Is Microsoft squandering its opportunity to roll out a new flagship?

This article may contain personal views and opinion from the author.
Is Microsoft squandering its opportunity to roll out a new flagship?
If you had to be reminded that the last Windows Phone flagship to hit the stage from Nokia and Microsoft was the Lumia 930, you’re not alone. If you had to double-check to confirm it, along with its Verizon-exclusive cousin, the Lumia Icon, was actually released earlier this year, you wouldn’t be alone there either, but it feels like they've been around, and Big Red has already retired its model.

To be fair, hype around smartphones generally doesn’t last beyond a few weeks, maybe a couple months. Case-in-point, I haven’t given much thought to the Samsung Galaxy S5 since, well, this writing is the first time in a while. Of course, in Samsung’s case, the company makes so many different devices, it’s easy to forget what came out when and where. Since the S5 was announced in February and released in March of this year, Samsung has announced or released 40 – forty, four-zero – phones, smartphones and tablets.

Many of those were variations of a flagship like the S5, or even the Note series, but the fact remains, that company just loves hammering the market with a new device every week. We already know Apple’s iPhone is an annual event, and so too are specific models from Samsung. What about Windows Phone?

Where’s Waldo?

Well, what about Windows Phone? Nokia Devices, now Microsoft, has followed a rather odd product plan over the past year-and-a-half. No doubt, the gears were gummed up by the now deceased Nokia X effort, but looking at the line-up of current devices coming out of Redmond, I have to ask what Microsoft is waiting for? More importantly, is 2014 an indicator of what 2015 will look like? It’s like looking at a Where’s Waldo landscape, all sorts of activity and not much standing out to make Windows Phone noticeable amidst the noise.

It needs to be more than OEM partners

Microsoft has made big hey with announcements over new OEM partners for Windows and Windows Phone. It is no small thing to get manufacturers to commit in that fashion, and with zeroed out license fees, it is certainly costing Microsoft. Nonetheless, most of those announcements have been for manufacturers who intend their products for developing markets like India, China, Eastern Europe, and other parts of Asia.  That means using established generation old technology and nothing to make the gadget geek's heart flutter.

That in itself is not a problem, but the latest device announcements, like the Lumia 830, Lumia 730, BLU Win HD, Yezz Billy 4.7, Micromax Canvas Win, and Archos 40 all cater to a demographic that neither drives nor pulls technological advancement. These developing “masses” drive innovation insofar that it challenges the OEMs to make devices that are affordable, but if that were uniformly acceptable, then we may as well stop making cutting edge gear now because, what’s the point otherwise?

Microsoft inherited two, arguably three, banner bearing designs with its acquisition of Nokia Devices, the Lumia 930, the Lumia 1520, and who can forget the Lumia 1020? These are three distinct form factors by which any other device could be shaped to address any other market need. In fact, the 1520’s near-twin, the Lumia 1320, is just such a device.

Late timing and more late timing

I thought long (well, not so long) and hard about Microsoft’s timing in all this, and figured that maybe it would have something to do with Windows 10. That would be great, until I read that Windows 10 will not land en masse until late summer 2015 at the earliest. Surely Microsoft would not hold back on the big guns for another eight or nine months, would it? I then thought maybe Microsoft was keeping the deck clear so that the HTC One (M8) for Windows would be the hardware darling for the platform during the holidays -- not an unreasonable thought, but I don’t see any company willingly just stepping aside for competition, hardware partner or not.

Perhaps there will be some grand announcement at CES 2015 in Las Vegas.  It's possible, but I'm not holding my breath.  The biggest announcements don't create as many ripples as one might think given all the activities going on at that convention. 

I am not trying to be a naysayer here, I really like Windows Phone, and I really, really like the Nokia experience of the Lumia devices. Given all that, the platform is still very much in need of TLC and heavy refinement. Even on my Lumia 1520, I still see the “dancing dots of waiting” too much, and while that could be argued as a sign of developer disengagement, it is also a reality of the fact that apps compiled for Windows Phone 8.1 are not backward compatible for Windows Phone 8.0.

Microsoft, for as dominant as it is in software, is not anywhere near being a big fish in mobile. It is competing amongst what is ostensibly a duopoly, and it came to the party years late for good measure (Windows Mobile had since evaporated). I used to wonder if there was room for four or five major mobile platforms in the market place, and being the free market guy that I am, I still think robust competition is the best arena for consumers and geeks alike.

Deep inside though, there is a nagging voice wondering if there’s room for even three major mobile platforms. The current market share indicates there isn’t, but then I must remind myself that all titans of industry rise and fall. Microsoft has risen and fallen, but it is not insignificant and is rising in other ways. BlackBerry rose and fell and it too is not out of the picture. So go the companies before them, so will go the enterprises of Apple and Google at some point. Even without a “fall,” the picture of mobile will change.

Of course for that to happen, one must be a willing and active participant in that change. As good as Windows Phone is, and for as much potential it has, I feel as though Microsoft has missed, and is still missing some key opportunities in developed markets, markets that will play a significant role in driving the direction of the platform.

Where’s the beef?

So, to coin a question of the ages, “Where’s the beef?” The Lumia 830 is a fine device, and I would argue is a contender for those considering the HTC One (M8) for Windows. However, in my opinion, it is not a contender for HTC’s Android counterpart, or other Android based competitors who have really stepped up the game to provide a smooth user experience which has been a traditional hallmark of Windows Phone.

Where is the hardware that will turn mobile photography on its head like the 41-megapixel monsters Lumia 1020 and its predecessor, the Nokia 808 PureView did? Where is the next generation PureView technology in a more mainstream 20-megapixel sensor (for those that do not want the ability to take a picture of the inside of their cat’s head – more on that in a moment)? Where is the next generation ClearBlack display?  Where is the next step step in an enhanced Windows Phone user experience (be it tiles, notifications, et al)?

Also, what is up with the apps? I’m talking about quality more than quantity at this point, but the latter is still important in a few key areas, most notably, localized apps. I’ve made points before about how the apps we use define the experience as much as the OS or hardware. Without a stronger effort in mobile-payment and banking, I envision a continued obstacle for Windows Phone.

Beyond the common “lack of apps” argument though, I want to know what has happened to the development of these apps. Instagram hasn’t been touched since February, Twitter since July, and Vine is a year old. Facebook remains what I call a “second-party” app. It’s developed by Microsoft so it’s not a completely detached third-party team. Unfortunately, the Windows Phone experience is nowhere near what Facebook dedicates its own resources to with Android and iOS.

It’s not all doom and gloom though. Facebook is excellent at maintaining its Messenger app. The Skype team is methodical, as is the GroupMe guys (both owned by Microsoft). WhatsApp is on its game too. Still, the overall app climate feels quite a bit cooler than on competing platforms.

Mind share

This is the first holiday season in a couple years where Microsoft has seemingly surrendered mind-share, and that’s saying something considering the splash made with the introduction of Windows Phone 8 two years ago, and announcements made at Nokia World in Abu Dhabi, UAE last year, two big events that gave great exposure to the Lumia 920 and Lumia 1520 respectively. The hardware (high-end and low-end) and the climate helped drive considerable growth for Windows Phone.

Since the Build 2014 developer conference however, most of the noise from Microsoft has been on the services front, like Office for iPad, and ever expanding storage on OneDrive. The hardware is keeping the assembly lines moving, but as I noted earlier, the products aren’t getting the enthusiasts excited.

Enthusiasts and cats

The Lumia 1020 may not have been the best-selling smartphone in the world, but among mobile enthusiasts, everyone knew what it was, and everyone knew about that wicked 41-megapixel camera. Now I’m not a super-photographer. I mess around with settings a little bit every now and again, but mostly, I keep things in “auto.”

I joke a lot about the internet and cats, but this time it's actually relevant.  Late last year, while tinkering around the house with my then-newly-acquired Lumia 1020, I took a picture of one of my cats in the kitchen. Being an Abyssinian, he doesn’t stand still very often. That’s why I was surprised with how well this particular picture turned out. Knowing the Lumia 1020 is not the fastest camera in the world, I started looking at how Bubu’s (my cat) pupils hadn’t adjusted to the initial focusing, and the xenon flash shed light upon everything.

I was quite interested in the full resolution picture. When I focused closely on his left eye, I realized that the camera captured more than just the reflection of the retina, but it was showing some texture of the retina itself. Literally, this amateur took a picture of the inside of his cat’s head.

That is the kind of stuff that can feed enthusiasm for a product line and a platform. That is what can drive imagination for advancing technology to the next step. Camera technology has always been the shiny point of the Lumia series of devices. The unique experience of Windows Phone has been the allure of the platform. Both can waddle along, but in a sea of Galaxies and iPhones, the light shined from this platform needs to be twice as bright, twice as often.

The burden

Singular feature sets that rise above the rest in such a pronounced fashion are a way to build and keep mind-share. The challenge is to drive home that issue just-enough -- not too much, and certainly not too little. Right now, Windows Phone is doing the latter, but I am really hoping that this is a calm before the storm and not the result of people scratching their heads, wondering how to behave like a designer and manufacturer.

That is not to say I am questioning Microsoft’s acquisition of Nokia Devices. In my opinion, the company made a bold move to vertically integrate and bolster its value chain. From the assembly line to the retail shelf, Microsoft now has a role to play with at least some of its product line. The challenge now is to ensure that product line continues to capture imagination like it has in the past, enough so the rest of the platform can get caught up. Microsoft may have been the larger company in the deal, but Nokia’s branding for mobile devices are arguably even bigger shoes, and they are Microsoft’s to fill.

Microsoft may be a great software partner for OEMs, but as it now makes hardware that accounts for 90% of its own mobile install base, the rise or fall of Windows Phone is at the mercy of Redmond. I want to see it rise a bit higher, the burden is Microsoft’s.



1. snowgator

Posts: 3617; Member since: Jan 19, 2011

An excellent article, and it echoes the thoughts of those of us who use Windows on Phones (the awkward way I need to to get used to saying it for Windows 10). There is no way- none- Microsoft can think they can release "Big Guns" for W10 and it not be too late. I am shopping for my next WP, and I am up between the excellent M8 for Windows, released by a manufacturer that is not know for supporting it's devices, or the over year old Lumia 1520. There is no way I last with my L920, which is a tad lag-like after the WP 8.1 update. For those two to be my only choices during the Holiday rush hour is sad. I do like and prefer WP, but I am not married to it. I truly believe the mobile space is better with at least 3 OS's to drive tech advances and price wars. But wait for W10? Can't see it. Both Android with it's TONS of choices and Apple now with real sized devices can truly offer me something each. Microsoft has me as a dedicated consumer. Doesn't mean they can't lose me. Hope my next Windows phone purchase isn't my last, but we will see.

2. ManusImperceptus

Posts: 724; Member since: Jun 10, 2014

I too can't see the W10 connection; MS has already announced that all present Lumias will be able to upgrade to W10, so other than the "perfect" presentation opportunity, there's no real argument for holding back a flagship launch. On the contrary, waiting 9 months is going to make it nigh on impossible to sell the device, simply because most potential buyers have been more or less forced to switch OS because their old 920's have reached the end of their life cycles, and because momentum for WP has come and gone.

3. FoneAddict

Posts: 263; Member since: Jul 05, 2011

Let's not mince our words: MS KILLED OFF NOKIA in an attempt to forcefully enter the mobile market and now they have realised it's just too hot for them to handle. Windows phone has been and will continue to be a failure.

5. ManusImperceptus

Posts: 724; Member since: Jun 10, 2014

I don't know... My Lumia 1520 is hands down the best phone I've owned or handled - better than the gs5 and lightyears ahead of the iPhone 6! I only miss the fantastic camera from the 808... WP in itself is a great OS, and the app gap is negligible for most users. Their focus on low- and mid end devices is annoying, though, as is their overwhelming favoritism of the US market...

4. ManusImperceptus

Posts: 724; Member since: Jun 10, 2014

By the way, Facebook releasing a separate messaging app is a con, not a pro! This goes for all platforms, of course...

6. Planterz

Posts: 2120; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

Budget 500/600 model or top-of-the-line 900/1000 flagship, it doesn't matter. The masses won't buy Windows Phones with the crappy app selection it currently has. The HTC M8 is a miss for WP, because even though the hardware and construction is top-end, it misses where people expect high-end Windows Phones to excel - the camera. Not that it matters, because the app selection sucks.

8. ManusImperceptus

Posts: 724; Member since: Jun 10, 2014

"The masses" have been proven to hardly download apps at all after the initial purchase, particular above and beyond the standard fare, which is available on WP as well as Android and iOS. In other words, the average user will experience no app gap at all, and even a relatively heavy user like myself only really miss 2 or 3 apps...

9. Planterz

Posts: 2120; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

Oh, bull. Tell yourself what you need to, but don't shine me on with that crap. Real (and it is real) or perceived (there's some of that too), "app gap" is a problem with WP, and the lack of a free or $.99 app, or even a limited version compared to Android or iOS can easily prevent a customer from spending hundreds of dollars on a phone. Silly, perhaps, but that's the way people are. People aren't going to switch from iOS or Android to WP because there's no reason to, and many reasons not to.

12. ManusImperceptus

Posts: 724; Member since: Jun 10, 2014

I don't need to tell myself anything; I'll let statistics do the talking... Around 60% of all US and UK smartphone owners never download a single app after their initial phone purchase. I suspect the statistic holds true over the rest of the world... As for the state of the app gap, I'd say whining about 300.000 apps smacks of spoiled teenager. But you obviously haven't given WP a go yourself or you'd know that most apps are free, and most paid apps come with a trial edition/mode. Unlike iOS, I might add...!

16. Damo579

Posts: 264; Member since: May 18, 2013

I have had a WP since 2010 and I like the OS a lot but even though most apps are on WP like the article stated the quality of apps are lower compared to IOS and Android. Developers create apps and rarely update them. The problem is if someone has an iPhone and gets a WP he or she will realize this right away, may return the phone and wont tell anyone to buy it. Also most apps by Microsoft are better than on WP so there really is no reason to buy one over Android and IOS. I have stayed with WP because of Nokia but since they are gone for the moment and will come back with Android in 2016 The lumia 830 I have will be my last WP.

25. elitewolverine

Posts: 5192; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

I have downloaded nearly 100 apps on my windows phone. None were purchased. There is not a single app a coworker has here at work, that I would 'need'. yes there is a case here and there, that a specific app or game is not available. But again, for the average user, there will be none. But since we are talking apps, what is an average user to you? 10 apps 60 apps 100 apps? Working in the job I do, I can honestly make the statement that on average if not even a heavy 75% or more, customers have about 5-10 apps in addition to the ones that came preloaded. Usually 2-5 games with another few sprinkled.

7. fanboy1974

Posts: 1345; Member since: Nov 12, 2011

It feels good and bad to be right. I knew Microsoft would screw fans over like they did during the end of the Windows Mobile 6.5 era. I will never trust Microsoft after they allowed that OS to rot. They left many people hanging for Windows Phone 7 which was not compatible with any of those legacy phones.

10. Settings

Posts: 2943; Member since: Jul 02, 2014

Damn! 40 phones?! I only knew at least 10 new Galaxy phones. Its like a new phone released every week.

11. roldefol

Posts: 4744; Member since: Jan 28, 2011

Microsoft doesn't sell a Lumia flagship on any US carrier. I'm not counting the 1520, which is clearly a phablet. Let that sink in. The 930 should be their 2014 flagship, competing head-on with the Galaxy S5 and iPhone 6, and none of the US carriers are interested. Verizon already dropped it. That says a lot to me about the brand's future.

26. elitewolverine

Posts: 5192; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

This is true, it is also true the ignorance of many foot soldier sales people on the floor. And the refurbed s3's dear god those are the bane of my existence on a daily basis. Not to mention the faulty no sim card detected S4's. Just this last week alone, I have handled returns of people going from a flip phone to a cheap 50-70 android device that the salesman swore up and down it was for them, only to have them get a 'low' storage warning and apps not able to transfer to the SD card. Not to mention the slow down. Considering android requires 150mb to run, if you are pushing 250mb of free space from that 1.5GB you received, it is hell and makes the phone rather worthless and slow. I turn around show them a 530 or 521 or 635, and they are instantly hooked, throw that sd card in and watch 8.1 install nearly every single app to the sd card (like android used to do), this includes pre-installed apps. All in all, it is the sales people and others they have to convince, not the general population. Because the general population (if not 30%+) has no clue what jellybean is, kitkat is or lollipop or that their phone is running android.

13. unklmik

Posts: 14; Member since: Dec 01, 2014

Microsoft has done an exceedingly poor job of working with U.S. carriers. AT&T is the only U.S. carrier that even remotely offers anything close to a flagship (Lumia 1520 over a year old; 830 & M8 not really flagship) and will treat the Windows Phone customer with a modicum of respect; virtually NO offerings on the other 3 carriers. Apparently Microsoft cannot work any sort of incentives for the individual carriers to promote Windows Phone products from any manufacturer. Just go into any store in the U.S. and ask about a Windows Phone and see what the reaction is..........quizzical look, disbelief, "you don't want one of those phones" and the list can go on and on. If Microsoft doesn't release any true flagship phones in the next few months, the high end, early adopter Windows Phone users will leave for Apple and Android in droves. Microsoft really can't wait until Windows 10 comes out. They will soon be watching their 7.2 billion dollar investment go down in flames; their high end customer base will only wait so long.

15. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

The reason Microsoft uses ATT is because ATT is a GSM carrier. That is who most business customers use also. If these customers travel, they typical use ATT because GSM is worldwide and their phone will work in any country. Even though there are businesses house Sprint, Verizon and TMobile, they don't travel like ATT customers. Those other carriers typically have retail customers who wont buy a Windows Phone and the carriers wont try to sell them one anyways. They push iPhone or the Galaxy that's it. I have spent time in the Verizon store, they always have just one or 2 Windows Phone models. No one ever looks at them, no one ever asks for them. ATT is the largest seller of Windows devices since day one because they are the carriers of the businesses in the USA. Its not that Microsoft has a poor relationship with other carriers. The problem is very simple, those other carriers don't have the customers that typical buy a Windows based device beyond a computer.

18. roldefol

Posts: 4744; Member since: Jan 28, 2011

I'm not buying it. Windows Phone is trying to be the OS of choice of the business world, but that isn't a long-term survival strategy. While Microsoft and RIM were sleeping, Apple and then Samsung ate their lunch in the consumer market. Now the iPhone is a commonly used business device. If Microsoft is serious about being a strong #3, they need to focus on consumers on all carriers.

19. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

Almost every phone released on Verizon that's midrange or higher is global ready. They have all the bands if someone wants to travel. What you're saying may have been the case 5 years ago, but it hasn't been that way for the last 3 years.

24. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3112; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

Not only are they GSM-capable, they're unlocked. My wife has a VZW G2 and is now on AT&T. Popped in the SIM, put in the APN settings and that was it.

14. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

The problem with Microsoft is simple, they don't know how to sell hardware. Windows and office are like magic because they are the defacto standards for business computing. Those product come preinstall on the vast majority of PC's. Microsoft doesn't have to advertise Windows or Office at all. However, they don't know how to sell hardware. Selling computers and smartphones is a whole different league vs selling mice and keyboards. Like Apple, Microsoft offers the same advantage of having their own hardware with their own software on it. But as we have seen with Xbox, they don't seem to be as good at it, as they should be. The problem with the Nokia/Microsoft Lumia is the phones are ugly. The Lumia's look so cool in the pictures. I actually consider the larger ones in the 10xx series. But when you go see them in person, they look cool from the front; but as soon as you hold them and flip the over and look at the device, its ugly. Plastic isn't the problem, the problem is design. The Nokia N9 which is where the Lumia's look came from, looks far better in person than the Lumia. The Lumia looks like a cheap knockoff. Wit the money Microsoft has, with the design teem they have, they should be able to make a much better looking device. The Surface Pro 3 especially is awesome in design. I think their phone should mimic the style and look. They should also se the same magnesium alloy. The UI and OS are smooth and clean, but still lack even the great feature Windows Mobile has. How can you have a phone that has Outlook, but doesn't even offer the full benefits your older OS did with the same software? Windows Phone is a complete mess. The UI is no consistent. To me it is just like what they did with Windows Mobile 6.5. They rook a cool skin and covered the original WM UI and the rest of the UI didn't fit with the skin. What they could do is this, offer a Windows Phone with the Surface 3 for free. If you Purchase a Surface 3 with an i5 CPU, you get 50% off the Windows Phone of your choice. Buy the i7 model and you get the Windows Phone free with your choice. Purchase an Xbox One with the Camera, get a Windows Phone free, without the camera; you get 50% off. Purchase a retail copy of Microsoft Office at Full price, get a Windows Phone free. Purchase any Windows laptop from any certified Windows OEM like Dell or HP, get 50% off a Windows Phone of your choice. Either they need to do that, or they need to make a better looking device that will sell itself. Windows Phone OEM's are already reluctant to even put the OS on their smartphones. Even after making the OS free, they still put the OS on the crappiest hardware they have. Even if Windows Phone doesn't need beefy hardware, you can't sell 3 year old hardware at the same price everyone else is with an ugly phone. Beef up the hardware to the same thing others have even if the OS doesn't need it. Its bad enough Apple pulls this stunt.

17. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3112; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

Windows Phone is not competing with Android or iOS right now. Keeping up with the Joneses would be a monumental mistake for MS. Concentrate on releasing a proper device that customers will want.

20. 7thspaceman

Posts: 1597; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

Folks I think we will see a New Windows flagship in early 2015 that runs Windows 8.1denim and then a more powerful one in june/july 2015 when Windows 10 comes to market. right now Microsoft is deciding what new replacement "Microsoft LOGO" phone case designs to put on the current Nokia Branded Windows smart phone because from now on you wont see anymore Nokia branded Windows smart phones on the planet Earth unless Nokia Of Finland makes them. it looks like Nokia of Finland might not even make anymore Windows smart phones. that's sad too they put Windows smart phones in the publics mind

21. Salazzi

Posts: 537; Member since: Feb 17, 2014

I agree. I've been dabbling in iOS, Android, and WP for over a year now and am extremely disappointed with Microsoft. The Lumia Icon was a great device for when it was released. 1080p, 2GB ram, etc. It was refreshing to see a new design (who knew that making the 4 corners just a bit more circular, would make the device a whole lot appealing?) Suffice to say, Microsoft announcing new devices such as the 630, 635, was warranted, they dropped the ball when it came to announcing a flagship. The devices they are releasing currently, simply are not compelling. Another issue is the leaks we have been seeing. When the Icon came out, I thought Microsoft flipped the page into a new chapter in WP devices. As I mentioned above, the more circular corners made the device more appealing. Leaks suggest that they're going back to the sharp corner design of all their phones prior to the Icon, which leaves me highly disappointed. I'm sure a good number of people are fine with it as it is, but there are also a sizable amount who aren't, including myself. The devices just look ugly that way. If the leaks are proven to be true, I'm sure others along with myself, will simply stop looking towards WP as a potential device for ourselves. Not making devices aesthetically appealing is akin to shooting oneself in the foot in the phone business. You still have the other foot, but now one foot is rendered useless. If they made beautiful devices along with a beautiful OS, they would have many people coming on-board, and thus, more apps made for it.

27. ManusImperceptus

Posts: 724; Member since: Jun 10, 2014

Sorry, but in my eyes the sharp cornered 1520 screams premium while the rounded corner 1320 whispers budget...

31. Salazzi

Posts: 537; Member since: Feb 17, 2014

Does the Lumia Icon whisper budget? I'm not talking about the 1320 or the 630/635. I'm talking about the aesthetics of the Icon/Lumia 930. When that device came out I thought WP was finally maturing. Building more appealing devices while advancing the OS. But if they're going back to this square design, I'm gonna stop looking and I'm sure others will too.

22. winboy

Posts: 1; Member since: Dec 10, 2014

I have 2 L1520 and it is the best smartphone I have ever used. I moved from android and will never go back to android. Can't wait for Win 10.

23. Phonecall01 unregistered

I really hope they can pull it off and come up with a "Solid" flagship in early 2015. Coming from Android a few months ago to a 930 has been the best phone experience I ever had. Lot of potentials here for MS. They just need to stay at it and push harder. I know they can. They did a good job with the Surface line up.

28. 7thspaceman

Posts: 1597; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

I still say Microsoft deliberately did not put out any Flagship smart phone this year because they want them to be branded "Microsoft Windows" smart phones. look for a new Microsoft Flagship smart phone to be released at CES 2015 next month. look for an Intel ATOM CPU "Surface 3" to replace the ARMS CPU Windows RT OS Tablets the "Surface 2" and Nokia lumia 2520 tablet. a Well known Microsoft info insider say Microsoft will probably no longer make anymore Tablets using "ARMS" Type CPU's. all "Surface Computers will be Intel CPU based full Windows Tablets. a lot of folks want that anyway!

29. 7thspaceman

Posts: 1597; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

I have been wanting an Atom CPU "Surface" Tablet that cost less than 450 dollars for years now. it was the Tablet Microsoft needed to have for sale in it's online and physical stores because all it's Current Surface Pro line of tablets except "Surface 2" an RT OS non full Windows tablet cost 800 dollars and up. pricing them out a lot of Peoples budget. all Microsoft has to do is put an Intel ATOM CPU inside the case of the current selling "Surface 2" Tablet call it the "Surface 3" and sell it in the sweet tablet price range of 250 dollars to 450 USA DOLLARS and Microsoft will sell lots more MS branded tablets. True they wont be super fast and do a lot of Multitasking buy most People would prefer a full Windows 8.1 OS Surface 2 over a RT OS Surface 2 which they currently sell

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