To say that Windows 8 has traveled a rocky road would be a vast understatement. While some users love it, it has had many high-profile detractors. It also seems set to have one of the shortest lives of any Microsoft operating system, as it will exit retail a mere two years after it entered.
The Windows support site quietly updated plans, and the prognosis for Windows 8 is dire. The OS will cease retail sales on October 31st of this year -- a scant one year, to the day, after its predecessor exited the market.
Computer sales will continue, as no date for the end of that has yet been given. Microsoft points out that “when the retail software product reaches its end of sales date, it can still be purchased through OEMs (the company that made your PC) until it reaches the end of sales date for PCs with Windows preinstalled”.
As for support, it will obviously continue, though Microsoft fails to even acknowledge it in the updated information, skipping right from Windows 7 SP1 to Windows 8.1 and glossing over the middle sibling.