Microsoft lowers Windows 8 tablet screen requirements to 1024x768

Up until a couple of weeks ago, Microsoft required that all tablets made specifically to run Windows 8 have a minimum display resolution of 1366x768. This was because Microsoft also made 1366x768 as the minimum for Windows 8 Modern apps to run while in snap view mode.

A few days ago, it was discovered that the leaked build of Windows Blue actually lowered that app snap view minimum resolution down to 1024x768. As it turns out, Microsoft recently, and quietly, announced that Windows 8 tablets can now be made with a 1024x768 resolution screen, down from the previous requirement of a 1366x768 resolution.

Could we see a Surface that has a seven inch screen?

The change was announced on Microsoft's Windows Certification Newsletter earlier in March. In making the change, Microsoft stated that while their were not encouraging PC OEMs to offer a lower resolution for their Windows 8 tablet products, they admitted, "We understand that partners exploring designs for certain markets could find greater design flexibility helpful."

There is one big caveat to this revised requirement. If a Windows 8 tablet is made with a 1024 x 786 resolution for its screen, the PC OEM maker must state up front to the consumer that such a tablet will not support the snap view for Windows 8 Modern apps. However, it does open up a way for PC makers to perhaps launch Windows 8 tablets that have smaller screens, such as seven or eight inches.

Microsoft says the Sony Tap 20 is not a tablet

Another interesting change in the newsletter concerns the upper limit on tablet screen sizes. We have seen products such as the Sony Tap 20 and the upcoming Lenovo Horizon and the Dell XPS 18 that are technically all-in-one PCs but can also be used as a really big tablet with a battery.

In the newsletter, Microsoft says having these large all-in-one devices acting as tablets was not what they had in mind, saying, "These larger systems aren't really designed to be handheld and mobile, so the tablet features aren't appropriate for them." So Microsoft has now changed their upper limit on Windows 8 tablets to 17 inches. It added, "Above that size, touch systems without batteries and attached accessible keyboards don't need to meet all of the tablet requirements."

Source: Microsoft

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As another poster noted, its a shame they don't support a vertical resolution of 720 (rather than 768). Unless you have a full HD TV, it means you can't launch any Windows 8 apps when you connect your device to the TV.

As I've said in the other article, windows 8 already supports 1024x768. This is thea real minimum resolution for the Apps to work. Already tested few months ago on my netbook with 1024x600.
So they just changed the minumum requirements, but they nothing change in the product.
The problem is with lower resolution - like my netbook - apps don't work unless I trick the sistem to make resampling - display a fake 1024x768 resolution.

But with the lower resolution users will not be able to split the screen and have two Metro apps side by side....
A little bit too draconian in my opinion.

neufuse said,
booooo... increase small screen resolution on newer devices, not this....

Well, with so many people whining about how expensive a Windows tablet is compared to $199 Android tablets... and this matches the resolution of the iPad mini... it's pretty much a spec and price point they should try to compete at.

Not everything has to be high-end, and going mid- and high-end only makes it very difficult to break into an already crowded and competitive market. But I agree with your sentiment.

a 7inch Surface pro with the same type of build quality would be a freaking great device. I use my current surface pro as my portable audio player as it picks up dlna by default and the audio hardware inside actually sound very good with head phones. Replacing it with a 7 inch version would be incredibly useful

its pretty obvious the "netbook" is making a return with Blue. except this time,the definition of netbook is a little different. 7 inch detachable netbook that turns into a tablet. I don't have any proof,but recent comments by OEMs sort of gives it away.

first,Acer,which has been whining so much about windows 8 all of a sudden had a change of heart.

Wong said he was "far more comfortable than previously" about the chances of Windows 8, especially in the second half of 2013.

then comes Lenovo saying the exact same thing about second half.

And Samsung all of a sudden begins becoming hostile. they see this as a threat to their galaxy tablets.

sorry if it wasn't apparent, but I was being sarcastic, though, saying negative things about Win 8 on this site tends to bring out the hivemind. (oops, forgot to click on Reply)

It's hard to tell. It's VERY common for people to make the same comment, and be completely serious about it.

In the spirit of your original comment, I propose a new rule:
3) NEVER say anything positive about Windows 8 if you don't want to be accused of being a Microsoft employee.

If a Windows 8 tablet is made with a 1024 x 786 resolution for its screen, the PC OEM maker must state up front to the consumer that such a tablet will not support the snap view for Windows 8 Modern apps.

Wasn't there a post yesterday that stated a new feature of Blue is you can now use snap-view on 1024 x 786?