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Microsoft Windows 10 and Build 2014: News, release date, and rumours

Update (15/01/14): Take a closer look at what Microsoft is planning with Windows 10

Microsoft may still be working on perfecting Windows 8.1, but that doesn't mean the Redmond-based firm isn't also eyeing up its next major update.

According to noted Windows insider Paul Thurrott, Microsoft is now actively prepping Windows 10, codenamed 'Threshold,' with a view to a public release in April 2015.

The rumours further suggest that Microsoft will offer an early teaser of the new software at its annual BUILD developer conference in April of this year.

In all, Threshold is understood to represent Microsoft's next generation of products, comprising new Windows, Windows Phone, and Xbox platforms.

Some of the features being touted on the Windows 10 front include a full return for the much loved Start button, and a significant evolution of the Metro design language to improve the Windows 8 app ecosystem and allow all programmes to be run within the traditional desktop environment.

News that Microsoft is looking to rebrand its core software offering so swiftly appears to suggest an acknowledgement on the company's part that the Windows 8 experiment was wrought with problems.

A further possibility is that Microsoft will look to offer hardware manufacturers with serious pricing concessions when Windows 10 rolls around - and some pundits have even ventured that the next-gen platform could be given away to OEM partners for free.

Of course, Microsoft's most pressing priority is its forthcoming Windows 8.1 update, dubbed 'Update 1' or GDR1. That refresh is also expected to land at BUILD 2014, after which we hope to have a clearer idea of what to expect from the Redmond firm's Windows 10 rehash as well.