Microsoft Shows off a 'Quad-Core' Windows Tablet

Reports from the far side of the world indicate BUILD attendees are due for a much better treat than just a t-shirt and bookbag.

Has Microsoft not learned there are no secrets left on the planet? It's either that or they sure know how to tease.

TechEd New Zealand has been taking place this past week and while our Kiwi friends are getting a good education, it's also been a spoiler-fest for what's coming at the big BUILD conference next month.

The biggest news was a demonstration of a Windows tablet that one attendee dubbed a "quad core Windows Slate." Alan Burchill, an Australian Microsoft MVP, posted pictures of the tablet with the comment ‘Quad Core Windows Slate that will be give(n) out at an upcoming Microsoft Event’. Since then, he's removed the reference to the slate being given out at an upcoming event.

Microsoft's next big event, of course, is the BUILD conference in Anaheim, Calif., due to take place Sept. 13-16. There is an event at Microsoft's Redmond campus a week prior to preview Windows Server 8, but giving out a tablet to those attendees wouldn't make sense, since they are mostly journalists.

The "Slate" looked pretty thick by tablet standards. One photo showed it with its battery removed. A dead giveaway was the Fujitsu logo on the tablet case.

Fujitsu has a pair of Slate tablets, called Stylistic, that come with a 10-inch screen and are powered by single-core Intel Atom processors. For them to be quad-core would mean a major upgrade. If they run Atoms, it means they could run both Windows 7 and Windows 8.

There's just one problem: Intel doesn't have a quad-core Atom. It's at dual-core designs with hyperthreading, for four effective cores, although Microsoft has pressured Intel to make Atoms with up to 16 cores. Either Burchill let the cat out of the bag on a big Intel announcement or he confused threads for cores, something I doubt an MVP would do. No word yet from Intel.

The other revelation at TechEd New Zealand was a demo by Microsoft officials of Lync Mobile for Windows Phone. Microsoft demonstrated Lync running on Windows Phone Mango during the show and said there would be versions of the Lync client for the other major smartphone platforms as well.

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