Microsoft is slowly getting up to speed with a comprehensive OS strategy for PCs, tablets and smartphones. We still have to wait for it until 2012. That is when Microsoft launches Windows 8. Microsoft gave a preview of Windows 8 last week and it looks pretty good. It takes the Windows Phone 7 UI and expands it to tablets and desktop computers. When finished Microsoft has an OS that can compete directly with the Apple operating system offerings.
Microsoft has to rely on its hardware partners to deliver great Windows hardware. For the tablet, Microsoft may also put its own brand into the game. Digitimes reports that Microsoft considers to release an own-branded tablet in 2012. Microsoft is supposed to partner with TI and Taiwan-based OEMs/ODMs for the tablet. Besides the Xbox, no Microsoft branded hardware did really sell well, besides of course Microsoft mice and keyboards. The Zune is just an afterthought. A Zune Tablet might have the same fate. Microsoft needs to make sure its partners create great tablets that can compete with Android and Apple tablets.