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Bill Bennett

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Last nail in Windows RT coffin?

It’s hard to see Intel’s battery-sipping Haswell processors as anything other than the final nail in Windows RT’s coffin.

Microsoft’s cut-down version of Windows for tablets with weedy processors was always a difficult value proposition. In hindsight it looks like no more than a holding strategy to keep Windows in the tablet game while hardware makers prepared their next generation devices.

RT’s one saving grace was that it allowed Windows tablets to work all day on a single charge. Intel’s new chips can do that and deliver enough power for a real tablet operating system.

Few hardware brands have stuck with RT. The devices haven’t been a sales hit despite competitive prices and preloaded Office applications.

Microsoft’s marketing of RT was missing in action, I don’t remember seeing any promotional material except while at product demonstrations arranged for journalists.

Windows RT may limp on, making it into smaller – that’s below 10 inch – tablets.

Typically an RT device is two-thirds the price of a tablet running the full version of Windows 8. Microsoft may sharpen its pencil to lower the price of RT on smaller tablets.

Even that may not be enough to save the tablet operating system. It’s now just a matter of time.

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