(From the article)
"Forrester Research has published a report that claims consumer interest has "plummeted" during the past nine months. The bean counters are vague on what the tab-happy public has grown tired of - be it Windows 8, tablets, or tablets running Window 8 - but the conclusion is that Microsoft's got a hard act to follow."
Absolutely it has plummeted.
For some history on Windows. So, Windows 1.x-3.x, then 95, 98, ME have a common lineage. NT was basically from scratch, and started with NT 3.1. Between NT 3.1 and 4.0, it supported (besides x86) MIPS, Alpha, and PowerPC. The Alpha version even had an x86->Alpha translator supplied by DEC.
Given this historical context, I read talk months ago about Windows 8 for ARM being targetted even for ARM-based netbooks, and people filling in the blanks assumed an x86->ARM translation thing, and so x86-like experience but on an ARM (with performance and battery life getting better as more ARM native apps come out.) Porting an x86 app for ARM would have been a recompile (plus taking care of any inline assembly.. which hopefully should just be a snippet of MMX or 3DNow... most ARMs have a SIMD instruction set called NEON that should be applicable to keeping the ARM version fast.) Of course for code that was already "managed code", this shouldn't even need the recompile.
How's that for a loss of enthusiasm? Going from visions of a pain-free transition from x86 to ARM, to "Well, actually it runs web apps" loses any enthusiasm I had for it. And retreating to tablets.
(Side note, my enthusiasm was actually pretty minimal, I'm excited about something like an ARM netbook, and even an ARM desktop, but running Linux. I've actually run either Debian or Ubuntu on PA-RISC, UltraSPARC, PowerPC, and Alpha besides the usual x86. The user experience is identical. A few years ago, I went on vacation for a few weeks. Some of the guys where I worked actually backed up the home directory and data off my Ubuntu for x86 system, pulled a board out of a PowerMac (dual 800mhz or so) and stuck it into a duplicate of my computer's case, and even used a PS/2->USB adapter so the same Model M keyboard was plugged in. They made sure it was already running when I got back, and took bets on how long it'd take me to realize it was a Mac -- about 4 hours, I finally rebooted it and heard that Mac startup sound. I kept using it for quite a while -- there was really no reason not to. This is what I want out of an ARM system -- the same stuff I do now, but with better power consumption (longer battery life on netbook and smaller power bill for desktop.)