Microsoft's Windows CE is still a better choice for
smartbooks, mainly because it's a more mature operating system, and
because it has a better user interface.
Mike Rayfield, general manager for Nvidia's mobile business unit, also
confirmed CEO Jen-Hsun Huang's predictions that Tegra could account for
more than half of Nvidia's business in just a few years. At this point
Microsoft is one of the biggest Tegra clients, as it will apparently
use it in its upcoming Zune HD player.
"Microsoft hasn't confirmed that ... so until they comment, I can't,"
says Rayfield, but it seems to be a done deal, although it's not
official just yet.
Another interesting tidbit is that Nvidia is working with Microsoft to
optimize Windows CE and Windows Mobile for Tegra. A few weeks ago
Microsoft confirmed that it would not port a desktop version of Windows
for ARM CPUs, and it seems this is the only way to go.
Nvidia favors Windows CE over Android because it's a "rock-solid
operating system that has been shipped billions of times." Windows
also offers a more familiar UI which will make more consumers feel at
home on their smartbooks.
Also, Android handles video and graphics through the system's Java
code, and it's just too slow for HD video. In spite of some drawbacks,
Rayfield says Nvidia is also working with Google to develop a Tegra
friendlier version of Android, but he doesn't expect Tegra-based
smartbooks running an optimized version Android to hit the market in
about a year.