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Microsoft Courier tablet is dead.
Pioneer Studios offices closed and employees scattered

A year after Microsoft killed the much-anticipated Courier tablet project, PC World reports that the entire team responsible for the project, Pioneer Studios, has disbanded.

Although Courier was never an official Microsoft product, the design and concept behind the dual-screen hinged tablet garnered a lot of enthusiasm. (Note: Sony is expected to launch a tablet with a similar form factor in the near future.)

Pioneer Studios' Seattle office closed a year after J Allard, a former top designer at Microsoft credited with founding Pioneer, left the company. Pioneer cofounder, George Petschnigg, is now listed as an "entrepreneur" working on an "undisclosed new venture" on his LinkedIn profile. He was instrumental in securing $20 million in development funding for the now dead Courier. According to a PC World, he is now at Microsoft's Startup Business Group. 

Other Pioneer Studios employees have also reportedly left the company or have joined other groups, notably the Startup Business Group.

In addition to Pioneer, Microsoft has a number of other incubation groups, including FUSE Labs, the Garage, and the Hardware Incubation Lab.

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WP7 team is next!
By jnemesh on 5/20/2011 11:21:39 AM , Rating: 1
How long before the Windows Phone 7 team gets the same treatment? :)

RE: WP7 team is next!
By vision33r on 5/20/2011 11:33:23 AM , Rating: 3
Even with Ballmer's fail, MS will stay a billion $ company until 3 areas are beaten.

Desktop OS, Server OS, and Office Suite.

Nobody has come close to touching Microsoft in these areas.

RE: WP7 team is next!
By Taft12 on 5/20/11, Rating: -1
RE: WP7 team is next!
By InvertMe on 5/20/2011 11:52:13 AM , Rating: 4
WP7 has so much potential and gets better almost daily. It won't be going away anytime soon.

RE: WP7 team is next!
By Tony Swash on 5/20/11, Rating: -1
RE: WP7 team is next!
By Da W on 5/20/2011 2:30:48 PM , Rating: 3
Google fanboys sound more and more like Apple sheeps.

RE: WP7 team is next!
By DanNeely on 5/20/2011 2:33:09 PM , Rating: 2
I found a graph showing android's share back to when it launched (no link since it triggered the spam trap). 6 months after launch android only had a 1.6ish percent market share, when I measured the height of its line in an image editor. WP7's takeoff rate is similar.

WP7 is still effectively a 1.0 product and is far from feature complete. WP7.5 looks like it should solve most of the major short comings (multi tasking and a fast mobile browser). Relative feature level wise that should put it roughly where android 2.0 was at launch, and likewise roughly 1 year after the initial launch.

If WP7 still has a negligable share in 6 to 12 months from now I'd be concerned; but right now there's nothing to worry about.

RE: WP7 team is next!
By mcnabney on 5/21/2011 11:25:29 AM , Rating: 1
Or maybe the market is going to say 'no' to allowing MS to build another monopoly? We aren't to thrilled with how they have managed their desktop efforts.

RE: WP7 team is next!
By jnemesh on 5/20/2011 7:15:08 PM , Rating: 1
LOL! Exactly! The funny thing is, when you point this out to the Microserfs, they throw iPhone or Android year one figures out, like there is some kind of comparison to what happened 3 years ago to what is happening today...they kinda forget that there is actually COMPETITION out there now. Well, they will figure it out next year, when M$ DOUBLES its market share to a whopping 3 million sold!

RE: WP7 team is next!
By Alexvrb on 5/20/2011 7:22:35 PM , Rating: 3
Android had a real uphill battle when it was new, and many people scoffed at their chances, just like you are now.

"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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