Second Community Technology Preview for Windows Embedded Standard 8 Now Available

REDMOND, Wash. — June 6, 2012 — Today at the annual Computex conference in Taipei, Microsoft’s Steven Guggenheimer, corporate vice president of the company’s Original Equipment Manufacturer Division, took the stage to demonstrate the breadth of innovation occurring across Microsoft and throughout the Windows ecosystem.

A lot of the buzz this year centers on a new category of business solution called intelligent systems, where specialized devices connect with back-end technologies such as servers and databases. By using devices to extend enterprise IT all the way out to the point of operation, more and more organizations are using intelligent systems to extract richer levels of data, drive greater efficiency, increase customer loyalty and identify new opportunities for business revenue. Already companies in retail, healthcare, automotive, manufacturing and other industries have built solutions based on this concept, and are creating unprecedented levels of operational intelligence.

Steven Guggenheimer announces the second community technology preview (CTP) for Windows Embedded Standard 8.

As part of Microsoft’s road map to support the market for intelligent systems, the company announced today that version two of its community technology preview (CTP) for Windows Embedded Standard 8 is now available for download. By evaluating the CTP 2, OEMs can start evaluating how Windows 8 technologies can help them evolve their intelligent systems solutions, while ensuring the investments they’re making today will carry forward to Windows 8. 

“Together with our partners, we have committed ourselves to developing and launching the intelligent systems approach to enterprise IT,” says Windows Embedded general manager Kevin Dallas. “Windows Embedded Standard 8 enables OEMs and enterprises to create specialized devices within intelligent systems leveraging the power of Windows, including features that will become available with Windows 8.” 

Since the release of the first CTP for Windows Embedded Standard 8 in March, more than 6,000 developers have downloaded the software and begun to evaluate and build with it. The number of partners enrolled in the Windows Embedded Partner Program has doubled as more companies begin to understand the potential of developing solutions to take advantage of dedicated hardware and software in the form of intelligent systems.

According to Dallas, companies across industries have been using the initial CTP to develop a new generation of devices that can connect and participate within an enterprise IT infrastructure. The announcement today builds on that momentum by offering new capabilities and enhanced performance.

“The big benefit for organizations is that now you can create devices with the confidence that they are able to leverage the powerful enterprise and IT pro tools offered by Microsoft,” Dallas says. “This is the foundation for building intelligent systems, and it’s available today.”

Microsoft entered the embedded marketplace more than 15 years ago and continues to drive the development of platforms that provide a small and customizable operating system footprint for devices spanning a broad range of silicon choices and a variety of industries — and these devices will continue to be supported by the Windows Embedded Compact platform.

In parallel, Microsoft also delivers platforms that provide the power of Windows to create specialized, differentiated enterprise devices within intelligent systems, including digital signage, kiosks, point of service, medical devices, thin clients and others. Looking ahead, these devices within intelligent systems will be supported by the Windows Embedded wave of products built on Windows 8 technology, allowing them to be integrated with Microsoft’s core enterprise solutions such as Microsoft SQL Server, System Center and Forefront.

About Windows Embedded Standard 8 CTP2

In the second CTP, Microsoft is introducing additional capabilities and performance enhancements to help partners extend their design efforts with Windows Embedded Standard 8 by harnessing key capabilities for intelligent systems, including security features, management, identity and connectivity:

  • Targeted and consistent device configuration with lockdown features to meet enterprise needs

  • Immersive line of business user experiences with multitouch, rich applications, Windows Internet Explorer and other Microsoft technologies

  • Technologies such as mobile broadband to help devices stay connected

Microsoft encourages partners to start working on how Windows Embedded Standard 8 can help drive innovation for intelligent systems in the enterprise. The company has set up the following resources to help developers get started:

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