So one of the most interesting things about the upcoming Windows 8 Beta that we’re expecting this January (hopefully at or close to the time of CES 2012) is the fact that Windows 8 is also a tablet Operating System.

It will run on both traditional PC’s, notebooks and tablets.

This begs the obvious question – how are we going to be able to test this OS on a tablet? Obviously if you’re one of the lucky 5000 developers who got a  Samsung Tablet at the BUILD conference, the answer is obvious – upgrade your tablet.

For the rest of us though, the answer is not so obvious.

I had reported in an earler post a rumor that Microsoft was going to (with an OEM partner) release a tablet with Windows 8 Beta on it that would enable the general public to get their hands on Windows 8 hardware to test the new OS.

Since I have no independent corroboration that this will indeed be true, we are left wondering how this will work.

I don’t know about you guys and girls out there but this is really fascinating stuff to me. We are in uncharted territory. Since the concept of the commercial tablet is relatively new, this has never been done or attempted before.

Typically software betas are just dumped out there for the brave to try on a spare PC with all the associated normal disclaimers. No one has ever dumped a tablet Operating System Beta on the market and said “it works.. really it does”.

That would be what Microsoft will be doing if they indeed release the Windows 8 Beta in January with no way for interested parties to get their hands on tablets.

So here are the options I see so far:

  1. Microsoft release the Beta with no associated tablets – trust us
  2. Microsoft (with an OEM partner) release Windows 8 Beta compatible tablets
  3. Some third option I haven’t thought of.

As CES 2012 draws nearer, it becomes more pertinent to ask, how will we test a Windows 8 Beta version without a tablet?

So here’s a little poll. Let me know what you think…

About the Author

Onuora Amobi is the Founder and VP of Digital Marketing at Learn About The Web Inc. Onuora has more than a decade of information security, project management and management consulting experience. He has specialized in the management and deployment of large scale ERP client/server systems.

In addition to being a former Microsoft MVP and the founder and editor of, he is the CEO of a Pasadena based online marketing education startup - Learn About The Web Inc. ( and The Redmond Cloud (

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  1. Why are u forgetting that tablet pc like hp elitebook 2760p are already present in market……So u can’t make point that there will not be tablet hardware to test it…….

    • You would pay $2500 for that -

  2. I have tested the development program on an HTC shift x9500 tablet that was running Vista business (not very successfully). It did not meet Window 8 specs but worked rather well considering.  I am now using Windows Home Premium with all functions working.

  3. Inder, 
    ermm… you are missing the point – This OS largely is aimed at getting into tablet market – big time – but if no one wants to fork out for a tablet just to test it for Microsoft, then Microsoft needs to offer a clear incentive for doing so.So does Microsoft want to attract the many non-tablet users, and the many non-windows-tablet users to a Windows8 tablet?If they do then Onuora has a point – do you just tell everyone: 1) yeah get one, win8 is real cool and works a treat just buy a tablet and try it2) offer some kind of incentive like low price tablets with win8 beta (with upgrade offer) to woe the uninitiated to the tablet world

    To my mind option 2 is the only option.

  4. When the Google Chrome Tablet was introduced, they released X-number of free tablets for testing. The public was invited to apply for one of the tablets, and those who were selected were required to fulfill certain obligations in return for the tablet. I suspect Microsoft will do something similar. (By the way, I applied for the Chrome program but wasn’t selected.)

  5. You missed option 5 for those few of us that actually have a tablet. I have the Dev Preview loading and working fine on an Asus EP121.

  6. Since Microsoft usually make their OS to run about any machine.  MS will have way to “upgrade” about any tablet to Windows 8 Beta except iPad.  If tablet can run Andriod you have Windows tablet.

    Same as HP tablet, someone as install Andriod, then you could install Windows 8.

  7. The poll is more about which answer sounds the more correct.

  8. maybe it could be ran in some sort of “sandbox” mode, on a pc with a touch screen capable monitor?

    • just to be a little more clear…they do have a version of android that can be run on pc for testing purposes , i dont know why the same concept coudnt be used in this instance as well. 

  9. It will be kinda hard for me to test windows 8 on a tablet  !!! I dont have one and dont plan on buying one anytime in the near future. If it will work on my Droid Charge I might try it, I tried the developers version when it came out and was not overly impressed at all. I live in an Adult community and Im the community computer geek ( at 60 years old ) and Im having a really bard time getting the old people away from windows XP to Windows 7 So I concentrate on Win XP and learning what I can new about Windows 7.

  10. i’ve been rinning it on a desktop and i don’t like it. my phone is win7.5 it looks and acts like Win 8 i think Microsoft is putting too much stock in people wanting everything to be social media based.

    • Facebook: more than 800 million active users
      Twitter: 200 million active users
      Photobucket: 9 billion and counting videos and photos uploaded
      May 17, 2010 – Youtube passed 2 billion videos viewed daily
      7 billion people in the world in counting

  11. i downloaded the preview from day one onto my acer iconia w500 tablet (not the a500) and i have been using it ever since. it works perfectly and i plan to install the beta once it comes out.

    • Same here David. I have the happy accident of great w500 compatibility so far. Waiting for a better developer build and of course the beta.

  12. I have a nook upgraded to android mod 7. I will be beta testing win 8.

  13. I want the tablet…I am not chancing a screw up on my machines.

  14. I have a Tablet ASUS transformer. I would be prepared to install on this for testing if possible. So how is this different to how we beta test PC’s? Install on current hardware.

  15. USB installed

  16. Indra Nawawi Daeng Parani / November 14, 2011 at 10:02 pm /Reply

    Dear Onuora,

    I’m glad that your product can run on both traditional PC’s, notebooks and tablets. I belief that Microsoft will come up with a solution that makes sense and I’m still waiting forward to see the next Windows generation and hope my dell inspiron 8600 will get along fine with Microsoft ideas for now and for the future. Thank you.

  17. I am sure there will be a way …so i m just ready to try it on 🙂

  18. Nekem csak PC van és arra van feltelepitve Windows 8 idáig még semmi problémám nem volt vele.
    Nem ütközik,gyors ,stabil,megbizható.Alig várom a teljes verziot persze magyarul mivel angol tudásom hiányos.

  19. I love the 3rd option 

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