Microsoft has offered insight into the future of Windows on mobile devices, showing off a full edition of Windows 10 running on an ARM chipset. Although the Windows Phone platform has effectively been in limbo for some time now, Microsoft is working on delivering a unified experience across all screen sizes.
At the WinHEC event in Shenzhen, China, Microsoft laid out details of Windows on ARM chipsets. And the company has also uploaded a video to YouTube, providing a demonstration of the experience.
The chipset used is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820. This is the same system-on-chip that has powered many of the 2016 flagship Android smartphones.
Although it is not possible to gain any significant insight from a demo video, the operating system does appears snappy and highly responsive.
It is unlikely that any ARM devices running Windows 10 will become commercially available before the second half of next year, at the earliest.
Convergence between desktop and mobile platforms is not only a focus of Microsoft – the concept is also being pursued by Google.
In 2016, there has been a major update to Chrome OS, allowing Android apps to run on Google’s cloud-based platform.
But more significantly, rumours have been circulating that Google is working on a new operating system – with Andromeda the suggested code name – which will merge Android and Chrome OS into a single platform.
There has been talk that Google could show off Andromeda in the first half of 2017, possibly with a 7-inch tablet being launched as a reference device for developers.
If the speculation about Andromeda is correct, it is not clear exactly how advanced Google’s plans are. But the search engine giant would need to provide significant commitment to such a project, given the advancements made by Microsoft with the ARM edition of Windows 10.