Windows RT first Impressions
So prior to using it I kind of had a mind set that Windows RT was going to feel like using Windows CE’s big brother (which technically maybe you could argue it is) but in practice what I have found so far is that the experience is EXACTLY the same as standard Windows 8. I am emphasising that because it does feel like the same O/S and not some kind of cut down little brother (which again, technically in many ways you can argue that it is). So what does that mean? I guess in the first instance it is good news for Microsoft. It means RT devices are more attractive than they otherwise might be and bodes well for the future (though I do wonder how long it is until the Intel chipsets match ARM for battery, cooling and ‘small device’ opportunities – making RT nigh on redundant). At this point I should mention the Elephant in the room – you cannot run legacy Windows Apps on Windows RT, but what is surprising is at this early stage, and even with the limited (10k+) number of apps available this fact is maybe not such a big deal after all. Most of the devices I have seen so far fit firmly in the iPad competitor category and when viewed in this light the story for RT devices is very positive. Microsoft have been very smart in including what feels to me like a full version of Office with Windows RT – making it a even more compelling than if it only supported Windows 8 apps (which is does extremely well!).
So the overall initial impression of RT is very positive. If you want something that offers iPad like weight and size (or lighter/Smaller) with reassuring levels of Device*, Office and PC compatibility and a relatively low price point then I would urge you to check out these devices now!
* The device support in terms of things like printers, scanners, mice etc. looks to be good but with some limitations with older equipment – so check this out first if you want to use RT with any third party hardware that it getting a little long in the tooth.
Update – where do I see myself using my RT device?
My own RT device (Surface) will live its’ life on a day to day basis in the family lounge. By day it will be the target device for the development of new Windows 8 Apps, by night it will become a leisure device for the whole family to use (Browsing the web, Skype calls, etc.) . It’s portability also makes it a candidate for taking on holidays or business trips where its’ note taking and office / calendar functionality will come to the fore.