News Analysis: Microsoft continues to say that Windows is the operating system that will eventually dominate the tablet market. But as Apple and Google continue their success in that space, it's becoming increasingly likely that Microsoft will have trouble dragging Windows to the top in the tablet market.
tablet market is heating up. Now
that Apple has sold more than two million iPads
, several vendors have
already jumped on board with Google's Android operating system. Rather than
wait and see how the market will turn out, they have instead decided to partner
with Google to deliver, what they believe, is the best alternative to the iPad.
disagrees. In a
, Microsoft executive Steve Guggenheimer said that his
company isn't concerned by vendors, including Acer and Dell, that have decided
to bundle Android in their tablets, rather than Windows. He said that the
market is still young and there is little to worry about.
But perhaps by brushing aside Android's threat, Microsoft
is missing the mark entirely
. Android is a fine alternative to Apple's
iPhone OS. It's also arguably the best option after iPhone OS. And all the
while, it's Windows that will have difficulty trying to compete in a market
that wants apps and entertainment over a full-fledged operating system. These
are the reasons why.
1. It's too late
Microsoft might think that it's just the beginning of the tablet
arms race, but it's sorely mistaken. Apple started the market, but it also
ensured that every other product to be released needs to compete with it. In
other words, Microsoft was late to the game. And once again, the software giant
will need to catch up to Apple. This is becoming a common issue with Microsoft.
Rather than see the writing on the wall and break into a market first with
outstanding software, the company waits for Apple to do it. And then, after
months or years of waiting, gets into it on its own. Windows is already in
trouble in the tablet space.
2. Google is playing to
As Google has shown as of late, the company is prepared to take on
Apple and ensure that Microsoft Windows doesn't get sure footing in the tablet
space. Recently, both
Dell and Acer
, the world's second- and third-largest PC manufacturers,
announced that they would be delivering Android-based tablets in the coming
months. Windows was nowhere to be found. With Google focusing so much of its
time on being the "other Apple" in the space, it's leaving Microsoft
to wonder why its own operating system just isn't cutting it.
3. Apple is there to stay
There's little debating that Apple wants to totally dominate the
tablet market. In fact, the company wants nothing more than to have the kind of
market share that it once enjoyed with the iPhone. That could spell trouble for
Microsoft and its Windows platform. Apple understands what it takes to be
successful in emerging markets. It also has a firm grasp on software and
hardware design, making it increasingly likely that the company will be able to
continue innovating beyond the first iPad. All the while, Microsoft is left
offering Windows 7 to vendors that realize quickly that in the tablet market,
that software just won't appeal to consumers as much as it would elsewhere.
4. It's not like the PC
Following that, it's important to realize that the tablet space is
nothing like the PC market. Having a company's software on as many products as
possible might help sales, but it probably won't be enough to corner a market.
In the tablet space, consumers are looking for solid hardware that has the
software that they covet. That's
entirely different from the PC space
. When buying computers, consumers are
first concerned with the software they want to run, and then focus on the
hardware. That mentality helps Microsoft. A hardware-focused consumer base does