Windows ARM Software News
Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) dropped a bit of a bombshell a few days ago. The company announced it was partnering with Qualcomm, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) to bring Windows 10 to devices running chips based on ARM Holdings processors. Yesterday, MSFT showed off Windows PC applications running on a QCOM Snapdragon CPU. Windows on ARM is no Windows RT and it’s about to make 2017 a very interesting year.
Microsoft can be surprising at times. After ditching Windows RT, the software giant has announced that it is working with Qualcomm to bring ARM support to Windows 10. In practice, that means that we will see Snapdragon-powered machines running Microsoft's latest operating system which, and this is key, can run proper x86 software.
Windows RT tried, and failed, to deliver a full-fledged Windows environment on top of anemic ARM microprocessors. Now, Microsoft is trying again, with two major improvements: compatibility with the mainstream Win32 apps that PC users have enjoyed for years, and a new generation of powerful ARM chips to run them.
Last month, details emerged of Microsoft's plans to bring emulation for x86 apps to Windows 10 Mobile smartphones. Those efforts were rumored to debut in Microsoft's 'Redstone 3' update in late 2017, and were said to be in development under the codename 'Cobalt'.
Everyone in the Windows Phone community hopes to see Microsoft launching the eagerly-anticipated Surface Phone next year, and according to a recent report, work on the project advances nicely and the company is indeed on track to unveil the device with Redstone 3 in the fall of 2017
Microsoft is planning to enable x86 on ARM64 emulation in Windows 10 by Fall 2017 with its 'Redstone 3' release, sources say, thanks to codename 'Cobalt.'- Since January 2016 (and maybe before), there's been talk that Microsoft was working on bringing x86 emulation to ARM processors. Sources of mine are now saying that this capability is coming to Windows 10, though not until "Redstone 3" in the Fall of 2017.
A few weeks ago, Microsoft announced that it would soon be dropping Skype support for Windows Phone 8 and 8.1 devices, along with several older versions of rival operating systems.
Microsoft has announced that Windows 10 IoT Core is now available with the Anniversary Update, which brings a long list of improvements, new features, and support for more devices and apps.
The latest Patch Tuesday update killed a major vulnerability that could have potentially let hackers unlock ARM-powered Windows RT tablets and install non-approved Windows programs. Fortunately for Windows RT tablet owners, Microsoft’s security engineers discovered this vulnerability before hackers exploited it.
It was big news when Microsoft announced it was working on a version of Windows that would run on tablets with ARM-based processors… but by the time Windows RT actually launched it was a lot less exciting. Devices like the Microsoft Surface and Surface 2 couldn’t run desktop Windows apps and weren’t significantly cheaper than Intel Atom-powered tablets running the full version of Windows, and they didn’t even get better battery life.
When Microsoft announced that Windows 10 would be available as a free upgrade for Windows 7 and 8.1 devices, owners of those devices running Windows RT were understandably frustrated by the news that they would not be offered an upgrade path to the new OS. Instead, the company released Windows RT 8.1 Update 3 in September, adding a Windows 10-style Start menu for those devices, but little else.
It would appear that the rumors of Windows RT's demise have been greatly exaggerated. The dead OS is showing signs of life as Windows 10 RT. Windows RT, announced and released in 2012, was designed to bring Windows to ARM based processors. User adoption was extremely low, as the OS looked exactly like Windows 8; however, it was only able to run apps that were available in the Store, as well as Office RT, which came preinstalled.
When Windows RT launched in conjunction with Windows 8 in 2012, the operating system ran on ARM-based devices with desktop program support only for software that Microsoft bundled, like a version of Microsoft Office. Because of RT’s inability to user-install Win32 programs, and for a number of other reasons, the operating system failed to catch on. Microsoft's last RT device, the Surface 2, launched in 2013.
A while ago, Microsoft released Windows RT for devices with ARM chips. Windows RT wasn’t successful for the company, and existing Windows RT devices didn’t receive the Windows 10 upgrade either. Now, it seems like Microsoft isn’t done with Windows on ARM chips.
Microsoft has delivered improvements to its version of the Windows 10 platform for small, low-cost devices like the Raspberry Pi 2 single-board computer, making it officially available for commercial hardware developers to use at the same time.