Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 12th Dec 2012 19:37 UTC
Windows "As early as mid-December, consumers will be able to go to retail stores in the United States and Australia to purchase a Surface with Windows RT. Additional availability will be added in a number of countries in the coming months." Sales might indeed benefit from, you know, allowing the world to actually buy your halo product. Us Dutch won't be getting the Nexus 4 and 10 either.
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The difference is that Apple invested the time and money in building a universal binary system. They had done a platform jump before with 68k to PPC, and they knew what to do to keep their users happy.

I don't think that is fair at all... In both of Apple's platform changes, the chosen path for backward compatibility was emulation. Emulating 68k on PPC (or PPC on x86) is a totally different proposition than emulating x86 on ARM. In the first case you are doing the emulation on hardware that is dramatically faster and more capable than what the original binaries were targeted against. Also, other aspects of the systems had improved as well - memory becomes cheaper so you generally have much more of it to work with, and more memory bandwidth as well. it is quite a different matter to go the other way around - ARM systems are both much slower and generally have much less memory than a typical x86 machine.

Point being, assuming Microsoft would have given ARM equal footing to x86, the real problem is not allowing new software to target both platforms equally - which is what something like universal binaries solves... The problem is supported existing x86 software on ARM

How do you do that when a typical ARM system performs like an x86 system from 10 years ago? In many areas, i.e. floating point, the performance delta can be as much as 2 or 3 orders of magnitude. There might be a handful of modern x86 apps for windows that would perform adequately on ARM through emulation, but most would simply be completely unusable.

Apple never even tried to solve this problem. Do you see iPads running OSX apps? You giving Apple credit for doing something they never did, and criticizing Microsoft for doing exactly what Apple did - which is pursue two separate parallel platforms.

Reply Parent Score: 3

Morgan Member since:

The focus of my comment was on the PPC to x86 shift; I only referenced the 68k to PPC transition to show Apple's prior experience with the process.

Yes, there was PPC emulation for legacy apps, but it was never intended to be the solution because it was simply untenable for most practical applications. Apple fully intended to use universal binaries (so-called "fat binaries" that contained executables compiled on both PPC and x86) from the start. They had been building and testing x86 versions of OS X and core applications from the very first release of the new OS. There was extensive documentation and support in the ADP for using fat binaries, whereas Rosetta was deemphasized and rightly considered legacy.

But you're right, I should have clarified all of that.

Reply Parent Score: 2