The consumer version of Microsoft's forthcoming Windows Vista operating system has slipped to January 2007, despite having received a November launch date less than a month ago.

A consumer beta of Vista is set to take place during the latter part of 2006, with only business users getting to experience the new operating system this November when Vista Business and Enterprise editions will launch.

Speaking about the delay Microsoft's co-president for the Platforms & Services Division Jim Allchin said "the industry requires greater lead time to deliver Windows Vista on new PCs during holiday. We must optimise for the industry, so we've decided to separate business and consumer availability" - making it sound to us like computer manufacturers have demanded the delay so as not to disrupt their pre-Christmas sales, and allowing them to shift old stock based around XP's features.

When Vista finally launches in the new year it'll come in a choice of options including Vista Home Basic, Vista Home Premium allowing Xbox 360 owners to record and watch TV shows, and an Ultimate version which brings all of the consumer aspects of Vista together with new business based features.

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