x86 emulation rumored to be coming to Windows for ARM in late 2017 : Microsoft is working on an emulator enabling systems with ARM processors to run x86 applications, according to sources speaking to Mary Jo Foley, and the capability will ship in the update codenamed “Redstone 3,” currently due for fall 2017.
This will be the third Minecraft-inspired Redstone codename; this year’s Anniversary Update was Redstone 1, and the Creators Update coming in spring next year is Redstone 2.
Ever since Microsoft announced Windows on ARM in 2012, there’s been an immediate problem that prevents the port of the operating system from having mainstream appeal: it doesn’t run Windows applications, because almost all Windows applications are compiled for x86 processors.
This isn’t such a big deal for Windows on phones because phone applications have to be purpose-built to include a phone user interface, but it was one of the things that made Windows RT tablets, including Microsoft’s own Surface, broadly undesirable.
it looks like Windows's hybrid x86-on-ARM64 tech has a new name "CHPE", whatever it means 🙂 maybe something like Compound Hybrid PE ? pic.twitter.com/aW1RLYU3dM
— WalkingCat (@h0x0d) November 21, 2016
And even while it isn’t an issue for phone apps per se, it limits Microsoft’s ambitions somewhat with Windows Mobile’s Continuum feature. With Continuum, a Windows Mobile phone can connect to a keyboard, mouse, and screen, and the phone can run desktop-style applications.
Currently, Continuum is limited to running UWP applications; these apps can offer dual user interfaces, adapting to whether being used in phone mode or Continuum mode.