re: Microsoft Tablet Surfaces A New Strategy
Surface is a STRATEGIC BLUNDER OF HUGE MAGNITUDE! Here's why:
1. Surface inflicts serious injury to already embattled OEMs--the PC OEMs are struggling to make a profit as the PC business is under attack from Apple driven consumerization. OEMs looked to Win8 tablets and ultrabooks to restore profitability. Those hopes are now dashed as MSFT takes one of the most profitable slices.
2. This can't be a move to motivate OEMs to do better against Apple, as MSFT is to blame--the OEMs are singularly dependent on MSFT for a true tablet OS. Last I checked, MSFT still doesn't have one in production (it's June 2012. tic, toc, tic, toc). MSFT is the prom date that took forever to get dressed, and now shows up with another date complaining about how late the awkward threesome is.
3. OEMs will strike back: OEMs have always strived to "hedge their bets" by working with others: Android, Linux, AMD, ARM. The alarms must now be at DEFCON 1 as it's mission critical that OEMs sever the dependency with MSFT, there new competitor.
4. Apple will almost certainly exploit this blunder by forming back-office partnerships with Dell, HP, and IBM to sell Apple based servers. The HW OEMs will bite becuase "my enemies enemy is my friend."
A better alternative would have been for MSFT to specify a minimally acceptable design (similar to what Intel did with Ultrabooks). Then let the OEMs compete to improve it. Simple, leverages, rather than weakens, the power of the ecosystem.