Microsoft is to preview its tablet operating system in a set of demonstrations next week, according to Bloomberg.
The first comes at the All Things Digital D9 conference in California, followed by another overseas at the Computex show in Tapei. This would confirm reporting in March that indicated Microsoft was close to being ready to show off its work.
The tablet devices would run on NVidia's Tegra chip, which is intended for use in tablet devices. Nvidia says the dual-core chips are ideal for such small devices due to their low power consumption and integrated graphics processor.
While Redmond is taking the wraps off the tabletised Windows now, it's likely that the actual release will not come until March, Bloomberg says. It's pretty likely that the tablet platform would be built upon Windows 8, which may suggest that the desktop version of the software could be released around the same time.
Regaining some traction in the tablet market is arguably important for Microsoft. With 20 million iPads sold in a little over a year of availability, Apple's showing that there is pent-up demand out there.
If it does not capitalize soon, it could find itself in a similar situation to its experiences in digital music. There, the Zune came too late to have a meaningful impact. That mistake is arguably the reason why to this day Apple still dominates digital music.
In tablets, it has an even bigger predicament: it will not only be behind Cupertino but Android as well, which beginning to build market share.