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Microsoft's executives have said there's essentially zero chance of seeing a Windows Phone 7 tablet.  (Source: Umang)

Windows Phone 7's "Metro" tiled theme is coming to Windows 8, though, which will be Microsoft's tablet OS of choice.  (Source: Microsoft)
Company is determined to push Windows 8 as the tablet solution of choice

Those hoping to see the slick tile-based Windows Phone 7 (WP7) mobile operating system grace tablets someday seem condemned to eternal disappointment.   Windows Phone president Andy Lees shot down the suggestion once more, speaking at Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) Worldwide Partners Conference in Los Angeles, California.

"We view a tablet as a PC", Mr. Lee states.  He complains that using WP7 -- a mobile operating system -- on a tablet PC would be "in conflict" with Microsoft's vision.  

Microsoft's decision to stick to its guns in the face of user demand has drawn criticism from some.  They point out that Microsoft was pushing tablets as PCs five years ago, and controlled virtually all of the small tablet niche market.  With the iPad and the explosion in popularity it became clear that people didn't necessarily want a full PC in their tablet.  And yet that is exactly what Microsoft -- who now owns roughly a 1 percent share of the tablet market -- hopes to push.

For better or worse, though, the verdict appears final -- Microsoft's tablets will run Windows 8 late next fall, and until then will run Windows 7.

To be fair, Microsoft is making some serious changes to Windows 8 to make it more tablet friendly.  While it isn't putting WP7 on the tablet, it is incorporating WP7's Metro (active tile) theme into Windows 8.  So Windows 8 on the tablet will likely seem like a hybrid of WP7 and Windows 7.

Mike Angiulo, corporate vice president of Windows Planning, Hardware and PC Ecosystem at Microsoft says the goal of Windows 8 is to make the "user experience a natural extension of the device, from the time you turn on your PC through how you interact with the applications you know and love."

To that end Microsoft is working hard to make Windows 8 tablets and laptops easier to control with touch, easier to connect to networks, and easier to print documents wirelessly.  Microsoft is also focusing on converting Windows 8 to run on ARM architecture CPUs, which are dominating the mobile architecture landscape, much to the chagrin of rival x86 architecture chipmaker Intel Corp. (INTC).

While Windows Phone 7 drew generally enthusiastic reviews for its cutting-edge user interface, the phone has experienced little traction in recent months.  It is being grossly outsold by Apple, Inc. (AAPL) whose newest phone is over a year old.  And it's also being outsold by market leader Google Inc. (GOOG) whose plethora of Android smart phones have soared in sales.

Steve Ballmer remarked last week that WP7 sales had gone from "very small to very small."


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By Ramstark on 7/13/2011 11:39:23 AM , Rating: 2
I agree with the views expressed in previous comments, the more integrated the OSs are (server, terminal, tablet and phone) the better for MS, as it will have the only not segmented, business ready OS in the market.
Nevertheless, they really have to rush it if they ant to catch the "hype" of tablets...soon, the market will be bored and confused of hearing so many Android options (some good, some horribly implemented) and of course, catching up with the "form factor/first hitter" iPad option.
I really expect to see a good W8 tablet at the end of the year, with hardware as interesting as the Asus Transformer or Acer Iconia.
Battery life could also be an issue, as ARM and Intel pushes the technology of power consumption forward, those tablets with a heavy OS will benefit from the push, leaving the "less powerful / limited functionality" ones behind.
Rush MS, RUSH!!




By bfr99 on 7/13/2011 12:27:32 PM , Rating: 2
It is quite likely that Windows 8 will spawn a Windows Phone 8 version. Presumably by the time Windows 8 arrives even cheap phones will have enough horsepower to make this feasible. However the boat might already have sailed on the high end phone market.
The tablet market is different. While Android has been successful on the phone market Android has not succeeded in the tablet market for two main reasons.
1. Tablet Android is still immature and buggy.
2. No normal person would get an Android tablet instead of an IPad unless the Android table was much cheaper.

So there may be an opportunity for MS in the tablet market with Windows 8.


By Fritzr on 7/13/2011 2:25:27 PM , Rating: 2
The business computer market had already set sail in the late 70s with Commodore targeting the business market & most of the other manufacturers advertising their business oriented applications.

Then IBM jumped in with a machine patched together from market ready parts and a crippled CP/M OS (PC-DOS 1.0). IBM decided not to purchase PC-DOS outright & with IBM's entrenched position in business computing the rest of the manufacturers were history.

Later, IBM-PC clone compatible versions of MS-DOS & other PC-DOS clones made Microsoft the front runner and IBM was history :P

In 1984/85, The Apple Lisa, Commodore's Amiga, Atari's ST introduced the world to the windowed operating system. These were de rigeur in professional graphic, video, and audio editing circles. Then Win 3.0 was released, followed shortly by Win 3.1 & Win 3.11.

Again Microsoft entered an existing market and using their entrenched position with MS-DOS destroyed the competition (okay Commodore blew itself up with internal disorder) and today only the Mac is taken seriously, and even that only in professional audio-visual applications. The Amiga lives on due to a fanatical user base and a few companies that still believe in it and MacOS is a minor player. Today it is a Wintel world.

Microsoft is hoping history will repeat itself. Android & iOS are creating a tablet market. Win8 is scheduled to take over the market that Microsoft's previous attempts failed to create :P

Success of Win8 Tablet Edition may be the thing that gives us a third major player in the chip market. Having Windows customers buying ARM devices will be a major boost in sales for ARM CPU manufacturers :D


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