One goal of Windows 8 design was support for making that shift gradually, Reller says. "And so we fully expect and knew that we needed to have a solution for customers to be able to really run Windows 7 and Windows 7 applications alongside Windows 8 and Windows 8 apps," she says.
Likely businesses will recognize cases where it makes sense to deploy Windows 8 to certain employees but not others based on their hardware needs and the applications they require to do their jobs. "We'll see departmental usage of Windows 8," she says. "I think that's a good way to summarize it, either scenario usage, departmental usage, people will be bringing in their Windows 8 devices into the environment, and so IT will want to support that."
She says Microsoft already has a number of business customers working on such Windows 7/8 hybrid deployments and they are working on how best to accommodate that. "They're learning and we're learning and so we'll see. I think there's a lot of potential," Reller says.
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