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Report: Sinofsky Killed Windows 7 Tablets

By - Source: Extremetech | B 14 comments

A new report sheds new light on the tablet landscape and the accusation that hardware makers do not have enough imagination to support Microsoft's vision what a Windows tablet should look like.

Extremetech reports that "Microsoft partners apparently had a reference design for tablet hardware ready in time for Windows 7." They reportedly came to Microsoft with a request to support the hardware. According to Extremetech, the recently fired Windows president Steven Sinofsky refused to support to add tablet support in Windows 7.

There was no information how the tablet reference design looked like and there is at least some doubt that a tablet could have succeeded with the "old", non-touch-optimized Windows UI. However, if the report is accurate, it appears that hardware makers came up with the idea for a tablet substantially earlier than Microsoft did. Windows 7 was released in October 2009. Of course, if the report is accurate, it is also possible that Microsoft completely screwed its partners by first denying support and then releasing its own Surface RT tablet.

Sinofsky was also rumored to have been critical to killing the dual-screen Courier tablet in 2010, which, however, may have been a good decision and eventually sparked the ideas that ended up in Surface. This tablet is quite possibly the most emotional and anticipated product Microsoft has released since the Xbox 360, but Microsoft's slow adoption of touch computing - initial Windows notebook touch screen designs emerged as early as 1998 - and the following aggressive move to turn every Windows device into a system that prefers touch input could backfire twice. Not only is Microsoft late, but it may also have to fix Windows 8 for PCs.


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  • 13 Hide
    Thunderfox , November 22, 2012 5:33 PM
    This guy seemed to live on Windows 8 Koolaid. I'm glad he's gone.
Other Comments
  • -8 Hide
    Devoteicon , November 22, 2012 5:09 PM
    tablets are dumb and need to go away.
  • 13 Hide
    Thunderfox , November 22, 2012 5:33 PM
    This guy seemed to live on Windows 8 Koolaid. I'm glad he's gone.
  • -8 Hide
    coovargo , November 22, 2012 5:44 PM

    I hope you don't drag your desktop PC around you on a cart, or maybe we should go back to the 386.

    Tablet PCs about six years from now are going to be as powerful as current desktop PCs given the current rate of technology.

    But really though, the windows 7 OS in a tablet form would have been a hit with me. At least then I could run windows programs, and it would give me an excuse to run my older games on it. (Diablo 2, Empire Earth, Starcraft 1). Surprised they went from smooth and streamlined to hard and blocky. It feels like Windows 7 meets Windows 95 on 8 bit color.
  • 3 Hide
    nightbird321 , November 22, 2012 5:56 PM
    It takes both good hardware and software to make a good tablet. Even if vendors went to M$, I doubt any small effort could have produced a tablet version of windows that would make for a good experience. Then there is also the doubt that Intel CPUs are efficient and speedy enough in a tablet, even now.
  • 0 Hide
    RealBeast , November 22, 2012 6:30 PM
    Why do I get the sense when I read articles like this that half the management at Intel and Microsoft spends their time stifling innovation?
  • 5 Hide
    warmon6 , November 22, 2012 6:47 PM
    Devoteicontablets are dumb and need to go away.

    They're only dumb if you have no uses for them.

    For my needs, there no point of having a tablet. Run way too many things that require a lot of computing power.

    Although for those that only watch videos, play simple games, surf the web, or check there email, what more do you need? (yeah smart phones can do that as well but there some things you just need a bigger screen too see something.)

  • 1 Hide
    livebriand , November 22, 2012 7:03 PM
    And the funny thing is, I would much rather have Windows 7 on anything - even a tablet - than Windows 8. Glad that moron is gone... (now please let people disable metro, or else sales will continue to be poor)
  • 2 Hide
    merikafyeah , November 22, 2012 7:54 PM
    And yet there were/are tablets made for Windows 7, like the Samsung 7 Series Slate, which you can install Windows 8 Pro (not RT) on:

    This is perfect for those who were planning on getting a Surface Pro without the keyboard since it's spec'd almost exactly like a Surface Pro will be.
    (Not that you couldn't simply connect a cheaper USB keyboard like the Logitech K750 and start typing like you would on a desktop. Get some super cheap craft wire or get an old wire coat hanger and you can fashion yourself a ghetto tablet stand for next to nothing. And to think some companies have the gall to charge you $20+ for a mere tablet stand. Tsk tsk.)
  • 5 Hide
    suoeno , November 22, 2012 11:03 PM
    Not that I'm backing this Sinofsky character up but really it wasn't such a dumb call. Think about it? Even if he OK'ed Win 7's tablet support, it'd be his surefire earlier exit because >>>

    A) which/what ARM or Intel Atom x86 SoCs at the time that have achieved the levels of efficiency available in today's SoCs? Win 7 tablets were already auto-doomed in that aspect.

    B) look at Win 8 + RT's touch UX balance. Not that good enough and these are supposedly in comparison to 7 are designed from the ground up w/ touch UX in mind, let alone to talk about Win 7?
  • 0 Hide
    ttcboy , November 22, 2012 11:27 PM
    Report: Sinofsky Killed Windows 7 Tablets

    Now Microsoft killed him :D 
  • 0 Hide
    bigdragon , November 22, 2012 11:58 PM
    I thought the Asus Ep121 and Samsung Series 7 Slates looked good. It's a shame Sinofsky prevented better designs from coming to the market. Have Microsoft (and Intel) learned yet that innovation works best for them when OEMs are turned loose to include whatever specs and parts they want? I see Microsoft pointing the finger at OEMs and then we get this story a day later saying they killed off OEM ideas.

    I want a good x86 tablet with a stylus for drawing. Intel, that means you can't randomly downclock the CPU when I'm using it (huge problem in Ep121). I am still waiting, and I don't want any of that secure boot crap.
  • 0 Hide
    zybch , November 23, 2012 5:38 AM
    RealbeastWhy do I get the sense when I read articles like this that half the management at Intel and Microsoft spends their time stifling innovation?

    No, that would be apple and their frivolous lawsuits.
  • 0 Hide
    CrArC , November 23, 2012 10:09 AM
    RealbeastWhy do I get the sense when I read articles like this that half the management at Intel and Microsoft spends their time stifling innovation?
    Because they probably do, if it makes 'business sense' to do it. They will be holding the R&D/MS techies back, refusing to support new ideas and projects because they aren't convinced on the cost-benefits. The larger and more bureaucratic companies get, the more this happens. This is why modern video games mostly suck as well. Watered down to appeal to the widest audience for more money. The 'passion' is secondary.

    zybchNo, that would be apple and their frivolous lawsuits.
    Every goddamn thread on Toms news posts has some twat bashing Apple for green thumbs. Stop it. Shut up. We get it, Apple sucks.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , November 23, 2012 12:03 PM
    Doesn't it seem like all they do is use Steven Sinofsky as a scapegoat for all the problems with Windows now that he is gone? You can't tell me that he is the sole person at Microsoft that made all of the decisions regarding Windows over the years...