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Microsoft has spent years treading water with tablets  (Source: Cult of Mac)
Microsoft UK exec says that Microsoft isn't ready to enter field just yet

Although Apple's iOS first showed up on the iPhone in 2007, it was easily adapted to the larger iPad that launched in 2010. Google is now starting to gain some traction with Android 3.0 “Honeycomb” -- it was designed from the beginning for tablets. Likewise, HP/Palm and RIM are using mobile, touch-optimized operating systems for their tablets. 

And where does leave Microsoft? For now, Microsoft is being left behind as its competitors continue to move forward at a lightning fast pace. Even though the company has a stellar basis for a tablet OS with Windows Phone 7, Microsoft exec Ashley Highfield says that the time just isn't right yet to jump into the fray.

"We won't do anything in the tablet market unless we can be distinctive," Highfield told Pocket-lint.

For now, Microsoft is pushing Windows 7 as its "tablet" operating system of choice. In fact, Highfield notes that he uses Dell's poorly received Inspiron Duo for tablet duties.

Windows 8 will support ARM processors that are so prevalent in today's iPads, Xooms, and PlayBooks, but such a fully featured operating system is still a bit of overkill for a 7" to 10.1", touch-dominated device.

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RE: The Tablet craze . . .
By ET on 4/19/2011 4:05:12 PM , Rating: 2
Laptops don't have a "distinct purpose". Many laptops just sit at home (or business place) and serve as desktop replacements. Some occasionally get moved to another place (such as from home to work, or to a meeting). A tablet that's dockable should be able to fit with a similar model. Dock it at home and use it as a desktop replacement, carry it around for fun (something the big laptops aren't useful for), hook it to a projector for a powerpoint presentation, ...

Even for replacement of smaller notebooks, a tablet with a detachable keyboard (like the Acer Iconia W500) should be able to serve as a notebook/netbook replacement, providing a keyboard when you need one and more mobility when you don't.

RE: The Tablet craze . . .
By Brandon Hill on 4/19/2011 4:20:17 PM , Rating: 2
Desktops/Laptops are primarily used for content creation
Tablets are primarily used for content consumption

I agree that some sort of convertible concept will be viable for the masses in the future, but I don't think that the concept is iPad-level mass market-ready yet.

RE: The Tablet craze . . .
By ET on 4/19/2011 6:21:28 PM , Rating: 2
I think that most (home) desktops/laptops are used primarily for content consumption, too. That's why many tablet owners said in a survey that their tablet is their primary PC.

Desktops/laptops can more easily be used for content creation, but a keyboard add-on covers most of that for tablets.

I agree that tablets aren't there yet, and frankly I think that phones are a better bet for dockable tech, but I think that Microsoft's position is sound in that people would like to do everything on one device, so an OS that does it all would be the right way to go when the market stabilises.

"We are going to continue to work with them to make sure they understand the reality of the Internet.  A lot of these people don't have Ph.Ds, and they don't have a degree in computer science." -- RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis

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