Windows 8 Editions Introduced: Meet S/T, "Pro", and "RT"
April 17, 2012 10:19 AM
New Pro version merges two premium editions of Windows 7, RT version will be dedicated to ARM support
Windows XP launched in 2001 with two primary editions -- Home and Professional. Later Media Center and a handful of regional-targeted versions would be tacked on. In 2006 Windows Vista -- an operating system that fairly or unfairly would come to be quite loathed and derided -- launched with a
dizzying six editions
including Starter, Home Basic, Home Premium, Business, Enterprise, and Ultimate. Windows 7 trimmed much bloat from Vista when it launched in 2009, but
stuck with the packed six-edition lineup
(which included both 32-bit and 64-bit variants, to boot).
has tall boots to fill as the follow-up to Microsoft Corp.'s (
) Windows 7 -- the
world's fastest selling operating system in history
. Launching this fall, the operating system changes much. Among the most recent changes to be announced is a trimming of the operating system SKUs.
Microsoft late Monday announced that Windows 8 would come in only three versions -- Windows 8 (self-titled), Windows Professional, and Windows RT. In many ways the latter two echo the simplistic marketing of Windows XP.
The final edition -- Windows RT -- is the special new version of Windows that will be
compatible with ARM processors for the first time
. ARM Holdings plc's (
) licensed designs have dominated the smartphone and tablet space -- now they aim to do the same in the PC space,
challenging veteran x86 manufacturer Intel
Windows RT is missing a couple of features found in the x86 editions -- notably Windows Media Player and Storage Spaces. But it comes with Microsoft's ubiquitous Office suite for free -- something the self-titled basic and Professional editions can't boast. It also comes with specialized device encryption.
Window 8 RT -- the ARM variant -- comes with a free edition of Office, a nice perk.
[Image Source: Microsoft]
Windows 8 Professional packs some different perks -- many of which were introduced in Windows 7, such as HyperV virtualization, virtual hard drive (VHD) boot, remote desktop, and Bitlocker encryption.
The veteran operating system maker stopped shy of forcing x86 customers to have a 64-bit central processing unit to upgrade. When exactly 64-bit will become the mandatory standard has been a topic of much speculation over the years.
The company plugs its reduced lineup as being its most diverse operating system yet, stating, "Windows 8 has the flexibility you need - whether you’re on an x86/64 or a WOA PC. You can use a touch screen or a keyboard and mouse – and switch anytime. It’s beautiful, fast, and fluid design is perfect for a wide range of hardware. And you’ll love browsing through the Windows Store and downloading all the apps you want. And those apps can work together too so you can share photos, maps, contacts, links and whatever else you want faster and easier. All editions of Windows 8 offer a no-compromise experience."
Windows 8 looks to be a relatively bold rewrite of the traditional Windows OS. It moves closer to a smartphone-esque software model, switching to a primarily online sales distribution model and
streamlined upgrade process
for the initial installation. Microsoft is also pushing its new Windows Store for apps, hoping to lure developers with
an industry-best 20-80 Microsoft-developer split
for high-grossing apps. Microsoft is also mandating that all new Windows 8 PCs
have 5-finger touch
spreading its new Metro UI
across the operating system.
But Microsoft is not turning its back on its respected tradition -- it's also shoring up the key components of Windows. Windows 8 has already been
shown to beat Windows 7
in performance benchmarks. It features better multi-monitor support,
less painful Windows Update process
decreased OS resource consumption
improved file transfers
(complete with an improved Windows Explorer), and a refined Task Manager.
While the overhaul of the base and mobile-trending feature set are key storylines, arguably the biggest story is the arrival of WOA -- Windows on ARM. Windows 8 RT should be prominently featured
in numerous tablets
. Sentiments are mixed on these devices -- some bemoan the lack of legacy software support (given the new architecture) -- others point out that hasn't been a hindrance to mobile operating systems.
"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer
All Windows 8 PCs Will Have 5-Fingered Touch
March 29, 2012, 10:22 AM
Windows 8 Bests Windows 7 in Most Performance Benchmarks
March 23, 2012, 9:30 AM
Windows 8 Public "Consumer Preview" Beta is Live
February 29, 2012, 9:21 AM
Qualcomm to Lead ARM in War Against Intel With New Laptop Chips
January 3, 2012, 10:30 AM
Microsoft to Give Windows Store Developers More Money Than Competitors
December 7, 2011, 6:01 PM
WhatsUp with WhatsApp?
August 29, 2016, 5:23 AM
Fuchsia – Google’s New Open Source Operating System
August 17, 2016, 6:30 AM
Windows 10: End of an Era & A New Beginning
August 1, 2016, 9:59 AM
Free Windows 10 offer ends July 29th, 2016: 10 Reasons to Upgrade Immediately
July 22, 2016, 9:19 PM
Quick Note: Whoops, Microsoft Pushed Unwanted Windows 10 to Some Users
October 15, 2015, 9:04 PM
Quick Note: Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 10565 Fixes Boot Camp 6.0 Issues
October 13, 2015, 11:39 AM
Most Popular Articles
What Can You Do with Your New Echo Dot?
December 3, 2016, 5:00 AM
Sales Battle - Apple iPad Mini vs Samsung Galaxy Tab
November 29, 2016, 12:36 AM
Google Wi-Fi – A Scalable Wi-Fi Solution for any size Home or Apartment
November 30, 2016, 1:00 AM
PIQ ROBOTTM reveals its new artificial intelligence software
November 29, 2016, 12:59 AM
PlayStation 4 Pro – 4K Console for 4K TVs
November 28, 2016, 1:00 AM
Latest Blog Posts
e Guide: Mobile Security for 2017
Dec 6, 2016, 5:00 AM
Apple Car is Not Dead
Dec 5, 2016, 1:00 AM
Dec 4, 2016, 5:00 AM
Dec 3, 2016, 5:00 AM
Dec 2, 2016, 5:00 AM
Surface Ergonomic Keyboard
Dec 1, 2016, 3:01 AM
Chapeconense plane crash: Football rallies around Brazilian Team
Nov 30, 2016, 1:00 AM
How to Extends Your iPhone’s Battery Life
Nov 29, 2016, 12:49 AM
Nov 28, 2016, 1:12 AM
News: Fidel Castro
Nov 27, 2016, 5:00 AM
Nov 26, 2016, 5:00 AM
Changes in Social status affect the way genes turn on and off within immune cells.
Nov 25, 2016, 5:12 AM
Austrian far–right hopeful Hofer may back EU vote.
Nov 24, 2016, 4:00 AM
Final Fantasy XV Leaked Before Nov 29 Launch Date
Nov 23, 2016, 1:00 AM
Nov 22, 2016, 2:26 AM
Nov 21, 2016, 1:00 AM
HTC Makes Big Moves in China
Nov 20, 2016, 2:00 AM
Do you know who is the number one company in the word?
Nov 19, 2016, 5:30 AM
Foldable Cardboard ”EcoHelmet” wins James Dyson Award’s Top Prize
Nov 18, 2016, 2:39 AM
Scientists Discover Roundest Object Ever Spotted in Universe
Nov 17, 2016, 1:00 AM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2016 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information