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Microsoft needs Windows 8 to do well, really well. And it’s going to spend a pretty penny to make sure businesses and consumers hear about it.

According to Forbes contributor Dave Einstein, Microsoft plans to spend between $1.5 billion and $1.8 billion on the launch of the new operating system. Einstein is dubbing it the “biggest product launch in the history of the industry” — comparing to the $200 million that Microsoft spent on Windows 95. Meanwhile, TechCrunch says get ready to see the Windows 8 logo everywhere this holiday season, with reporter Matt Burns saying the company “wants Windows 8 to be the Furby of 2012.” And The Wall Street Journal notes that the marketing blitz will likely start this weekend.

What’s at stake?

Well, for one PC shipments have been slumping, and Microsoft (and the PC makers it partners with) need the new operating system to restart the industry. A report out earlier this month from IHS indicated that worldwide shipments of personal computers are expected to decline this year, the first time that’s happened in about a decade.

Microsoft plans to launch Windows 8 on October 26th. I think we’ll be hearing a lot more about it in the coming weeks, don’t you?

Previously on GeekWire:  Analyst on Windows 8: ‘I wouldn’t want Start menu back, even if I could have it’

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