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8/2/2012
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Microsoft Surface The Next Zune?

Analyst says Microsoft needs to work with PC industry partners to bring down price of Windows 8 tablets.

8 Things Tablets Still Can't Do
8 Things Tablets Still Can't Do
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Microsoft's Windows 8-powered Surface and Surface Pro tablets will be too pricey and face too much competition to have much impact on the mobile computing market when they launch Oct. 26, according to a research firm.

"The information available to date suggests the prices of both will be too high to capture significant market share, and a direct sales approach will prove inadequate," said Tim Coulling, who watches the the computing market for research firm Canalys.

"We expect the Surface pads to have a similar impact on the PC industry as Zune did in portable music players," said Coulling, referring to Microsoft's ill-fated MP3 player, which it pulled from the market last year.

Zune never was able to dent the iPod's stranglehold on the MP3 market, and Coulling believes Surface will be similarly challenged against another Apple blockbuster--the iPad.

[ Read Will Microsoft Surface Tablet Cost $1,000?. ]

Canalys believes Windows 8 tablets from other vendors also could have a tough time competing unless Microsoft lowers the price. Early reports indicate the tablets that run Windows RT, the version of Windows 8 built to run on mobile ARM chips, could start as high as $500, which is also the entry price for the new iPad and more than twice the price of Amazon's hot-selling Kindle Fire.

Intel-based Windows 8 tablets likely will cost even more.

"Canalys has advised PC vendors (Microsoft's OEMs) to postpone launches of Windows RT pads until Microsoft rethinks the high license fee," the firm said in a report this week. "'Once the Surface puts a material dent in Microsoft's P&L, it will need to repair relationships with vendors, who are already preparing lists of demands," said Canalys' Chris Jones.

Hewlett-Packard, for one, has confirmed that it has no plans to produce Windows 8 RT tablets. Canalys said Microsoft should help OEMs deliver competitively priced slates by subsidizing components costs such as touch screens "to kick start the market."

Windows 8 tablets and PCs hit stores on Oct. 26. Microsoft on Wednesday said the OS has reached the release-to-manufacturing (RTM) stage and is now in the hands of its PC industry partners.

Developers can download the final version of Windows 8 through their MSDN subscriptions, starting Aug. 15. IT departments with Software Assurance for Windows can download Windows 8 Enterprise Edition through the Volume License Center, beginning Aug. 16.

Volume license customers without Software Assurance can purchase Windows 8 from Volume License Resellers, as of Sept. 1.

Android and Apple devices make backup a challenge for IT. Look to smart policy, cloud services, and MDM for answers. Also in the new, all-digital Mobile Device Backup issue of InformationWeek: Take advantage of advances that simplify the process of backing up virtual machines. (Free with registration.)

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moarsauce123
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moarsauce123,
User Rank: Ninja
8/6/2012 | 11:16:41 PM
re: Microsoft Surface The Next Zune?
One way would be to lower the cost of Windows overall. Eventually Microsoft will need to give W8 away for free just so that someone uses it. That will bring the prices down.
ANON1238069211759
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ANON1238069211759,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/6/2012 | 5:49:25 PM
re: Microsoft Surface The Next Zune?
If this does more than my current ipad (ipad I) which is a gloified web browser and angry bird player. Ill get one. (but Ill get one anyways, the burden I must bear for head of IT). Seriously though, if it can be used for business better than the iPad it could be a winner. I got an iPad I when they first came out, but I rarely use it. My kids use it way more than me.
Capealava
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Capealava,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/4/2012 | 6:13:21 PM
re: Microsoft Surface The Next Zune?
To Khula,
First off all I do not believe you own any apple products. Therefore your post is a fabrication paid for by Microsoft. It is well know than Microsoft has a cadre of paid for commentator. I am assuming you are one of these.
Capealava
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Capealava,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/3/2012 | 6:01:28 PM
re: Microsoft Surface The Next Zune?
Microsoft has money to burn. Amazing how they keep pumping out losers. Balmer should resign. I mean really. He is such a loser. And the people such as Paul McDougall who keep writing this crap about Microsoft should be banned from all Tech magazines foe worthless news. Gates is out trying to save the world with his billions-but amamzingly after supposedly giving away billions and billions his personal fortunes seems to alway remain the same or even increase a bit. He is A the perpetual Nerd who should just drift off into the sunset.
Khula
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Khula,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/3/2012 | 10:51:37 AM
re: Microsoft Surface The Next Zune?
If this device does half of what I saw @ the lunch, I'm ditching my MacBook & IPad to get the Pro Version, It will cost me less thant the two apple products including all the other devices I bought separately for my Ipad.. the great is that I wont have to carry abig bag whenever I go, this hybrid will do just fine.I can play n work in one device, why didnt Apple think of this.
moarsauce123
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moarsauce123,
User Rank: Ninja
8/3/2012 | 9:18:04 AM
re: Microsoft Surface The Next Zune?
@jsantana0793

Spoken like a true Microsoft astroturfing shill. Well done to you.

P.S: Keep your day job. You'll be a horrid tech pundit.
jsantana0793
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jsantana0793,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/2/2012 | 7:11:19 PM
re: Microsoft Surface The Next Zune?
First of all, I have to say that Microsoft has yet to set a price.. 2nd, its not a Zune and its not going to be like the Zune.. This product is more of a PC and Pad, where Ipad is just an over size iphone, ipod touch with limited options. I love it when a person types an artical that makes no real analysis. Idiots like this makes me laugh becuse Microsoft did not spend billions of dollars for all of the ecosystem to fail.. What this guy does not seem to understand that each of ever devise is more than just one.. It a combo of Phone, Xbox, pad, windows 8 and much much more. Zune of one lonely product. Surface is part of something new, something bigger and something that will do very well. If Im right with my Analysis, then I want this guys job.. he can have mine..
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