Microsoft has been internally testing Windows Live Wave 4 from the past few months and now we are hearing that it will soon be released to the public for further testing and feedback. On April 21, Chris Jones, Corporate Vice President of the Windows Live Experience said
For several months now, we’ve had several thousand people running regular builds of this code inside Microsoft, and we’ll shortly begin expanding this testing to some folks outside Microsoft for additional feedback.
We will then roll out updates to our web services, followed by betas of our software for Windows PCs, Macs, and phones. Our approach is to release betas to the public once we think the build is in pretty good shape, learn through beta usage data and beta user feedback, and make additional refinements that eventually become the final release.
So, it looks like we can expect a beta release of Windows Live Wave 4 very soon, may be within two months. The final release of Windows Live Wave 4 is expected to be launched by the end of this year but final release of the service only Windows Live properties will come first. Also there would be no new service in Windows Live Wave 4 as all the current services will be available in a new improved form in Wave 4. Chris Jones said about that:
Don’t expect to see new or more (Windows Live) services from us. Expect us to do more things like adding more sharing options to e-mail. We’ll make it easier to connect with what you already use,
Bad news for the XP users is that Windows Live Wave 4 will not run on Windows XP so most Wave 4 users would be on Windows 7 and little bit on Vista. But still Windows Live services that don’t include software clients will work in browsers on XP.