Microsoft, Ballmer Envious of iPad's Success, Insists Windows Tablets are a Priority



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From what I've seen from the IPad, the tablet is not just a fleeting piece of technology that will expire anytime soon. That is why Microsoft is doing the shuffle right now. Thing is the Courier looked like a BETTER IPad than the IPad, and they shut the project down. I was totally looking forward to seeing that hit the market! In fact if Microsoft paid attention to posts on You Tube, Twitter and other sites, they would have seen there was a good following. Fact is Microsofts insight is completely blind as their internal leadership branches seems so hooked on politics within their own company that they are stifling their own creativity. If the Courier continued and was released today, with better support than a battery replacement plan that meant mailing in your IPad and getting a new one, and a bit more muscle and support for the major cell phone carriers I'm sure Microsoft would not be sweating bullets right now. The Courier looked more aggressive and desirable than the IPad, which is just like a huge IPhone. A Courier with zune software, and XBLNA support from XBOX360 would have destroyed IPad in a year. Apple would have to beef it up.



Hasn't Microsoft had Tablet PC's around for years now?  Haven't they been relatively unsuccessful except in a few professional area's (ie medical field)?

The iPad is nothing more than a oversized iPod Touch which in turn is nothing more than a glorified PDA.  Microsoft's answer should be the Zune Pad - which based on history wouldn't be too successful either. While the Zune is a better product than the iPod it just had too late of a start and not enough advertising and 3rd party support to compete.  Same thing here.

Let Apple have their little corner of the market selling Arizona beach front property to the millions of uninformed consumers - it's their specialty.  Microsoft needs to stick to the few area's they have going well at this time (ie the OS, the Office Suite, XBOX). 



Don't these people have sense enough to have a think tank as part of their research team?  Don't they have anyone working for them who actually sits in their bed, living room, kitchen, office, airport, car, backyard using computers to accomplish anything?  They obviously need someone in charge that can see further than Balmer's substantial nose to run the business.  Microsoft has become so old it creaks.



I'd buy one in a heartbeat!! As long as it has the following:

Windows 7
Front facing camera
Multitouch capabilities
At least 3 USB ports (USB3.0?)
Multiple sizes of screens (6"-12")

Please hear me microsoft! To be successful you need these things! :D



I would have to totally disagree with taking the tablet PC approach.  Sure it is kinda cool now, but it doesn't serve much of a purpose in the market.  I wrote an article about the ipad at this link.

In the short term it seems to be genious, but the long term still holds in smartphones and laptops.  Sure tablets hold the link in between, but if you are going to pack around a large tablet PC, why not carry around a more powerful device aka laptop of similar weight?  Just seem the logical thing to do.

Engage PC



Your argument flows from a flawed assumption: that the tablet PC will compete or replace a laptop. Tablets are great fro ereading and showing pictures and even watching movies. Tablets should focus on the things they have the advantage on, not doing everything with a new interface. Doing spreadsheets and word processing the tablet fails because of its interface. I see them as coffee table PCs, which is a new segment in that it places a premium on user experience and convenience rather then pure performance. If you must have one device to do it all, tablet isn't it. For a lot of little tasks a laptop is not the most convenient device. If you are just going to do a few things then why do you need the complexity of a full PC?

The prize here is that this is not a zero sum game. The tablet format has just expanded the PC market. You don't have to dump your laptop to buy a tablet. You can have both! We will see if Win 7 tablets are better or too complex but I don't see them replacing laptops.



Am I hearing this correctly?  This is a pity-party for MS??  Steve's long face and the comments posted seem to indicate that it is indeed....sadness that MS was not the 1st and the best to the market....this time.  I'm sorry but I find it very hard to summon any degree of sympathy for the multi billion dollar leviathan that is MS, for a product delay and/or shortcoming.   Rather this sounds more like MS is having problems with 3rd party vendors which is to be expected considering their treatment of 3rd party vendors in the past.  Using large wads of $1000.00 bills to brow beat retailers into installing (lately) Win 7 on every device they sell, is NOT a good way to do business as the many court cases MS has lost regarding this practice in the past., can attest to.

On a good note however, it seems that MS is finally realizing that cranking out new products ahead of the competition is not the ONLY....way to do business...the comment above...."not just to deliver products, but to deliver products that people want to buy.", seems to imply that FINALLY MS is starting to realize that no amount of money paid to retailers is going to 'make people want to buy a product'.  I think this is a GOOD mindset for MS to develope.  They are not the only game in town and therefore should be driven by consumer demand rather than bottom-line demand, which seems to be MS's main marketing strategy.

I think there is one cell in my brain that actually feels sympathy for MS and Steve's long face....only one cell.  Due to massive consumer internet capabilities,  and the consumer awarness that this brings, it's no longer a game of just flood the market with a product, but rather create a product that the consumer both wants and can afford.  MS admitted they learned their lesson with Vista, but that seems hardly credible to me, considering that MS turned right around and employed the same tactics for the Win 7 release, that got them in court appointented hot water when they applied the same thinking to the Vista release.

Dear MS

What the consumer wants is this:  CHOICE.  Pretty simple eh? Consumers do NOT want to walk into a brick and mortar store and be faced with forced adoption of a new OS...or device. If Steve is REALLY sad (which I doubt) they should stop this 'force retailers to install' (practically irremovablly) every new OS they create on to every device capable of using it.  Case in point:  Vista was a flop, Win 7 is no more than Win XP with larger driver cabs and a pretty new interface.  Even the fact that Win 7's GUI is utterly ridiculous compared to XP's doesn't seem to phase MS at all.

I fix computers for a living and I can truthfully say that 80% of those with comp issues that come to me, wish they had never heard of Win 7, let alone be forced into adopting it.   Every single task doable on Win 7 takes twice as long as it did on XP and the results are no better after all the strain of the learning curve and the loss of productivity.  Aside from an APPLE task bar, libraries and seriously far better driver cabs than XP.....I still see no reason to switch to Win 7.  Side note: If i wanted an APPLE taskbar, well, I'd buy a Mac.

IF MS has truly learned their lesson, then we are about to partake of a journey into a new and improved market place, where when I pay 300+ dollars for an OS (or device) I am allowed to CHOOSE the product rather than have it forced on me.  MS is not the only major corporation that applies these tactics, but they are surely the 'leader of the pack' in this regard.  When I walk into a brick and mortar store, or even shop online, I'd like to choose what OS is installed on my device.

Here's a little tip MS:  Try offering your 'soon to be seen tablets' with no OS installed....oh the horror!  Resupply stores of all types, with copies of all your OS's and let the CONSUMER decide.....after all it is THEIR money.  I think you will find a much warmer reception to this tactic than those you've employed in the past.  So, you won't be able to sell EVERY consumer an MS product running an MS OS...what you will achieve however is consumer confidence in the fact that you are 'big hearted enough" to allow for the fact that EVERY consumer does NOT always want what you have to offer and that you are OK with this.  I think the word you are looking for is: magnanimous!  1st, you must win the consumers heart, THEN you can once again mistreat them all for the sake of a bottom line that is bigger than most countries!  Trust me on this, lay off a few thousand yacht bimbos and use that money to be.....magnanimous!  You never will capture the entire world market for OS's or devices and even if you should happen to do exactly that....the FTC will then just force divestiture.  You have the capital to be the 'good guy'...maybe you should try it on for size.





WTF, MicroSoft IS a software company, why in the name of God would they not try and sell threre product. This is likr saying Ford dealers should sell Toyota's.



I really want a tablet to augment my HTPC. I have emulators on there and copied my old PSX games over to it. I got the cover art and all the things that make it orgasmatic eye candy... Now I also downloaded guides for all the games. I'd love a tablet to just sit next to my as I play Final Fantasy or what not to be able to read the guide as I play the game (as I would if I actually had the book). 

I think it'd also be cool with .cbr comics I have. Although considering the screen size I'm sure I'd have to zoom in a little but I'm hoping they'll come out with a slate that won't make zooming in an issue. IDK...



Touchsreen editions of windows have been around for a long time (see: Microsoft WinPad), so I would put the blame on hardware vendors. I'm surprised that touchscreens are not among the standard features of most laptops by now. I'd gladly give up the builtin mic and camera and pay a little extra for a touchscreen, or a reasonable way to add a touch sensor to the screen.



Everybody is over reacting all the time. What's the rush? The catching-up game is so short sighted. Just get it right (and not just right now).



If I were Balmer I wouldn't be getting my panties in a twist over the Apple maxipad, there is currently a Class Action Lawsuit in the works because they overheat. The CAL involves every maxipad owning party in the US.,news-7611.html




3 major releases from apple this year, all with major problems or defects. Apple, if you can't run with the big dog, then stay on the porch.


Who is Bemis and why do I need to accept him or her? These captchas have got to go...



You hear about a CAL against Apple every week, the last one to gain traction was the one where they had to limit the volume on the iPod. Whooped dee do! I dunno, for all the defects and derision Apple's stuff still gets rave reviews. I think the defects aren't as major as you'd like them to be. iPhone 4 antenna was a PR nightmare but the free bumper fixed the problem. iPad is the only game in town so far, warts and all. iOS4 certainly is no Vista. Now they have the nifty Mac mini and new iMacs, plus that new tablet thing to compete with touch screens. It looks like Apple is leading the pack. I have high hopes that HP can fuse the Palm OS with some Voodoo DNA and come up with products as advanced or better than Apple's. The Envy, the Slate, the Omen and the Blackbird all rocked but fell a little short. I liked their focus but the execution was a little stale because they have to use industry standard parts. Now they have the tools to make their stuff distinct and better than the industry standard. Design them better and easier to use and you may be able to get away with charging a premium. Then treat your customers right with quality customer service and warranties and build a cult of your own.



So what? Nothing they release now will be anything other than an also ran. They had their shot with the Courier, and they blew it. An MS Slate will just be another slate in the wilderness, with plenty of competition and nothing to separate it from the pack. As much as I dislike Apple, at least the iPad has Apple's brand behind it.

MS is two steps behind, like with the Zune and the Windows Phone. It almost doesn't matter if they have a superior product now, they've given up too much lead time to their competitors. The rumored September launch for the Courier was already pushing the limit, now they're just out of contention.

That's not to say that I wouldn't buy a Courier if they suddenly released one, but I'm rabid anti-apple. Most people aren't, and I wouldn't buy a generic MS Slate over one of it's non apple competitors.



I agree, MS blew it.

At the very least they should have teamed up with HP or Asus, and helped to fun a Win 7 tablet. This far into the game, it's going to be very very hard to sway the market.

But it can be done, look at Android, they are quickly catching up, and hopefully overtake apple soon in both users, and apps.


Mister Friendly

The only viable competition for Apple in the same market is going to be HP + WebOS. HP has always had the industrial design chops, now they have their own OS. They can play Apples game by the same rules. 

Hopefully they will chase Apple out of the safe (but fucking lucrative) incremental hardware bumps per version that they could luxuriate in. We win in any case with actual options instead of jerkoff fanboi vaporware. Anyway, get ready to call HP an evil draconian company with walled gardens, or whatever

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