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Image representing Steve Ballmer as depicted i...

Image via CrunchBase

Microsoft and Intel have been so inter-twined for decades that there’s been a special name for them: WinTel.  The “WinTel Monopoly” has required you to run Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Office and the rest of their core software on Intel hardware only, with few exceptions.

There have been a couple of attempts to move away from Intel x86 architecture toward better processors (such as Digital’s Alpha and the Itanium), but this is Microsoft’s first real shot at running its core product on an inexpensive, low-power processor architecture — the ARM family.

Hitting two birds with one stone, Microsoft Windows 8 is also aiming squarely at tablet computers, and is hoping to be able to employ the power-sipping ARM family to give it a big advantage over past attempts at running Windows on a tablet.  Toward that effort of taking over the tablet world, Microsoft has adopted larger icons and a different work-flow which should make it easier to use your fingers to run your tablet.

Will it be enough?  Steve Ballmer has said that Windows is their core product family for future revenue enhancement, and there are obviously hopes that the new Windows 8 will provide them a universal platform that will sell by the millions.  Given their history of attempts at tablets over the years, it will be at least another two or three years before we’ll be able to tell if they made a dent.

And then there’s the built-in advertising platform.  Windows 8 provides a complete platform to be able to show you ads no matter what you’re doing.  No more waiting to go to a web site to see an ad 🙂  Now you’ll be able to see ads anytime.  Now there’s a feature that will attract users!