Microsoft’s Tablet OS
Microsoft has insisted on sticking with the historic Windows as the OS for its tablets, something that its CEO Steve Ballmer had pronounced with finality during his speech at CES. Now analysts, and plenty of people that sadly includes Microsoft employees, might be thinking that he is finally also running the company to the ground. Many outside the company known that a desktop OS is not what should be running a tablet.
The coming Windows 8 is the first tablet-oriented version of the Microsoft operating system family, pitting it against the giants Google and Apple. CEO Steve Ballmer himself admits that it is a risk, but still apparently believes so much in Windows to keep using it in every company exploit, an OS whose golden era many consider to be far gone. Despite touting support for ARM processors, which in turn provides sleeker tablet profiles and greatly improves battery life, many are still skeptical about Ballmer’s decision, likening it to someone who keeps using the same solution to a problem but expecting different results each time.
What many analysts agree on is that Windows is extremely resource and power hungry and expensive to the point of being out of any competitive price-range, the opposite of what any tablet is supposed to be. What Windows has done to the netbook market, pushing out Linux to replace it with their more expensive and bulky features that has destroyed any further consumer interest in netbooks, is what these experts are banking on for manufacturers to look back to so as not to fall for the same trap twice. The netbook experience with Windows 7 has not been good for that market and has almost completed killed it.
Ballmer has been criticized over the years for lacking vision and within whose term has lost major markets to Apple and Google, even waving away any consideration for potential within Microsoft’s ranks to rise above his beloved Windows. An OS named Courier was developed in 2009 by a Microsoft team as a lighter OS that does not use Windows code but has similar features and was liked by many outside the company, was shot down by Ballmer himself.
Currently, the CEO’s approval rating within the company is steadily declining, and his plans for a 2018 retirement might be sooner than expected, as even the company board is beginning to lose its patience with him. The departure of Ray Ozzie last year, where he talked about moving away from the desktop as the focus of the company, apparently has not taught the CEO the value of changing from the past.
Windows 8 is due for public beta-testing by the end of this year, pending a full version launch in 2012.