Will Windows 8 Desktop run on ARM?

ARM and Windows 8 desktops…will it be possible?

Ok, that is a good question because Windows 8 is supposed to be a radically different type of operating system. In fact it uses System on Chip (SoC) architectures. What is that?


An SoC is an integrated circuit that brings together all components of a computer or other electronic system into a single chip. It may contain digital, analog, mixed-signal, and often radio frequency functions … all on a single chip design. A typical application is in the area of embedded systems. One benefit is that SoC designs usually consume less power and have a lower cost and higher reliability than the multi-chip systems that they replace. And with fewer packages in the system, assembly costs are reduced as well.

New development features

Unlike current x86-based machines, which mainly use processors from Intel and AMD, ARM-based SoC devices generally draw less power and can wake from standby instantly. The impact for Windows 8 systems is that SoC systems can enter a near-sleep state but they can still retrieve e-mails, text messages and other information.

Intel ARM Development

Who’s working on ARM? And will it be ready for Windows 8 deployment?

Intel’s first system-on-chip, “Medfield,” is at the final prototype stage according to VR-ZONE. Moreover, it is performing well, even against other chips like NVidia Tegra, and Qualcomm’s Snapdragon.

So there are multiple companies preparing to use ARM. Already the market for ARM is the mobile and tablet market. The question is whether ARM will handle Windows 8.

Some blogs mentioned that ARM-based devices use SoC architectures, and that SoC devices will run both Metro-style and desktop apps suggests that ARM-based computers will support the Windows 8 desktop after all. That said, Microsoft still has to say officially how the Windows 8 desktop will run if Metro will be the new GUI version.

Source PCWorld, ZDNet

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3 Responses to Will Windows 8 Desktop run on ARM?

  1. Jhabril_Harris February 8, 2012 at 6:58 pm #

    There’s that old question again

  2. NoClipMode February 9, 2012 at 5:37 am #

    You make it sound like Intels Medfield platform uses ARM… it dont. It’s x86 like all there other desktop chips. So any tablet using Medfield will also have the full desktop on it and run anything a desktop PC can. This gives Intel an advantage. But at the same time ARM devices will apparently be considerably cheaper.

  3. Cregan89 February 9, 2012 at 4:13 pm #

    It’s official:
    Windows 8 on ARM (WOA) will run ALL parts of Windows, including the desktop.

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