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Microsoft keeps expectations for its first party tablet modest amid market hype

At its Worldwide Partner Conference in Canada, a Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) executive offered official confirmation of an August Release to Manufacturing (RTM) build of Windows 8, followed by an October release.  

The details were confirmed by Windows Chief Financial Officer Tami Reller.  They fall roughly in line with past statements by Microsoft, but were more explicit, committing to precise months.

Leaked builds have shown that one of the big changes in the RTM build will be the elimination of the Aero glass UI, in favor of a Metro UI desktop theme.  The desktop Metro UI theme in leaked builds looks somewhat similar to the familiar Windows desktop, but emphasizes harder windows edges and pastel colors.

At the conference CEO Steve Ballmer also is quoted by All Things Digital's Mary Jo Foley as stating, "We may sell a few million of the 375 million PCs we expect to sell in next year with Surface."

Microsoft has high hopes for its first-party 10.6-inch Surface tablet.  However, much like Apple, Inc.'s (AAPL) 2010 iPad launch, its initial production run is constrained by its bleeding-edge hardware and manufacturing processes.  The Microsoft tablet is built with a unique scratch resistant magnesium body, an industry first.

Microsoft Surface
The Microsoft Surface

Apple's iPad sold "only" 15 million units in 2010, but went on to sell 40 million units in 2011 [1][2][3][4].  While Microsoft's objectives with the Surface are quite modest, it surely hopes to follow a similar path in its second year on the market.

Microsoft recently acquired Perceptive Pixel, a company specializing in large-scale multi-touch hardware and is looking to launch new devices with large multi-touch displays.

Sources: Digital WPC, Mary Jo Foley

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By StevoLincolnite on 7/10/2012 3:54:38 PM , Rating: 5
One thing about Windows 8 preview is that it looks slick on my tablet.

Just unfortunately the same experience doesn't translate well to my desktop with Eyefinity, it feels like they decided to throw all multi-monitor support out the window, Metro takes up one screen with the other 2 screens just essentially a solid colour, hopefully they fixed that up in the full release, but I have my doubts. :(

RE: .
By Belard on 7/10/12, Rating: 0
RE: .
By aftlizard on 7/10/2012 4:12:19 PM , Rating: 5
How do you expect anybody to take your opinions with any sort of authority if you feel like being a thirteen year old child when you write?

RE: .
By Belard on 7/10/12, Rating: 0
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By flyingpants1 on 7/12/2012 4:10:09 AM , Rating: 2

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By aftlizard on 7/10/2012 4:10:59 PM , Rating: 3
Maybe you have something set wrong? I have my second screen set to a wall paper, even with metro loaded it stays the same unless I launch metro from the second monitor.

RE: .
By Helbore on 7/10/2012 5:57:56 PM , Rating: 3
Sure, Metro doesn't scale well with multi-monitor, but the traditional desktop multi-monitor support is FAR better than Windows 7.

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By B3an on 7/11/2012 5:52:51 AM , Rating: 3
You obviously have a problem with your PC or drivers then. Metro works perfectly fine on my 3 monitors. I can have Metro on any monitor i like and still see the desktop on the other two. And theres much better multi monitor support in 8 as well so i dont know what you're talking about.

RE: .
By StevoLincolnite on 7/11/2012 1:44:19 PM , Rating: 2
The thing is, it's Eyefinity.

I shouldn't have Metro on one screen and a desktop on the other two.

It's one giant screen real-estate, I have 5760x1080 wallpapers too, suddenly cutting 1/3rd of that just looks ugly.

RE: .
By Smilin on 7/11/2012 12:52:32 PM , Rating: 2
With Eyefinity you are essentially using a single monitor. Turn Eyefinity off and let Windows handle the multimon. Win8 has awesome multimon features.

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