SOFTWARE REDEVELOPER Microsoft has outed a roadmap of sorts for its Windows Embedded operating system.
Microsoft's Windows Embedded is already in a vast range of devices and while the world and his dog are looking towards Windows 8 on tablets, Microsoft wants to push Windows Embedded even further. Kevin Dallas, general manager for Windows Embedded at Microsoft laid out some of the firm's plans for the embedded operating system, claiming it will be a central part of "the move toward intelligent systems".
Dallas introduced Windows Embedded Enterprise v.Next, which the firm is saying provides full Windows application compatibility on embedded devices in ATMs and kiosks. Dallas claimed Microsoft will release this operating system within three months of Windows 8 shipping.
Microsoft will also produce a second version, Windows Embedded Standard v.Next, which will support ARM architecture and also come out within three months after Windows 8 makes its debut. Dallas confirmed there will a Windows Embedded Standard v.Next "community technology preview" for developers in the first quarter of 2012.
If that wasn't enough, Microsoft will also bring out two versions of Windows Embedded, a standard and a 'compact' version. Speaking of the goals for Windows Embedded, Dallas said, "We need Windows Embedded Standard v.Next to take the lead around application-rich devices, and Windows Embedded Compact v.Next to take the lead around real-time, small form-factor devices. Both are critical to the success of our partners and enterprise customers building intelligent systems."
Microsoft's decision to tout application compatibility with its desktop operating system is not surprising. Dallas offered one piece of advice to developers, "build now". The firm will be hoping that by playing to the developers' lack of time and resources, it can sway customers to adopt its operating system over Linux.
The problem for Microsoft is that for years, developers have had little option but go with Linux on embedded systems due to its security, reliability and its minimal resource requirements. Microsoft might find having Windows compatibility is not a huge selling point outside of consumer electronics. µ