Microsoft, who recently displayed an experimental version of their new operating system, code-named Windows 8, at the D9 conference in Taipei are reportedly said to be looking at releasing their own tablet around the end of 2012. Their new tablet, if released, will also run on the Windows 8 OS.
Windows 8 is said to be completely touch-oriented and would thus be perfectly suited to a tablet version. Microsoft said it would support both Intel Atom-based units as well ARM designs, which would support Qualcomm, TI and NVIDIA processors.
Companies have already shown how workable Windows 8 is with other portable devices, with companies like Foxconn, Wistron and Quanta displaying hardware that showed how Windows 8 would work in a portable device at the same Computex conference where Microsoft unveiled Windows 8. However, none of the prototypes displayed in that show are expected to reach the market.
Microsoft is believed to be taking this step after seeing the success that Apple has gleaned through manufacturing and selling devices with its own OS, as well as the amount of profits that its wildly successful App Store has garnered over time. That, along with rise in prominence of Google, which is aggressively developing and promoting its Android operating system for mobile devices has made Microsoft keen to slice out its own share of an increasingly lucrative market.
Microsoft is hoping to employ the same branding strategy for its tablets that it used in promoting its gaming console, the Xbox 360 among other devices such as its music player Zune and Kin smartphone and TV. However, the Xbox 360 remains the only Microsoft product which can be considered successful apart from its PC-related products, with all the other products performing unsatisfactorily. Eventually Microsoft plans to reach the same degree of eminence in the tablet market that it enjoys in the PC-related markets. It was noted that the dissatisfaction amongst Microsoft’s system clients due to Microsoft releasing its own-brand tablet is not likely to damage it in the long run.
It is believed that the new tablet from Microsoft would contain processors from Texas Instruments, and will be assembled through Taiwan-based original equipment manufacturers. Texas Instruments’ participation in the venture is believed to suggest that the new Windows Tablet could use processor designs belonging to ARM Holdings for this project.