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Windows 8 Devices Get Cheap
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AsokS489
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AsokS489,
User Rank: Strategist
3/2/2014 | 12:24:34 AM
Re: CRAP IS CRAP, EVEN IF IT'S FREE
Microsoft Flunky to New CEO: Sir, people don't think our Windows poop-on-stick sandwich 8.1 is very tasty.


New CEO: No problem. Lower the price 70% on Windows poop-on-a-stick sandwich 8.1. It'll still taste horrible but at least it will be cheap.

Microsoft Flunky to New CEO: But sir, why not make it tastier instead?

New CEO: Are you kidding me? Then we would have to admit we were wrong about the taste. Boy, do you have a lot to learn! That's why you're a flunky and I'm a CEO!

 
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Apprentice
2/28/2014 | 7:04:57 PM
Re: CRAP IS CRAP, EVEN IF IT'S FREE
@anon- When it comes to windows phone I have to agree that Microsoft is a failure. The navigation itself is driving me nuts. (The same way it did when Windows 8 desktop version was launched)
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Apprentice
2/28/2014 | 7:02:16 PM
Re: CRAP IS CRAP, EVEN IF IT'S FREE
@Johnd985 – Don't you think reducing the prices will make Microsoft devices more attractive to the customers? 
Laurianne
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Laurianne,
User Rank: Author
2/27/2014 | 2:58:54 PM
What is the right price?
I am helping a family member shop for a new tablet right now. (I brought up Chromebooks as an option, for the price advantage. But not everyone wants to learn a new interface.) What do people think the right pricepoint is for a Windows 8 tablet?
Michael Endler
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Michael Endler,
User Rank: Author
2/25/2014 | 3:13:53 PM
Re: How does a $250 Windows 8 laptop sound? Or a $200 2-in-1?
Maybe, but Microsoft runs interesting promotions-- e.g. buy Office 365 for your teachers and all of your students get it for free. That stuff had already sweetened the deal enough to persuade some, and cheap devices can only help.

My bigger concern is that the new devices end up too cheap. The first low-cost Windows mini-tablets (i.e. that used the previous generation Atom chips) were almost unusable because of poor hardware-- I'm talking about at you, Acer Iconia. The newer, post-8.1 batches have been much better, thankfully. Anyhow, the same point could apply for these forthcoming, low-cost Windows laptops and 2-in-1s. Budget devices can filter users toward more lucrative services and higher-end machines-- but if the device components are too cheap and the experience suffers, it won't help.

Plus, as I've noted elsewhere, Windows 8.1 hasn't appeased mouse-and-keyboard concern as much as I'd expected. The upcoming update takes things a step further than 8.1-- but if it also produces less-than-anticipated adoption, what then? The idea that a $250, non-touch Windows PC will satisfy is predicated on the UI being agreeable to the average user.

Suffice to say, I see the market, but I also see the ongoing concern.
GBARRINGTON196
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GBARRINGTON196,
User Rank: Strategist
2/25/2014 | 3:02:31 PM
Re: How does a $250 Windows 8 laptop sound? Or a $200 2-in-1?
A market for a sub $250 tablet that runs Windows? Sure I can believe that, but a version of of MS Office to run on it that costs (either through susscription or outright purchase of license) that costs in the neighborhood of $120 a year? For Students? Sounds like a dumb purchase to me.
rradina
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rradina,
User Rank: Ninja
2/25/2014 | 2:04:00 PM
Re: How does a $250 Windows 8 laptop sound? Or a $200 2-in-1?
Metro a huge hit in 1994?  I'd like to see that.  It would run on a 640x480 256 passive LCD screen that sports a microwave-oven-quality touch screen, 5lb NiCad battery, coax Ethernet port whose signal terminator doubles as a handle and a 486 SX2/66 that might, might offer 8MB of RAM with the right EMS TSR to load drivers into high memory.  That would be something!
Michael Endler
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Michael Endler,
User Rank: Author
2/25/2014 | 1:18:01 PM
Re: How does a $250 Windows 8 laptop sound? Or a $200 2-in-1?
I don't think Office is irrelevant by any means, though it doesn't appear invincible in all markets any more. For enterprises, I think Office 365 presents a lot of legitimate benefits. For consumers, the advantages are less obvious-- especially because, as you point out, a lot of free/cheap alternatives are "good enough" unless you're a power user. But even for consumers, the multi-device licenses can be useful, and as Office apps become increasingly integrated with one another, the suite's collaboration and social tools could become a bigger deal, in the office and at home. In any case, even if there are good alternatives to Office, I think a market clearly exists for sub-$250 Windows PCs. Give students a non-touch, $200 laptop that runs Office, for example, and I think you'll see a lot of happy school administrators. The 8-inch Windows tablets that come close to that price point aren't all that useful for Office-- but a 13-15 inch, no frills laptop offers clear utility at that price.
GBARRINGTON196
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GBARRINGTON196,
User Rank: Strategist
2/25/2014 | 8:42:45 AM
Re: How does a $250 Windows 8 laptop sound? Or a $200 2-in-1?
As far as the Win 8 controversy goes, I think of it as a product being sold out of its time.  The Metro interface would have been a HUGE hit in 1994.  But now, it's a "me too" touch UI, and as a desktop UI, it addresses needs people simply don't have.  It is aimed at people a bit afraid of the computer, who have no experience with them and who have no pre-concieved ideas of how computers should work, and how they should work with computers.  There just aren't many people like that left.   Win 8 adresses issues that stopped being issues 15 years ago.

To a different poster, MS Office isn't irrelevant, but what it provides has become a commodity that can't really be sold at a premium.  It's like trying to get people to believe that a chicken sold by Tyson is significantly better than one sold by Perdue.  Chickens are still relevant, but a chicken is still a chicken.
rradina
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rradina,
User Rank: Ninja
2/25/2014 | 7:37:28 AM
Re: How does a $250 Windows 8 laptop sound? Or a $200 2-in-1?
The OP said his kids prefer Office.  As such, your comment is irrelevant.  Besides, a subscription is paying for the software you use.  Perhaps what you meant to say is that you prefer to pay once for a perpetual license.

 
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