Microsoft Getting into the Tablet Business?

By Gary Kim June 15, 2012

Microsoft reportedly is set to unveil a tablet June 18, 2012, that will mark its entry into the tablet business. This will not mark the first time Microsoft has gotten into the business of selling its own branded products. It has done so in the game console business with Xbox and in the MP3 player business with Zune.

But Microsoft has stayed out of its partners' PC business. You can argue a tablet isn't a PC, even though people use it in place of a PC. But Microsoft has drawn the conclusion that there is not a channel conflict if it creates its own tablet.

As young as the tablet business is, segments already are developing, ranging from the smaller seven-inch form factors better suited to e-reading, to Apple's market-leading segment. But it might be reasonable already to suggest that a user's choice of a tablet might hinge on the lead apps that user wants to engage with. 

Either an Android or Apple device arguably works well either as a Web browsing platform or as an app platform. The Kindle Fire and Barnes and Noble’s Nook work better as e-reading devices. Microsoft's device might appeal more to users whose primary applications are Web-based, as its app store is relatively less developed than Apple's or Google Play, some might argue. 

And though Lenovo Group Ltd. CEO, Yang Yuanqing argued early in 2012, there’s scant room for growth in the tablet market, lots of people might not agree.

It is harder to disagree with his contention that devices running Google software will keep trailing the iPad. Virtually all forecasts now suggest Apple will retain a rather commanding lead in the foreseeable future. 

But much could change, over time, as distinct tablet niches could emerge. Some think tablets eventually will be a more suitable device for content creation as well. The issue is where the Microsoft offering might wind up. 




Edited by Brooke Neuman

Contributing Editor

SHARE THIS ARTICLE
Related Articles

Frame Brings CAD Windows Apps into the Cloud

By: Peter Bernstein    3/27/2015

CAD Windows apps can now be moved to the cloud thanks to Menlo Park, California-based startup Frame (formerly MainFrame2). This represents what is lik…

Read More

Facebook's Internet-for-All Drone Set to Take Flight

By: Tara Seals    3/27/2015

Internet for the billions of underserved around the globe continues to get closer to reality. The latest is Facebook's plan to trial a version of its …

Read More

Tech, Media & Entertainment: 4K TV, Live Sports & Sony's Vue

By: Bob Wallace    3/27/2015

With change a constant in the technology, media and entertainment (TME) sector, it should come as no surprise that this past week alone saw important …

Read More

Study: Software 'Robots' Improving Business Operations

By: Casey Houser    3/26/2015

A recent study from Cognizant, a provider of information technology and business process outsourcing services, concludes that software "robots" are ha…

Read More

Google Fiber Moves Beyond the Novelty Phase

By: Tara Seals    3/26/2015

Google Fiber is gearing up to expand to one more metro area-Salt Lake City. The Utah capital will join the Atlanta, Charlotte, Nashville and Raleigh-D…

Read More