LOS ANGELES--At Microsoft's Worldwide Partner Conference here, Windows tablets were on display tables but not in attendees' hands.
Windows 7 tablets from Fujitsu, Motion Computing, TabletKiosk, and others occupied a sizable swath of display area inside a pavilion devoted to Microsoft hardware and software partners. But walking the floor for five hours made it quickly apparent that iPads--being used by attendees--occupied the entire pavilion.
To be fair, Windows 7 tablets exist because they meet a need. For example, the retail and health care industries are big customers. And companies like Fujitsu and Lenovo will likely continue to provide hardware to those markets.
But the classic Microsoft tablet PC design does not--and never will--appeal to the much larger consumer market, where Apple and the Android camp now dominate.
There are plenty of reasons why consumers--including the "businesspeople" attending WPC 2011--don't buy Windows 7 tablets. And, conversely, why they do buy Apple's iPad. Two big reasons are the fact that Windows 7 has not been optimized for tablets and the popularity of iOS apps versus older "legacy" Windows applications. But design also plays a big role.… Read more