I understand Microsoft would like people to use a cloud desktop they have to rent and/or they're pushing their other services, but the desktop won't be going away in Windows 9. Even with what I feel are monumental missteps by MS, I just don't see that happening. There are too many people that have investments in the desktop who won't pony up cash if it disappears.
Microsoft maybe pushing the Modern UI and it's sub-par single window "app" landscape, but desktop isn't going away anytime soon even if they hide it, brush it under the rug, ignore it, move some of the settings to the "clean" UI, etc.
What they will do if they ditched the desktop is create the same problem they have with Windows XP hanging around for well over a decade, only it will be Windows 7 and/or Windows 8.