When Microsoft decided to make Windows work on all kinds of devices, it set out to re-code Windows for machines that use chips based on the ARM architecture, which has a near-monopoly on mobile devices (phones and tablets). (Until now, traditional Windows has run exclusively on machines that use the power-hungry x86 chip architecture made by Intel and AMD.)
Windows on ARM (WOA) is a key part of Microsoft’s plan to get Windows on as many machines as possible. The experience will differ a bit, but most features — even the traditional desktop — will be available on both. Microsoft says WOA devices will be “end-to-end” products, meaning you won’t buy Windows separately from the device. Look for special mobile features, like an extreme low-power mode that lets the tablet stay in standby mode for weeks.
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