Vaporware refers to a technology or product for which a tech company may pre-announce development but never actually hits the market. Because many of these announcements are never backed up by an actual product release or are officially canceled, vaporware alludes to their spectral nature and the fact that they essentially vanish into thin air before consumers get to see them.
Some attribute the origin of this term to the 1980s Microsoft project Xenix, a Unix-based system that was eventually released but was significantly delayed. Other prominent examples of vaporware are successive versions of video games like "Duke Nukem" and "Diablo", which never surfaced as promised, as well as some types of software and networking technologies. More recently, some have used the term in reference to various kinds of cloud computing products.