Toshiba ARM Based Windows 8/RT Tablets On Ice – Delivery Problems with TI and Qualcomm CPU’s?

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16 Aug, 2012 1:09 am


Uhoh, this is not a good sign! The Japanese manufacturer Toshiba has abandoned plans for the introduction of Windows RT tablets and laptops running on ARM-based technology (that is the ARM version of Windows 8). Toshiba officially stated that “delayed components that make a timely launch impossible” are the reason for this sudden departure from Windows RT plans. Up until now, the company had a tablet and an ARM-based laptop planned with a Texas Instruments TI OMAP 4470 dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 processor with a clock speed up to 1.8 GHz and PowerVR SGX544 graphics. These devices would have run Windows RT. Instead, Toshiba will initially rely exclusively on devices with x86 processors from Intel, which will ship with Windows 8.

The real reason behind the elimination of the Windows RT devices from Toshiba’s plans could have to do with a problem much more serious than not being able to supply the necessary components. Industry analysts are speculating that the real issue is the processors from Texas Instruments and Qualcomm. This seems to prevent the production of Windows RT devices based on the chips of both providers. Initially only models with the Nvidia Tegra 3 quad-core platform will be on the market. According to the analyst Patrick Moorhead, the desired performance has not been achieved so far, so the developers need more time to work on the CPU’s.

Sources: Winfuture & Bloomberg

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  • sola

    It is possible, that WindowsRT has a much larger number of background processes than Android or Linux so it needs at least 4 Cortex-A9 cores to properly distribute the load and remain responsive. This would explain the problem with the dual-core TI SOC.

    However, the two Krait cores in the new Qualcomm SOCs should be plenty powerful. If not, there is a problem with WindowsRT since it is not suitable for current ARM SOCs. Maybe the limited availability of Krait-based SOCs is the answer here.

    This could mean that WindowsRT will be MUCH heavier on the battery of the device so it needs to have a much bigger battery to have the now standard 10hr runtime. That, in turn will mean that they will be significantly more expensive (battery is everything but cheap).

  • Alex Fox

    Totally not a good sign…