A curt response from Microsoft to comments from Intel about upcoming versions of Windows has left analysts guessing as to the future of the operating system.
Renée James, Intel's senior vice president for software and services, said at an investor's day this week that Microsoft will build different versions of Windows 8 for specific ARM platforms and system-on-a-chip (SoC) models.
James also said that such systems will have problems accessing legacy applications, compared with x86 systems running Windows 8.
The comments kicked off a storm, and Microsoft has released a statement disputing James's comments, but declining to say exactly where she was incorrect.
"Intel's statements during its investor meeting about Microsoft's plans for the next version of Windows were factually inaccurate and unfortunately misleading," said the Microsoft statement.
"From the first demonstrations of Windows on SoC, we have been clear about our goals and have emphasised that we are at the technology demonstration stage. As such, we have no further details or information at this time."
Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer promised at this year's CES that Windows 8 will run on ARM and SoC chips, as well as the x86 platform, but since then little has been publically revealed.
Nevertheless, analysts are confused by what they see as mixed messages from the two companies, which have one of the longest relationships in the technology industry.
Michael Cherry, lead analyst on Windows at Directions on Microsoft, told V3.co.uk that the statements "don't make sense".
"Microsoft would be silly to break backwards compatibility, given its huge installed base of older systems. I think Intel got ahead of itself on this one," he said.
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