Tablets Could Be Temporary Trend: Microsoft Exec

By Channel Insider Staff  |  Print this article Print

Craig Mundie, Microsoft's chief research and strategy officer, suggests that tablets, like Apple's iPad, may be a passing fad.

At least one Microsoft executive seems unconvinced that tablets are much more than a passing fad.

"Mobile is something that you want to use while you’re moving, and portable is something that you move and then use," Craig Mundie, Microsoft’s chief research and strategy officer, reportedly told the audience at a lunch in Sydney. "These are going to bump into one another a little bit, and so today you can see tablets and pads and other things that are starting to live in the space in between."

According to a March 30 report in the International Business Times, he also added: "Personally, I don’t know whether I believe that space will be a persistent one or not."

That marks the second criticism against tablets to come out of Australia in the past few days. On March 28, a Dell executive told CIO Australia that Apple's iPad had little chance in succeeding with businesses, due in part to its high cost with accessories.  

Microsoft remains a low-key presence in the tablet market, despite its rivals’ aggressive moves in that space. Apple’s iPad 2 is currently attracting around-the-block lines at its retail locations, and manufacturers, ranging from Samsung to LG Electronics and Toshiba, are all preparing new tablets for release over the next few quarters. While tablets have existed for years as a device for narrow industry segments, the original iPad is widely seen as responsible for making the form factor a viable consumer item.

Windows 7 has appeared on a small handful of tablets in the past year, courtesy of Hewlett-Packard and other manufacturing partners. However, many of these devices are aimed at the Asian market, and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer neglected to mention the company’s tablet plans during his keynote at this January’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

For more, read the eWEEK article: Microsoft Exec: Tablets Could Be Temporary Fad.