Windows 8 ARM-powered notebooks will debut in mid-2013, according to reports.
Microsoft is currently preparing its first beta copy of Windows 8, expected at CES, and computer manufacturers far and wide are testing their latest and greatest hardware. Microsoft has discussed its Windows 8 ARM plans previously but most of the focus has been on tablet form factors with ARM. DigiTimes reported on Tuesday that Windows 8-powered notebooks will debut in the middle of 2013. NVIDIA and Qualcomm have both been reportedly enhancing their ARM-based processor consumption and performance, geared towards notebooks.
Microsoft has previously revealed that any applications for ARM will be supplied through the Windows Store. Speaking during a press briefing earlier this year, Windows chief Steven Sinofsky explained the decision to go Metro only on ARM. “We haven’t made any product announcements,” said Sinofsky, referring to Microsoft’s desktop app demo of Office 2010 on Windows 8 ARM in January. “The previous demonstrations were always technology demonstrations of the underlying architecture,” he said. “All of the apps for ARM are going to come through the store which means they’re all going to be metro style.”
The debut of Windows 8 ARM notebooks in the middle of 2013, if accurate, appears to be a careful approach to a new market. ARM processors will not support the traditional desktop x86 apps and Microsoft is pushing software developers to buy into Metro for cross platform compatibility. Windows 8 is expected to debut in late 2012, giving software developers around six months to create an array of Metro applications for the final version of Windows 8, until ARM notebooks hit the market.