Bonum Certa Men Certa

The Future of Embedded is Linux, Not Windows

Loekelberg's basilica



Summary: Mobile devices and phones are becoming centred around Linux while Microsoft can only dream and use legal actions (or threats of legal actions, as means of extortion rackets)

GNU/Linux has already won a place in the server room and it dominates the world's biggest servers. But also on the very low scale Linux is a spectacular superstar and Microsoft cannot do so much about it. Our reader gnufreex alleges that Microsoft's ARM news is just vapourware that's intended to harm Linux because Microsoft promises too much, only to under-deliver (or not at all deliver) at a later date. Many distributors of Linux regularly confess that their "next version" will not have much that's revolutionary. Microsoft never behaves that way. It pretends everything is exciting even when it's not and Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols has a post about that, wherein he says that Vista 7 on ARM tablets is a pipe dream:



The only reason for Microsoft to bring Windows 7, Windows 8, or whatever to ARM is to put it on a tablet. The best existing fit would be Windows Phone 7, but the story being spun by Microsoft rumor spiders seems to be that this will be bigger and better than Windows Phone 7.

Excuse me as I roll my eyes. Microsoft has always promised that their next big operating system will be the greatest thing ever. The business reason for this is to try to freeze the market. Ideally, a customer goes: “Oh, I can’t buy WordPerfect today; Word 6.0 next year will be sooo much better.” This tactic worked for decades, which is why the younger among you will never have even heard of WordPerfect, much less used it.


Microsoft recently threw out there the figure 1.5 million, in relation to its phone platform. This number is not only appalling but it is also deceiving (people can see that) as it shows just how far behind Microsoft has fallen. It can barely even stuff the channel anymore. As OpenBytes put it:

I also have to wonder if Steve Ballmer is now just hoping for a Christmas miracle – when he wakes on Xmas morning and switches on the TV he sees consumers and developers climbing over each other to get into the shops to purchase his phone? What will become of Ballmer if the phone flops? What will become of Microsoft’s phone aspirations if yet again they fail (like with the Kin)?


There is no such "Christmas miracle" and Microsoft will probably just resort to more litigation -- a subject we'll cover later. Embedded Linux developers -- some of whom are located in Europe (the head of the FFII for example) -- understand why software patents as the most major threat.

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