Windows RT on ARM chips is 'not promising,' Asus exec says

Taiwan firm plans to focus instead on making devices running Intel chips, report says

Editor's note: This story has been updated. An earlier version incorrectly stated that Asus makes the Surface RT tablet.

Even Asus, which makes the VivoTab RT tablet, isn't impressed with sales results of Microsoft Windows RT-based tablets.

Asus Chairman Jonney Shih told tech news website AllThingsD that the Taiwan-based manufacturer won't be launching new Windows RT-based tablets running on ARM chips.

Shih didn't flat out say Asus won't produce Windows RT products, but did maintain that the company is putting time and energy into devices that run on Intel chips.

"The result is not very promising," he told AllThingsD, referring to the widely reported problems with Surface RT and the Asus VivoTab RT.

Asus could not be reached to elaborate on Shih's comments.

Nvidia, which makes the Tegra 3 ARM-based processor used in Surface RT, recently voiced support for Surface RT and the Microsoft concept behind it.

"Surface RT is the very beginning of a long process and it's the first shot in a changing landscape," said Rene Haas, vice president of computing products at Nvidia.

Haas in May said that next-generation Tegra 4 chips would be used in multiple RT tablets, but in July said he couldn't commit to when or what types of future RT product will appear.

Microsoft cut the prices of its Surface RT tablets by up to 30% in mid-July.

Just 200,000 Surface RT and other Windows RT tablets shipped in the first quarter of 2013, IDC said.

Analyst Patrick Moorhead, of Moor Insights & Strategy, said Shih's comments don't diminish his own view that Windows RT has a long-term future. "Even if Microsoft is the only OEM shipping [Windows RT] for a few years, they are sticking to their guns, as it's a long-term play," Moorhead said.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen, or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed . His email address is

Copyright © 2013 IDG Communications, Inc.

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