Software giant Microsoft recently offered the first glimpse at the next version of Windows – Windows 8 – which will formally launch sometime next year. While there will, as ever, be a lot of changes, refinements and new features in the new operating system, the key thing about Windows 8 will be its focus on touch-screen devices, especially tablets.
For the first time ever Windows will be able to run on processors other than those made by Intel and AMD, as Microsoft extends support to those using the ARM micro-architecture. Nearly all mobile phone chips are ARM-based, and tablets mainly run on those processors too, so by this time next year there should be a lot more Windows tablets on the market.
You can buy Windows tablets now, but they run on PC chips which are less power-efficient than mobile ones, and thus use up the battery more quickly.
The other big tweak with Windows 8 is a new touch user interface called Metro. This is the introduction of many of the features you find in Windows Phone smartphones onto the full version and should, in theory, offer the best of both worlds.
Are you excited by the prospect of Windows 8 tablets? Let us know in the comments section.