back to article Ballmer has plans for more Microsoft own-brand hardware

Steve Ballmer has re-iterated Microsoft’s commitment to making more hardware. Promoting Windows 8 ahead of today's launch in New York, Microsoft’s chief executive has repeated the undertaking he gave shareholders in October. Asked the obvious by enquiring technology minds at the BBC – whether his software giant would make …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "The thing getting everybody excited is the Surface table"

    The thing that Microsoft pretend that everybody is getting excited about is the Surface table -fixed it for him, I'll send the bill later

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      You sure about that?

    2. JDX Gold badge

      Everybody's so unexcited about it that the BBC had a story on it on their homepage.

      1. Shagbag

        the BBC had a story on it on their homepage...

        ...after Microsoft gave the BBC Journo's Surface Tablets. To keep.

        This is industry standard. Remember the 'Celebrity' 'Changing Rooms' of the 2000s? The one where the 'Celebrity' got a free new kitchen/bathroom/whatever they wanted just so long as they lent their 'celebrity' to the camera crew?

        It's the same at the BBC. People are people. You scratch their back, they'll scratch yours. BBC journo's are no different (apart from a shared predisposition to voting Labour).

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: the BBC had a story on it on their homepage...

          And scratching MS's back consisted of covering their new products, just as they did Apple's.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "... more hardware"

    Is he launching a new chair?

    1. Ole Juul

      Re: "... more hardware"

      I'm not sure about furniture, but if they start making vacuum cleaners I'd buy one.

      1. Vic

        Re: "... more hardware"

        > if they start making vacuum cleaners I'd buy one

        Upvoted, but I think you stole that joke from Kelly Monteith...

        Vic.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Bitchy?

    "Asked the obvious by enquiring technology minds at the BBC"

    They got the interview right? I didn't notice you there.

  4. djack
    Linux

    MS Hardware

    I've always thought that MS have made some pretty decent hardware. For many years, they and Logitech were the only names I would look at for mice and keyboards. Whilst I've never owned (nor intend to own) an XBox, that Kinect (sp?) thing looks like some neato tech too.

    Based on that, I would expect surface to be a damn fine tablet.

    It's just a pity that you can't say the same about their software that I wouldn't touch with a barge-pole.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      And in another year...

      ...I should be able to pick up a Surface tablet from the bargain bin as an upgrade to my X220 Linux tablet.

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: And in another year...

        At least you'll have to wait a whole year. With Apple, Andriod and others you can get bargain basement prices after a few mere months on FleaBay and in your local boozer.

    2. Nigel 11

      Re: MS Hardware

      I never had much joy with MS keyboards. They felt "wrong", and that's before they started going glitchy after a couple of years (non-entries and double-entries). Low-end Logitech keyboards, on the other hand, are the best you can buy for little money. I actually prefer the cheap ones to some of their expensive ones that I've tried, and they seem to last very well.

      I agree, MS mice are as good as Logitech ones, and both beat the rest hands-down. The choice mostly boils down to whether you like your mice fat (MS) or thin (Logitech).

      1. Spoonsinger
        Happy

        Re: MS Hardware

        MS 5000 wireless mouse with a tenkeyless Filco FTW :-)

        (PS not entirely sure why the Filco's are so expensive, but luvely none the less. Also the MS mouse has really nicely balance - I suspect due to the two AA batteries it needs).

        (PPS I really don't want greasy marks over my screen when working. People touching the screen to 'point things out' have annoyed me since the year dot - mainly because its a pain getting rid of their crisp fat/nicotine brown encrusted smears).

      2. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: MS Hardware

        ~I agree, MS mice are as good as Logitech ones, and both beat the rest hands-down. The choice mostly boils down to whether you like your mice fat (MS) or thin (Logitech).~

        I've dissected a few M$ keyboards and mice to find Logitech imprinted on the circuit board. I'm not sure if Logitech builds all of MS's KB'S and mice (or if they are the current supplier), but it's the same stuff from the same factory in China.

        Kinect was developed and built by another company. I think Asus had something to do with it. Worked with some blokes that hacked a non-MS copy of the Kinect to use for enhanced vision on a robot. Really cool kit.

        I can't wait for a tear down report on the Surface to see who is building it.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      FAIL

      Re: MS Hardware

      I'm guessing you havn't seen the specs for the Surface yet then.

      You think the iPad Mini had a shit low-res display, surface is even worse, with a significantly lower DPI than even the ipad Mini..

      Sounds like you have been "glamored" by Microsoft marketing...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: MS Hardware

        >Sounds like you have been "glamored" by Microsoft marketing...

        No he doesn't. The screen is a consideration, but its not the only consideration. Some people might consider ports a more important feature, for example.

  5. DJV Silver badge
    Devil

    "important opportunities to set a new standard"

    Well, that will make a change from important opportunities to screw up some existing standards...

  6. Graham Wilson
    Windows

    Perhaps it's time for other hardware manufacturers to seek another O/S.

    With proprietary Microsoft hardware knowing APIs within Windows that other brands won't know about thus giving it an advantage, it might force other manufacturers to look around for a replacement O/S product.

    After all, if you were a H/W manufacturer competing against Microsoft, you'd have to be pretty pissed of methinks.

    1. Nigel 11
      Thumb Up

      Re: Perhaps it's time for other hardware manufacturers to seek another O/S.

      What I was thinking. HP Linux? Pity HP is a shadow of its former self.

      Or maybe Google will see its way clear to do Android Desktop for businesses?

      1. JDX Gold badge

        Re: Perhaps it's time for other hardware manufacturers to seek another O/S.

        Google has no interest in getting you to use Linux. Unless it's their stupid Chromebox Linux.

        1. Nigel 11

          Re: Perhaps it's time for other hardware manufacturers to seek another O/S.

          Android IS Linux under its skin.

          As for why Google might ever do "Desktop Android for Business" ... certainly not to give the penguin a helping hand. It would be because they thought businesses were looking for something that could replace MS Windows and MS Office, and they thought that they could make a profit out of supplying it. Odds: 3:1?

          IBM is the other giant with the means to take on the MS desktop stranglehold. Whether they have a motivation is quite another matter. They don't sell desktop hardware (having sold the Thinkpad business to Lenovo). However, if the business really is like an elephant, they won't have forgotten being shafted by Microsoft over OS/2, and revenge is a dish best eaten cold .... Odds: 12:1?

      2. Vic

        Re: Perhaps it's time for other hardware manufacturers to seek another O/S.

        > Google will see its way clear to do Android Desktop for businesses?

        Doesn't need to be Google. The code is available, you could do it yourself...

        I won't be. I like my Android phone, but I wouldn't want an Android desktop (although Android widgets on the desktop might be cool).

        Vic.

  7. Ralph B
    Linux

    The Cheese Penguin Prize

    I hereby offer a quarter-scale model of an Emperor Penguin, lovingly hand-crafted from genuine Swiss Emmentaler cheese to the first person to get Apple iOS6 running independently on a Microsoft Surface Tablet.

    It's not that it should be done; it's not that I'd want to use it; it's just that it would piss off both Microsoft and Apple, puzzle the Linux fans, and give me a laugh.

    If only there was some way to annoy Google too.

    Any suggestions, commentards?

    1. Mike Brown

      Re: The Cheese Penguin Prize

      Wrong way round. Get windows RT running on the ipad. That would just confuse everyone.

    2. Joefish
      Gimp

      Re: The Cheese Penguin Prize

      "genuine Swiss Emmentaler cheese" - sheesh, why don't you just fence us all in ya big P.D.O. fascist... ;-)

  8. This post has been deleted by its author

  9. Jemma Silver badge

    To quote...

    Now I know why MS execs lick their testicles, its to get rid of the taste of WP 7...

  10. Armando 123

    Need a correction

    "The thing getting everybody excited is the Surface tablet, which follows the various iterations of Xbox as the second Microsoft-built and -branded piece of equipment for running its software."

    Uh, what about Zune? Easy to forget -- in fact, some people have willed themselves to forcibly forget it -- but it was around before the Surface and it wasn't even a MITIGATED success.

    1. dogged
      Stop

      Re: Need a correction

      To be fair, from a hardware point of view, it was an excellent device; compare a Zune HD to an iPod Touch on any measure at all (except "is it for sale in Dixons") and the Touch looks like a PoS with bad sound and a stupid interface and rightly so.

      It was just way too late and not marketed at all.

      1. Captain DaFt

        Re: Need a correction

        I think the advertising that they had may have helped kill the Zune.

        With all the emphasis on 'squirting' your friends, it came across as a musical super-soaker.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Ballmer has plans for more Microsoft own-brand hardware

    God help us, more rushed out the door shit like Xbox...

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Re: Ballmer has plans for more Microsoft own-brand hardware

      Yeah look how that has flopped.

      1. JDX Gold badge

        Re: Ballmer has plans for more Microsoft own-brand hardware

        And all those news stories about XBox getting hacked

    2. TheOtherHobbes

      Re: Ballmer has plans for more Microsoft own-brand hardware

      Don't worry - 'more hardware' means 'we gonna make a MSPhone! '

      The world can hardly wait.

      MS could be an interesting company if everyone at VP level and higher was fired and replaced by talented underlings.

      I get the impression there's some cool stuff struggling to get out. But the Vision People [tm] are so mediocre it's not going to happen while they're in charge.

  12. IGnatius T Foobar
    Megaphone

    more microsoft bollocks

    surface tablet is a ripoff of the Asus Transformer, a truly innovative tablet with a keyboard dock that makes it useful for some as not only a tablet but a laptop replacement as well. Why not just buy the original?

  13. Simon Crowe
    Megaphone

    It will be another FOXCONN rebrand

    Microsoft may do some of the initial design work, but in the end it will be manufactured by Foxconn who seem to build everything these days, and with parts supplied by Samsung/Sharp/LG.

  14. FutureShock999

    I love MS hardware...

    I have a MS Curve mouse for my MacBookPro, the one that curls up. Best mouse for travelling ever.

    Kinetic rocks too, I have to say.

    But the rest....?

  15. mark l 2 Silver badge

    Microsoft are doing their best to piss off their OEMs by making their own hardware, who may just start looking elsewhere for an OS. I see at least one major PC maker going tits up within the next 18 months as sales start to dry up even more and they fail to win people away from Apple with Windows 8

    1. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Well, for the general user, the case for being tied to an OS is weakening, with many PC activities being done through a browser. Networked storage and virtual machines can only contribute towards not really caring if ones next machine comes with a penguin, fruit or a primary-coloured shape pre loaded. For me, this day hasn't yet come and I'm not saying it will tomorrow, but one day..

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