One of the most cited problems with the slow reception of Windows 8 is the fact that OEM are yet to create devices that bring out the best in the new operating system.
Microsoft has reportedly brought this issue up more than once in internal meetings — now the company seems to be sharing this with the general public.
Craig Mundie, Microsoft’s Chief Research and Strategy Officer believes that Microsoft had allowed partners a bit of a free hand to design their Windows 8 products, without setting any guidelines that could have a guaranteed higher quality devices. Talking to The Verge he noted:
“We said, ‘oh the OEMs, that’s their design, they deal with it.”
According to him, while Microsoft got huge amounts of diversity out of this decision at all possible price points, it came at the expense of quality.
It became hard to guarantee a uniform quality of experience for the end users, so much so that Redmond itself had to take the flak for this highly variable experience. He continued:
“I think one of the things evolved over a long time in the PC business was we stopped some years back really trying to actively curate what the devices looked like.”
Without detailing what the company has planned for Windows 8 on the software front, Mundie did explain that Microsoft is currently paying more attention and attention to hardware and design:
“One of the big challenges that the company faced in the last couple of years was just the question of, would there be a very high quality physical device that would go up against Apple?”
This much is clear that the Surface was designed from the grounds up to put up a challenge to the iPad. Microsoft wanted to create a device that competed with it in several areas, from hardware to design, form and functionality, price and screen size.
While how much of a success it registers will be known in the months that follow, the company still is reported to be working on expanding the Surface lineup with smaller (and larger) devices.