Report: Windows 8 tablet rush on the horizon
Now that Microsoft® has officially unveiled Windows® 8, which will span both PCs and tablet computers, many industry observers are wondering how the next-generation operating system will affect the software giant's game plan.
The first Windows 8 machine isn't expected to hit the market until mid to late 2012. And, according to a PC Magazine report, the operating system's arrival will have a bigger impact on Microsoft's tablet business than its PC lineup.
Perhaps the most significant aspect of Windows 8 is its touch interface. Though Microsoft stresses that Windows 8 will be used for both tablet and PC platforms, the fact of the matter remains that the majority of PC users do not own touchscreen machines.
According to PC Magazine's Peter Pachal, this seems to suggest that Microsoft is shifting its focus more heavily toward tablets than desktop and laptop computers. As such, industry observers should expect a "Great Windows Tablet Rush" when the new OS arrives.
This shift in Microsoft's strategy may be wise, as the PC and tablet markets appear to be moving in opposite directions. According to research firm IHS Suppli, year-over-year tablet shipments will grow 245.9 percent in 2011. Meanwhile, Gartner estimates that PC shipments will grow just 3.8 percent.