2010-09-06

FOLLOW-UP: Windows 7 on Netbooks?

A couple of months ago I had written a piece on what I believed Microsoft's strategy should be with regard to putting Windows 7 on netbooks and tablet PCs. I believed then that Microsoft should try to scale Windows Mobile 7 up onto netbooks and tablets as opposed to trying to scale Windows 7 down onto netbooks and tablets. While I still believe that this plan would deliver optimal performance, a new review (Sasha Muller, PC Pro) of ViewSonic's two new ViewPad tablets suggests that the latter option may not be as bad as I once thought. The 10.1" ViewPad dual-boots Android 1.6 (as the newer versions do not support its hardware) and Microsoft Windows 7. As expected, Android is amazingly quick on the hardware, but more surprising is the fact that Windows 7 is actually quite usable on just 1 GB of RAM, an Intel Atom processor, and a 10.1" screen. I therefore congratulate Microsoft on a job well done in scaling Windows 7 down to a touchscreen tablet PC; I now believe that Windows 7 could actually work (and that it may not just be empty Microsoft rhetoric) on 10.1" and 11" netbooks, as Windows 7 doesn't have to deal with the added requirements of a touchscreen. Bravo.

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