Windows CE goes browsing

A broader selection of applications may soon be running Windows CE, and on a wider choice of devices, because Microsoft has updated its Platform Builder.

Platform Builder 2.12 supports Web browsing through Microsoft Internet Explorer 4.0, offering tighter Web connections for Windows CE programs. New tools will let developers enhance cryptography functions with 128-bit encryption, and support better interaction between Windows CE applications.

To actually develop applications for Windows CE devices, you'll have to be a programmer. But the benefit of the new development platform is that it will become easier and cheaper to support devices previously unable to run CE, according to a Microsoft representative.

Microsoft officials have emphasised the importance of Windows CE as they try to expand the kinds of platforms that run the Windows operating system.

"Integration with enterprise and Internet solutions is critical for most embedded devices being built today," Tony Barbagallo, group product manager for Windows CE, said in a statement. "Microsoft's embedded technologies -- Windows CE and Windows NT Embedded -- are poised to become the backbone of the next generation of connected devices."