3 reasons Microsoft shouldn't port Windows to ARM processor

3. Microsoft already has an OS -- several, in fact -- that run on ARM.

Not well known to the general public is the fact that Microsoft already has a successful platform that works with ARM called Windows Embedded Compact, formerly known as Windows Embedded CE, formerly and better known as Windows CE.

A decade ago, Windows CE -- and its offshoots, such as the Pocket PC -- gained a bad rap as the unstable, bloated operating system on PDAs that competed with the original Palm.

Windows Embedded Compact has changed a lot since then. Its chief offshoots today are Windows Automative and Windows Mobile, the smartphone operating system.

With Windows Embedded Compact and its close sibling, Embedded Standard (based on a cut-down version of the XP kernel), Microsoft leads the commercial market for embedded operating systems, with about a third of the market by sales revenue, according to Venture Development Corp.

Despite the hype around Apple Inc.'s iPhone, Windows Mobile smartphones had 45% higher sales worldwide in 2008 than the iPhone, according to Gartner Inc., and ranked third overall behind Nokia Corp.'s Symbian phones and Research In Motion Ltd.'s BlackBerries.

Analysts such as Gold are optimistic that the next version of Windows Mobile, called Windows Mobile 7, will be a vast improvement over current versions. It is expected to be released next year.

The logical move, he said, is for Microsoft to create a "souped-up" version of Windows Mobile to run on netbooks that takes advantage of their larger screens and keyboards.

Castellano agreed. ARM netbooks won't become popular for at least several years, giving Microsoft time to retool Windows Mobile and make it work well on netbooks.

"You might as well try to get a piece of the action without affecting Intel," Castellano said.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags arm processorMicrosoft

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Eric Lai

Computerworld
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?