the release of the Tango updates, but others are of the belief that it could be Apollo or Windows Phone 8, as it could also be known.
Visser himself agrees. "According to an official Microsoft roadmap, the next version of Windows Phone will be released October 1st 2012," he tweeted.
Interestingly, neither part of the roadmap mentions Windows 8, which we believe to be coming October.