re: Windows 8.1: Thanks For Listening, Microsoft
Agreed. Mobile devices will never be useful for that sort of work-- though desktop computers are already starting to resemble, and sometimes even function as, giant tablets. That shift is form factor doesn't mean users will stop using a mouse and keyboard, but I think it shows that even users with specialized needs will soon find a variety of device types to choose from. And for users with general needs, the sky's the limit: for this group, the functionality a smartphone provides is about 80% of the functionality they'd use in a high-end PC. Tablets only narrow that gap.
This explosion in choice is, more than anything, what the slow PC market is really about. Tablets aren't going to take over all tasks anymore than desktop PCs are going to go extinct; rather, tablets are just a sign that the ways we define "computer" aren't adequate anymore.
The question for Microsoft is this: with so many device types out there, can Windows 8 successfully span so many sizes, form factors and use cases?