Windows 8 tablets: Intel x86 to have slight advantage over ARM in 2012
March 28th, 2012 - 10:25 am ET by C. D.
By the end of the year and with the launch of Windows 8, there could be a lot more tablets using the x86 architecture on the market compared to ARM. This will help the American chipset manufacturer take a strong position in the market.
With Windows 8, Microsoft will finally launch their tablets strategy, although they will leave the architecture choice to assemblers. Besides Intel’s x86 platform, compatibility with ARM architecture is planned, creating two branches of tactile tablets.
While this represents a big opportunity for ARM to assure their presence in the Windows environment market – opening the way to netbooks and computers, Digitimes reports that there will be a lot more Windows 8 tablets running x86 than Windows 8 on ARM.
The news is that we should have a good thirty Windows 8 tablets running x86 by the end of the year while only 10 ARM models are expected from manufacturers Asus, Acer and Lenovo who already manufacture products running ARM.
A slight advantage to Intel at the end of the year Resourcing problems have been noted (a lack of R&D personnel) while some software compatibility issues could lead to a large number of launches being delayed until 2013. Among the ARM projects, we note Nokia’s first tablet with a 10" display and Qualcomm processor.
Support of the x86 architecture will also be seen as an argument for manufacturers looking to enter the Windows 8 professional tablet market to make the jump (Dell, HP, Lenovo...) even if the expected prices are between 600 and 800 dollars.
The Windows 8 on ARM tablets will be cheaper in price and will have better energy use to attract the general public, although there may be some application compatibility issues. Windows 8 was expected for launch in October, with Intel to have more models than ARM on the market by the end of the year. A large number of technology shows in early 2013 (CES, MWC...) should quickly balance up the devices available on both architectures.