You had to see this coming (and it was rumored, too), with the popularity of low-cost ultra-portable laptops such as the Asus Eee PC, the OLPC, and the Classmate. Microsoft has given Windows XP another reprieve, but only for a class of devices they call ULCPCs or Ultra-Low-Cost PCs.
Microsoft said on Thursday that it will continue to allow Windows XP Home edition to be sold for a class of computers it calls "ultra-low-cost PCs." It's a category that covers machines with slower processors, smaller screens, and in many cases flash memory for storage, rather than a traditional hard drive.
Microsoft will give PC makers the option of using Windows XP or Vista on ULCPC devices, said Michael Dix, general manager of Windows client marketing.
Still, the minimal hardware used in ULCPC systems might make Vista ill-suited to such a task. The decision to discontinue Windows XP might have driven even more device makers into the hands of Linux, hence the extension.
Ah yes, don't want to lose out to Linux, so we darn-well better do this; that had to be what Microsoft was thinking. With this announcement comes the question: where is SP3?