Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Microsoft moves in on self-service

The big news in the kiosk industry is that Microsoft has just announced a new version of Windows optimized for self-service and POS while demoing their new Windows Mobile 5.0 operating system. Bill Gates says:

"We've gone from having this boundary between work that you just sit at your desk and do or when you're at home you're sitting there with a desktop computer to now where wherever you are, whether you're taking a portable computer or a mobile phone, you can be in touch, you can get the information that you care about.

And so it's a very radical shift that's taking place, a lot of expectation about what people can get into this device. And it's because of that vision of software working on all these devices, putting the user at the center, taking all the things you're interested and only having to express those things once and it shows up on the different PCs you use, shows up on the different phones you use, because of that software-centric vision that we decided we needed to be part of this mobile space.

So we took Windows CE and built around that. Now, we provide Windows CE and Embedded Windows XP to an unbelievable range of applications from kiosks, medical devices to use in set-top boxes to increasing use in the car and that's another area of special interest to us because we see explosive improvements in what can be done with the user interface there. So embedded Windows in both forms, CE and XP, is used very, very broadly."

Immediately after the announcement, vendors came out of the woodwork claiming support fort the new OS. You can read the full transcript of the conference here.

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