VirtualRiscPC birthday price slashBy Chris Williams. Published: 22nd Sep 2004, 16:37:46 | Permalink | Printable
How it began in May 2003VirtualAcorn is celebrating the first birthday of its hardware emulation software, VirtualRiscPC-SE, as a "stand alone product" by slashing its price to 99UKP.
Back in May 2003, VirtualRiscPC first appeared in the MicroDigital Alpha range of PC laptops. The software, developed by Graeme Barnes of Red Squirrel fame, emulates Acorn era RISC OS hardware so that RISC OS and RISC OS software can be run on top of the host OS, namely Microsoft Windows. At the time, this enabled MicroDigital to leverage a mobile RISC OS solution to the market, despite controversially relying on emulation.
The ensuing and unexpected turnaround relationship between RISCOS Ltd. and VirtualAcorn would later result in the release of VirtualRiscPC-Adjust, as the brand continued to grow in defiance of the corner of the userbase who vigorously opposed emulation of RISC OS hardware. In September last year, VirtualRiscPC became a standalone product, and various dealers pounced upon it as a way to make a little extra cash on the side by shifting VRPC and commodity PC hardware - whether it was marketed as a 'hybrid computer', or a RISC OS laptop.
The advent of VirtualRiscPC arguably kept various quarters of the userbase busy and interested in our platform. Whilst particular users protested the alleged damaging effects of emulation sales vs. native sales, VirtualAcorn apologists insisted that developers who had left the market were using the software to revive legacy source code for the purposes of 32bit compatibility.
VirtualRiscPC-SE includes a copy of RISC OS 4, which itself costs 85UKP, as well as networking support, the power management plugin, support for 8MB screen modes, and a collection of graphics, DTP and web software. At the start of this month, 3QD took over sales and technical support of VirtualAcorn's software, which was meanwhile linked to ARM in an interesting addition to the software's copyright.
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