Microsoft will not, contrary to some expectations, put a name to its next Windows 8.1 update, a decision that not only reflects a scaling back of ambition for the reputation-plagued OS but also indicates a different approach to all Windows' releases, analysts said today.

On Tuesday, Microsoft said that future feature updates, whether new tools or improvements to existing parts of Windows 8.1, would be parceled out in smaller chunks.

"Rather than waiting for months and bundling together a bunch of improvements into a larger update as we did for the Windows 8.1 Update, customers can expect that we'll use our already existing monthly update process to deliver more frequent improvements," said Brandon LeBlanc, a Microsoft spokesman who regularly posts to the company's Windows blogs.

Windows 8.1 Update 1, which shipped in April, was a minor upgrade from Windows 8.1 of October 2013; together, the pair were designed to make the original Windows 8 more palatable to traditional desktop and laptop owners who control their desktops with a mouse and keyboard.

But Windows 8.1 Update 1 will not be followed by an Update 2, as many had thought until recently. "Despite rumors and speculation, we are not planning to deliver a Windows 8.1 'Update 2,'" LeBlanc confirmed.

From now on, Microsoft will not even dignify its Windows 8.1 updates with a name, but simply toss them into the Windows Update machinery long used to serve up vulnerability patches on the second Tuesday of each month. Microsoft prefers the less-negative label of "Update Tuesday" for that day, but the rest of the world refers to it as "Patch Tuesday."