Early reviews of the Surface Pro X suggest that Microsoft’s new $1000 tablet looks great, gets decent battery life, and performs well… when you’re running apps that have been ported to run on Windows devices with ARM-based processors.
Things slow down a bit when you want to run 32-bit x86 apps, because emulation is required. And 64-bit x86 apps won’t run at all.
One workaround? Run a remote desktop app on your Windows on ARM computer so you can remotely connect to a system that doesn’t have those limitations.
As luck would have it, Microsoft just updated its Remote Desktop app with a new ARM64 version that should run nicely on the Surface Pro X.
I’ve never been particularly fond of the idea of using remote desktop solutions to make up for the lack of native apps — since it means you have to leave another PC running 24/7 for it to work.
But that’s just one of many uses for Remote Desktop.
You can also use it to remotely connect to a colleague or family member’s computer to troubleshoot problems. You can login to your work computer or virtual machine to access enterprise apps on the go.
While the ARM64 Windows version of Microsoft’s Remote Desktop app is new, the company also offers Android, iOS, and Mac clients. So it’s not particularly surprising to see the company expand support for its own operating system — what is a little surprising is that it hadn’t happened before.