Dual OS support in Intel processors confirmed

Intel has confirmed support for running a dual operating system setup of Windows and Android on their processors at the Consumer Electronics Show 2014 in Las Vegas.

Just before CES, rumors had started coming in about multiple computers and tablets which featured the Windows and Android Dual OS combo reportedly known as "PC Plus" devices. ASUS launched its first Dual OS convertible, the Transformer Book Duet during their conference at CES just an hour before Intel took to the stage. The notebook-tablet hybrid runs Windows 8.1 or Android 4.2.2 in either mode and is powered by Intel processors up to Core i7. Samsung announced the Ativ Q last year which also was a Intel-based hybrid running the two operating systems, however, it is assumed to be using a different technology to carry out the functionality.

During Intel's own press conference, the company's CEO showcased the ease of use of running Windows and Android simultaneously. Intel has tried to make the transition seamless and one which requires just the push of a button. Built-in device protection is expected to prevent security breach while switching between the OSes or using the setup.

Although Windows has more productivity value than Android, casual apps and games remains to be its Achilles' Heel. With the Dual OS feature, manufacturers can expect to sell more portable devices to consumers who want to have the entertainment value brought by Android on the move.

Source: Gizmodo | Image via Gizmodo

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The whole concept of running two operating systems at the same time is sort of lost on me. Is Windows 8 so inadequate as a tablet operating system that you have to run it side-by-side with something else? Is this an actual customer market?

With a few tweaks, you can get a hypervisor of your choosing to run just about any OS, including ARM, x64, etc. I run VMs of Android and Raspbian along side Windows and MacOS without much headache today.

What I don't get is why, they wouldn't try to dual boot chrome os and windows. With Android, you are still having to deal with version fragmentation with this.

When I first installed Windows 8 RTM on my Acer W500 Windows 7 tablet I then installed Android X86 and I really did enjoy it more. Because the entire OS was made for touch, I was never dropped out to the desktop. That being said i'm not saying I want a version of windows EVER to be completely touch based.

And that is the thing about ModernUI - while it has better support for touch, it is no more biased toward touch than Android. While the vast majority of Android's apps ARE touch-biased, that comes from the majority of Android's hardware base (outside of VMs) supporting touch. I find BlueStacks (especially the latest update) extremely usable for casual Android gaming, and that's on not just an old Intel quad-core, but the original Intel quad-core (on which I am running Windows 8.1 ProWMC today). Why would it be any less usable on a quad-core Intel i-series AMD Fusion or A-series? If the performance is near-native, than a CPU in any of those categories (running Android) will have far more resources to throw at Android (and the apps thereof) than any Android tablet could ever come with affordably. What is the typical RAM loadout of an ARM-based tablet - regardless of whether it comes with Android or RT? i5s - regardless of formfactor - typically have 8GB of DDR3 as a base configuration. That means you can dedicate 2 GB to an Android VM/player and still have 6 GB for use by Windows. While DDR3 pricing has gone up, it's still not THAT pricey except in comparison to the Great DDR3 Glut pricing of less than two years ago - upgrading to 16GB (or even 24GB or 32GB, which is STILL Supremely Silly Territory) is not as expensive as you would think. And if you need the RAM you have dedicated, you CAN always shut the player/VM down (while BlueStacks is running, you can right-click on the apropos icon in the TaskTray and select Exit to shut it down).

Quibble, quibble, quibble.

I don't get why people are so quick to dismiss the dual OS feature. This is a nice way to have a Android tablet and a Windows laptop in the same device. For people who want to travel with one device, or people who usually want a tablet but occasionally need a full desktop interface, this fits the bill nicely.

If it's implemented correctly, with the ability to switch quickly between OSes, I can see this being a useful product. The only downside I see is price. The Asus device really needs to come down $100-200 to be a good value proposition.

I think this is a fad idea that will die in due course, but you shouldn't worry about resources. The typical Android tablets have what, 32GB of storage? With the OS taking a small fraction of that? Path of least resistance suggests that most people will just pick the OS that does most for them. And with Windows store apps increasingly covering the "casual computing" role, it's only a matter of time.

Either way, it'll be interesting to watch.... maybe.

Sorry but this is worse than bloatware that OEMs install. It'll unnecessarily take up resources. If they must, they should let people CHOOSE which one to install, rather than have both pre-installed. Or, let the user choose it should uninstall the other OS. OR give them a choice to keep both. Having tried Android on a tablet before and being the resource hog it is, this is not good.

Biggest change and shift from last year is

Oem and consumers don't need Microsoft or windows , its other way around . Next 2 years be very interesting .

I remember when I was in school I learned to use PC on windows 95 and I was very excited and felt cool to use windows.

don't think kids at school these days or consumers share same view, they already using parents androids ,apples
This is Microsoft biggest challenge right now.

nub said,
Why is everybody ****ting over choice?
Because anything other than Windows to some people is very threatening.

nub said,
Why is everybody ****ting over choice?

Because this is worse than bloatware? It'll take up space and resources on your computer. If they must, they should let people CHOOSE which one to install, rather than have both installed.

nub said,
Why is everybody ****ting over choice?

Cause the choice aint Microsoft and ..... Microsoft. Some people here would prefer to die than buy a product not made by Microsoft. Just last week i've seen someone here say they would never buy any car from a company again if this company would start to use Android as the OS for their in-vehicle communicationm entertainment and navigation system even though the company is his favorite car company.

At this point someone should probably seek medical help imo.

JHBrown said,
Because anything other than Windows to some people is very threatening.

It is. While Windows is still by far the de facto standard and dominating force it has never been in such a "week" position since the glorious days of Windows 95. Windows will probably remain for a very very long time teh OS of choice for the corporate world but in the consumer world its position is a lot weeker than it used to be. It is selling more cause people buy more oem PC than they used to but it is attacked from many sides by Apple, Google, Valve and even AMD with Mantle.

Mr. Hand said,
So, if you criticize anything you're against choice?

The way people are going on here, absolutely.

Everyone is making assumptions, when there is next to no info on how this will actually work.

j2006 said,

Because this is worse than bloatware? It'll take up space and resources on your computer. If they must, they should let people CHOOSE which one to install, rather than have both installed.

If you don't like it you can CHOOSE not to buy it.

AMD is already offering something similar with Bluestack. So both Intel and AMD are in the "Dual OS" boat. And if it's at little to no cost to OEM, why not add it to the feature list?

It's not about saving energy or anything like that. It's just the convenience of having Android apps on your PC. And that could be a real blow to Microsoft as Devs won't make the effort to build better Modern/RT apps.

Microsoft is going to be quite happy about that.... NOT.

I can imagine Devs not wanting to spend any money on "Modern/RT" apps when the user can simply switch to Android and enjoy what's already available.

I guess it's Intel way to say to Microsoft "Eat this s*it".

TruckWEB said,
Microsoft is going to be quite happy about that.... NOT.

I can imagine Devs not wanting to spend any money on "Modern/RT" apps when the user can simply switch to Android and enjoy what's already available.

I guess it's Intel way to say to Microsoft "Eat this s*it".

the relationship between microsoft and it's OEMs has been troubled for some time. Microsoft will continue the path they have chosen, become a devices company and cut out the OEMs altogether.

Chicane-UK said,
Not much Microsoft can do about it though frankly.

Sure they can. They already have Windows RT. By furthering the sale of ARM devices over of x86, they can hit Intel where it hurts.

Chicane-UK said,
Not much Microsoft can do about it though frankly.

How about developing their own cpu, gpu, motherboard etc and let this idiots oems burn in hell with this POS Android? Surface was the first step!

xpxp2002 said,
Sure they can. They already have Windows RT. By furthering the sale of ARM devices over of x86, they can hit Intel where it hurts.

Or rather, this is Intel's salvo back at Microsoft for WindowsRT.

TruckWEB said,

I guess it's Intel way to say to Microsoft "Eat this s*it".

"We still want to make money with you, but in the meantime, eat sh*t and die!"

WinRT said,

How about developing their own cpu, gpu, motherboard etc and let this idiots oems burn in hell with this POS Android? Surface was the first step!

I certainly love your vision, and your imagination. But in reality, I don't think Microsoft have the clout to tackle something quite that ambitious, certainly in the next 5-10 years at least.

lol... this is only saying one thing... Android is bleeding away from tablets, it's moving onto desktop. You can thank microsoft for how bad is handling windows at the moment. Lol.

You haven't actually tried one of those astoundingly lame chromebooks have you? I think they're main sales are fooling people into thinking they're getting a real laptop at a low price. It kind of matches the tactic of tricking people into installing the Chrome browser. It's like that company that tried to sell cheap Linux laptops at Walmart and had to stop because of the massive number of returns.

Just out of curiosity, who is selling more tablets? Android OS or Windows? That answer may or may not shed light on why.

I bought one of those windows + android netbooks. It came with an extremely old Android version with no way to upgrade, zero useful apps installed and a custom store with only garbage.

It will likely be as successful as their 'revolutionary' splashtop linux distros because OEMs really can't refrain from turning everything into garbage.

Edited by francescob, Jan 7 2014, 12:13pm :

francescob said,
I bought one of those windows + android netbooks. It came with an extremely old Android version with no way to upgrade, zero useful apps installed and a custom store with only garbage.

It will likely be as successful as their 'revolutionary' splashtop linux distros because OEMs really can't refrain from turning everything into garbage.

Splashtop was a lie. The "near instant" boot wasn't fast at all. It used hard drive space and yielded a terrible user experience. I've removed it from more than one PC, not recently since it sees to have died out, where the owner was flabbergasted by it.

The fact that they want to run android OS on a i7 is making me vomit inside, no power efficiency on app support why would I want that?

Zaic said,
The fact that they want to run android OS on a i7 is making me vomit inside, no power efficiency on app support why would I want that?

It's still linux so I don't see why it would have power efficiency issues: Intel CPUs are actively supported by Intel on linux.

i7 is still usually 70-90Watt monster compared to ARM solutions that would accomplish the same for android with 5Watts in pure silence and with no compatibility issues.

Intel knows that x86 and their exclusive rights to it is getting more and more irrelevant, we as customers should help x86 die by not supporting Andoid on x86

HawkMan said,
Android isn't really linux, neither the adnroid camp or linux camp considers it linux. unless when it beneits them.

Officially it's not but technically it still is since the kernel is basically the same (about 3mb of code differences most of which additions).

HawkMan said,
Android isn't really linux, neither the adnroid camp or linux camp considers it linux. unless when it beneits them.

Most of what people think of Linux is not Linux. It's the collection of Unix style command utilities and X windows. Those are identical on all the different Unix kernels and on Windows using Cygwin.

HawkMan said,
Android isn't really linux, neither the adnroid camp or linux camp considers it linux. unless when it beneits them.

Android is Linux the same way Ubuntu is Linux and RedHat is Linux. No need to twist the facts.

Zaic said,
i7 is still usually 70-90Watt monster compared to ARM solutions that would accomplish the same for android with 5Watts in pure silence and with no compatibility issues.

massively awful comment.
I would research just how low the TDP of various i7s can go. You might be surprised


recursive said,

Android is Linux the same way Ubuntu is Linux and RedHat is Linux. No need to twist the facts.

No it actually isn't.

It's as much linux as OSX is BSD, somewhat less.

recursive said,

Android is Linux the same way Ubuntu is Linux and RedHat is Linux. No need to twist the facts.

You are so desperate to believe Linux is taking off that you are trying to count Android as if it were Linux. I'm sorry, but Android is not Linux. Android is what Linux tried and failed to become after decades of effort and hundreds of lame distributions. Android is a user friendly OS with no dependency on the 1980's era command line interface. The two share kernel code, nothing more. You can't take 1% of the code base of a full Linux distro, use it in Android, and then say Android is now magically a distro of Linux. That actually makes it 99% NOT Linux to any rational person (i.e., non zealot.) In daily use, or in app development, it behaves nothing like Linux. If you believe otherwise, you have your head stuck somewhere, but that moist stuff around your head is not sand.

I have no idea why you would choose Android over Windows on Intel architecture. Didnt they release dual booting laptops with linux before? Cant imagine these will fair any better.

Android has possibly better battery life, more higher quality apps for tablets, better user interface (personal preference), more customization options. So why wouldn't you choose android over windows?

2III7 said,
more higher quality apps for tablets

uhh, not even close. most android tablet apps are just phone apps, rescaled or blown up. the amount of real tablet apps is actually quite small,and pale in comparison to the amount of windows tablet apps.

vcfan said,

uhh, not even close. most android tablet apps are just phone apps, rescaled or blown up.


Sorry but this is just BS. Most apps support different resolution.
And it's phone apps , and then ? I'm not interested to have these apps in a phone at all !
Between playing angry bird on a phone or on a tablet, I'd rather play it on a tablet.

bigmehdi said,

Sorry but this is just BS. Most apps support different resolution.
And it's phone apps , and then ? I'm not interested to have these apps in a phone at all !
Between playing angry bird on a phone or on a tablet, I'd rather play it on a tablet.

sorry,it isn't BS. i said they are also rescaled,meaning ,scaled to the resolution.you can have for example,a mobile website,that scales to a high resolution display, but its still a mobile site. phone apps scaling to resolution and size doesn't make them tablet apps.

I only have an android tablet (nexus 7), not a phone, and so far haven't seen anything that looks weird or doesn't use the space well, but I don't have an android phone to compare it to. I guess on the desktop the Android apps would run in an appropriate sized window or what?

vcfan said,

uhh, not even close. most android tablet apps are just phone apps, rescaled or blown up. the amount of real tablet apps is actually quite small,and pale in comparison to the amount of windows tablet apps.

Android apps scales better for different sizes. It is not the same than iphone apps for ipad, where some are zoomed.

2III7 said,
Android has possibly better battery life, more higher quality apps for tablets, better user interface (personal preference), more customization options. So why wouldn't you choose android over windows?

Windows has a far greater back catalogue of applications (apps lol), compatibility and capability, so that doesnt fly. Android certainly doesnt have more customisation options either and as you say UI is down to personal preference. Even Windows on Arm is more capable than android with the only thing letting it down being the app catalogue.

Because its Buggy as hell! and has no security at all!!!!! that is Android, the evolution of windows XP into mobile.
I prefer to wait a little longer for Windows 8 support for a good app....


vcfan said,

uhh, not even close. most android tablet apps are just phone apps

Which is what most people need on a tablet. It's astonishing the Neowin community still did not get it. I guess love can blind people. Keep living in your distorded MS reality while MS itself understood the Joe Blow consumer market is slowly shifting.

the better twin said,

Windows has a far greater back catalogue of applications

Most of this back catalogue doesn't work well on a media consumption tablet.

erikpienk said,
Because its Buggy as hell! and has no security at all!!!!! that is Android, the evolution of windows XP into mobile.
I prefer to wait a little longer for Windows 8 support for a good app....

Strange i don't have much problems with my Nexus 7 2. It works very well for what it is built to do.

It's not that they don't get it - they simply want Android and Windows in separate cages. Android VMs are certainly popular enough, going by the takeup of the (free) BlueStacks player alone. Further, the article is, in fact spot on about casual gaming on Windows; other than PopCap, it's not really there, even in Win32, let alone ModernUI. If you want to play a casual game in Windows, you have two choices - a browser or an Android VM/player (including BlueStacks), as even PopCap is concentrating more on Android than Win32.

LaP said,

Which is what most people need on a tablet. It's astonishing the Neowin community still did not get it. I guess love can blind people. Keep living in your distorded MS reality while MS itself understood the Joe Blow consumer market is slowly shifting.

so people want phone apps instead of tablet apps on tablets?

WOW!

2III7 said,
Android has possibly better battery life, more higher quality apps for tablets, better user interface (personal preference), more customization options. So why wouldn't you choose android over windows?
I've only used Android tablets to help people remove spyware, adware, and malware in general. But yea, it's great for casual users.

Brony said,

Android apps scales better for different sizes. It is not the same than iphone apps for ipad, where some are zoomed.

The exact opposite is the case.

Don't worry, this is just the start, to enable a smooth transition for Windows users. Eventually Windows will be phased out completely.

recursive said,
Don't worry, this is just the start, to enable a smooth transition for Windows users. Eventually Windows will be phased out completely.

and what replaces it? Linux? Linux has been out there for 2 decades and didn't replace windows. there must be something wrong with it. don't you think?

recursive said,
Don't worry, this is just the start, to enable a smooth transition for Windows users. Eventually Windows will be phased out completely.

yeah no thanks. this "dual OS thing" (more correct: one and a half OS) will only be an eye opener for the customers... it will show the lack of functionality of android lol

recursive said,
Don't worry, this is just the start, to enable a smooth transition for Windows users. Eventually Windows will be phased out completely.
Or, this is a way for people to buy windows tablets without having to fully commit to the windows ecosystem or abandon their friends on Android applications. Trust me, the movement would be the other way. People wanting an android tablet but also wanting to see if Windows is viable.