We just got our invitation to Microsoft's debutante ball in Spain for Windows 8 beta-- dubbed Windows 8 Consumer Preview--which will take place on February 29th during Mobile World Congress and will hopefully culminate in the release of a public beta of Windows 8. Though the OS will still need some primping and preening before it's official release later this year, it'll give the general public a chance to dance with the new Metro user interface, the same interface overlay that's currently on Windows Phone.
Microsoft has stated that their goal with Windows 8 is to optimize the tablet experience while still providing the power and versatility needed for desktop users. Users will be able to purchase apps from the Windows Store for simplified software installation across a variety of devices. We got a hands-on look at the developer preview of Windows 8 and came away impressed not only by the operating system's touch capabilities, but also by how well it handled on a traditional laptop.
LAPTOP will be at Windows 8 Consumer Preview's debut at Mobile World Congress in Spain later this month, so stay tuned.