Preston Gralla

Toshiba pulls the plug on Windows 7 tablet --- will Windows tablets ever gain traction?

May 25, 2011 2:35 PM EDT
By Preston Gralla

More bad news for Microsoft in tablets --- Toshiba has apparently pulled the plug on its plans for a Windows 7-based tablet. Given that it was already available for pre-order, and slated to be shipped in June, this is very bad news for Microsoft. At this rate, will Windows ever become a significant presence in the tablet market?

DigiTimes reports that Toshiba had abandoned its plans for developing Windows 7-based tablets, and says that a Windows 7-based tablet has "already disappeared from Toshiba's latest product roadmap, according to sources from the PC industry."

DigiTimes also reports that Toshiba was "set to launch its Android 3.0-based tablet PC in June, featuring Nvidia's Tegra 2 processor and a 10.1-inch panel, and the device is already available for pre-order in the US market." In addition, Toshiba had touted the tablet at the CES show earlier this year.

Most likely, that means Toshiba canceled the product because pre-orders were poor and the sales force couldn't sell it.

Windows 7 isn't suited for tablets, so this should be no surprise. Unlike iOS and Android (especially 3.0, Honeycomb) Windows 7 wasn't built for tablets. It requires too much hardware overhead, wasn't built for touch interaction, and its interface isn't tablet-friendly.

Windows 8, when it arrives in either 2012 or 2013 will be built for tablets. But by that time, the market may already be sewn up by iOS and Android.