Microsoft was going to release its database management system, SQL Server 2008 in Q2 of this year, but now has mentioned that the product will require some more time to be completely ready for release. Thus, the delay currently means that Microsoft will be releasing SQL Server 2008 sometime in Q3, 2008. Even this date will depend on how fast Microsoft can work on the product and get it ready for release.
Every major Microsoft product has been delayed off-late. A few examples include Windows Vista, Home Server, Sharepoint, Office for Mac, Visual Studio 2008. This either means that Microsoft has been doing a lazy rest or may be Microsoft has been promising too much to early. It could also be the case where people are expecting product releases like before, but Microsoft is spending more time than before in refining and polishing the products. Either ways, its not a good sign for the world's largest software company.
The delay was part of a roadmap clarification, another way to say that we screwed sometime in the planning phase. But all the delay isn't affecting Microsoft much, since its still able to make good profits and is able to sell enough products. SQL Server 2005 which was delayed by some 18 months was well received and is hosting a lot of databases at the moment.
The clarification on the site reads like this:
To continue in this spirit of open communication, we want to provide clarification on the roadmap for SQL Server 2008. Over the coming months, customers and partners can look forward to significant product milestones for SQL Server. Microsoft is excited to deliver a feature complete CTP during the Heroes Happen Here launch wave and a release candidate (RC) in Q2 calendar year 2008, with final Release to manufacturing (RTM) of SQL Server 2008 expected in Q3. Our goal is to deliver the highest quality product possible and we simply want to use the time to meet the high bar that you, our customers, expect.
This does not in any way change our plans for the February 27 launch and we look forward to seeing many of you in Los Angeles and other events around the world. Please keep the great feedback coming and thank you again for your ongoing support of SQL Server!