Windows on ARM May Get Its Own Brand

on April 16, 2012

The Wall Street Journal‘s Don Clark is reporting that Microsoft is considering calling the version of Windows that will run on ARM chips something other than Windows 8, the  name expected to be used for the Intel/AMD version. But I can only hope that his belief that the Windows-on-ARM operating system may be called Windows RT is wrong.

First, it’s a lousy name. It does not fall trippingly off the tongue. The best you can say is that it is better than WOA, hard-core tech-speak for Windows-on-ARM. Windows Tablets are going to need all the marketing help they can get and something with a little more pizzazz would be  helpful.

Second and more important, Windows RT would be a really confusing name, because of its extreme similarity to WinRT, which is how developers usually refer to the programming model for Windows 8 Metro apps. Among developers, programs written for Metro as usually referred to as WinRT apps. In theory, at least, all WinRT apps should run on both Windows 8 and Windows RT, if those are the names Microsoft chooses. But the whole thing seems unnecessarily confusing.