16 Comments

Summary:

When Microsoft rolled the Tablet PC bits into Windows Vista it was clear the end of the Tablet PC as a unique product line was near. The end is here as the Microsoft Tablet PC Team blog has closed the doors. RIP.

Tablet PC Team Dissolves

There has been a lot of talk lately about the Microsoft Tablet PC and that fruity pad thing. The banter has rekindled the regret I’ve felt over the years due to the lack of public support for the Tablet from the folks who created it. The fact that Microsoft never made a big marketing push to show the world what the platform could uniquely do has long been fodder for long-winded discussions at Tablet PC enthusiast sites.

When Microsoft rolled the Tablet PC bits into Windows Vista it was clear the end of the Tablet PC as a unique product line was near. Tablet talk became Windows feature talk, and the technology became just a small part of the entire Windows landscape. Then Windows 7 rolled out and Tablet became more of a touch thing, instead of a pen thing. This made it clear to me that the end was near, and something I ran across today on the Microsoft Tablet PC team blog drove that belief home.

The assimilation of the one major unique technology from Microsoft into the bowels of the OS is complete. RIP.

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  1. I’m going to miss active digitisers. Bless you pen input.

  2. The Tablet PC is dead! Long live the Tablet PC!

  3. Resistance is Futile. You have been successfully assimilated.
    Nice try Earthlings from Redmond, now it is time to step away from your Tablet and let the iPad show the Universe what a proper tablet can and should do.
    Good morning Steve…

  4. Terrible shame

  5. The tablet is dead? Hmmmmmm? I’ve been using a Motion Computing 1400 for 2 years with Tablet XP instead of a laptop as I like the ability to use it in portrait position. While the 1400 is no longer in their line, the do have two newer models — 1600 and 1700 — that are used widely in the hospital and medical fields.

    I believe the Sahara line of tablets are almost the same as the Motion computer line.

    Current “tablet laptops” are not the answer as when folded down to use as a tablet, the keyboard cannot be used.

    What will “kill” the tablet computer is not Apple or netbooks but when the computer industry comes up with a laptop where the monitor lid can be moved 90 degrees or make one that the monitor lid is 12 x 12 viewing area.

    It seems that the entire computer industry is stuck on the CRT ratios or, now with HD proportions. However, it is missing the boat by not thinking about how the majority of people use a computer — to read text and look at text on web sites. People read in portrait but what they look out is designed and viewed in landscape.

    So, long live the tablet computer!

  6. Convertible tablets will always be a niche product, but as a student, I find the tablet feature on my Gateway C-142 to be invaluable, if only for Onenote. Having instant search through my handwritten notes is a great feature. It’s too bad that Microsoft had to bungle this. Onenote is the only true 1st-party tablet pc showcase, when Word, Excel, and Outlook should have all had tablet-exclusive features. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve opened a spreadsheet and wanted to write a quick value into a cell, only to realize I have to pull that damn tray out and insert the text.
    I guess that Microsoft didn’t have confidence in their tablet brand with all of the so-called “tablets” (slates) coming out. I agree with the recent NYT op-ed. Microsoft has no direction. Instead of promoting a central tablet brand, they’ve had a half-hearted tablet “feature” spread over multiple failed ideas like Origami and Smart Display. Really sad.

  7. A terrible shame. Ink is the only thing still keeping me in the PC Universe. It is a terrific technology in my profession of education, but my personal use has always been at least half for general administration. It is so easy to take notes in a meeting and then file them electronically within One Note–this saves me at least an hour of work each week. Microsoft really missed the boat by not marketing this more effectively.

  8. Recently I blogged a couple demo/concept videos for the Microsoft Courier (because I hadn’t watched them until a few days ago). It clearly had pen input as a major feature. Does anyone know if this project is still going, or is it dead in the water?

  9. I feel that it’s good that the Tablet/Touch features are rolled into the main OS, so that the CORE OS itself understands that in addition to the mouse there are other forms of interaction that can be performed with it.

    Tablet become more of touch because TOUCH is implemented more widely by the device manufacturers than PEN. We might see a resurgence of the pen if/when price comes down or if someone who is not Wacom manages to make active digitizers that can be integrated into a screen cheaply.

    I’ve jsut gotten the Lenovo S10-3T and Fujitsu UH900 recently, and I really feel that all the work to make touch part of the OS does pay off. And I feel that no matter how crazy it might be, you can actually use most of your apps without a keyboard…

    do you WANT to.. is another question of course.

  10. I feel like ceremoniously snapping in two my Cross executive pen. Shame on you Microsoft.

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