Ina Fried

Recent Posts by Ina Fried

Microsoft Really Won’t Have an iPad Killer for CES

There’s some buzz out there that Microsoft will have some giant iPad-killing tablet at January’s Consumer Electronics Show. Don’t believe the hype.

The New York Times posted a story this week playing up the fact that Microsoft will have new tablets to show at CES.

That’s true, but remember–the exact same thing could be said last year. In fact, it was. The New York Times did some similar hyping last year and I similarly warned folks not to get their hopes up.

As was the case last year, Microsoft will show some new tablets as part of Steve Ballmer’s annual overview of all the new hardware coming for PCs, according to sources familiar with Redmond’s plans. Acer, for example, plans to show off its Iconia dual-screen tablet as well as a Windows 7 slate.

Ballmer may even talk a bit about what is coming on the hardware and software fronts, but don’t expect too much, particularly on the Windows 8 front.

The real issue for Microsoft remains the fact that, while it has been talking about tablets for years, Windows-based tablets still don’t present a real challenge to the iPad. And that’s not likely to change after CES.

There has been additional speculation about whether Microsoft is doing work on a tablet based on Windows Phone software, but even if such a project exists, I’m hearing nothing is imminent on that front.

Instead, I expect Ballmer to spend most of his time talking about Microsoft’s areas of strength on the consumer side, particularly around Xbox and Kinect.


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