Hardware is hard stuff, no two words about it. For some companies it fits like a glove, for others it can wreck up some pretty irreparable destruction. It is all about the flow, and whether things are running in the right direction. Think BlackBerry.

Still, for some technology companies like Microsoft, hardware is even harder.

Microsoft actually has to balance its own hardware ambitions with the hardware market dynamics and more importantly the efforts of its hardware partners that license its operating system.

Yup, you guessed it β€” too high a use of the word hardware in the sentence above.

Redmond, obviously, still continues to bet big on Windows RT tablets, even as several manufacturers have decided to give up on this platform and develop products running the full version of Windows 8.

Famed industry analyst, Patrick Moorhead, talking to ITProPortal said that Microsoft is rather unhappy with the efforts of some of its partners in the tablet realm β€” including the largest of vendors like Dell, HP and Lenovo.

And it is for this reason that it tries to aggressively expand international availability of the Surface RT:

β€œThis new commercial channel thrust for Microsoft is significant and really shows their unhappiness with Dell, HP, and Lenovo’s efforts in tablets. Commercial markets are really the only place the PC OEMs are making decent margins and Microsoft has just entered their turf, most likely capturing some of the profits.”

Nevertheless, while sales of the device still remain low, Moorhead believes that the major reason for this is because of the lack of Metro apps, coupled by the limited distribution of the device in the holiday season last year.

Your thoughts on this, guys? Weighty argument, or just another arrow in the dark? Do comment!

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  • garak0410

    I’m a Microsoft Ecosystem fan and I’m putting up with their half finished apps and ideas (XBOX Music, Skype (which still has Live Messenger in there running.) I own a Surface Pro but like a 7-8″ tablet. Using the Iconia W3 as an example then yes, this article le rings true. I am reading and replying on a Nexus 7, wishing it was a Windows tablet. πŸ™

  • Ray C

    Price, too much being made of lack of apps, limited distribution were the issues. All 3 of those have been fixed. If Microsoft keeps the price where it is now or lower, the next generation should do a whole lot better. Both the Surface and Nokia’s tablet should do well if they’re priced to compete with competing products. They both should be priced cheaper than devices from Google or Apple with the same amount of Storage. Also, 68% of all tablets were the smaller ones. Microsoft didn’t have a true player in that market because the only Windows tablets in that size, and there was like 1 maybe, were from companies like Acer who put less effort behind pushing the product than HTC did with their phones.

  • 1stkorean

    I like Ray C. & garak0410 am a Microsoft fan having desktop, laptop, Windows Phone, Surface RT and Pro. Long before Surface RT was launched we were assured it would be priced comparable or less to other devices on the market as it turned out it took a kings ransom to buy one. Living in South Korea we were at the bottom of the list to get them and I wanted 4 for Xmas gifts. All I could do was fly to America and buy what I wanted. Once in US I was so surprised I could not buy it but only in a few places unlike Android devices I could buy most anywhere. But I got the 4 I wanted and went back to Seoul. All the talk started about the lack of apps, and I ask how many apps does one need 3,4,5 maybe 6 and the rest are a waste. I found in Korea a lack of apps in Hangul presented a slight problem but we all managed. When iPad launched in 2010 there was just over 3000 apps, and in May 2011, there were 174 applications that were exclusively available for Android Honeycomb 3.0.

    Yeah Surface RT had a few issues at launch, but so did the iPad and Motorola Xoom upon launch. Most of these problems have been fixed in Surface RT & Surface Pro. I think Surface 2.0 will be much better but MS needs to get that price down and have it sold everywhere at once, not release some now and a few more at a later date, and if MS plans on keeping both platforms they both need to be available at the same time globally.

  • Mike Greenway

    I think I’m tired of he said, she said.