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June 15, 2012

Microsoft News - Microsoft Windows RT ARM-powered OS Set to Hit the Market Later this Year

By Daniel Brecht, Contributing Writer

Microsoft Windows on ARM (News - Alert) devices (or WOA for short) will launch in the fall of 2012. WOA is being built for touchscreen devices; more specifically, the Windows RT operating system is meant for systems that run on ARM processors designed by Texas Instruments (News - Alert), Qualcomm and Nvidia.

The ARM-friendly version which has been officially named “Windows RT” by Microsoft – the acronym is supposed to stand for “Run Time” – will not be sold as an upgrade or software, but will be pre-installed in Windows on ARM devices, including tablets and some PCs, by the factory. Included in the pre-installed package will be a custom version of the Microsoft (News - Alert) Office suite.

Consumers can look forward to seeing Windows RT available about the same time when the full suite of Windows 8 editions gets released. PC experts are not sure if the WOA software will be anything like Windows 8 – or something else entirely. What they do know is that it will cost tablet makers and vendors for the licensing fee per device to use it; the fee should be about $85.

Set to hit the market later this year, and rumored to launch in October, one should be able to purchase the ARM-friendly Windows RT tablet anywhere between $549 and $799, or up to $899 for the ARM premium products.

With the Windows RT tablets still in production, consumers can expect to be running Microsoft’s latest operating system and have power efficiency thanks to the ARM processors which have the ability to conserve battery power.

Windows RT is expected to be suitable for most business customers; obviously this depends on one’s expectations of an ARM-powered OS tablet or PC. It seems Microsoft is exploring more possibilities for its customers who want to operate ARM-based devices.

The forthcoming Windows RT will be a meaningful competitor to Apple’s (News - Alert) iPad in the tablet market, some believe. Only time (and sales) will tell for sure if Microsoft’s ARM devices will be successful.

Edited by Brooke Neuman

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