Menu
Microsoft expanding Windows on Devices program

Microsoft expanding Windows on Devices program

Microsoft wants to put a small version of Windows 8 on more developer boards

Intel's Galileo board running Windows

Intel's Galileo board running Windows

Microsoft is expanding a program to put Windows in smart devices, robots and Internet-connected appliances, following overwhelming response for developer hardware.

The company is currently putting a stripped-down version of Windows 8 on Intel's Galileo development board to bring the OS to a "smaller class of devices," said Colin Murphy, senior technical product manager at Microsoft, during an interview at the Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco.

But the demand for the Galileo board with Windows has exceeded expectations and Microsoft is now looking to put the OS on more boards such as Intel's Galileo 2 and MinnowBoard Max, Murphy said.

"You'll see that evolve. We're working with Intel and other partners putting Windows on those boards," Murphy said. "There's a whole range of boards we'll be investing in."

Microsoft is tapping into the community of enthusiasts -- also called makers -- to come up with ideas on the types of devices in which Windows could be used. With the Galileo board, Microsoft researchers have put the OS in a piano and a robotic refrigerator that can deliver cold drinks. The software company also has provided instructions on making a thermal sensor, smart fan and smart bulb. Microsoft's goal is to link such sensor appliances to the Azure cloud service, where data could be fed and analyzed.

Microsoft has also hinted at releasing developer boards for Windows RT and Phone, through which mobile applications could be written. Murphy declined to comment about that.

Microsoft is also trying to combat the dominance of Linux in the maker community. Popular development boards like Raspberry Pi and BeagleBone run on Linux. Intel's Galileo also runs on a light version of Linux from the Yocto project, but Microsoft has now added Windows support.

The demand for Galileo from the Microsoft developer ecosystem has been overwhelming and that bodes well for putting Windows on smaller devices, Murphy said.

"We only thought we'd get a few numbers, a few thousand people maybe, but it's just blown out of the water," Murphy said.

Investments are also being made in driver development, so components and devices work as soon as they are plugged into developer boards.

Driver development is important and will bring a "desktop user experience for the developer where they plug and play and they can start writing their app for devices," Murphy said.

The idea of developing cool devices may seem like fun, but Microsoft is taking the Windows on Devices program seriously as it looks to expand in the Internet of Things market. The program builds on over a decade of investment in Windows compact and embedded operating systems, and Microsoft now hopes the new OS will lead to a new family of smaller and sophisticated Windows devices.

The newer boards with the slim version of Windows 8 will also provide a fresh look at Windows.

"It's reinvigorating some of the markets we're in today with newer technology and the latest platform updates," Murphy said.

Agam Shah covers PCs, tablets, servers, chips and semiconductors for IDG News Service. Follow Agam on Twitter at @agamsh. Agam's e-mail address is agam_shah@idg.com


Follow Us

Join the New Zealand Reseller News newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags IDFMicrosofthardware systemsComponentsprocessorsintel

Featured

Slideshows

Kiwi channel comes together for another round of After Hours

Kiwi channel comes together for another round of After Hours

The channel came together for another round of After Hours, with a bumper crowd of distributors, vendors and partners descending on The Jefferson in Auckland. Photos by Maria Stefina.​

Kiwi channel comes together for another round of After Hours
Consegna comes to town with AWS cloud offerings launch in Auckland

Consegna comes to town with AWS cloud offerings launch in Auckland

Emerging start-up Consegna has officially launched its cloud offerings in the New Zealand market, through a kick-off event held at Seafarers Building in Auckland.​ Founded in June 2016, the Auckland-based business is backed by AWS and supported by a global team of cloud specialists, leveraging global managed services partnerships with Rackspace locally.

Consegna comes to town with AWS cloud offerings launch in Auckland
Veritas honours top performing trans-Tasman partners

Veritas honours top performing trans-Tasman partners

Veritas honoured its top performing partners across the channel in Australia and New Zealand, recognising innovation and excellence on both sides of the Tasman. Revealed under the Vivid lights in Sydney, Intalock claimed the coveted Partner of the Year 2017 (Pacific) award, with Data#3 acknowledged for 12 months of strong growth across the market. Meanwhile, Datacom took home the New Zealand honours, with Global Storage and Insentra winning service provider and consulting awards respectively. Dicker Data was recognised as the standout distributor of the year, while Hitachi Data Systems claimed the alliance partner award. Photos by Bob Seary.

Veritas honours top performing trans-Tasman partners
Show Comments