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Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer promised the world Windows tablets at last year's CES, but thus far has failed to deliver. Speaking to an audience Tuesday, he promised that they would see Windows tablets by Christmas.  (Source: Reuters)
"You'll see new slates with Windows on them. You'll see them this Christmas." -- Steve Ballmer

One of the technology industry's big Steves -- Steve Ballmer, Chief Executive of Microsoft -- on Tuesday promised that Windows tablets won't take much longer to hit the market and compete with Apple's popular iPad and upcoming Google Android/Chrome OS tablets.  He remarked, "You'll see new slates with Windows on them. You'll see them this Christmas."

Of course "see them this Christmas" could have a variety of meanings -- anything from "see them" as be unwrapping them, or "see them" as in reading an online press release that they will be available in March.

Google and its hardware partners has been a bit slow responding to the tablet craze.  They only recently have aired 5-inch (Dell Streak) and 7-inch (Dell Streak, Samsung Galaxy Tab) designs, and are still awaiting full-sized 10-inch tablets, comparable in size to the iPad.

Microsoft, however, has been even more lackadaisical in pursuing this lucrative market.  The company showed off a slew of tablets at a presentation attended by DailyTech at this year's Consumer Electronics Show, yet has failed to deliver a single Windows tablet from a major player. 

HP, the world's largest personal computer maker, was reportedly close to releasing designs like the HP Slate this spring, but has shelved those plans, instead focusing on webOS tablets.  WebOS is a product of Palm, which HP acquired earlier this year.

Meanwhile July's numbers indicate that Apple is unloading at least 2.3 million iPads a month.  If it can sustain that sales pace (which seems likely due to holiday demand and lack of competitors), it's on the mark to hit anywhere from 15 to 20 million tablets sold this year.

Mr. Ballmer also hit on one of Microsoft other key problem spots -- the mobile phone market.  Microsoft's Kin project was a colossal sales failure perpetrated by miserably outdated hardware, bizarre commercials that bordered on disturbing, and a lack of carrier support.  At the end of the day Microsoft pulled the plug.

Meanwhile, Microsoft's veteran Windows Mobile brand has languished, bleeding market share to Apple and Google.  Microsoft's answer is a brand-new smart phone operating system dubbed Windows Phone 7, which will air October 11th.

Mr. Ballmer addressed his company's challenging state of affairs in this sector, summarizing, "The job right now is we've got to get back seriously into the game of phonesWe've got to have a comeback against the competition and I think with our new Windows phones we really have a beautiful product."

WP7 faces an uphill battle when it hits the market, but Microsoft's CEO seems to realize that.  At least he can take comfort that he will quite possibly be putting some in peoples' Christmas stocking...even if that something isn't a Windows tablet.


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What version of Windows
By Zstream on 10/6/2010 3:50:25 PM , Rating: 3
Windows phone 7 or Windows 7 on a tablet?




RE: What version of Windows
By Mitch101 on 10/6/2010 4:14:36 PM , Rating: 2
Im Hoping full blown Windows 7 but I could see a mobile port before full blown.

CPU/GPU's that are plenty powerful enough for full blown OS with low power are right around the corner. The 18w AMD fusion dual cores or the 9W Single core fusion chip could make for a nice device but I think they are slated for 1Q 2011. Give it blutooth and get it near a keyboard and mouse for a tablet that acts like a netbook when needed.


RE: What version of Windows
By ncage on 10/6/2010 5:02:29 PM , Rating: 2
I think your probably one of the few. If you want to have to run AV + have crappy battery life then Windows 7 it is. On top of that Windows 7 interface (start button) isn't that great for tablets. You can't just shrink an OS down to fit every form factor.WP7 would be awesome on a tablet, but to be honest with you, i think you will get your wish and windows 7 will be on the tablets. They don't have the time (i think) to make WP7 tablets by Christmas. They are trying enough already to just make WP7 as perfect as it can be so it will compete. In the meantime i already have a IPad until microsoft / google produces something that impresses me.


RE: What version of Windows
By acer905 on 10/6/2010 5:41:58 PM , Rating: 3
Well, I may also be one of the few, but i agree with him. A device that effectively replaces netbooks or even notebooks must be able to both view content, and create content. A full OS would be able to do such, when paired with proper accessories. It is rather easy to create an "app" skin, which increases the usefulness of a touch screen, such as the Media Center interface.

(Or, use any of the existing "10 Foot Interface" setups that exist. These, being optomized for viewing from a distance and using a remote control, already have larger icons and more distinct text than the standard desktop environment.)

Add an overlay to the full OS desktop for touch interface, while leaving all of the functionality that Bluetooth accessories can use, and a winning device is created.


RE: What version of Windows
By Akrovah on 10/6/2010 7:21:51 PM , Rating: 3
I am also one of those "few." In fact, my wife and I were just talking last week about wanting some kind of lightweight easily portable screen that maintained the functionality of a full desktop system without the hassle of a laptop setup. Basically the iPad without the limitations. Full Windows tablets would be perfect for this, and since the idea was home use we would never be far away from a charging port if need be.


RE: What version of Windows
By superPC on 10/6/2010 7:49:44 PM , Rating: 2
most tech inclined people would agree to you guys. a good interface is all windows 7 need to be a good tablet. something like exopc UI or other even better. problem is most of the manufacturer have their own UI. dell, HP, fujitsu, MSI, asus all will release tablet soon and they all have their own UI. this is a problem and i hope MS release a touch UI of their own with great usability and animation (we all know most of what makes ipad look fast is its sleek animation).


RE: What version of Windows
By theprofessor on 10/6/2010 9:23:41 PM , Rating: 2
Microsoft already has this. They created it for the Origami project.


RE: What version of Windows
By vol7ron on 10/6/2010 10:09:05 PM , Rating: 2
I think I agree with the above. I'd like a W7 touch device, it just needs a few tweaks and a better form factor.

I don't get why people argue the Start menu - I like it. More importantly, you get to customize the taskbar and desktop to how you like it... If you want it to act like a iPhone, just make a bunch of shortcuts to all your programs and put them on the desktop... enough said.

That being said, I think some tweaks might be to make the Start menu larger for fingers, and to possibly add some desktop scrolling (any direction, not just side-to-side). Additionally, it doesn't have to be the full OS. It can be W7L (Win7 Lite); an extreme stripped down version, that is still fully compatible with other devices.

Will Microsoft please get the hardware manuf. to include an IR sensor for my TV/DVD/Computer!?


RE: What version of Windows
By OUits on 10/6/2010 11:43:21 PM , Rating: 2
I'm in this boat too. I've never owned a smartphone, but would be interested in getting a tablet. I'm guessing that a lot of people are in a similar situation, and full blown W7 is what a lot of people have and are already used to. Screw a phone OS if I have the option.


RE: What version of Windows
By Belard on 10/7/2010 5:39:27 AM , Rating: 2
Just gone from just a regular cell-Phone (slider, 2.5" screen - I did voice and texting) to an Android by Samsung.

Overall, it totally murders any previous phone in the past... and I've had it for only a few days. Everything it does, is better than my last phone.

A tablet/pad device is not a phone. Even Apple and Google had to modify their OS to work better for a larger device. As good as Win7 is, its NOT made for a 7" gesture screen. Try for yourself, set your screen res to 800x600 and use that for a week... without a keyboard... so use the on-screen keyboard.

A tablet will not do you much good away from home. A smart phone will.


By therealnickdanger on 10/7/2010 9:47:50 AM , Rating: 3
Better advice:

Go to Best Buy and get your hands on an HP Touchsmart laptop or desktop all-in-one. See for yourself how a Windows 7 tablet would perform. Also keep in mind the bloatware factor...

The biggest advantage that smartphones and the iPad have is the quality of the screen itself. Almost every touch laptop/desktop I've seen over the years, since the dawn of XP Tablet Edition, has been junk. Thick layers that cause a perception of separation between what you see and what you touch. Often times, the resistive or capacitive layer itself is visible, creating a grainy and washed out visual effect. Not only that, but the screens usually aren't glass, so they flex and bend too much or your touch input registers somewhere else on the screen.

An ideal Windows 7 tablet won't be cheap as it will NEED certain components in order to feel smooth to the end user:

Core 2 Duo ULV with Optimus or Core i3 UM (ULV) as a minimum for CPU. Atom, Celeron, and the Pentiums with their IGPs lack the CPU/GPUmuscle to handle HD video or HD Flash, plus they are just less efficient overall than the C2D/i3/i5 ULVs. It's possible that an Atom w/ION could work... but not nearly as well. Games?

SSD. In order to have that Android/iOS app-like experience with full-blown applications, a fast SSD is mandatory no matter what CPU is used.

Touch drivers are crucial. Bad drivers for touchpads can make all the difference in the world. If an entire screen can't be calibrated properly, then the whole process is just a waste.

Gorilla glass or equivalent touch surface.

I don't see any OEM selling a tablet with the above features for less than $900. But we all know that they will try to make Windows 7 tablets using Atom processors in order to get down to the iPad pricing. Without stripping away unneeded processes and bloatware (haha, yeah right!) and building low-resource overlay, there's no way an Atom-based tablet will be "good enough" when compared to the iPad.


RE: What version of Windows
By superPC on 10/7/2010 12:08:53 AM , Rating: 2
by origami did you mean this http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/winfamil... ? looks like it was based on windows media center (in windows vista). it's not pretty, but i think it's functional. downloading it now (from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx... ) and hoping it work on windows 7. i don't get it. why did they abandon this? if they give such care to WMC why the hell didn't they do the same for origami experience? didn’t they think tablet market would grow? microsoft really is years ahead of the competitions. they build origami experience waaayyy back in 2007 months before ipod touch was even launched.

i think building with origami as a base they can make a really great touch UI.


RE: What version of Windows
By theprofessor on 10/7/2010 4:30:47 PM , Rating: 2
You might still be able to buy an UMPC (I think Samsung and Sony may have one for sale). They were never a big seller, mostly because of price. Even though Microsoft tried hard to get the OEMs to release them in the $500 - $800 range (similar to the iPad), they all cost $1000 - $2000, well above what the average consumer was willing to spend. My hope is, that with newer low cost technology and the proof to OEMs that you can make money at a lower price point, that this project is continued. Version 3 built off of this base could be really good.

And if you think that it's impressive that they released this in 2007, this is actually Version 2, based on Vista. They had version 1 for XP at least a year before this. And Microsoft has been talking about the idea of a full Windows tablet since 2000 when they began work on what became Windows XP Tablet PC Edition. That was released in 2002, but is really better suited for a different market (professionals and students).


RE: What version of Windows
By superPC on 10/7/2010 12:10:42 AM , Rating: 2
OH btw kudos for still remembering about origami experience after all this years. i bet even some microsoft people had already forgotten about it. i certainly had forgot.


RE: What version of Windows
By theprofessor on 10/7/2010 4:31:31 PM , Rating: 2
Thanks :).

Yeah, I'm sure a lot of people forgot about it.


RE: What version of Windows
By robinthakur on 10/7/2010 11:52:29 AM , Rating: 2
This has been tried before many times and they don't generally sell. The question that has to be asked is whether the form factor was the problem, i.e. heavy and bulky with jutting out batteries or the price, or in this case the OS. Obviously a combination of all three have killed the idea of a windows tablet stone dead, even without Apple's runaway success, not just to the buying public, but seemingly to the industry as a whole. Hence the lack of such a specimen so far appearing on the market post iPad. Manufactureres have been burned by this many times before.

I used to think having a full Windows experience on a tiny mobile device like a phone was the holy grail of mobile computing back in the early 90's world of Palm Pilots and Newtons. I thought this way until technology progressed enough to make this a possibility with WiMo and the original Tablet PC's. Whilst in their heydays, there was no competition in terms of OS, i.e. nothing better, the benefit of having all the same applications on identical devices with smaller form factors results in iStrain and frustration, notwithstanding the important consideration that most Apps are not designed for touch operation and the best you can hope for is a direct finger-as-cursor replacement. MS's interface for Media Centre is a good example of MS putting in a proper interface because they realised the standard start menu interface was not a one-size fits all solution! In this regard Apple's use of touch was the first time touch control was implemented on a device correctly (or at least, the best so far)

Putting a full desktop version of an OS on a slate is a bad idea. Bad battery utilisation versus horsepower required, no mobile aware applications (unless everything is delivered through silverlight etc) and despite being touch enabled by default, touch is NOT central to Windows 7 in the way that it is central to iOS and other mobile OS's. It is a 'nice to have'. You also have to have a 'mobile touch profile' which is easy to enable for OEM's, pre-customised and tweaked so that when it gets to the customer it just works. As obvious as it sounds, this is rarely the case.

You also have the weight of the public's newly advanced expectations to deal with. The only successful slate is the iPad so far, so the expectation from the public is that a tablet PC will be simple to operate, be always on and wake within half a second, have long battery life, will be virus free, aesthically designed, have an Appstore and have cool animations. If this list seems Apple-centric and the very antithesis of Windows, that is natural because Apple have set the standard in this new space. There are no wasted App icons, no "subscribe to AOL" widgets and clutter, everything serves a purpose.

The key is to sell the Tablet PC as a commodity appliance which is a best-fit solution to as many people as possible particularly business, which should not be a colossal challenge given that MS are still at the centre of that universe...


RE: What version of Windows
By rudy on 10/6/2010 9:54:45 PM , Rating: 2
So you are saying that phone based OS do not need antivirus?

Just because people do not know they have viruses or can get them does not mean you do not need antivirus.

If you disable a couple features in a full blown OS like windows 7 and you do not execute any attachment you get from a forward you wont need antivirus for that either.


RE: What version of Windows
By vol7ron on 10/6/2010 10:10:39 PM , Rating: 2
In the article, Windows Phone 7 is independent of Windows 7 on a tablet; though Microsoft may eventually use WP7 on the tablet.


RE: What version of Windows
By Da W on 10/7/2010 8:29:38 AM , Rating: 3
Best idea for Windows.Next would be a WP7 OS on a tablet able to boot a full version of windows if you need it.

Looking at this tread, i think there's a market for a Windows slate. I have a tablet, HP touchsmart, it's a computer and eats battery like crazy, and its still heavy, but as far as Windows goes it's usable on a touchscreen. Handwriting recognition with a stylus is pretty damn impressive. It's not that fun though.

Problem currently is the hardware. Atom sucks, graphics are subpar, and even AMD's Zacate will be too power hungry until they shrink down to 32nm. By then Intel will have an answer.

What do people do on an iPad that is so cool??? I don't get it.

Anyway a good slate needs: USB ports, stylus, voice recognition, memory card slot, login to your home network to access all your goodies on your desktop and HDMI output.


RE: What version of Windows
By Zingam on 10/8/2010 5:21:13 AM , Rating: 2
What do people do on an iPad that is so cool??? I don't get it.

-- browsing the web while they sh. in the toilet?


Avoid these like the plague...
By TEAMSWITCHER on 10/6/2010 4:34:58 PM , Rating: 4
The last time Microsoft tried to use it's "Hurry Up" offense to get products our the door, they shipped the XBox 360, and Windows VISTA! The 360 was beleaguered with hardware issues, and Vista was...well...just a BETA for Windows 7.

Apple doesn't discuss products before they ship, and people think that they just whip these things out. The truth is that they are years in the making.

Microsoft cannot afford to quick launch crappy versions of Apple products for much longer. They need to demonstrate leadership by launching innovative products first, and let Apple catch up to them.




By The Raven on 10/6/2010 4:52:14 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
...and Vista was...well...just a BETA for Windows 7.

BETA?!

It was more like an ALPHA!


RE: Avoid these like the plague...
By charrytg on 10/6/2010 7:22:42 PM , Rating: 1
Is it still popular to hate microsoft? I haven't been keeping up with the trends.

This promise from ballmer does not excite me any more than the next person, I wouldn't expect microsoft to be putting out a good tablet any time soon. However, the reasons for your dislike make little sense to me.

quote:

The last time Microsoft tried to use it's "Hurry Up" offense to get products our the door, they shipped the XBox 360, and Windows VISTA!

Whether or not you like the 360 personally does not really matter. It's sold quite well, and although I am without one, it seems like for many college kids it is a must. Now, true that the 360 as a device was not ideal, but then I would say the same thing about the ipad, being that it's a device which serves no specific purpose, for too large a price, and in a form which makes me wonder just how I am supposed to hold it in some situations.
However, I wouldn't go guessing that a future apple product would be a flop, and then using a great selling product as an example.

As for vista, it was acceptable. Neither miraculous nor terrible. I thought hating on vista stopped being popular a while back as well. In a way it was a beta for windows 7, but then I feel that many versions of windows can be compared this way. Windows 2000 matures into xp, vista tests the waters for a new design, and then matures into windows 7. Perhaps people are just upset that it took so many years.

Now, instead of pointing to one successful product and another mediocre one to predict the success of this promised tablet, I'm thinking it will be disappointing for a different reason.

There are other tablets that run microsoft software out there. They are quite powerful too, at least when compared to the competition. However, they are not very desirable. The software (being windows xp/vista/7) just isn't very elegant when it comes to tablet use. It's possible that they could use windows phone 7, and while that would solve the issue of ease of use with a tablet, it's missing the capabilities that the desktop versions of windows bring.

We will either get yet another tablet that is clunky, or yet another tablet that attempts to copy the ipad.


RE: Avoid these like the plague...
By mcnabney on 10/6/2010 9:24:15 PM , Rating: 2
The 360 did well because of four things:

1. Beat Sony to market
2. MS paid for a LOT of exclusive titles
3. Were quite a bit cheaper than PS3
4. MS stole a bunch of PC titles

Even then it got pounded by the completely inferior Wii.


RE: Avoid these like the plague...
By charrytg on 10/6/2010 11:03:51 PM , Rating: 2
Or:
1. Beat sony to the market
2. Was not nearly as challenging to program for
3. Cheaper than the ps3

It probably would not matter what they did to get the developers to make games for the platform, I think the platform was also more desirable.

However, the success of the wii has nothing to do with the success of the xbox. The target audience doesn't overlap much.


RE: Avoid these like the plague...
By KoolAidMan1 on 10/6/2010 8:34:39 PM , Rating: 2
Spot on, excellent post.

Fact of the matter is that Microsoft, save for Windows 7 and their enterprise software, has been executing poorly for about a decade. Their ROI from their colossal R&D has resulted in very little compared to the returns that Apple and Google get from their own R&D.

Of course, Windows and Office are money machines with insane profit margins that any company would want, so that'll keep them deep in cash while they stumble along everywhere else.

Microsoft demonstrating leadership would be great for overall competition, but they insist on releasing crap products, and then follow by making pale copies of Apple products. Maybe Windows Mobile 7 will be their first step in turning this around, it looks really promising. We'll see.


RE: Avoid these like the plague...
By mcnabney on 10/6/2010 9:30:13 PM , Rating: 2
Why would somebody invest $200 and get commited to a two year contract on an also-ran version of Android?

Unless you absolutely must have the Xbox Live integration (see, got to leverage the existing monopoly) the existing Android and iOS platforms are far more advanced. Even the hardware that Phone7 is launching on is essentially a Droid Incredible. Sorry, but I just don't see much compelling. Google is going to be deploying 1.5ghz and dual-core Androids for the holiday season and talking-up Gingerbread while MS will be trying to rook some old Microsoft die-hards with six month old hardware and a woefully incomplete OS.


RE: Avoid these like the plague...
By superPC on 10/7/2010 12:15:46 AM , Rating: 2
they did launched innovative product first. before ipad was even a gleam in apple engineers eyes microsoft have origami experience for UMPC (demo here http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/winfamil... and download here http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx... ). at the time the hardware is just not powerful enough. their only mistake is they tend to forgot their own breaktrough.


RE: Avoid these like the plague...
By Belard on 10/7/2010 5:44:20 AM , Rating: 2
Like the ZUNE...

Which you wont find in Wal Mart, which has every iPod model to choose from.

Zune has less than 2% of the MP/Mp3 market, isn't it discontinued yet?

Remember the Zune HYPE... mysterious website, etc. And they come out with ugly brown devices.


RE: Avoid these like the plague...
By Sazabi19 on 10/7/2010 8:15:04 AM , Rating: 2
I got my Zune HD Platinum, my origional 30 gig "fatty", and my brothers 8 gig Zune all at Walmart, what are you talking about? Also, sound quality is much better out of the Zune. I have tried the same songs on both Zune and the iPod, the all around music levels on the Zune are better, especially lows. I love my Zunes and will never go to Apple's overpriced junk just becuase it's shiny or popular.


RE: Avoid these like the plague...
By Belard on 10/7/2010 4:29:50 PM , Rating: 2
Gee... key words here... my "original" and "got his 8GB"... uh When?

There are currently 4~5 Zune players available from MS. Only the bottom end unit is available at most/Some Walmarts.

Total Zune & Zune products on WalMart.com's catalog is 21.

Currently, MS has 8 total Zunes, but really - just TWO different ZUNEs with various memory sizes & colors. Half the line is a COPY of the iPOD touch (Zune HD). Most likely, the older ZUNEs are simply older models.

Apple has 4 distinct lines of iPODs, each vastly different than the other. Walmart sells about 150 iPod & iPod products.

In my Walmart, I check last night... they have all the latest iPODs... they had RCA, SONY and some other MP3 players. No Zune.


Message to Ballmer
By Da W on 10/6/2010 3:51:54 PM , Rating: 5
You had a miracle tablet in your labs ready for christmas, it was called the COURRIER, and you killed the project you freaking moron!!!!

I now have 100 shares of microsoft. Once i get 4 billions of them, your ass is gone Ballmer!!!!




RE: Message to Ballmer
By Mitch101 on 10/6/2010 4:23:36 PM , Rating: 2
Thats a rocking device but I have to wonder about cost of manufacturing of dual screens and battery life. Would have been even cooler if the second screen was optional. Like you could buy the base tablet and add the second screen if you have the cash.


RE: Message to Ballmer
By mcnabney on 10/6/2010 9:19:39 PM , Rating: 3
There will be dual-screen tablets out this Xmas.

Microsoft is just packed-full of idiots who know nothing except how to exploit a desktop OS and office suite monopoly.


RE: Message to Ballmer
By Zingam on 10/8/2010 5:34:52 AM , Rating: 2
I'm from a small country with its own local Microsoft Division. Any ideas what they do? All they do is to complain about software piracy. Selling overpices Windows and Office packages (more expensive than in US but at the same time we have much lower earnings). Molesting local businesses and bribing corrupt local officials to buy unnecessary Microsoft software.

At the same time we have no local developer support, no local access to XBOX live. They are not advertising or trying to sell XBOX, Zune etc. I guess these devices and the games are imported by third parties.


RE: Message to Ballmer
By KoolAidMan1 on 10/6/2010 8:29:51 PM , Rating: 2
Have you seen the Toshiba W100? I can now see why a dual screen tablet was aced, it is too expensive, has crap battery life, and two small screens are inferior to one large one. Two small screens compromise the UI too much.

Neat idea but practically speaking it doesn't really work, and I'm not surprised that Courier got killed in the R&D phase.


Brace yourselves
By qrhetoric on 10/6/2010 4:29:12 PM , Rating: 2
for the next Microsoft disaster. Didn't Microsoft already launch a tablet a few years ago and it didn't go anywhere?

They will likely miss the whole point and just make a PC in a tablet form factor.




RE: Brace yourselves
By JakLee on 10/6/2010 5:15:57 PM , Rating: 2
http://www.microsoft.com/surface/en/us/default.asp...

From the reviews it is "portable" as long as there are enough of you to carry it. Microsoft expects their next tablet to 5% smaller and 12% faster.
I think I might stick with my kindle and smartphone a little bit longer.
:)


RE: Brace yourselves
By theprofessor on 10/6/2010 9:36:12 PM , Rating: 2
Uhh...Micorsoft has been making a Tablet OS that OEMs have been selling on tablet computers for eight years. They are mostly used by professionals and students though. They also have a more consumer oriented version known as the Ultra-Mobile PC. These are all fully functional computers. The problem is/was that OEMs priced them out of reach for normal consumers ($1000 - $2000) even though Microsoft tried hard to have OEMs price them in the $500 range.

Microsoft has been designing tablets and the OSs that run on them for over a decade and was one of the initial companies to push the idea. Now, that technology has advanced and OEMs see that money can be made with lower priced devices, I wouldn't count Microsoft out.


RE: Brace yourselves
By Belard on 10/7/2010 6:12:16 AM , Rating: 2
The MS Tablets were only useful in some fields... such as hospitals and such, but I've seem them go back to notebooks. The convertible tablets are a pain in the rear. They are heavy, not powerful, not fast, expensive, easy to break, harder to service. We had two in our company and we traded them in for normal ThinkPads.

Why MS Failed where Apple kicked MS in the nuts:
- Full blown OS, bloated.
- Stylus was typical for operations... lose it, your screwed.
- price! A ThinkPad X201 with i5 CPU starts at $1500. iPad is $500~800.

- weight! iPad = 1.5lbs. The Thinkpad x201 is 3.5 lbs! Thats with a 4cell battery, not including the power brick. 4.5lbs with 8cell.

- Battery life, 10hrs vs about 3hrs for a PC-Tablet.

- Size... iPad is half an inch thick... vs. 1~1.5" for PC tablets.

Functionality... iPad is far more useful to consumers. Tablet PCs have a place, but its very limited. Even Netbooks far outsell Tablets. And we can expect future iPAD clones to eat into notebook and netbook computer sales.

My 4" Android screen is NOTHING compared to my 24" desktop display... but its very functional for my needs with GPS and internet.

The ThinkPad maybe the last tablet-PC on the market, I bet nobody will be making them in 2011.


RE: Brace yourselves
By theprofessor on 10/7/2010 6:54:27 PM , Rating: 2
I've had a Tablet PC since they came out in 2002. I don't work in a hospital and I find it very useful. I don't think your points about the convertible tablets are true, not compared to similar sized notebooks. Most 10 to 12 inch notes, convertible tablets or not, have similar specs, performance, price, etc.

As for your points:
-yes, a full blown OS is bigger, but it's also more functional. That was Microsoft’s idea, give these devices the same (or more) functionality as PCs. The original Tablet PC was based on Windows XP which has about a half a gigabyte install.
-Some Tablet PCs didn't require a stylus. If you prefer, you could get one of those. Also ,the UMPC was not based on using a stylus, though I think a few did use them. Again, if you prefer, get one that doesn't need it.
-You're comparing a full convertible laptop to the iPad. Do you know the performance difference between these two devices? Also, regarding price, what about UMPCs as I mentioned in my previous post? They compare more favorably to the iPad, especially because they are targeted at the same market. They were more expensive ($1000+), but that wasn’t Microsoft’s fault as they constantly pushed OEMs to price them at $500-$800. Eventually, you were able to get lower end models for $800+.
-Again, you're comparing a full convertible laptop to a tablet. This is unfair. At release, in 2002, NEC had a 2 pound 10 inch fully functional Windows XP Tablet PC. I'm not sure about the size of the battery. UMPCs are in the 1 to 2 pound range.
- Again, that’s comparing a fully functional performance driven 12” laptop computer with an iPad. Tablets PCs and UMPCs that use the same components as a netbook, get battery life closer to the iPad.
- The same NEC Tablet PC, I mentioned above, was a half inch thick when released in 2002. There are others that are between a half inch and an inch thick. The same goes for UMPCs.

Also, if you read my post before you posted, you would see that I specifically said that Tablet PCs are not meant to compete in the same market as the iPad. They are meant for professionals and students. Ultra-Mobile PCs are meant to compete in that market. Yet, you complete ignored them in your post. Of course, netbooks outsell Tablet PCs, they are meant for totally different markets. Also the netbook is at a low-end price point in its market, and tablets are in the high-end price point in its market. Even if they were targeted at the same audience, economics would tell you that the lower priced product is going to sell more.

I’m glad you consider your phone functional enough for your needs. Almost everyone would, but the article is about tablets. Your comment implies that since your phone is functional enough, that tablets are not necessary. This would mean the iPad and any tablet with similar functionality to your phone are not necessary. That doesn’t mean that Tablet PCs with full PC functionality and more are not necessary. So, I’m not sure why you made this comment.

I’ll take your bet and I’m sure there will be a Tablet PC in 2011. I’m pretty sure there will also be derivatives of the UMPC (possibly with a different name) released in the future.


RE: Brace yourselves
By Belard on 10/8/2010 5:24:36 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
I don't think your points about the convertible tablets are true, not compared to similar sized notebooks.


The Tablet PC *HAS* its place. It really does. But as proven by the iPad and the Android/Windows clones coming out now, its form factor isn't usable for the masses.

In regards to most of the rest of your response. I understand where your coming from. The Tablet-PC was never really ready for most people because of the limitations of the technology and the costs involved.

UMPCs were really nothing more than $1000~2000 SONY tiny tiny notebooks... which todays $300 easily surpass in sales.

quote:
-Some Tablet PCs didn't require a stylus. If you prefer, you could get one of those. Also ,the UMPC was not based on using a stylus, though I think a few did use them. Again, if you prefer, get one that doesn't need it.


UMPCs and tablets are different computers, both are expensive. I think SONY left the UMPC market years ago even thou it was a powerful and good product, its price and ultra tiny size made it UN-substainable. An iPod makes for a better tiny computer than the UMPC... since the keyboard can be displayed on the screen. Yes, the pros on UMPC is that they dont have touch screens to get messy.

quote:
Your comment implies that since your phone is functional enough, that tablets are not necessary. This would mean the iPad and any tablet with similar functionality to your phone are not necessary.


That was not my point. Its that technology changes and functionality has advanced. The power of a modern Cell Phone with a 4" screen is more useful to the general user than the tablet-PC has been for years. (Yes, I know - Tablets have their place)

iPads and others such devices have their place too. I want to get an iPad for my mother who won't touch a computer, because the iPad doesn't function like a notebook/tablet/desktop computer.

Personally, I welcome Microsoft to enter the iPad market... we could see cheaper and more interesting devices, hopefully. We'll see how MS does. They do good and they screw up as well... and coming out with something "original" has never been part of Microsoft since day one. MS-DOS was purchased, IE, bought. Word, FrontPage, bought. The list goes on. But thats not saying MS doesn't do good things either... they created the mass-market PC, Windows7 is very good and at one time, they made the best joysticks on the market for PC, which have not been replaced yet. :(


Sure thing
By MeesterNid on 10/6/2010 3:17:25 PM , Rating: 3
It will be a miracle if they are available by Christmas...that's what Ballmer really meant.




RE: Sure thing
By GTVic on 10/7/2010 1:41:59 PM , Rating: 2
Another Festivus miracle :)


predict 3 days after launch
By tharik on 10/7/2010 6:31:08 PM , Rating: 2
before the first virus compromises WP7. Make sure you get one right away and use it for all your banking needs.




crazy people
By Zingam on 10/8/2010 5:17:11 AM , Rating: 2
Big on promises - low on delivery = Steve B.

Are there any crazy who would trust a bold guy to sell the hair products.




Oh good.
By macthemechanic on 10/8/2010 11:02:22 PM , Rating: 2
Something else to add to my Patch Tuesday list. Maybe it will take 30 minutes to boot, just like my brand new laptop.




Fail written all over...
By imachip on 10/6/10, Rating: -1
RE: Fail written all over...
By Belard on 10/7/2010 6:19:55 AM , Rating: 2
So lets see if MS releases MS-Pad like a week or two before christmas... too late, people will be done with most of their shopping. Geez, most of my Christmas shopping is already done... ;)

They won't be thinking or waiting for MS... when Apple has a good product out now. Geez, Apple is catching up to the XBOX 360...! 6 month, 20million units?! Theres only about 25million 360 units after 4 years (deduct for replacement defect units).

MS would have to have product on the shelf before November to count.


"Well, we didn't have anyone in line that got shot waiting for our system." -- Nintendo of America Vice President Perrin Kaplan














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