OnLive offers 'no compromise' Windows desktop for iPad

OnLive offers 'no compromise' Windows desktop for iPad
Windows on iPad

iPad owners will soon be able to access Windows and all the familiar Office apps on their device, with OnLive offering a streamed cloud service that it claims offers up the "first no-compromise Windows desktop" for the Apple tablet.

Gaming service OnLive is stretching its cloud-based talents into a completely new direction, and the prospect of a cloud-based Windows experience on an iPad is certainly likely to turn a few heads.

OnLive is offering up its servers in the cloud and a streamed service which will allow people to log into a virtual desktop and interact with it in a familiar way.

It'a not the first time we've seen virtual Windows desktops on the iPad, but OnLive claims to have cracked several of the issues.


"OnLive Desktop is the first app to deliver a no-compromise, media-rich Windows desktop experience to iPad, opening up powerful new possibilities for consumers and businesses," said Steve Perlman, OnLive Founder and CEO.

"iPad users will now be able to simply and securely view and edit cloud-hosted documents with full-featured Windows desktop applications like Microsoft Office, just as if they were using a local high-performance PC.

"Multi-touch gestures respond instantly and smoothly, while HD videos, animations and PC video games—never before usable on a remote desktop—play seamlessly."

Windows on ipad

It's certainly a fun idea, and one that is fairly obvious given the power of the cloud and the quality of the iPad's screen.

Of course, Microsoft is currently beavering away on a proper tablet-friendly OS in Windows 8, whereas OnLive's Windows will be a little less finger-flickingly useful.

And it doesn't end there, with OnLive's Windows service also being lined up for other devices, according to Perlman: "The Free OnLive Desktop app for iPad is just the tip of the iceberg. Android, smartphones, PC, Mac and monitor/TV support (via the OnLive MicroConsole thin client with Bluetooth keyboard/mouse) are coming soon, with your same OnLive Desktop available by login from any device.

"Your OnLive Desktop can be accessed anywhere, on any device, at any resolution."

Windows in a Windows in a Window

So you could access your Windows desktop through a streaming service, from your desktop - mindblowing...

The OnLive Desktop iPad app will be available on Thursday to US customers for free (with terms and conditions) in the iTunes App Store, and the UK release date is given as "soon".

You'll need an OnLive account and you can check out the details at

Best thing is that it's going to FREAK people out who look over your shoulder at what you are doing on your Apple tablet.

Patrick Goss

Patrick Goss is the ex-Editor in Chief of TechRadar. Patrick was a passionate and experienced journalist, and he has been lucky enough to work on some of the finest online properties on the planet, building audiences everywhere and establishing himself at the forefront of digital content.  After a long stint as the boss at TechRadar, Patrick has now moved on to a role with Apple, where he is the Managing Editor for the App Store in the UK.