ARM-based Windows RT seen confusing consumers, benefitting Apple

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2014
The launch of ARM-based tablets and computers later this year running Windows RT is expected by one analyst to confuse consumers, potentially pushing even more of them to Apple's tightly integrated ecosystem.

Mark Moskowitz with J.P. Morgan issued a note to investors on Tuesday discussing this year's launch of ARM-capable Windows, branded by Microsoft as Windows RT. He does not see the product, which will run on low-power processors like the ones found in the iPad and iPhone, as being a major catalyst for Microsoft in the near-to-mid-term.

In fact, Moskowitz believes the average consumer could be confused this fall, when Windows 8 will launch. Windows 8 will feature both the Metro interface as well as the traditional Windows desktop layout, while Windows RT will be entirely Metro.

Moskowitz sees a general lack of Windows RT devices, along with multiple Windows 8-based alternatives running on similar devices with traditional PC processors, serving to confuse many consumers at launch.

"We think that the consumer could be confused and distracted by the bevy of PCs, tablets, e-readers, and hybrid devices slated for release later this year," he said. "A combination of varying operating systems and hardware form factors are the key reasons."

This confusion, he said, could end up benefiting Apple, which offers a more integrated solution and streamlined product line that will be less intimidating to consumers.

Windows 8
Windows 8 Consumer Preview. | Source: Microsoft


In all, Moskowitz believes that a total of seven ARM-compatible Windows RT devices will be available at launch this October. He believes the general lack of available devices is being driven by Microsoft, which aims to maintain tight control over the initial release for quality control purposes.

ASUS, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Lenovo, Nokia, Samsung and Toshiba are all gearing up to launch ARM-based devices for the WIndows RT launch. Moskowitz thinks other major vendors will introduce their own Windows RT devices to the market by early 2013.

Apple is predicted to continue dominating in both the tablet market, with its iPad, and ultraportable space, with the MacBook Air, even in the face of the Windows RT launch this fall. Moskowitz said that Microsoft's ARM-based operating system does not provide enough differentiation to drive consumer demand at launch.

While Apple's iPad is seen dominating the mid to high end of the market, Moskowitz believes Microsoft could eventually find some traction in the low end of the consumer tablet market. He believes that Windows RT on ARM-based hardware will become the combination of choice in the sub-$300 tablet market, beating out low-priced Android-based devices.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 110

    Quote:


    (Microsoft) which aims to maintain tight control over the initial release for quality control purposes



     


     


    Quote:


    ASUS, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Lenovo, Nokia, Samsung and Toshiba are all gearing up to launch ARM-based devices for the WIndows RT launch.



     


    Tablet PC v.2?

  • Reply 2 of 110
    bullheadbullhead Posts: 493member


    sub $300 market? ROFL!  How are they going to cost that little?  Microsoft tax + hardware + cloner tax is going to be over $400 for a bare bones model easily.  This is going to fail hard just like Microsoft Windows Phone has.  I can not wait to watch it....have to get my popcorn ready.

  • Reply 3 of 110
    desuserigndesuserign Posts: 1,316member


    Who cares about the ARM processor confusion?


    The Metro interface is enough to keep customers confused all on its own!

  • Reply 4 of 110
    zarenzaren Posts: 49member


    The interface isn't a problem as far as I'm concerned. The blocks appear to be labeled well enough and easily recognizable; it's just a matter of the user deciding what goes where, and getting used to the positioning. I'm sure you did the same thing with your phone; I know I did with mine. 

  • Reply 5 of 110
    drdoppiodrdoppio Posts: 1,132member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by bullhead View Post


    sub $300 market? ROFL!  How are they going to cost that little?  Microsoft tax + hardware + cloner tax is going to be over $400 for a bare bones model easily.  This is going to fail hard just like Microsoft Windows Phone has.  I can not wait to watch it....have to get my popcorn ready.



    Microsoft tax? Hahahahaha...

  • Reply 6 of 110
    fredaroonyfredaroony Posts: 619member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by bullhead View Post


    sub $300 market? ROFL!  How are they going to cost that little?  Microsoft tax + hardware + cloner tax is going to be over $400 for a bare bones model easily.  This is going to fail hard just like Microsoft Windows Phone has.  I can not wait to watch it....have to get my popcorn ready.



    Why would you like to see a company fail? Cynical much?

  • Reply 7 of 110
    commun5commun5 Posts: 36member


    What company more richly deserves to fail than Microsoft?  Their Office suite has been ripping off Mac users for two decades.

  • Reply 8 of 110
    michael scripmichael scrip Posts: 1,915member
    I thought the whole point of a Windows 8 on a tablet was so it would run all your old software? You know... people say the iPad is a toy and that they'd rather run "real" Windows applications on a tablet.

    But it sounds like there will be a bunch of WindowsRT tablets pushed out into the market to battle the iPad.... but those WindowsRT won't even run your favorite programs... they will only run Metro apps.

    I hear there will also be X86 Windows 8 tablets which will run any Windows application... but those will likely be bigger, heavier and more expensive than the ARM Windows 8 tablets and the iPad.

    Yeah... I'm thinking there will be a little confusion this Fall.
  • Reply 9 of 110
    buzzbybuzzby Posts: 2member


    Yeah, what's a few tens of thousands of lost, good paying jobs in this economy! They can all go greet me at Walmart.

  • Reply 10 of 110
    eltroyoeltroyo Posts: 4member

    "He believes that Windows RT on ARM-based hardware will become the combination of choice in the sub-$300 tablet market, beating out low-priced Android-based devices."


     


    That ought to leave about a $1 for Microsoft licensing ....or a $1 for the manufacturers. Have fun with those pieces of trash.
  • Reply 11 of 110
    drdoppiodrdoppio Posts: 1,132member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by commun5 View Post


    What company more richly deserves to fail than Microsoft?  Their Office suite has been ripping off Mac users for two decades.



     


    Bollocks. Microsoft put a gun to your head to buy Office? There are plenty of office alternatives, and there always have been. Or did Office offer something other applications couldn't?

  • Reply 12 of 110
    fredaroonyfredaroony Posts: 619member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by commun5 View Post


    What company more richly deserves to fail than Microsoft?  Their Office suite has been ripping off Mac users for two decades.



    Your first point doesnt deserve a response.


     


    How exactly have they been ripping off Mac users?

  • Reply 13 of 110


    Does Windows RT run regular windows programs? If not, this is going to be a mess.


     


    I'm fairly tech savy, but I don't really understand what RT stands for. Run Time. Ok, but what's that mean? When it's called Windows, and looks like Windows 8, but runs on a totally separate architecture and can't actually run traditional windows programs, it's going to really confuse people.

  • Reply 14 of 110
    davebarnesdavebarnes Posts: 320member


    I would agree about the Metro interface.


    When Windows 8 lands on desktops in corporations, the screams are going to be insane.


    I just installed Windows 8 (under VMware Fusion) and played with for about 1/2 hour. It was a very frustrating experience.


    This is my personal opinion: the transition from Windows XP/7 to Mac OS X will be easier for most people than the move to Windows 8.

     

  • Reply 15 of 110
    fredaroonyfredaroony Posts: 619member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by davebarnes View Post


    I would agree about the Metro interface.


    When Windows 8 lands on desktops in corporations, the screams are going to be insane.


    I just installed Windows 8 (under VMware Fusion) and played with for about 1/2 hour. It was a very frustrating experience.


    This is my personal opinion: the transition from Windows XP/7 to Mac OS X will be easier for most people than the move to Windows 8.

     



    I agree, I have also played with it and found it frustrating.

  • Reply 16 of 110
    zandroszandros Posts: 537member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Michael Scrip View Post



    I thought the whole point of a Windows 8 on a tablet was so it would run all your old software? You know... people say the iPad is a toy and that they'd rather run "real" Windows applications on a tablet.

    But it sounds like there will be a bunch of WindowsRT tablets pushed out into the market to battle the iPad.... but those WindowsRT won't even run your favorite programs... they will only run Metro apps.

    I hear there will also be X86 Windows 8 tablets which will run any Windows application... but those will likely be bigger, heavier and more expensive than the ARM Windows 8 tablets and the iPad.

    Yeah... I'm thinking there will be a little confusion this Fall.


     


    I agree that it will be confusing, but I don't necessarily believe the x86 tablets will be bulkier than the ARM tablets. Intel did finally get their Atom chip into a smartphone last month so I can't imagine slim tablets being much of an issue.

  • Reply 17 of 110
    jakebjakeb Posts: 559member


    Am I just dumb? I have no idea what the RT stands for. 


     


    Rad Tablets?


    Really Touchy?

  • Reply 18 of 110
    michael scripmichael scrip Posts: 1,915member
    zandros wrote: »
    I agree that it will be confusing, but I don't necessarily believe the x86 tablets will be bulkier than the ARM tablets. Intel did finally get their Atom chip into a smartphone last month so I can't imagine slim tablets being much of an issue.

    Oh that's cool. Have Atoms gotten any better?

    Last time I used something with an Atom processor... it was a netbook... and it was HORRIBLE. But at least it was cheap... though I don't know anyone who used an Atom-powered netbook as a primary machine.

    I think Microsoft and the OEMs are gonna try to spin Windows 8 tablets into "it's a tablet... but add a keyboard and it's one machine that does it all"

    That sounds great in theory... but I hope these aren't woefully under-powered machines trying to do double-duty as both a tablet and a laptop equivalent.

    .
  • Reply 19 of 110
    ericthehalfbeeericthehalfbee Posts: 4,284member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Michael Scrip View Post



    I thought the whole point of a Windows 8 on a tablet was so it would run all your old software? You know... people say the iPad is a toy and that they'd rather run "real" Windows applications on a tablet.


     


    Exactly. People see "Windows" and they're going to expect that software they've bought for their PC is going to run on their tablets.


     


    I think it's going to be even worse when companies release versions of their software that do run on both. The interface and feature set will be different. Imagine trying to switch from the "File->Open" style of menus you're used to to "swipe this way with 3 fingers" or whatever gestures they decide to use to perform certain functions.


     


    Tim Cook was right when he said it's stupid to try and combine a tablet and desktop OS. Nothing wrong with sharing a few features between them, but trying to make them co-exist is something I don't whink will work.

  • Reply 20 of 110
    desuserigndesuserign Posts: 1,316member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by zaren View Post


    The interface isn't a problem as far as I'm concerned. The blocks appear to be labeled well enough and easily recognizable; it's just a matter of the user deciding what goes where, and getting used to the positioning. I'm sure you did the same thing with your phone; I know I did with mine. 



    People can get used to anything. And people deserve to get what they want. 


    So people who get used to Metro will use it, and people who want Metro will like it.


    I just don't think very many people, when faces with the option, will want it.


     


    And as a user-centered researcher, my objective opinion is that the Metro interface is interesting as a concept and a surprising esthetic change for Microsoft.


    But as far as usability, it's more than a bit of a train wreck.  

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