Did Microsoft create a “lemon” with Windows RT?

surface work rt

Windows RT has not been a success for Microsoft. It was meant to be a low power and low cost alternative to Windows 8, but it has turned out to be just a less capable version of Windows. Even the pricing for Windows RT devices has left a lot to be desired. Back in the beginning of this year we predicted that Windows RT would eventually die off, and it’s looking more and more like that will come true.

Peter Bright from Ars Technica calls Windows RT a “lemon.” He claims that consumers are avoiding RT device :in droves.” Sales numbers for even the most popular Windows RT devices have not been stellar, so there is some truth to his words. Other reasons he gives for Windows RT’s poor performance is the Windows Store requirement for ARM apps, and the lack of enterprise appeal.

Despite all the negative words Bright still thinks Microsoft can salvage Windows RT. He suggests allowing full Office and Outlook on RT devices to appeal to enterprise users. At least then they could do some of the things they can on a full Windows device. Do you agree with Mr. Bright? Is Windows RT a lemon? Let us know below!


  • idlelimey

    I think most of the negativity comes from tech journo’s and their seemingly anti-Microsoft bent. People who use RT thinks it makes sense, but only they’re fully aware that it is not Windows 8.

    In use, RT makes a lot of sense on touch-enabled ARM devices. My Surface performs very well and the battery life has been impressive. Intel just can’t compete in the battery stakes at the moment. RT will die if they can beat ARM in mobility.

    I particularly get annoyed at the same criticisms not getting pointed at Apple. iOS isn’t exactly OSX and yet they get away with the same problems as though they weren’t there. Apple made no mistake in making a distinction between the two platforms though whereas Windows 8/RT is just Windows in the eyes of consumers. Perhaps they should have called it something completely different like ‘Touch’ and marketed it loosely as Windows Touch while only ever referring to it verbally as ‘Touch’ to make that distinction.

    RT, potentially, makes iOS look like a child’s toy. Microsoft should be applauded for bridging the gap between a full blown productivity OS and the fart-app platform. Fart apps or not though, it is apps that make an OS – and they’re too few for Windows on ARM.

    To be fair, Office on RT is complete enough even for most business users. I agree, Outlook should have been included though and hopefully that may change.

  • hi
    as a corporate user I can’t use windows RT because it does not support our Silverlight apps.
    this is a BIG mistake of Microsoft. Windows RT does support Flash (good for games) but it does not support LOB apps developed in Silverlight ( the business technology that Microsoft was pushing to corporates until 2011)

  • CX1

    Problem is most people can’t rap their head around the concept. I really like my Surface RT but I understood the tradeoffs. Far from a lemon.

  • Mark Bryant

    It’s overpriced and currently too limited. Whats Microsoft’s excuse for the awful state of the core apps.

  • Edgar Cervantes

    Thing is, it is a less capable device that is not as “low-price” as they advertise it to be…. These are expensive tablets.

  • Sondre Krumsvik

    I think the RT OS is perfect for students. The tablets running RT have an OK price tag, full office, portable and good battery life om most og the tablets. The thing is that Windows RT is an OS built around office. The only main reason for getting an RT device is to have Microsoft office on your tablet. Hopefully Microsoft will launch office for android.

  • Rallicat

    A lemon? Absolutely not!!
    I have a Surface RT as my personal tablet, and I couldn’t be more pleased. Sure, it’s Windows … without the ability to run Windows software, but that’s hardly the point. The hallmark feature of a tablet is that it should be easy to use and hard to break. Achieving that is impossible by maintaining legacy compatibility. On both the iPad and Android tablets you can’t run ‘full’ desktop applications … why would you want to? It increases complexity, decreases battery life, and just doesn’t work well in a ‘tablet only’ configuration … which plenty of people /do/ want
    The strength of Windows RT is that it still retains many of the powerful features of Windows – mutli-user support, network browsing, a proper file system etc etc .. features that make it far superior to iOS or Android. Sure, business users are going to need desktop compatibility more than consumers .. but for those people looking for a ‘pure tablet’ experience, you simply can’t beat Windows RT

  • The RT should have been Modern Interface only, lowered $100, had keyboard included and marketed as better than iPad or Kindle Fire to the consumer market. Focus on ability to home to share media with home compuer and Skydrive, has USB, expandable memory, has MS Office, etc. Selling it a pricier “hybrid” device only confused the consumer market. I showed mine off when it came out to coworkers and friends. All were impessed and wanted one until they heard the price and the keyboard was extra.

  • for me my surface rt is doing the same thing my ipad was. watch movies, music and the occasional game. MS messed up with the price. my rt with touchcover should have been like $399.

  • I don’t understand why Microsoft would make such a useful device so limited in its capabilities. I bought my surface for use at school, and though it has served that purpose, it is not compatible with Microsoft Silverlight, which I find bizarre as why would a software company put out an operating system incompatible with other software they produce. The surface is also limited in the available apps for it, however, that may be due to how new it is. I don’t understand the need for RT. The price difference was not that great however the capabilities are. is there a way to upgrade the surface OS?