Top Tech Stories: Microsoft’s Tablet Efforts
To switch things up a bit, here’s a non-Apple piece. Microsoft is coming into a huge year. It’s replacing CEO Steve Ballmer, integrating Nokia (NOK) into its operations as a mobile devices arm and struggling to stay relevant in a world where PCs and Windows are declining in importance.
While the new Surface 2 tablet shows that the Windows RT experience has improved, Microsoft is seeing minuscule uptake on the platform. In Q2, despite steep discounts, Microsoft managed to move just 200,000 Surface RT tablets, compared to the 14.6 million iPads Apple sold. And Microsoft’s OEM partners have backed out of making their own RT devices to boost the platform.
As IDC points out in its report on Q3 tablet shipments, “Windows tablets continued to struggle to win over consumers.” Most of the Microsoft tablet sales have been the full-blown Windows version, with tablets running Windows 8 RT failing to have a significant impact on the charts.
In 2014, I’m waiting to see if MSFT dumps Windows RT and whether cheaper 7-inch Windows 8 tablets can leverage enterprise adoption to get Microsoft anywhere near double-digit tablet marketshare.