Surface RT tablet

A recent report indicated that the Surface RT tablet will be supported by Microsoft for four years while the Windows 8 version will receive support until September 2018.

However, the Microsoft Surface tablet will still be limited by its lifecycle, which is the period were firmware updates, support and replacement of parts will be offered by the company. Microsoft is offering two product lifecycle categories, the Mainstream and Extended Support.

The device will receive security updates, fixes, and other features while the product is still in the Mainstream Support period. The Extended Support period is the transition period from the Mainstream Support period to the limited support period. The device will only receive security updates while fixes will require payments from the users.

For example, the Windows XP and the Windows Vista are currently in the Extended Support period as of November 2012 while the Windows 7 and Windows 8 are currently in the Mainstream Support period.

In addition to the Windows 8 OS, Microsoft is also offering the Windows RT OS, which is a more basic version of the Windows 8 OS. Both versions have a lifecycle policy together with the tablet, however, the date when the Mainstream and Extended Support will end for the Windows RT OS has yet to be announced.

Since the Microsoft tablet is a consumer device and is a combination of software and hardware, the lifecycle policy is different. But the company has reportedly revealed that the lifecycle support for the tablet with the Windows RT OS will last until 2017 although it will not have extended support.

This means that buyers of the tablet can expect support for the device until April 2017. The Windows RT software itself along with the Office 2013 RT will receive support for the next five years although the specific end date has yet to be revealed.

Despite some differences in the support end dates for the Microsoft Surface tablet, it is still considered better compared to its rivals. A number of companies do not reveal the end date of its support for its products. Some manufacturers have a shorter support period compared to what Microsoft is offering.

In addition to the Surface RT tablet, a number of manufacturers are also set to release their own devices using the Window RT OS, which may have a different hardware policy than what is offered by Microsoft. For the moment, the retirement schedule of the Windows RT remains uncertain although its lifecycle and support may not be less than five years.

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Surface with Windows RT
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