'Millennium' to launch as Windows Millennium Edition ('Windows Me')

As previously reported in WinInfo, Microsoft Corporation will usher in its final Windows 9x product under the moniker "Windows 2000 Millennium Edition," the company confirmed today. Millennium, which might otherwise be thought of as "Windows 98 Third Edition," is the final product that will leverage the decades-old DOS/Windows underpinnings. This next version of Consumer Windows, which began testing last summer, has undergone some major changes over its short life. Originally designed to provide a new HTML-like user interface, Millennium was quietly scaled back to a minor point release after those plans fell through.

Microsoft will actually market Millennium as "Microsoft Windows Me" (that's "Me," as in "Millennium Edition"), in an attempt to stay hip with the consumer market that the product targets. Microsoft first looked into the phrase "Microsoft Me" in December 1999; the company plans to use this as the advertising slogan for the new operating system.

"The name Windows Millennium Edition, or Windows Me, will help Microsoft to clearly identify this next iteration of the OS as the Windows version designed specifically with the home user in mind," says Microsoft Windows Group Product Manager Shawn Sanford.

Millennium features an AutoUpdate feature that will automatically keep the system up-to-date over the Internet, a System Recovery feature, a new HTML-based Help Center, a Movie Maker application, and other features that the company hopes will set it apart from previous versions of Windows 98.

Further down the road, Microsoft will finally create a consumer version of Windows 2000 sometime in 2001, when its Whistler project, first revealed here in WinInfo, comes to fruition

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