When Windows 8 launches on Oct. 26, it will have a lot to prove about how well the operating system will work on tablets. The operating system, which will work just fine on traditional PCs, is designed to provide a high-end experience on tablets.
Some of those tablets will be running Microsoft’s ARM-based version, Windows RT, while the others will come with Windows 8 Pro. So far, few vendors have unveiled their plans for Windows 8 slates.
Still, we know that some Windows 8 tablets are coming. When they do, we can only hope that they’ll offer an array of features that will make them and the operating system a success in the mobile market. From a big screen to an innovative design, it’s clear that in order to be successful and compete against Apple’s iPad, Windows 8 tablets are going to have to appeal to both consumers and enterprise users. More importantly, those tablets should deliver that by way of aesthetics and components.
Take a look at the sort of features Windows 8 tablets must offer to be successful in the hotly contested tablet market this year and next.
1. Big screens
Although 7-inch tablets have been successful, that’s only because they’re cheap and don’t try to do too much. Windows 8 tablets, however, will attempt to replace lightweight notebooks running the operating system. Therefore, they need to be more powerful and come with a big display. In that end of the space, it’s what customers expect.
2. An innovative design, like Surface
One of the nicest things about Microsoft’s Surface tablet is that it’s innovative. The device comes with a beautiful VaporMg finish, and its kickstand is an added benefit that can’t be overlooked. In order to compete against that device, all Windows 8 tablet vendors must be able to deliver a fresh designâor else.
3. Windows 8 Pro
Windows 8 Pro is the operating system that most customers will want to use. It’ll support all applications, come with all the latest Windows 8 features, and make enterprise users far more productive. Windows RT will be fine for casual users, but for serious customers, Windows 8 Pro is a necessary ingredient in any tablet.
4. Apps galore
In order for Windows 8-based tablets to be successful, they’re going to need an ample number of applications in the Windows Marketplace. Digitally delivered apps will be a key piece of the Windows 8 puzzle, but if it fizzles out and developers don’t care, the tablets will fail. Vendors, especially, can’t forget that.
Mobile Users Require 4G LTE Connectivity
5. Strong vendor support
Speaking of vendors, it’s imperative that many companies get into the mix. If the Android ecosystem has taught the marketplace anything, it’s that consumers are quite happy with choices. The more options available to them, the better. So, if Windows 8 tablets are going to be successful and achieve great strides over the next several years, vendors will need to get into the mix.
6. Competitive pricing
If Windows 8 tablets are too expensive, they will fail. It’s as simple as that. So, vendors will need to make sure that their pricing can justify customers putting down the iPad and choosing their product. In some cases, that might mean pricing the tablet for less than the iPad. In others, it might mean matching the cost. But never should vendors try to charge more than the iPad’s top price-$829-for their slates.
7. State-of-the-art processors
If Microsoft wants to truly achieve its goal of delivering a tablet that can replace lightweight notebooks, the company and its vendor partners must offer up state-of-the-art processors. Any outdated or less-powerful processors just won’t work in the mobile market.
8. Flash storage, for sure
In the mobile space, there is a very different experience delivered by Flash storage than traditional hard drives. Flash storage is quicker, offers fewer chances of malfunctioning, and yes, costs a bit more. But that shouldn’t matter. Flash storage is the key ingredient that makes tablets more responsive. Flash storage technology needs to play a role in all Windows 8 slates.
9. 4G LTE across the board
Since tablets are designed to be mobile, it would only make sense that all Windows 8 tablets are able to connect to the Web from a mobile network. However, the last thing the tablet makers should do is only support 3G. The future of mobile connectivity is 4G LTE and that’s is what buyers want.
10. One good version from every company
In the Windows ecosystem, sometimes vendors complicate things. They believe that by offering many models and features, it reduces the chances that buyers will go to a competing vendor. But that’s less likely in the case of tablets. Consumers want one good device from every vendor. Based on that information, they can decide what they want. Vendors can’t forget that.