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Windows RT

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Windows RT

Postby Kenneth Burns » Sat Jun 29, 2013 7:16 pm

Has anyone used Microsoft's new operating system, Windows RT? It runs on tablets and only lets you install applications written for the new Windows interface, the one Windows 8 boots to. I'm intrigued. There's not a lot of love out there for Windows RT, but it might be the future for Microsoft.
Kenneth Burns
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Re: Windows RT

Postby Sandi » Sat Jun 29, 2013 7:54 pm

As I don't have any mobile devices, I maybe shouldn't even comment, but I have read a few articles about it. Also because I am a programmer I understand operating systems. The reviews are not encouraging.

A big con is MS included Windows 8 desktop tools. This gave developers the choice of writing apps for the ARM architecture (used in mobile devices) or ARM with RT (Intel-based Windows 8 ). Most developers chose to write applications for the proven
ARM core used in PDAs and smartphones, but are not interested in developing for RT.

Also RT apps can only be purchased in the Windows Store. That doesn't give buyers much reason to buy a Window RT tablet over an iPad or Android.

Microsoft is cutting the price to help poor sales, but I don't see it making much headway. As I said I don't presently own any mobile devices, but think you should stick with the broader market.

More reasons to avoid it here.
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Re: Windows RT

Postby Kenneth Burns » Sat Jun 29, 2013 8:48 pm

I'm nowhere near buying an RT device because of my $200 rule. I shy from buying many kinds of devices until I can get them new or refurbed for $200 or less. Prices indeed are dropping, though. If I did buy one, it would mainly be to fool around with on the development side. I love my Nexus 7 Android tablet and don't anticipate replacing it anytime soon.

Thanks for the CNET link with the RT caveats. I have some reactions.

1. Flash only works on approved sites.


Doesn't seem like a deal-breaker. There's likewise no Flash on iOS, right? I think the world is moving away from Flash because it's insecure. HTML5 video seems to be the future.

2. So-called legacy apps -- the traditional programs for older versions of Windows -- won't run on Windows RT.


This also doesn't seem like a deal-breaker. The only reason people might expect to run legacy Windows apps on RT is that Microsoft is marketing it as Windows. Which may be a mistake. I see RT as a new platform that competes with iOS and Android, not desktop OSes. I don't expect to be able to run legacy Windows apps on Windows RT, any more than I would on iOS or Android.

3. Apps can only be purchased through the Windows Store. If you think you can buy software at Wal-Mart or another retailer, think again.


As with iOS and Android, right? You buy apps for those platforms in their app stores. I haven't bought software at a big box store since ... 1994? Seriously.

4. The apps that are available are pretty limited. Microsoft has said it expects more than 100,000 apps in its Windows Store by the end of January, but it's a long, long way from that level right now.


That's a concern, but app count may not be all that useful a metric. There are a lot of dumb apps.

5. Even some traditional Microsoft programs won't work with Windows RT. Outlook is one of those, and Windows Media Player is another.


Outlook is coming. But I don't use Outlook.

7. Windows RT will have a desktop mode, but it will be restricted to pre-installed, Microsoft-produced software. That includes Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote. You won't see other desktop applications when you visit the Windows Store.


Desktop mode on RT seems kind of kludgey, and I won't be surprised if it goes away. At the moment I think it mainly lets Microsoft offer Office free as an enticement. Supposedly RT versions of Office apps are in the pipeline.

8. For business users, Windows RT is less than ideal.


That's probably true. It's a consumer play?

9. The number of Windows RT devices is pretty limited.


That's definitely true. But the OS has been out for less than a year.

10. Overall, Windows RT vs. Windows 8 is pretty darn confusing. Microsoft hasn't done the best job explaining the differences, and many consumers are likely to buy RT only to find out they don't have the full functionality of Windows 8.


That's absolutely true. It hasn't been a marketing triumph.

What RT might let Microsoft do is make a more or less clean break with old-style Windows, which is looking pretty long in the tooth. I'm curious whether they can pull it off.
Kenneth Burns
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Re: Windows RT

Postby Sandi » Sat Jun 29, 2013 9:16 pm

What RT might let Microsoft do is make a more or less clean break with old-style Windows, which is looking pretty long in the tooth. I'm curious whether they can pull it off.


That would give RT a horizontal market for the consuming public. Vertical markets only work for some business.
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