So how committed are Microsoft to RT

Discussion in 'Alternatives to iOS and iOS Devices' started by Internaut, May 29, 2013.

  1. Internaut macrumors 6502a

    #1
    Now there's a question for you. At the moment, the Dell XPS10 is in the bargain basement bracket. PC World in the UK is now giving customers either the touch cover or the keyboard cover; a saving of up to £109.

    These devices are now approaching my curiosity threshold, but I wouldn't want to buy a white elephant that ends up unused and largely unsupported by the latest tablet software.
     
  2. spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

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    #2
    If MS is smart they will just let RT die a quick and painless death. They should concentrate on their low end tablets with the atom processors, and their high end tablets with ivy bridge, covering all angles of the market.

    RT was an attempt to battle Apples "toy" OS with another toy OS, and MS cannot compete with Apple head to head like that. The funny thing is that don't need to compete with them like that, full blown windows on a tablet already trumps iOS in so many ways. I think MS is starting to realize that, they have a commercial that makes fun of Siri as it compares an Atom windows tablet next to an ipad and some of the things the ipad cannot do, ending with the windows tablet shown being a couple hundred bucks less, that's the marketing they should have had from the beginning.
     
  3. AppleRobert macrumors 603

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    #3
    Which Windows 8 tablet with Atom processor is hundreds less than an ipad?
     
  4. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #4
    My opinion is that MS is seeing how RT is not generating the level of interest and sales, in fact most people openly deride it. I think they'll let it whither on the vine. I also think manufacturers will avoid building RT based tablets as well which will accelerate its demise.
     
  5. AppleRobert macrumors 603

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    #5
    Well the Surface has not dropped in price yet which kind of surprises me since my assumption is it did not take the market by storm which is really needless to say.
     
  6. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #6
    True, but then MS isn't looking to unload them in some sort of fire sale (yet). I forget but did MS drop the price of the zune as it struggled to gain marketshare back in the day? I'd hazard a guess and say probably not.
     
  7. spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

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    #7
    64gb ipad is $699, they were comparing it to an Asus Vivotab smart with 64gb which is $449. $250 is a pretty huge difference IMO.
     
  8. AppleRobert macrumors 603

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    #8
    Thanks. I did not know the Asus came with 64gb. I knew the price but now I am becoming even more interested in it.
     
  9. cube macrumors G5

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    #9
    I think the server is going to make it live on until the time is right for the client.
     
  10. spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

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    #10
    I owned one for a month, it's an incredibly nice unit and I really loved it. But I needed a digitizer and a 3g card so I went with the thinkpad tablet 2. For $449 though you just can't lose, although we are so close to baytrail (I'm hoping this holiday season) and/or Haswell consumers might want to wait. But still, $449...

    edit: $439 here:
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=&sku=900749&Q=&is=REG&A=details
     
  11. Internaut thread starter macrumors 6502a

    #11
    Wow - the only widely available Vivotab in the UK (and it has an Atom processor) is typically listed at £699!

    Edit - Jumped the gun. They sell the Smart on Amazon for £349.

    ----------

    All of which begs a question: How well does full Windows 8 perform on these Atom based devices? Remember, that toy OS on my iPad Mini and that other toy OS on my Nexus 7 both give a very smooth experience.
     
  12. sentinelsx macrumors 68010

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    #12
    A second gen of that with even improved battery life and processor would be a dream come true, i might even ditch my laptop for it considering i am buying a desktop any way and i want something that does not have a permanent keyboard attached all the time (a bluetooth or dock keyboard will be fine for me).
     
  13. spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

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    #13
    Well Haswell and Baytrail are around the corner, so we should start seeing better tablets than what is available currently. Battery life is as good if not better on the Atom tablets than an ipad, processor power though is worse than an ivy bridge tablet but IMO quite capable of running any windows task you throw at it.

    I'm hoping though that Haswell on the surface Pro 2 will make it thinner and give it 8ish hours of battery life. But I think the next generation of Atom tablets are going to be pretty insane, they currently get 10+ hours of battery life and the new iteration of the atom cpu is supposed to be much better with power, while bringing much improved performance and graphics. It's going to be a pretty incredible holiday season I think.
     
  14. Liquorpuki macrumors 68020

    Liquorpuki

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    #14
    I think the RT was MS's attempt to put out an ARM device, because nobody knows for sure who's gonna win the x86 vs ARM war. With RT and 8 tablets they have both bases covered. That said, MS's ARM ecosystem is so sparse it's not competitive at all, especially if they're not gonna make an active attempt to grow it.

    MS didn't need it to become a hit - they needed it to be a branding tool to lift up Windows 8 OEM's who were killing the platform by putting out cheap junk. I read somewhere their roadmap going forward is to get Windows 8 to the #2 spot in tablet penetration, with Surfaces taking a 50% share of Windows devices. Pretty ambitious but I think the Surface and Win8 are disruptive products. Just nobody sees it yet because MS is an eroded brand that's regularly dismissed.

    On that note, the Japanese version of the Surface Pro is gonna have a 256 GB option and come with Office. MS is listening to their customers.
     
  15. spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

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    #15
    It seems they screwed up on both counts IMO. Why support ARM when there are virtually no programs designed for it, it makes absolutely no sense when the Atom CPU's were readily available and Atom powered windows tablets were released very soon after the surface RT was released. Additionally MS chose the wrong platform, ie Ivy Bridge, to release as a branding tool, the surface pro is just a jack of all trades master of none type device that will only gain a niche following, it's too thick, heavy, and battery life is too poor to be a decent tablet, and it also is too small and keyboard limited to be a decent laptop. Add on top the crappy UI/DPI/Scaling on windows 8 on such a high resolution yet small screen and it's just a very weird device.

    If MS had thrown all their strength behind the Atom tablets I think we would have a very different story, but instead they fragmented the market with the utter junk that is RT, then they let the OEM's get pissed and completely miss the release date of Win8 in releasing their own tablets which made MS look utterly stupid. Then they release a device before technology is ready for it, the surface pro. Add to all that trying to force people to use Metro, which is a horrible solution, although I do support MS I just think Metro was very poorly thought out. Meanwhile we have seen ZERO atom powered tablets from MS, but the atom tablets are the ones uniquely poised to take market share from the ipad. IMO MS finally gets this as they now have these commercials putting the ipad directly head to head with an atom tablet, but it's too little too late.

    So while MS could have had a branding tool AND a hit, but they ended up with a dead OS (RT), a stupid OS (Metro), a device that will be only a niche product (pro), and angry OEM's who now feel betrayed.

    Still, even with all that negativity I still think the incredible feeling of actually having a "real" OS in a thin light and 10 hour battery life package is one that is too powerful to be resisted. Despite MS best efforts to fail, they can't help but to succeed, especially when the new CPU's/graphic combos come out soon and as they realize their mistakes and both fix/improve Windows 8 and also begin to finally market themselves.
     
  16. Kashsystems macrumors 6502

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    #16
    RT may not die yet because there are some companies that I am aware of interesting in using Arm processors for embedded systems. This is a section of the market where RT can thrive in some form and do well as a lot of embedded systems use Windows.
     
  17. Liquorpuki macrumors 68020

    Liquorpuki

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    #17
    Every converged device is a jack of all trades, master of none. The jack of all trades argument doesn't mean anything, otherwise the first smartphones would've been DOA. Contrary to what analysts think, there's a good kind of compromise out there.

    Atom is meant to compete with ARM head-on. Ivy Bridge is a whole different story though and by sticking Ivy Bridge on a tablet form factor along with active cooling, MS has engineered something more disruptive than Atom would have ever been.
     
  18. spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

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    #18
    I'd have to respectfully disagree on both points. The surface pro is both a poor tablet and a poor laptop. An atom tablet is at least an excellent tablet and a mediocre laptop, possibly poor if your laptop needs required horsepower. You are right, there IS a good compromise, an atom tablet. This will change with Haskell/baytrail, but its true today.

    I also don't see atom competing with arm at all. Atom runs ANY legacy windows program you throw at it, Arm runs NONE unless the developer makes a specific version for it, how many programs are out there that run on RT?

    Ivy bridge on a tablet may be more successful than Atom, but that's tomorrow and not today, although IMO I don't believe that. Intel is set to give Atom a huge update in Baytrail and I'll bet battery life will still run circles around Haskell
     
  19. Liquorpuki macrumors 68020

    Liquorpuki

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    #19
    I think it's a use case issue. If you want to run a desktop game, Ivy Bridge fairs better than Atom. If you need to do something computationally heavy or that requires rendering, you're gonna prefer Ivy Bridge.

    Biggest things Ivy Bridge allowed MS to do is expand the upper end of the tablet market to have a $900 space and disrupt the Ultrabook market. With an Atom device, they would've gone head to head against the $500 tablet space and disrupted the Netbook market, which is already dead.

    As a converged device, Ivy Bridge tablets will always be a step behind the individual markets it tries to disrupt. The question is how good does it need to be to reach the point of good compromise. For those who need more portability, Atom is a better fit and Ivy Bridge is not there yet. But for a lot of power users, the Surface Pro is already a good compromise. For me it's the best hardware purchase I made over the past year and I'm excited because Intel's roadmap only means the device will get better.

    As chips, both Atom and ARM compete for the same market segment - mobile devices that require passive cooling.

    From a strategic POV, MS releasing RT makes sense. Trying to hedge itself in case x86 loses the x86 vs ARM war (as opposed to Apple, whose entire tablet strategy is predicated on ARM winning it all). Execution wise it's been a failure though and I expect MS to either scrap it or keep it as a pet project in the background.
     
  20. spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

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    #20
    Yeah I agree, it is a case by case issue, although having owned a surface Pro I still think it's poor for running games as a tablet AND a laptop, although I won't deny it is still better than an Atom tablet but that's not saying much. Besides games I really haven't seen anything the Pro is not anything more than nominally better than the Atom at doing computationally.

    I see your point about disrupting the ultrabook market, which I agree to a certain extent, but in a future iteration, not with today's product. Even besides that though the tablet market is MUCH larger than the ultrabook market ever was or will be, and to disrupt the tablet market would be MUCH much more valuable IMO.

    As for power users, I still don't see much of a need for the power, not at the expense of the poor battery life and size/weight, at that point you are almost certainly tied to a power outlet and still have a sore back and shoulder as with a laptop. You've just lost 90% of the appeal of having a tablet, and you still don't have a real keyboard or even a laptop keyboard. Unless you have a specialized niche need the Pro is pure overkill, I don't deny it's a nice machine, but it will only be niche at best in todays iteration. The future will be a different story though and I'll be first in line for that.

    As for mobile devices that require passive cooling, this is something that is invisible to the consumer, it's most apparent with the Surface Pro which has active cooling, but to the consumers eye is passive, just as technology to a native will be like magic hehe.

    I still think the RT strategy was a mistake from the beginning and didnt make sense. Well let me quantify that, it *might* have made sense if MS was able to have a huge App market and was able to release a truly mobile version of win8 and was able to garner true support and loyalty from the OEMs, it did none of these, although I think even with these things it was still putting itself head to head against Apple and look how long it took Google to make headway there and that's WITH Google accomplishing those things I mentioned. No RT was a terrible strategy versus the Atom tablets. The atom tablets boast doing ANYTHING windows can do, and that's such an incredibly strong ability but MS squandered it. I'm still having a very hard time seeing where ARM tablets fit in anywhere, where is the advantage? Apps/programs? battery life? size/thinness/weight? It has an advantage in none of those and in some a deep deep disadvantage.
     

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