Is Windows 8′s Avoidance of 7-inch Devices a Bad Move?
So Microsoft’s Tami Reller has now confirmed that the Windows 8 platform is focusing on 10.1-inches or larger for all the tablets around the launch Window. Onuora spoke up and said he thinks it is smart for Microsoft to focus on the 10-inch market first and develop its place there before moving forward.
I honestly disagree– for the most part.
Sure, a Microsoft Surface tablet in this size format would make very little sense. Focus on the Surface RT and PRO, nothing else hardware-wise for now. BUT their vendors could truly do well with a 7-inch RT device. Sure, Windows 8 might not be best for such a small screen, but there is potential in this size of tablet.
Ignoring the market altogether will continue the (False) idea that Microsoft still is behind the times and doesn’t understand the tablet market as well as the competition. Apple ignored the 7-inch market for a very long time, but even they now realize that there are true money-making opportunities with smaller tablets.
Having a smaller tablet by a third party vendor using RT makes sense for a few reasons. First, it gives vendors a why to use RT without competing directly with the Surface. Second, it would probably allow $299-$350 tablets running Windows RT to arrive— this could put the device into the hands of consumers that wouldn’t otherwise consider any tablet over the $399 mark.
Personally, I’m just not keen to spend $400+ on a consumption tablet, even something as sexy as the Surface RT. I am considering the Surface Pro because I feel it can truly be the best of both worlds (PC and tablet), but for a WinRT only device, or an Android, or Apple? Eh, I think the Surface RT will do great and I love the way it looks, but I’m not sure I’d spend the money.
What I DO love about Android and Windows is that we have options in these ecosystems– not one size fits all like in the Apple world. Limiting the size of tablets doesn’t reduce their open system, but it does mean that those of us that like e-reader sized devices are left out in the dark.
While I disagree with the move to not include 7-inch devices, I still think Windows RT and 8 will be huge successes down the road. I also think there will be a time when 8 or 9-inch devices are explored by vendors as well.
What do you think, is Microsoft right to ignore the 7-inch market for now or should they have at least ONE vendor that explorers that path?