The tech industry isn’t just about one product. It’s about that product, and the products that emerge to compete. We see it every day, but sometimes something gets released that, at least right off the bat, doesn’t see any real competition. This year, that product is Apple’s iPad. And while many people are looking in just about any direction they can to find something that can dethrone Apple’s tablet device, Microsoft still looms in the background. Are they the company to make it happen? Steve Ballmer seems to think so.
He will admit though, that the iPad has sold a lot of devices. “They’ve sold certainly more than I’d like them to sell, let me just be clear about that.” That was a choice comment from Ballmer, Microsoft’s CEO, as he was speaking at Microsoft’s Financial Analyst Meeting. He goes on to outline that Microsoft has to make something happen, that it’s up to them to create something worthy enough to draw attention away from the iPad, and to whatever slate-like device they release.
What’s probably most noteworthy, though, is his relation to the tablet market and the netbook market of yesteryear. He pointed out that Microsoft didn’t lead that movement, but now they are certainly the most dominant proponent of it. He is apparently suggesting that, just like how Linux was in the lead for netbooks, that Apple’s iOS will be in the lead for tablets for a little while, but that Microsoft will soon take it over. We’ll have to wait and see, and hope that the versatility of Windows 7 (or something) and those manufacturing partners mean that something worthwhile gets released sooner than later.