ARM chips away at x86 PCs

2012-Jan-06 | Tags: aceranalysisbusiness

Windows on ARMAnalysts at Sterne Agee are projecting that emerging market growth could shift from x86 PCs to lower-cost WARM (Windows ARM) platforms. "While PCs have seen the strongest engine of growth from emerging countries, the emergence of lower-cost ARM PC platforms in C2H12 could become a more attractive option for the low-cost geographies," Vijay Rakesh and Mark Kelley wrote in an industry note obtained by TG Daily.

Windows on ARMWith the Consumer Electronics Show coming up in Las Vegas next week, some of the analysts this week tuned up their outlooks for the next version of Microsoft's (MSFT) Windows, which will have support for processors other than those of Intel's (INTC) and Advanced Micro Devices's (AMD), such as chips from Nvidia (NVDA) and Texas Instruments (TXN).

Windows on ARMEarlier this week we pointed out that AT&T and Nokia would be teaming up to support Windows Phone developers. After digging a bit deeper, it looks like AT&T is going big with a Windows 8 Qualcomm powered LTE tablet according to their developer summit schedule, (via

Windows on ARMEarlier today, Lenovo has announced the new ThinkPad X1 Hybrid laptop that was designed to sport a secondary operating system and an ARM-based Qualcomm SoC in order to deliver up to 10 hours of battery life to its users

Windows on ARMThe war between Intel Corp. (INTC) and the alliance of chipmakers using ARM Holdings, Plc.'s (LON:ARM) titular core designs is heating up. Intel is the world's largest personal computer CPU maker, while ARM Holdings is the largest core licenser on the general CPU market, which includes everything from the chip in your dishwasher to automotive CPUs. The stage is set for the pair to duke it out at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show.

Windows on ARMIntel has pitched ultrabooks as the answer to ARM-based tablet shortcomings. In a document titled "Ultra Excited for Ultrabook" referenced at the home page of its newly launched Ultrabook Community, Intel outlines why it believes that ultrabooks offer users a better alternative to tablets.

Windows on ARMMicroBite: number 31 2011 saw Microsoft place a some big bets to break into new markets: putting Windows on ARM to challenge the iPad, becoming a web telco with the record-breaking $8.5bn purchase of Skype, and an exclusive deal with handset manufacturer Nokia to deliver smart phones using nothing but Windows Phone.

Windows on ARMNokia Tab is a mere concept tablet right now, but it's still an interesting vision that Cameron McKinnon has on the very first Nokia Windows 8 tablet. Last I heard, MS was preparing such a device for mid 2012, although no official confirmation came. Till we get that, let's check out this huge 14 inch slate with a design inspired by the Nokia N9 handset and the Sony Tablet S model.

Windows on ARMMost of you out there that are interested in Windows 8 tablets are likely considering a new machine that runs an ARM processor. ARM isn't as fast as x86 but it has better battery life and doesn't produce so much heat. What this means in the long run is that ARM tablets are often less-bulky than their x86 brethren, since they don't need as good of ventilation and as many fans thanks to their low power consumption and heat production.

Windows on ARMNext year, Intel will have to show that it can deliver on promises of a competitive tablet and smartphone chip platform to be able to compete with ARM vendors - especially since ARM vendors will be encroaching on Intel territory with the release of Windows 8 for ARM.

Windows on ARMSummary: You can pick up an iPad starting at $499, a Kindle Fire for $199, and there are even Android tablets that come in at around $99 - So how much would you be willing to pay for a Windows 8 tablet?

Windows on ARMSince rumors began circulating late last week that Microsoft might cut the ability for "Desktop App" non-Metro-style apps to run on Windows 8 ARM tablets, devs and users have had plenty to say about the potential significance of this move.

Windows on ARMMicrosoft's First Apps contest offers tantalizing hints, but there's still no guarantee when we'll see ARM version of Windows - At the Windows Store presentation yesterday, Windows Web Services VP Antoine Leblond mentioned that the much-anticipated Windows 8 beta would arrive in "late February" -- but there's more to the story.

Windows on ARMMicrosoft is putting a devoting a significant amount of time, effort and money into making Windows 8 'touch-enabled' ready for loading onto tablets. But are Windows 8 tablets already irrelevant. Here's the problem. Microsoft is putting an awful lot of time, effort and money into making Windows 8 a touch-enabled operating system that will work on both desktop and tablet, x86 and ARM hardware. 

Windows on ARMEver since Microsoft first announced that Windows 8 would be compatible with certain ARM system-on-chip processors, questions about what this would mean for existing Windows applications have been abundant. ARM's strength is in low-power applications, and the decision to support the architecture was plainly motivated by the needs of the tablet market—which left observers wondering just how much of Windows would actually be supported on ARM? Just the bits relevant to tablet and consumer applications, or the whole shebang?

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Windows on ARM - Windows RT