The Inquirer-Home

Hardware firms are tight-lipped on Acer’s 'troublesome Microsoft' comments

Computex 2011 Acer president JT Wang might not have much public backing
Thu Jun 02 2011, 10:46

HARDWARE MAKERS have distanced themselves from remarks made by Acer president JT Wang that Microsoft is exerting too much influence on the hardware requirements for tablets meant to run the forthcoming Windows 8 operating system.

The INQUIRER spoke with several firms at the Computex trade show in Taiwan where Wang made the controversial comments about Microsoft's "troublesome" influence. However, few were prepared to talk, not even Acer's Taiwanese rival Asus, which was reportedly also locked out of the Windows 8 development process.

For its part, MSI, which has Windows 7 running on its latest tablet, the Windpad 120W, explained that "Microsoft means very good business" for the firm, and as such it would not want to speculate on the situation with Windows 8.

Viewsonic, meanwhile, which has several Windows 7-based tablets on display at the show, said that Microsoft is being very secretive, in the UK at least, on its plans for Windows 8 on the devices.

Acer's Wang made the comments earlier in the week to several journalists on the sidelines of the show, and if his intent was to make mischief, it certainly seems to have succeeded.

However, it's unlikely that Microsoft is going to change its Integrated Development Programme (IDP) based on comments made by one of its partners' executives. As if to emphasise the point, it was all business-as-usual for Microsoft's VP of OEMs, Steve Guggenheimer, during his Wednesday keynotes as he waxed lyrical about the wonder of the Microsoft ecosystem and the amazing innovation that enables its software to shine.

Ultimately, if the result of tighter Redmond control on hardware specifications means a better Windows 8 experience on tablets, then no one will really care.

You could even argue that it's about time the hardware makers were reined in a bit in this respect, given that similarly prescriptive rules Microsoft gives to makers of its Windows Phone devices seem to have been effective, in that they all deliver the same user experience. µ


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