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Microsoft dishes official details on Windows 8 for tablets - desktop UI included!

Posted: , by Scott H.

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Microsoft dishes official details on Windows 8 for tablets - desktop UI included!
If it seems like just yesterday that we were reporting on Windows 8 tablet rumors…that’s because it was. Today Microsoft has seen fit to pull back the curtain on a huge swath of official details about Windows for Arm devices (or WOA), confirming some rumors, and illuminating the effort the company has gone to in order to make Windows 8 tablets feel like “no compromise” Windows devices.

First, they confirmed that ARM tablets will indeed come with both the desktop UI and the Metro UI available, with the end user being able to switch between them. This is consistent with rumors that circulated earlier this week, but appears to be a reversal from what was thought a couple months ago. Whether the latter was a baseless rumor, or whether Microsoft has itself changed its mind on the subject isn’t known for sure.

Also confirmed is that you won’t be able to run anything else on a WOA device – Windows on Arm devices are intended to be used as integrated consumer electronic devices, not the more self-service and open nature of traditional PCs. As such there will be no software distribution of WOA, and all updates and apps will run through Microsoft and the Windows Store. Packaging will apparently make it clear that you are buying a WOA product rather than an x86/64 Windows 8 device.

Despite the software homogeneity, Microsoft says it will support a broad range of hardware solutions, indicating that SoCs from Texas Instruments, Qualcomm, and NVIDIA will all be available in the first wave of Windows 8 tablets.  The first tablets are intended to ship when the rest of Windows 8 is released – a timeframe that is believed to be in late Q3 or early Q4 of this year.

If you want to read an extraordinary amount of extra detail, much of it aimed at developers, on the process of adapting Windows for the ARM architecture definitely check out the source link. Otherwise, we’ll keep you posted when any juicy new details are revealed.

source: Building Windows 8

10 Comments
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posted on 09 Feb 2012, 19:06 7

1. Skyrim (Posts: 36; Member since: 16 Nov 2011)


So excited for these im selling my ipad 2 so that i can buy one.

posted on 09 Feb 2012, 19:28 3

2. akmaintu (Posts: 42; Member since: 08 Jan 2012)


I didn't buy a tablet last holiday season only coz I want a window 8 tablet. :)

posted on 09 Feb 2012, 20:17 1

3. hotspot (Posts: 7; Member since: 25 Jan 2012)


yeah beibi...bring bring it on...

posted on 09 Feb 2012, 21:03 2

4. android1234 (Posts: 106; Member since: 09 Feb 2010)


Full PC in a small package, bring it on!!!!

posted on 09 Feb 2012, 21:50 3

5. T00muchF00D (Posts: 98; Member since: 27 Nov 2011)


I been holding out on buying a tablet because i wanted a full PC capable tablet. Not a giant phone.

posted on 09 Feb 2012, 21:50

6. Cwebb (Posts: 501; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


Who would get an ARM processor for Windows 8 instead of Android? Its much better there. But the x86/64 are going to be beasts, I'm getting the 1st transformer (convertible I think its called) form factor with the keyboard when they come out, with a i5 processor and a good screen. I'm running the beta on old Windows now and its not much of an improvement over Windows 7 for laptop, but will be amazing for touchscreen

posted on 09 Feb 2012, 22:58 3

7. tigermcm (Posts: 752; Member since: 02 Sep 2009)


I'm pretty much with everyone else. I could not for the life of me figure out why I should get a tab but now this yr when Win8 comes out I sure will get one

posted on 10 Feb 2012, 01:26 2

8. Bokisa333 (Posts: 9; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)


Yeah, FULL PC in my hand!
I can't wait!

posted on 10 Feb 2012, 08:14

9. Glim12808 (Posts: 393; Member since: 26 Oct 2011)


This is exciting! This could be the year I buy my first tablet!

posted on 11 Feb 2012, 18:33

10. 7thspaceman (Posts: 1152; Member since: 14 Feb 2011)


Wow I am a little taken about about all this interest in Windows 8 for Tablets If Microsoft makes a good near Clone of the desktop/laptop windows 8 for tablet computers with good battery life and have the capability to run windows PC programs plus the blue stacks app that enables Windows computers to run Android apps then folks Microsoft will have one fantastic winner on their hands. I think Ipads are great tablets but us Windows folks need a good tablet computer we can use. We have been looking for one for a long time now. Yoo Microsoft don't let us down

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