"Surface-like" multi-touch capability is coming in the next major release of Windows, currently codenamed Windows 7.
During the The Wall Street Journal's "D: All Things Digital" conference Tuesday, Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer appeared for an onstage interview during the opening events in Carlsbad, California, where they touted the touch-screen features.
Gates first introduced the Surface computer a multi-touch table-based computer at last year's conference.
Since its debut, company officials have hinted that eventually multi-touch capabilities would come to end users. The Surface, as it's called, is not widely available yet, but it will be, a little sooner rather than later.
Windows 7, officials confirmed Tuesday evening, is still on schedule to ship approximately three years after the January 30, 2007 commercial roll out of Windows Vista.
At the same time, Chris Flores, a director on the Windows Client communications team, posted a link to a video of the multi-touch capabilities running on Windows 7 on the Windows Vista Team Blog.
"What becomes even more compelling is when this experience is delivered to the PC on a wide variety of Windows notebooks, in all-in-one PC's, as well as in external monitors," Flores' post said. The company is working with hardware and software makers to make the feature a compelling addition in Windows 7, he added.
Among the features highlighted during a demo of Windows 7 at the conference was one that should seem familiar. The demo featured a photo management application that enabled the user to move the pictures around with her hands.