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Major UK Retailers Mislabel Windows RT As Windows 8 106

Posted by timothy
from the seriously-what's-the-difference dept.
Barence writes "Major British retailers such as Argos and Tesco are mis-selling Windows RT devices as Windows 8 PCs, PC Pro has discovered. The confusion over Microsoft's ARM-based version of Windows could lead to consumers buying the wrong machines, and the wrong software to go with them. Argos, for example, recommends Norton Mobile Security as an add-on for its mis-labelled Windows 8 machine, despite that product only working on Android and iOS."
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Major UK Retailers Mislabel Windows RT As Windows 8

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  • They both suck. I loaded Win 8 in a VM yesterday and it is still the nightmare it was during the preview. Soon it will be be one icon that says "Do something (but most likely not what I want)" :)
    • by FunPika (1551249) on Thursday April 04, 2013 @12:20PM (#43358495) Journal
      Windows RT doesn't even have the desktop mode and locks you into a walled garden of Windows Store apps.
      • by dc29A (636871) * on Thursday April 04, 2013 @12:22PM (#43358523)

        Windows RT doesn't even have the desktop mode and locks you into a walled garden of Windows Store apps.

        It has a desktop mode.

      • by DavidD_CA (750156)

        Windows RT indeed has a desktop.

        It has Windows Explorer.

        It has Internet Explorer.

        It has Control Panel.

        It has Microsoft Office 2013.

        And they're all so close to the Windows 8 versions that if I showed them to you, you'd think I was using a Windows 8 (non-RT) device.

        Quit spreading lies.

        • Unless you want crazy 'enterprise' features like "Office Macro support" or "Domain Authentication"....

          • by DavidD_CA (750156)

            Obviously there are differences and RT isn't for everyone.

            Does that justify spreading lies about it on Slashdot? Come on. I realize it's cool to bash Microsoft here, but this is a bit much.

    • by gewalker (57809)

      Maybe MS can upgrade The Button into Do what I Want in a service pack. Maybe the horse can learn to sing.

    • by Patch86 (1465427)

      The difference is that you can't install any legacy or mainstream software on the RT version, and what you can install all has to come through the Microsoft "App Store"- so no more downloading random bits of software from anywhere you like on the internet.

      Both of those things suck quite a bit on their own without even needing to invoke the horridness of Metro. Yes it's comparable with the experience on an iPad I suppose, but certainly not what someone would expect if they were buying what they thought was n

    • by hairyfeet (841228) <bassbeast1968@@@gmail...com> on Thursday April 04, 2013 @06:42PM (#43363725) Journal

      Why is he labeled troll? I mean seriously who doesn't know that Windows 8 sucks? Its the first MSFT OS since WinME I won't allow in my shop and I'm making as much wiping it for Win 7 as I did wiping Vista for XP which was quite a lot.

      And please do NOT give us that "Oh its just 7 with a start screen" bullshit because that is what it is, bullshit. I'd love nothing more than to talk to some of the internal devs of Win 8 because i truly believe that "refresh your PC" was NOT put in there to help users but because they knew there was serious flaws they couldn't fix before RTM. I haven't had to reinstall a single Windows 7 system that the user hadn't gotten infected, with Win 8 I've probably made a good $800 in the past couple of months from folks bringing their laptops in for me to do just that with Win 8 as it shits itself a LOT.

      Frankly the confusion over Win 8 VS Win RT is just the stinky tip of a shit iceberg, the whole damned thing is just a mess. Oh and "keyboard commanders" don't bother replying, you are full of crap and here is a study proving it [bell-labs.com]. The simple fact is when you HAVE to be a keyboard commander and memorize a shitload of keyboard commands on an OS that MSFT designed for keyboard-less touch tablets? Something has gone horribly horribly WRONG.

      Lets cut through the bull, Win 8 and WinRT is gonna be on every "worst of" list come Dec and the fact that even the fricking retailers don't know the difference should just show how badly thought out the whole thing was. I only hope that after ballmer shits out "Windows Blue" and the board sees its just as fucking stupid and pointless as Win 8 (you are focusing on touch, when more than 98% of the PCs DO NOT HAVE TOUCH and the OEMs are saying "We can't sell the touchscreens as nobody wants 'em" and you don't see that as a problem? Really?) they will punt kick his fat sweaty ass like a 40 yard field return and bring somebody in there with a functioning brain...fuck put ME in charge and I'll double the numbers in 2 years or you won't owe me a dime!

      Spin off mobile, make Metro OPTIONAL on systems that aren't ARM and focus on a "it must be simple and work no matter what" mantra, oh and toss the mess that is Win 8, build the optional metro on the much more solid Win 7, and add services that will allow you to monetize those that stick with previous builds. hell I can think of two just off the top of my head, make deals with the media companies to make any laptop with an HDMI out and Windows Media Center into a media powerhouse and use the MSFT servers to allow home users and SMBs with a thumbstick remotely access their PCs from anywhere.

      But any other corp would look at the facts, Win 8 bombed, WinRT bombed, numbers falling, users not even able to shut the damned thing down [zdnet.com] without knowing shit they have no reason to know, and see the whole direction is a failure. Instead we get what we see in TFA, where even the retailers don't know WTF you are selling or the differences between the models. What a fucking mess.

      • Thanks, you put it better than I could. From jump street its hard to use, both. From a useability perspective why should I have UI that supposed to me my life easier harder to use to find simple stuff like How do I install a program like Symantic Endpoint Protection? ok I find out how and run the installer and it blows up. nope. not installed. Can't find the shutdown method either. (only took 2 minutes to find both on Google on my other machine to find which was easy to do, not a chore) No command line
        • by exomondo (1725132)

          No command line at all?

          Seems the same as Win 7 to me: win key + 'cmd' + enter. cmd.exe is where it always was on Win 7.

          • by hairyfeet (841228)

            Except I can walk over and yank the keyboard out of your Win 7 machine and you won't have ANY problems, without CLI and keyboard commands (which is ironic when all MSFT has been pushing is touchscreen tablets) you'll find Windows 8 will have you bashing your head against the wall just trying to find basic tasks.

            Its not about learning new UIs, even guys that have no problem picking up the weirder Linux DEs will have trouble with Win 8 because there is NO context or explanations, it doesn't follow ANY UI co

            • by exomondo (1725132)

              Except I can walk over and yank the keyboard out of your Win 7 machine and you won't have ANY problems

              Opening the command prompt is a pretty pointless task if you don't have a keyboard, but regardless of that i'm not particularly concerned about being able to continue to open programs when somebody has ripped out my keyboard.

              • by hairyfeet (841228)
                Uhhh..and I'd have to have a CLI in Windows 7...WHY exactly? You don't and the fact that "keyboard commanders" are the only ones who can use MSFT's new TOUCH TABLET OS without wanting to shoot the thing just shows what a failwhale the design is. You have to give MSFT credit, only MSFT would decide they needed a more tablet friendly OS...only to make it so you had to rely on a keyboard to get anything done, its about as logical as putting P4s into laptops, its so damned dumb you almost have to admire anybody
                • by exomondo (1725132)
                  I don't know where you're going with this, you're obviously pretty intent on going off topic on some rant, I suggest you produce a blog to whinge on instead, you obviously don't like Windows 8, so don't use it. The command line still exists. [slashdot.org]
        • by hairyfeet (841228)

          Wanna know what pisses ME off? These apologists and keyboard commanders keep making excuses yet when i pointed out how stupid the design is, like putting shutdown on the settings screen on a VERY heavily geek site what did I get? "Oh is THAT how you get to shut down?" because frankly most of them were just doing random shit, one would log off to get the shutdown built into the log in, another was just holding the power button because if he didn't his laptop went into sleep mode...this is a site filled with

    • Re: (Score:1, Troll)

      by Waveguide04 (811184)
      You can mod me to Troll all you want, but the fact is, they still suck, both of them. Forcing someone to use either should be considered torture and therefore disallowed by the Geneva conventions. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geneva_Conventions [wikipedia.org]
  • Window RT (Score:5, Funny)

    by Andrio (2580551) on Thursday April 04, 2013 @12:22PM (#43358527)
    In an effort to avoid confusion, MS should consider renaming it to "Window RT"
  • by Anonymous Coward

    I suspect Norton Mobile Security will not perform any worse on RT or 8 as it does on iOS or Android.

    • I suspect Norton Mobile Security will not perform any worse on RT or 8 as it does on iOS or Android.

      Arguably, it'd perform better since there'd be no slow down!

  • Who didn't see this coming? Hands up, anyone? No?

  • So big box retailers aren't good places to go for computer advice?

    I'd be shocked if I haven't heard so many blatant falsehoods coming out of the mouths of people in these stores -- they're often clueless about the products, and more worried about up-selling you to Monster Cable or something.

    • Reality doesn't seem to be a strong suite of at least some Britons. Like the Prime Minister [telegraph.co.uk].

      • by Aardpig (622459)

        I think you meant suit. A strong suite would be a sofa made from purest diamondium.

        • I think you meant suit. A strong suite would be a sofa made from purest diamondium.

          Pah! My diamondillium will beat your diamondium any day!

    • by nukenerd (172703)

      So big box retailers aren't good places to go for computer advice?

      I'd be shocked if I haven't heard so many blatant falsehoods coming out of the mouths of people in these stores

      I don't think you know Argos (in the UK anyway). They cannot be accused of giving advice because basically they do not say anything about what they sell.

      You go in, choose an item from the catalogue at one of the booths, enter its number into a terminal, put in your credit card to pay, then wait 5-10 minutes until your item comes up on a screen as ready for collection. You then go to a counter and someone (this is the only human contact) who knows absolutely nothing about what is in the box, and makes n

      • by gstoddart (321705)

        Wow. No, I have never encountered that form of retail, and I don't think I'd be inclined to unless they're a lot cheaper than anywhere else and I knew exactly what I was buying.

        For that kind of service, I'd just order on-line.

  • MSFT should have made the OS look different enough that there wouldn't be this confusion on the tablet side and rejection on the desktop side.

  • For Example... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by denmarkw00t (892627) on Thursday April 04, 2013 @12:46PM (#43358765) Homepage Journal

    Argos, for example, recommends Norton Mobile Security as an add-on for its mis-labelled Windows 8 machine, despite that product only working on Android and iOS

    The mislabeling of the Windows machine has nothing to do with this "example" of how the mislabeling is a problem. If it only runs on Android and iOS, the RT/8 label makes no difference as the software doesn't run on anything that says "Windows" in the name.

    I'd love to jump on the bandwagon of merchant-bashing since they don't know an RT from their asshole, but that's a tough sell when the article lambasting them makes examples that don't benefit their case at all, but instead make the argument that whoever wrote this can't grasp the idea of simple examples any more than UK retailers can grasp that RT and 8 are different operating systems/

    • by jonbryce (703250)

      The point is that there are two problems with Argos's listing for that Samsung slab.

      1. The describe it as running Windows 8, when it runs Windows RT. People will buy it expecting to be able to run normal Windows software on it, and will be disappointed.
      2. They encourage people to buy Norton Mobile Security with it. That program won't install on either Windows RT or Windows 8. They claim it will work on Android and iOS. I struggle to understand how it will install on a non-jailbroken iDevice, or how it

      • Re:For Example... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by 0123456 (636235) on Thursday April 04, 2013 @01:36PM (#43359355)

        Maybe Microsoft shouldn't have called it 'Windows', then people wouldn't have expected it to run Windows software.

        Do you really think they wouldn't have the same problem if it said 'Windows RT' instead of 'Windows 8'? How many non-tech users do you know who have any idea that a computer running 'Windows' might not run Windows programs?

        • by yurtinus (1590157)
          The name isn't the problem. There wasn't significant confusion between the Windows CE and 95/98 or Windows Mobile and XP/7. The problem now is the blurring of lines in the hardware and the user interface. You have 10" tablets with a UI that looks and feels exactly like the desktop UI (only... y'know, useable 'cause it's hard to "swipe" with a mouse). Of course people are going to assume you can use the same software on both.

          God I hate Metro...
          • by 0123456 (636235)

            The name isn't the problem. There wasn't significant confusion between the Windows CE and 95/98 or Windows Mobile and XP/7.

            That's because one ran on a desktop and one ran on a phone, and no-one in their right mind wanted a phone that ran Windows.

            Now you have two tablets running 'Windows', yet only one actually runs Windows programs.

          • There wasn't significant confusion between the Windows CE and 95/98 or Windows Mobile and XP/7.

            Well, that was primarily because nobody *used* Windows CE or Windows Mobile.

            • There wasn't significant confusion between the Windows CE and 95/98 or Windows Mobile and XP/7.

              Well, that was primarily because nobody *used* Windows CE or Windows Mobile.

              Acer did, for sat-navs. Others probably did too.

        • by msobkow (48369)

          Funny. Calling it "Windows" wasn't a problem when they supported CPUs other than the Intel instruction set in years gone by.

          But then again, those versions of Windows were marketted at Engineers, not the general public.

      • I understand the point they were trying to make, just pointing out that their example itself was a mistake - an improper example of the improper labeling done by the retailer. You mentioned that the slab they are selling Norton Mobile Security with fell prey to this 8/RT mislabeling. That's what the point of the headline and summary are until you get to the whole iOS/Android bit - bringing that in doesn't sell the point of mislabeling, but it does make the retailer appear doubly idiotic.

  • Blame Microsoft (Score:5, Interesting)

    by onyxruby (118189) <onyxruby@[ ]cast.net ['com' in gap]> on Thursday April 04, 2013 @01:02PM (#43358917)

    They want a similar look and feel to get people to start thinking of windows as being the same thing regardless of platform. They desperately want to embrace Apple's app store market, get rid of legacy software and get people to stop thinking of windows as only being for 'computers'.

    The means to achieve this end is to make the different versions of windows look and feel the same to the 'average' person on the street - not the tech types. The result is that you have devices that for all intents and purposes look just like actual Windows 8 devices. The net result is that the store, which has average people and not technical people working in it, got confused.

    It's a little bit like having two display cases of oranges, both look like oranges, both feel like oranges and both are labeled 'orange'. It's only if you pay careful attention, /and/ know enough to know better that you realize the difference between "Orange 8" and "Orange RT". The lay person doesn't pay that much attention or know enough to know better and Microsoft damn well knows it.

  • Personally, I'd want to open the desktop to third party developers and just call it Win8 for ARM, just like what NT for Alpha was called.

  • Newegg labeled their invoices for Win8, windows 8 RT. But according to them the RT was for the "ReTail" version. Created a lot of confusion.

  • That's like labling horse meat as hamburger! Oh wait...
    • by Misagon (1135)

      Over here, slices of pressed, boiled horse meat have been marketed as "Hamburger meat" for decades. Not really foul play, but anyway ...

  • Argos, for example, recommends Norton Mobile Security as an add-on for its mis-labelled Windows 8 machine, despite that product only working on Android and iOS

    Well, some would say that being unable to install Norton is probably a good thing...

    However a quick check (http://us.norton.com/norton-mobile-security) reveals that 'Mobile Security' for 'Android & iOS' rather unsurprisingly does not work on *any* version of Windows. Well, no shit.

    Now, one could perhaps forgive the people at Argos making this kind of dumb mistake, but the Slashdot Eds?
    Perhaps a car analogy next time, guys...

  • These tablets are being offered for sale at £549 (US $834.32) [argos.co.uk] and £634 (US $963) [tesco.com] respectively. The Kindle Fire HD costs from £159 [amazon.co.uk], the Google Nexus 10 costs from £319 [google.com], while the Apple iPad costs from £399 [apple.com]. Even if there were nothing else wrong with Windows RT, trying to sell tablets for between 150% and 350% of the price of the comparable market leaders was never going to work.

    As it is, if you actually want a Windows RT tablet for some reason, you've got to know that there's go

  • Win 8 and Win RT both look like the same fisher price toys to me...both clumsy and colourful.
  • And it's not ups, or "my bad" - it's done deliberately, because people avoid Windows RT like a fire. Otherwise they would not simply sell.

Computers are unreliable, but humans are even more unreliable. Any system which depends on human reliability is unreliable. -- Gilb

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