re: Microsoft Releases Windows 8 Tablet Specs
When Microsoft introduced the Tablet PC (or re-introduced, rather; the original IBM ThinkPad in the early 1990s was a tablet PC) in 2001/2002, the prototype hardware used a 600MHz Transmeta chip, 192MB RAM, XGA, a 6GB HD, and weighed 3 pounds. The only hardware requirements Microsoft issued were 1) an active digitizer, 2) good power management (like returning from suspend in two seconds), 3) screen rotation, 4) docking support, and 5) legacy free. Microsoft then issued a set of hardware recommendations, those being at least XGA resolution, at least 120 dpi, at last five programmable hardware buttons, and generally good ultraportable design (like 4+ hour battery, thin, no fan, WiFi, under 3 lbs.). That was that.
Personally, I don't think hardware requirements are important. The market will decide what sells and what won't. And I think the days when Microsoft could mandate what was allowed are long gone. I'd say whatever Microsoft specified this time is more like general common-sense guidelines.