Forrester Says Windows 8 Tablets Are Dead-on-Arrival

While 46 percent of US consumers would have wanted to own a Windows 8 tablet in Q1 2011, the share has declined to just 25 percent in Q3. Forrester's JP Gownder says that Microsoft's marketing essentially failed to keep a momentum in the market and "amp up" expectations.

Forrester's take is that any late-comer to a market needs a compelling strategy, which is what Amazon and Barnes & Noble apparently created, to establish a necessary consumer desire that can sell products. As it stands now, Gownder indicates that Windows 8 tablets that are simply me-too devices are dead on arrival and require a fresh and convincing approach to stand a chance in a cut-throat market.

"Windows 8 tablets must provide consumers with a more differentiated product experience than it otherwise would have, had Microsoft entered the market sooner," the analyst wrote. "They’ll have to take a lesson from Amazon’s product strategists, who fundamentally changed the tablet product experience by leading with content and services rather than feeds and speeds, at a compelling price point."

Without having seen a Windows 8 tablet, it is, of course, difficult to predict the opportunity of the OS on tablets. We haven't seen a cross-device integration yet. We don't know how Windows 8 tablets can interact with Windows 8 PCs and we don't know how well Windows 8 devices as well as Windows Phones will be able to interact with Xbox Live, which remains a strangely underused asset in Microsoft's Windows and Windows Phone lineups. It is a bit early to discount the opportunity of Windows 8 as a platform spanning a variety of devices just yet, especially since the new touch interface will work much better on a tablet than it will on a vertical notebook or desktop screen.

If Microsoft gets the cross-device integration right, Windows 8 could easily turn into the successful catch-up player Forrester believes it can't be on tablets.

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    Top Comments
  • jerrspud
    I'm I the only one waiting to buy one that has a real OS?
  • lancelot123
    I've been waiting for Microsoft to finally starting making some nice tablets. Screw Apple and Droid tablets. Give me one with a Windows OS so I can use any of my PC programs on it. Enjoy your Angry Birds while I play Starcraft.
  • haldarc
    Forrester couldn't be more wrong. I have an entire corporation just waiting to buy some Windows 8 tablets. Finally we can get rid of these Apple "toys" and get some real work done. True Microsoft Domain integration, corporate level control, and the ability to utilize our vast library of existing applications (without having to give Apple a cut). No doubt they're definately taking their time, but it will be worth the wait.
  • Other Comments
  • monkeysweat
    windows does have the most potential out there,, already have phones, consoles, Pcs,, not too difficult to make the tablet integrate with them and make it a 'home base' or controller... maybe even a second screen in some cases
  • billybobser
    to be honest, the fad is dieing down, and hopefully in the future, they'll be better integrated and actually worth having.
  • jerrspud
    I'm I the only one waiting to buy one that has a real OS?