Microsoft has announced the release to manufacturing of Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R3, the next-generation of the componentized, real-time Windows Embedded CE operating system that now features a rich immersive user experience provided by Microsoft's Silverlight Rich Internet Application (RIA) platform.
Microsoft announced the RTM of the new release at the Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) in Boston on Sept. 22. Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R3 delivers the rich application experiences of Microsoft Silverlight through the new Silverlight for Windows Embedded user interface (UI) framework.
This assists developers and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in delivering specialized consumer and enterprise devices with immersive user experiences, animated UIs and seamless connections to the world of Windows 7-based PCs, servers and online services, Microsoft said. This release marks a new paradigm for designers and developers to collaborate, improve UI capabilities, and reduce development time and associated costs, said David Wurster, senior product manager on the Windows Embedded team.
"We are bringing the power of Silverlight to CE to provide rich, connected experiences on your CE-based device," Wurster said. "We're making it so that application builders can deliver these experiences in days not months. And we're doing it by splitting the Microsoft design/development story. Designers and developers can use tools like Expression Blend and the developers doing the background logic can use Microsoft's Visual Studio tools."
This version of Silverlight for embedded systems is similar to the standard version except for two things, Wurster said. One is that it runs outside the browser and the other is that it has a native code back end, "so you use C++ instead of other .NET languages," he said.
"With the release of Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R3, Microsoft has furthered its commitment to energize the evolution of consumer Internet devices (CIDs), which fall between smartphones and the full-featured, small Windows-based notebooks, by empowering our OEM and developer ecosystem with innovative, new technologies to fuel rich, animated and compelling user experiences," said Kevin Dallas, general manager of the Windows Embedded Business Unit at Microsoft, in a statement. "Microsoft has reaffirmed its investment in the Windows Embedded CE operating system and raised the bar by providing embedded OEMs with access to Visual Studio, Silverlight, Expression Blend and other advanced Microsoft technologies. These technologies help drive innovation and differentiation in devices, redefine the way users interact with devices at work and home, and deliver a consistent experience for end users across devices, Windows 7-based PCs, servers and online services."
Additional new Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R3 capabilities, features and benefits include:
"??Ã High-fidelity user experiences are created when designers leverage their knowledge of Silverlight, Microsoft Expression Blend and Internet Explorer Embedded, enabling capabilities including panning and zoom, touch, and gesture input to dramatically improve Web browsing and the overall user experience OEMs can deliver right from the box.??Ã A consistent experience is delivered across devices and PCs with Microsoft Office and PDF viewers.??Ã Seamless connections to Windows 7-based PCs through Windows 7 Device Stage and Microsoft Connection Manager enable PC companion opportunities for Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R3-based devices.??Ã Improve efficiency in design and development by enabling OEMs to utilize current investments in the Windows Embedded CE platform, including board support packages (BSPs), hardware and design resources."
With the addition of Silverlight for Windows Embedded, Microsoft Expression Blend and the other new design technologies to the Windows Embedded CE platform, developers and OEMs now have access to the broad ecosystem of Microsoft partners participating in the Silverlight Partner Initiative and can leverage their existing design skills in the embedded device market.
For example, during ESC Boston Microsoft and Microsoft Gold Certified Partner Infragistics, a leader in UI design and development tools, along with Adeneo, a leading systems integrator and Windows Embedded Gold Partner, will demonstrate a CID user experience built on Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R3. This demonstration will showcase a rich user experience that is possible on the device and in the browser. More information on the Silverlight Partner Initiative and the directory of program participants is available at http://www.microsoft.com/silverlight/resources/partners.
More information on Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R3 and the entire Windows Embedded portfolio of platforms and technologies is available at http://www.microsoft.com/windowsembedded.