Windows Embedded recently laid out details about how Microsoft will deliver on its vision for intelligent systems over the next year.
Microsoft will start allowing developers to preview Windows 8 Embedded in the first quarter of next year, with plans to eventually release its embedded computing products in the quarters following the Windows 8 desktop version launch.
Microsoft's plan involves continued support for a variety of platforms, while also aligning with the upcoming Windows 8 and the new experiences it will enable.
Windows Embedded Enterprise v.Next, providing full Windows application compatibility and the power of Microsoft's operating systems on embedded devices, will be available for use in a number of different devices, such as ATMs and kiosks, a quarter after Windows 8 is generally available for PCs.
Windows Embedded Standard v.Next will undergo a community technology preview for developers during the first quarter of 2012. General availability of Windows Embedded Standard v.Next will occur three quarters after Windows 8 is generally available for PCs. Microsoft did not disclosed specific dates for the Windows 8 release schedule at this time.
According to Windows Embedded general manager Kevin Dallas, Microsoft updated Windows Embedded Compact 7, the current generation of the Windows Embedded CE platform, in October 2011, and Windows Embedded Compact v.Next will follow in the second half of 2012, introducing support for Visual Studio 2010.
Windows Embedded Standard v.Next will support the ARM architecture, and Windows Embedded Compact "will continue to provide a real-time operating system and a full tools suite for a streamlined development experience on small-footprint, specialized devices," Dallas said. "Windows Embedded Standard v.Next will deliver technologies for customized, rich user interfaces, enhanced always-on connectivity, and all of the management and security functionality provided by Windows 8," he added.
"Windows Embedded Compact and Windows Embedded Standard represent Microsoft's platforms for intelligent systems." Dallas said. "We need Windows Embedded Standard v.Next to take the lead around application-rich devices, and Windows Embedded Compact v.Next to take the lead around real-time, small form-factor devices. Both are critical to the success of our partners and enterprise customers building intelligent systems."