We saw two prototypes of the Courier over the last year, the later device featured folding dual-screens that relied on stylus and handwriting recognition as its primary input. The “digital journal” took a very different approach to the Slate PC market.
The official announcement came today from Microsoft Corporate VP of Communications Frank Show, who said, “At any given time, we’re looking at new ideas, investigating, testing, incubating them. It’s in our DNA to develop new form factors and natural user interfaces to foster productivity and creativity. The Courier project is an example of this type of effort. It will be evaluated for use in future offerings, but we have no plans to build such a device at this time.”
Today’s announcements comes on the heels of Microsoft boss Steve Ballmer informing the Microsoft Courier internal team that had been working on the tablet device that the project would no longer be supported. Courier had never been publicly announced or acknowledged as a Microsoft product.
There is a great sigh of disappointment in the Slate PC world, as many people had been turning to Microsoft as an alternative to the Apple iPad and various other Slate PCS announced within the last three months. Microsoft currently has no plans for a Slate PC device, and is looking at Netbooks and Laptops to market this year.
The Microsoft Courier was very innovative concept and the dual screen tablet journal looked to be a welcome alternative. It seems if you want a dual screen device you might want to take a look at the Entourage Edge.