Microsoft offers sneak peek at Internet of Things plans

Internet of Things

Microsoft has hinted at a new strategy that will see its Windows operating system powering devices beyond PCs, laptops, smartphones and tablets.

Dubbed Windows for Devices, the technology looks to bring the company's flagship operating system firmly into the Internet of Things.

On the official website, the company claims to be "bringing Windows to a whole new class of small devices".

"Build a smart coffee mug, build a talking bear, build a robot, or build something else entirely," the website suggests.

According to Microsoft, Windows on Devices will enable experienced Windows developers to jump into the Internet of things, as it will feature the platform and tools they are already familiar with.

Furthermore, the company claims the product will allow even new Windows developers to build "the next big thing".

Details of what the service involves are scant, other than it will make use of Intel's Galileo technology.

The website also states it will connect any Windows device to the Azure cloud and the first SDK will be released in spring 2014, with updates being released throughout the year, including a "more complete API surface and integrated cloud services".

The announcement, as limited as it is, plays heavily into Microsoft's new "Cloud for Everyone" strategy, first mentioned by CEO Satya Nadella at the launch of Office for iPad.

Registration for the service is due to open "later this week", the website states.

This is not the company's first foray into Internet of Things technology. Windows Embedded Compact 2013 has been around since last year, but Windows on Devices appears to be more consumer-focused, whereas Embedded Compact is designed for business applications.

IT Pro contacted Microsoft for more information on the project, but had not received a response at the time of publication.

Jane McCallion
Deputy Editor

Jane McCallion is ITPro's deputy editor, specializing in cloud computing, cyber security, data centers and enterprise IT infrastructure. Before becoming Deputy Editor, she held the role of Features Editor, managing a pool of freelance and internal writers, while continuing to specialise in enterprise IT infrastructure, and business strategy.

Prior to joining ITPro, Jane was a freelance business journalist writing as both Jane McCallion and Jane Bordenave for titles such as European CEO, World Finance, and Business Excellence Magazine.