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Windows, including Flash, on the iPad

John Moe Feb 23, 2012

The other day, we told you about how Microsoft Office may be coming to the iPad. But why stop there? Why not drag the whole dang Windows on over to iPad? Someone’s doing it. OnLive is an app for iPad. You subscribe for five bucks a month, and, according to the New York Times’ David Pogue, you get speeds of 1000 times faster than normal and a fully functional Windows desk top.

He’s gone bananas for this thing, look:

It’s a tiny app — about 5 megabytes. When you open it, you see a standard Windows 7 desktop, right there on your iPad. The full, latest versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Internet Explorer and Adobe Reader are set up and ready to use — no installation, no serial numbers, no pop-up balloons nagging you to update this or that. It may be the least annoying version of Windows you’ve ever used.

If you subscribe (rather than just download), you get Adobe Flash. On an iPad. Mortal enemies joined as friends! I mean, David Lee Roth is recording with Van Halen now so who the hell knows, nothing makes any sense any more.

Pogue’s especially whipped up about the back end:

That’s pretty impressive — but not as impressive as what’s going on behind the scenes. The PC that’s driving your iPad Windows experience is, in fact, a “farm” of computers at one of three data centers thousands of miles away. Every time you tap the screen, scroll a list or type on the on-screen keyboard, you’re sending signals to those distant computers. The screen image is blasted back to your iPad with astonishingly little lag.

Other write-ups on the app are a little less effusive but everyone seems to agree that it works. It’s a perfect solution if you somehow hate everything about how Apple works but, possibly in a fit of self-flagellation, bought an iPad. Weirdo.


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