Windows 12 is reportedly expected to appear at the end of 2024. For now, Microsoft has shown a prototype of a new desktop, which is to be part of a project called “Next Valley”.

Please note that Microsoft has not yet announced Windows 12 or its February 2024 release date. The 2024 date reflects Microsoft’s internal thinking, and it’s easy to see how this could be pushed back or changed entirely. This operating system may not even be called “Windows 12”, but it could be called something else – after all, we expected Windows 9 after Windows 8, but Microsoft skipped Windows 9 and gave us Windows 10 instead. Likewise, the operating system that started from Windows 10X for dual-screen devices, evolved to Windows 11.

The engineering codename for the operating system that will most likely be Windows 12 is “Next Valley,” which makes sense since Windows 11’s codename is “Sun Valley.”

However, Microsoft has not announced an official date.

We only know from leaks that in the new version of Windows they want to introduce the following changes:

  • A floating taskbar instead of an edge-to-edge taskbar.
  • Floating search box at the top of the screen, center.
  • System icons (such as the taskbar and notification icons) appear in the upper right corner of the screen, above the desktop background.
  • Weather displayed in the upper left corner of the screen, above the desktop background.

Will Windows 12 be free? How much does it cost?

If the upgrade from Windows 10 to Windows 11 was free, we would be surprised if they started charging for it. However, many computers do not meet the requirements of Windows 11, and further, they will not meet the requirements of the new system. Most people will probably get a free version when purchasing a new laptop or computer.

Image by Neon Pixels Studio from Pixabay