Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Microsoft reportedly considers launching own-brand tablet PC

Microsoft is reportedly considering to launch an own-brand tablet PC that features Windows 8 by the end of 2012 with cooperation from Texas Instruments and Taiwan-based OEMs/ODMs, according to sources from the upstream supply chain. However, Microsoft did not confirm the rumor.

Facing Apple's iOS and App Store successful assistance in helping iPhone and iPad to gain shares in the smartphone, tablet PC and even PC market, while Google has also been working aggressively on developing operating systems and establishing its own supply chain alliance, Microsoft plans to copy its branding strategy from product lines such as Xbox 360, Zune, Kin smartphone and TV, to compete in the tablet PC segment.

Although Microsoft has been seeking business opportunities outside of PC-related markets and is aggressively launching own-brand products, Xbox 360 is currently the only own-brand product line that Microsoft has achieved success, while Zune media player, Kin smartphone and own-brand TVs all had unsatisfactory performance. However, Microsoft is still considering to launch an own-brand tablet PC and is proceeding on a low profile, the sources noted.

The sources pointed out that despite the plans to launch its own-brand tablet PC, Microsoft will continue to push its IDP plans for Windows 8.

As for the reaction from Microsoft's system clients, the sources pointed out that the system vendors' dissatisfaction with Microsoft launching own-brand tablet PCs is unlikely to impact Microsoft significantly in the short term.

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