We've seen just how easy it is to build a Point of Service device using the WEPOS (Windows Embedded for Point of Service) SDK, I wrote the code needed to support a Barcode Scanner in about two minutes using around 10 lines of code, adding additional peripherals would have been just as simple.

WEPOS isn't like Windows CE or Windows XP Embedded (and at the same time it's very much like Windows CE and Windows XP Embedded) - the main difference is that WEPOS isn't a componentized operating system, you don't have components to choose, you "install" the WEPOS operating system onto your target machine (you do have a number of setup options, which includes the ability to choose applications such as Media Player or Internet Explorer to be part of your image) - at the core WEPOS is a cut down install of Windows XP Professional SP2 (around 300MB), the install process takes around 30 minutes to complete and, at that point you have a ready to run WEPOS operating system - of course you still need to write the POS application - we've already seen how easy that is.

Here's the question... Would you prefer to have componentized operating systems where you take time to pick and choose the individual operating system features, and therefore tweak the operating system footprint, and therefore the supported operating system API's and technologies - or would you prefer to have more vertical focused operating system images like WEPOS that speed your time to market through fast installs, managed libraries to support your hardware and support for all the latest desktop security and management features (including Windows Update, SMS etc...) ?

How do you make the trade-off between footprint and time to market ?

- Mike