Microsoft is not saying all that much when it comes down to Windows 8, but keeping mum on the next major iteration of Windows isn’t stopping the company from denying the latest batch of leaked Windows vNext information coming from Intel.
It’s clear that Microsoft is none too happy with the fact that top Intel executives ran off at the mouth, managing to reveal some information about Windows 8 at the CPU giant’s Investor Meeting 2011 in Santa Clara, California.
Although in all fairness, neither Renée J. James, Senior Vice President, General Manager, Software and Services Group Intel, nor Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Paul Otellini disclosed all the Windows 8 secrets the software giant is keeping under a tight lid in Redmond.
"The ARM guys are getting a port to Windows, but it's really four ports since every OS has to be written to a chip," Otellini said according to WinSupersite
. "So Microsoft is really doing four ports of Windows to ARM."
In addition, James noted that there will be two major variants of Windows, the traditional OS supporting x86 processors, and the new one, designed for System on a Chip / ARM architectures.
Stressing the dichotomies between the two flavors of Windows 8
, James pointed to the fact that Windows 8 Traditional would be characterized by continuity, compatibility and legacy application support.
In contrast, Windows 8 for ARM will be tailored to new, mobile form factors such as slates, and will not play nice with legacy apps. In addition, James also revealed that Windows 8 will feature a Windows 7 Mode
, although it’s unclear what its purpose will be.
After the statements from Intel execs were picked up by the press, Microsoft retorted with a denial.
“Intel’s statements during yesterday’s Intel Investor Meeting about Microsoft’s plans for the next version of Windows were factually inaccurate and unfortunately misleading.
From the first demonstrations of Windows on SoC, we have been clear about our goals and have emphasized that we are at the technology demonstration stage. As such, we have no further details or information at this time,” the company said to Business Insider
. (emphasis added)
The software giant did not offer insight into just what particular statements were considered inaccurate and misleading, or whether all that Intel executives shared with the world should not be believed.
Here is what Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said at CES 2011 in January:
“The next version of Windows will support system-on-a-chip architectures from Intel, from AMD and from ARM. This announcement is really all about enabling a new class of hardware, new silicon partners for Windows, to bring the widest possible range of form factors to the market.
“Windows has always been, and will continue to be, about the breadth of hardware and software applications and innovation. We're very excited about the full set of partners for the next version of Windows. NVIDIA, Qualcomm, and Texas Instruments are working on SoC designs based on the ARM architecture. Intel and AMD will continue to innovate on the X86 platform, including the new low-powered SoC systems that will be fully supported by Windows, and will include support for native X86 applications.
“Windows support for SoC is an important step for Microsoft and for the industry. Increasingly customers expect the full range of capabilities from any device: the power and breadth of software that is available for today's laptop, the long battery life and always-on capabilities of a mobile phone, great browsing, productivity and media experiences, in addition to the basics, printing and support for all of the hardware devices and peripherals.”