What Is the Difference Between Windows RT & Windows 8 Pro?

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Windows RT and Windows 8 Professional are different in a number of key and interesting ways. Learn about the difference between Windows RT and Windows 8 Professional with help from your friends at eHow Tech in this free video clip.

Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Dave Johnson, editor of eHow's Tech Channel. And today, I'm going to tell you what the difference is between Windows RT and Windows 8 Pro. Now, these are tow different flavors of Windows 8, and you may have heard of both of them and not really known which one you should get, and what the difference is. So, the first thing I want to show you is, how you can tell what you've got. If you've already bought Windows 8, here's how you can tell. All you have to do is, go to your Start screen, right click on the Computer tile and then, choose Properties. It's going to go to the desktop and open up the good-old System Properties Window, which looks very similar to older versions of Windows. And right up here, under Windows Addition, its' going to tell you what you have. In this case, it says Windows RT. So, what is Windows RT? Well, I'm going to give you the geeky, technical answer and then, I'm going to tell you what you really need to care about. So, first of all, Windows RT is a version of Windows 8, that's been optimized to run on low power mobile chipsets. The kind of chipsets that you're going to find in mobile devices like Slates and Tablets and phones and that sort of thing. Windows 8 Pro on the other hand, runs on the same, old, like giant steam powered processors, that are in desktop computers and laptops of old. Alright, o.k., so, now, I know that. But what does that really mean, or how does it affect you? Well, if you have Windows RT, it cannot run any Apps that have not been optimized for Windows RT. And that means, here on the desktop, all of your old, what are sometimes called legacy Apps, you know, old copies of Microsoft Office, Adobe Photoshop, Games, Steam, anything you can think of. Any program you have ever run on the desktop, that didn't come in the box with Windows, is not going to work in Windows RT. So, let me just show you what that looks like. Here is a program I downloaded at random from the Internet, it's Windows compatible. But if I double click on it, I get this message that says this App can't run on your PC. And you'll get that a lot from Windows RT. Windows RT is really designed to run all of these modern Apps that are in the Windows store in Windows 8. Now, there are a couple of exceptions, for example, Microsoft Office. Microsoft went out of it's way to re-code Microsoft Office, Word, Power Point, Excel and so on. So that it does run on the desktop. But if you have Windows RT, it's pretty much not going to run on the desk, any old Apps that you have, won't run on the desktop. Windows 8 Pro on the other hand, it's a more, I don't know, safe bet, because you can run all your old stuff and the new stuff as well. But the key difference is, is that the reason RT exists at all, is it's for those low powered chipsets. So, on a device like this Surface, or some other touch tablet, some touch device. What you get is, much longer battery life. This will run all day long, like an iPad, or as Windows 8 Pro on a device like this, will probably only give you an hour or two of run time. Very much like an old laptop. So, there's some pros and cons, you have to decide which way you want to go. My advice is, is that, if you're really interested in the new stuff, the new mobile Apps and you want to get something like you know, like an iPad like device, like the Surface, then RT is fine. But if you really do need to run PowerPoint, alright, not PowerPoint. If you really do need to run Adobe Premier, or After Effects, or all your old games that came with Steam, or you bought in the store. For those situations, you're going to want to get the full version of Windows 8 Pro.

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