Thursday, March 21, 2013

Making Windows 8, RT more reliable

It has been some time since Windows 8 was introduced along with the much promising Windows RT
But we feel there are plenty of areas which require improvement, the primary among them is the area of Desktop Applications and a clear direction for Windows RT.
About Windows 8 and RT
As most of you are aware, Windows 8 is the standard version of the metro operating system and Windows RT, RT stands for “Run Time”, is the completely different new operating system and is only available pre-installed on new computers with a license free toned down version of Microsoft Office.
Windows RT is based on the ARM platform and not upgradable from other versions of Windows
This is not applicable for Windows 8 where an upgrade is quite possible. 
The other interesting fact is though both Windows 8 and Windows RT run on the latest metro interface, the adaptability of Windows 8 for old desktop apps is much better than Windows RT which does not support third party apps in its desktop, though it does support some of the Old apps of Microsoft. 
Windows RT runs only on the ARM based devices and not on either AMD or Intel powered devices. 
Windows 8 will not run on the ARM based devices like the latest Surface tablet released by Microsoft.
This Win RT functionality will affect day to day web surfing as only Internet Explorer would be able to perform most functions. 
These include essential stuff like providing stability and speed and of course, security which the users expect from any modern day browser. 
The use of Application programming interfaces, API’s as they are known, for web browsers is completely restricted. 
This effectively eliminates competition from other browsers like the popular Mozilla Firefox
The best part is both provide support for Xbox Live, Multi language support and Exchange Active Sync.
Looking forward to a reliable Win 8
Though Windows 8 does promise a never before metro interface, there are some things which MS can do to Win RT ensure to make both Win 8 and RT user friendly and reliable. 
These include desktop apps that are available for both Windows 8 and the RT versions in the Windows Store.
The step for making Win RT robust starts with allowing developers to contribute desktop apps for ARM powered devices. 
The availability of these apps in Windows Store does help as this might end up as a success just like how the Apple App Store encouraged downloadable apps for Apple Eco System. 
The other successful models based on the same objective include the Google Play App and Amazon App Stores. 
This could help Windows RT in the long run by creating a successful eco system for newer exciting desktop applications adaptable to both RT and Windows 8.
Things to Improve
The areas in which Microsoft can make RT version more exciting are usability, performance, security and the much talked about licensing aspect.
The first area which is essential to make Windows RT enjoyable is the user experience. 
This starts with providing easily downloadable apps from the Windows Store that are easily installable. 
These desktop applications must be easy to install and uninstall preferably as a single step process from the Start.
It is a fact that the desktop applications that Microsoft provides are safe, reliable, secure and confirming to all the guidelines that it is known for. 
The Metro apps that are to be developed would confirm to all the guidelines as those not so good apps would be rejected straight away.
With respect to Licensing, just like the setup currently available for Metro Apps at Windows Store, the same could be extended to the desktop applications offered through the Store. 
The ability to run the application in 5 computers and other devices attached to a single Microsoft account is the most required feature to make desktop applications click with the users.
Besides the comforting feeling that the apps are secure, reliable and from the Microsoft Store, the users of both Windows RT and Windows 8 could benefit from the various apps offered. 
It is important that Microsoft realizes that making Windows RT more user friendly and reliable is beneficial for it in the long run.

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