Microsoft may have just accidentally revealed a change in direction in the naming convention of its next-generation version of Windows 10. If the leak holds to be true, the expected Windows 11 moniker could be dropped in exchange for something akin to macOS, with its use of geographic locations as names for its updates.
Such a change in tack would mean farewell to the sequential naming of previous versions of Windows. Historically, Windows updates have more or less ran in order, with Windows 7, 8, 8.1 and Windows 10 spanning the length of the last dozen years.
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With a big Microsoft event lined up for June 24, which is set to unveil the future of Windows OS, Microsoft's Panos Panay recently tweeted a teaser video featuring sunlight bursting through the Windows logo to form a number eleven underneath it — a strong indicator, perhaps, of Windows 11 and its name.
However, as reported by Windows Latest, Windows may have mistakenly added 'Windows Sun Valley' to the publically visible HTML meta description for the 'Windows application management' webpage. For a short while, it read as follows: "Learn about managing applications in Windows 10 and Windows Sun Valley."
Windows 11 as Windows Sun Valley
Of course, there's been a whole bunch of rumors and leaks in the lead-up to Microsoft's June reveal event: most of these point to a revamped user interface. This metadata issue is different, though: most of us thought we understood 'Sun Valley' to be the codename for a major Windows 10 revamp, including updated UI and modern features.
But the accidental addition of the 'Sun Valley' name to the page's metadata potentially indicates two things: first, it was definitely not supposed to be there as Microsoft quickly amended the copy by removing the ending; second, the way the text is written could hint that Microsoft sees Windows 10 and Windows Sun Valley as standalone things, rather than just a major update to Windows 10.
At this point, it's all speculation until June 24. However, it's interesting that Microsoft sought to quickly correct the text. It feels very feasible that Microsoft could opt for a macOS-style naming convention for future versions of its software. Using a geographic tag like Sun Valley could let Microsoft break free of any past negativity around Windows 10 (especially updates) and communicate to users that this is a big and bold update.
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Luke is a Trainee News Writer at T3 and contributor to Tom's Guide, having graduated from the DMU/Channel 4 Journalism School with an MA in Investigative Journalism. Before switching careers, he worked for Mindshare WW. When not indoors messing around with gadgets, he's a disc golf enthusiast, keen jogger, and fond of all things outdoors.