Feeds

Microsoft: Someone gave us shot in the ARM by swallowing Surface tabs

Go on, have a guess who...

Boost IT visibility and business value

Microsoft has produced the name of a corporate customer in a fresh attempt to convince us Windows 8 is being adopted by businesses.

Unfortunately, and in a sign of just how desperate things have really become, that customer is ARM - one of Microsoft's co-conspirators on Windows RT and Surface RT.

The threadbare "news" comes courtesy of a Microsoft press release titled "Enterprises bet on Microsoft devices and services to accelerate business worldwide."

We're also informed carrier Telefonica will roll out Windows Server Hyper-V and SQL Server and an Italian ads agency is hosting a service on Windows Azure.

But something like the Wehrmacht at Stalingrad receiving parachuted crates of condoms rather than ammo or warm food, the hapless IT employees of ARM Holdings' IT, quality assurance, marketing and sales teams have received crate upon crate of Surface RTs.

With a straight face Microsoft told the opening of its TechEd conference Tuesday that Surface RT is allowing ARM's IT troops "to work more efficiently with features such as live tiles and notifications while being virtually always on and always connected."

For those with short memories, which seems to include Microsoft's PR and marketing, Surface RT and Windows RT were built specifically to run on ARM in the first place.

The closest Microsoft's announcement comes to conceding this is a sub clause in a sentence that mentions that Surface RT with Windows RT "utilizes an ARM-based chip"."

Microsoft goes on to tell us ARM already uses Microsoft Office for "a variety of productivity solutions". This is rather handy, because Microsoft Office - or, rather, a limited version of Office that's actually aimed at students, teachers and home users and has been compiled specifically to run on the ARM instruction set - Microsoft Office and Student 2013 RT - is one of the few apps of any use for an RT device.

That's because Surface runs on ARM, Microsoft's slabs cannot run the vast back catalogue of off-the-shelf, third-party or in-house apps built for Intel or AMD x86.

It's therefore likely that ARM - the principal brains behind ARM architectures - is probably one of the few customers on the planet to actually have more apps for ARM than for x86.

This is Microsoft's latest attempt to prove Windows 8 and Surface have a serious side, with the majority of Microsoft's PR having pushing a consumer-first strategy anchored on Bring Your Own Device (BYOD). Last year, Microsoft tried to convince journalists that Windows 8 was business-ready by parading BT and Poste Italiane rollout of 5,000 Windows 8 tablets to staff.

In reality, however, most businesses are upgrading to Windows 7, finally coming off of Windows XP, and not even remotely considering Windows 8. Overall, Windows 8 has sold so badly that analysts reckon it was responsible for the industry's worst PC sales since records began.

As for Microsoft Windows-8 loaded Surface tablets, IDC says just 900,000 Surface RT devices and Surface Pros, using Intel, shipped in the first three months of 2013 versus 19.5 million iPads sold. Microsoft is now slashing the price of Surface RTs by up to 60 per cent for students and teachers. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can
No, not with swearing, but by controlling the release cycle
China hopes home-grown OS will oust Microsoft
Doesn't much like Apple or Google, either
Sin COS to tan Windows? Chinese operating system to debut in autumn – report
Development alliance working on desktop, mobe software
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Eat up Martha! Microsoft slings handwriting recog into OneNote on Android
Freehand input on non-Windows kit for the first time
Linux kernel devs made to finger their dongles before contributing code
Two-factor auth enabled for Kernel.org repositories
This is how I set about making a fortune with my own startup
Would you leave your well-paid job to chase your dream?
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Scale data protection with your virtual environment
To scale at the rate of virtualization growth, data protection solutions need to adopt new capabilities and simplify current features.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?