We sure have some inkling about Microsoft being up to something. Something that many believe will resurrect the Tablet PCs once again. But the problem is, there has been no official confirmation from Microsoft yet. There has been no denial either. The nearest that we have got to Microsoft acknowledging the existence of such a project is a post made in one of their own blogs by a company insider wherein it was confirmed that such a device sure is coming our way. But then, the post was deleted to keep the flames of rumor going. Well, rumors did get stronger about the Courier – as the device is so named – and it is back in the center stage.
As per the videos and photos that are available right now, the Courier is likely to be an inch thick tablet with dual screens of 8 to 9 inch size. It would weigh a pound and by measurement resembles a 5 by 7 inch photo frame in folded state. The device has flicking objects on its screen, and the screen has both multi-touch as well as gesture based interactive capabilities. It appears the general usage of this device is centered on blogging and working in tandem with other users of this device via a site exclusive to this device. Anyone who has used the Microsoft Surface Device would find this tablet device to be quite similar.
The OS of this device is yet a matter of discussion. However, information now available clears some description of the OS. Against the Microsoft’s popular choice of using Windows 7 on tablets, an ARM based chip would lead the tablet to instead utilize the similar base as Windows Phone 7, Zune HD and Project Pink. This book like device is likely to be powered by NVIDIA’s Tegra 250 chip, which is known for its power saving quality. Earlier disclosures have confirmed that the OS would be perfected mainly for note taking and would include handwriting support, although the latest info details how the previously released data gave a clue at e-reader layer.
Also, what seems obvious is that e-books would play a vital role and hence, Courier would include a ‘dedicated ecosystem’, thereby indicating that an online bookstore similar to the iBookstore is in line, which is likely to turn out its most apparent competitor. There are also mention of apps in one screen as well as a Courier marketplace for new features.
Tech blogs are rife with the discussion on the OS and ironically, even flooded with debate on the very existence of this device. The theory, that given Microsoft’s numerous ongoing projects it should not be taking so much time to sew up one as the Courier, does hold water.
Having weighed these factors, it does give an impression that team Microsoft have stopped innovative thinking. Rather they are concentrating on just matching Apple on a product to product basis. Every launch by Apple with a product is immediately responded by Microsoft with a near similar launch. This in the long run could give Microsoft a copycat label, which may not auger well for this giant. Its time they reworked on their strategy to give fresh ideas to the market and electronic consumers in particular.
To sum up on the Courier chance if and when it hits the market. If Microsoft sticks to the Windows 7 OS then this would tilt the buyers decision it its favor. The device would be a miniaturized replication of the laptop with capability to run all the applications that the user is running on the laptop. On the other hand if Microsoft decides on the Windows Phone OS 7.0 then it would place the Courier as somewhat as an iPad replica, albeit with a minor difference being that with its foldable design the screen of the Courier gets better protection.
Currently, the Microsoft tablet seems to be comparatively a late entrant into competition for the Apple device despite the fact that it was being publicly disclosed months before the iPad. These and many more such thoughts are present and flowing in the debate of the Courier, its existence and relevance.
Stay tuned for more on this as well as all the latest e-reader news.
Also, our Good E-Reader Magazine is out. It sure will make for an exciting reading experience if you care about Tablets, Slates, E-Readers and the like.
Sovan Mandal is the senior tablet and tech corespondent for goodereader.com. He brings a international approach to news that is not just applicable to the North American market, but also Asia, India, Europe and others. Sovy brings his own writing flavor to the website and is interested in Science Fiction, Technology and Writing. Any questions, send an email