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Hi, I’m Nick Parker and I lead the OEM Division at Microsoft.
Many of our partners are making announcements this week at IFA so it’s a good time to showcase some of the amazing hardware innovation coming to market with Windows 8.
IFA is one of the world’s largest consumer electronics trade shows and attracts upward of 150,000 people in Berlin each year. It’s great to see the buzz and excitement for the new products being announced, especially in the PC space.
The industry is building momentum for Windows 8, and the level of hardware innovation from components and hinges to ultrathin designs and beautiful touch displays is impressive. Customers will benefit from very rich and immersive experiences made possible by the combination of the incredible new Windows PCs and tablets running Windows 8 or Windows RT along with cloud services. With devices that range from tablets and hybrids to more familiar notebooks and all-in-ones on display at the IFA conference, it is clear that consumers will have a broad range of PC choices when Windows 8 launches.
Here are some of the highlights from Berlin this week:
Versatility is a key theme we’re seeing with Windows PCs, allowing consumers to use the devices in a variety of ways. This is what we mean by no compromises. The new line of “transformer” PCs from ASUS, such as the ASUS Vivo Tab RT, is a good example of tablets that run the Windows RT operating system powered by ARM processors and provide an easy docking setup that makes it a snap to go from the office to the coffee shop. Also powered by Windows RT, the Dell XPS 10 brings productivity, a mobile keyboard dock with long battery life, and support for enterprise applications to business users.
Samsung also announced a docking tablet with its new line of Samsung ATIV Smart PCs, due out this fall. True to Samsung’s heritage, the Smart PCs are sleek and powerful, but the real kicker is their support for a range of touch and gesture commands, which makes them amazingly adaptable for home, professional and commercial uses.
Some of the new hardware designs include keyboards, blurring the line between pure “tablet” PCs and “hybrids.” Several of the PCs on display at IFA this week are being billed as desktop replacements that function just as well in either mode.
Acer’s new Iconia W510 is an incredibly small and light example, outfitted with a cradle that allows the display to be used on the desktop via keyboard and mouse input or tilted back for easier touch control. The keyboard also functions as an additional battery, giving the PC up to 18 hours of battery life. The HP Envy X2 is another detachable tablet PC with a slick aluminum chassis and an interesting physical feature for docking — magnets embedded in the PC help pull and guide the tablet into the dock, making it easy to dock the machine and get to work.
Sony’s VAIO Duo 11 is a unique hybrid design that features a surf-slider keyboard which stays with the PC wherever it goes. The Duo also comes with a stylus that is a breeze to use, allowing users to write, doodle and interact easily in tablet mode. Toshiba’s Satellite U925t is a tablet-convertible version of its more traditional U920 laptop offering and features a 12.5-inch screen that easily converts to a tablet.
For more traditional notebooks, Acer, HP, Lenovo, Samsung, Sony and Toshiba have all refreshed their notebook and Ultrabook PCs to take advantage of touch capabilities in Windows 8 — Acer’s premium Aspire S7 and S5, HP’s Envy TouchSmart and SpectreXT ultrabooks, Sony’s VAIO T and VAIO E, all feature classic notebook designs with powerful components and responsive touch screens. The S7 in particular is designed with extra tension in the hinges so it can open up to 180 degrees, enabling a new type of collaboration scenario.
For those that want a more familiar laptop, consider the Lenovo IdeaPad S300 and S400 laptops, which include an updated touchpad that gives users a more controlled experience when scrolling and zooming.
All-in-ones are becoming increasingly popular, and designs from Samsung, Lenovo, Acer and Sony are bringing the world of touch to full-tilt desktop computing.
This is just a glimpse of some of the hardware innovation coming with Windows 8, and we look forward to bringing these PCs to market together with our partners later this year.
For more high-res images of these devices, check out the Microsoft OEM Newsroom Image Gallery.
I'm absolutely LOVING the new designs that the OEMs are producing this year. It's as if someone finally sat them down and said, "Listen. You guys have released the same, boring, tired boxy-looking designs for 20 years. It's time to switch it up and come up with something new and special."
And just look at the results! A lot of the devices look similar, sure, but some of them look truly unique too. They're doing a great job this time around.
Now I'm just looking forward to more Surface details, so I can start making some decisions about my holiday buying!
BTW, Microsoft, you guys have a great lineup this fall... PLEASE come out swinging fast and hard with marketing! I want to see more Microsoft ads than election ads! Seriously.
Outstanding look! I am eagerly waiting to buy my new Windows 8 lappy
This is awesome. I hope it puts to rest all rumors that Microsoft is trying to kill its partners.
I hope Microsoft decided to resurrect the Courier project.
It would make a perfect "Surface Pro"
Are they going to make a computer with similar specs to current laptops? I want a 500gb hardrive 8gb of ram, a quad core processor, some super duper AMD or Novida graphics card, a 1080p screen, ect. I'm ok with it being a little thicker than these computers, however I still want a capacitive touch screen. I still want it do be less bulky than current laptops. Sort of in the middleish. I'm sure I'm not the only consumer like this.
Prices!!! Where are the prices? I'm dreaming of surface in my sleep!
what's the technology landscape like for desktops? I desperately need a high-end desktop. no touch-screen please. my arm would wear out.
I just hope Microsoft new tablet comes with 4GB ram 100Gb solid state drive it should have 2 SD card slots with one USB and one e-SATA slots. this would make it more friendly to all user. Microsoft people thinks for what you do keep working hard
I am running Windows 8 on my studio 17 with 4gb ram I will tell you this it starts better and faster then Windows 7. So far I'm very please with Windows 8. Here are some of the program that I'm running on my PC Coral Paint shop Pro X4, Coral Video 12, Cyberlink Power DVD12 & Power2 go 8 from Cyberlink, Office 2007 & 2013, WYSIWYG 8 so far all programs work find. Going to try all my Cyberlink software off my desktop soon. Must people that I show Windows 8 to say they like seeing the information that the app give and that it look like the new windows phone. So the why that I look at it is Microsoft is on the right track they just need to remember that lots of people would like all there device to work the same. They do not like having to learn a new device. Why can't you PC Tablet and phone work the same?
Most anticipated Windows device designs.
I think the knew concepts are great. I also downloaded beta windows 8 for my windows 7 desktop and I like it alot. Indefinetly interested in surface product as I really don't use my iPad much outside of browsing. Wish I knew pricing and more specs. People always hating on Microsoft for some reason. I also have a lumia 900 and love it and I was a long time iPhone user.
Designs are make to users...thanks my friend
It looks like the designs are inspired by apple design with little changes to iits interfaces. However, I love the slickness of it.
Exciting times! Great innovation. Hope the pricing in the UK is competitive.
+1 for e-SATA
This design absolutely timely design. It is very helpful for tec lover. to discover this product.
I just went from XP to W 7 pro, less than a year ago. $2500 in hardware (quad core, 16g ram, 2 TB HD) only to find out none of my XP software worked, then added another $1500 in software. Now W 8 is going to make my W7 worthless.. what a bunch of crap.
Iwroy, with windows 7 pro Microsoft has two downloads you can get for free to malke any Windows xp program work on it. It makes the Windows 7 machine virtual Xp machine. you have to be in this mode to install the softare for yoru programs. I have an old accounting program Quickbooks 2000 and it works this way. IT will not work on 7
This is to lwroy , i fully understand what you are saying but the issue with some xp programs not working was well documented, and there were ways around it (sometimes) and also with pro could not get around it, they must be old programs, but as for windows 8 if you are posting here you should have known it was coming a long time ago, and this issue with anew products coming out has been forever. So why are you upset, use what you have for as long as you can.
This is to WCO Sales, as for IT not working with win 7 this is not new, for most of them who pound their chest telling everyone how good they are DO NOT WANT CHANGE since they need to realize they will need to learn something new, so they figure a way around it. Also since 2008 a lot of company's have not been building up there computers with new ones because of money issues, that would force theses people into win 7 and now into win 8. So good luck with it all
Good to see OEMs finally pushing out something other than Macbook Air cones.
I hope MS sets a standard with the Surface devices. OEMs have been selling unfinished stuff for too long.
I think my biggest complaints about Windows laptops are:
1. Functionality & Design: Poor touchpads, passable but poor keyboards, poor heat management (i don't like my lap getting uncomfortably warm). Also, ultrabooks so far have been either uninspired or too expensive. Even the expensive ones always miss something or the other.
Worst offender is the touchpad, if Apple can do it, then why can't anyone else? I'm sure it's not that hard.
2. Bloatware: So much bloat! It actually makes Windows look bad.
3. Must be user servicable. That's the reason why the PC as a platform can cover everything from a VIA nettop to a Mac (lol) to my custom assembled rig over here, next to me.
I think it would be great if we could have MS branded laptops, a few designs made in collaboration with AMD and Intel, and then adding other vendors like AMD/ATI and Nvidia on top of the base platforms. Price them higher, i don't care, just make them appealing and get them right to perfection.
As far as Win 8 is concerned, i think it's great for the devices mentioned in the article: Tablets, touch screen notebooks and touch screen AIOs (of course phones as well).
However, i strongly believe that for traditional mouse and keyboard users, there should be an option available to restore the old UI interface. Maybe MS can offer it as a seperate download or optional service pack, and then they can get an actual estimate of how many people like the "Windows 8 UI" with a mouse and keyboard.
Otherwise the OS is slick. I'll wait for Win NT 7, though.
unrelated P.S. :
Also, Halo 4 for the PC, come on now. The PC was your ticket to sucess, MS. So why not show us what a game can really do with Windows 7/8 and DX11?
It's an open challenge, make a game that's extremely efficient but extremely detailed, extremely resource efficient, extremely well put together and looks spectacular on the PC.
I wants it. We all wants it. We awaits it.
Leave it to consumer reporting once again. ME was fine... dumb users had transition issues because they bought 2000 first accidentally. XP was buggy, then great after fixes. Vista is fine! Win7 same, just fewer resources- both were crap because 32 bit versions don't work- both great in 64 bit.
Ahh... Win8... thanks for leaving out all of us graphic and media artists who WILL NOT BE UTILIZING A TOUCH OR GESTURE INTERFACE. THANKS FOR AN INTERFACE THAT NEEDS TO BE MEMORIZED FIRST BEFORE CAPABLE NAVIGATING, THANKS FIR POOR FILE MANAGEMENT, A-LA MOBILE PLATFORMS. THANKS FOR CRAPPY SPLIT SCREEN FOR MULTIPLE APPS. THANKS FOR NON FUNCTIONAL DESKTOP WITHOUT START MENU AND INABILITY TO ACCESS APPS FROM IT WITHOUT DIGGING AND CREATING OWN SHORTCUTS.
THANKS FOR A GREARMT REASON USERS TO SWITCH TO THE SAME CLOSED IN OS THAT LINUX AND MAC HAVE CREATED. If Microsoft was smart, they'd leave Metro for RT only and leave desktop aline. Just but Amiga already like you did Corel and make OS that's seamless across devices while using different UI's. RT and Win8 don't even use same apps? Does that mean you have to buy twice? GARBAGE! Worst OS update in history. This should have been your mobile platform only.
I have a good feeling about the new designs and the speed that this new W 8 OS does.
I have tryer windows 8 what a wast of my time. I was verry disappointed in it , no start page ,hard to navigate ect.
Windows 8 is awesome! Unfortunately some will disagree, but there is nor can there ever be an operating system that pleases all. Having used it for several months I find it easier & easier to use - yes there is a learning curve and there was a learning curve going from DOS to Windows. That's part of the dynamics of innovation. As humans we prefer the status quo, for comfort level. That prevents the opportunity for improvement. Thinking outside the box is always key.
Windows 8 is certainly a departure from the Windows everyone has been accustomed to for quite some time. That doesn't mean it had to stay like that. Windows 8 gives users "options" - many options under one roof. Instead of focusing on what it might not have today, it's more productive to focus on what it can do and the future opportunity of what it wil do. That's what's key!
Each of these devices probably attracts a different type of user and it will only get better. The Surface will come out in the ARM architecture with the Windows RT op sys on October 26th and it will be interesting to see it in action. The follow-up to it that works on Windows 8 Pro, will be even more exciting to see what it brings to the table.
This was certainly a bold move for Microsoft. Instead of following in its previous footsteps of being "me-to", it is embarking in a new direction that will hopefully bring the company and its users new avenues not possible before. It was about time!
Lwroy... All your software will work on windows 8... And it will be more stable and faster...
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