Microsoft has done well enough within the tablet realm, but the entire tablet market seems a bit flooded now. With all of the other brands pushing their own tablets, it seems like it'd be hard for any brand to get their product noticed, unless you're Apple of course. Microsoft has tended to stay pretty strong with their Surface and Surface Pro tablet lines, but it may be time for a change.
Look at how well Apple's iPad Mini has done. This product in particular has proven itself to be quite the contender in the tablet wars. Even with this smaller screen size, they sacrifice a bit of productivity for overall accessibility. This is where Microsoft may need to venture in order to move their next line of tablets.
The Microsoft Surface tablet was designed with the laptop user in mind. This was when we really started to see the hybrid tablets begin to flourish. It almost seemed like Microsoft was trying to keep the laptop alive by allowing for an attachable keyboard feature. I could be completely wrong, but that's always how I've personally viewed it. Instead of launching forward into the future like the rest of the brands, Microsoft chose to go into the tablet realm with a laptop sensibility in mind. Then again, this could be viewed as the company just trying to cater to both the tablet and laptop markets at the same time, but in that same breath they may have been trying to do too much.
Microsoft will be launching a new product to their surface line next week and it can only be assumed that it will be a Surface Mini as the internet rumors all point to this possibility. Should this particular product come to fruition, there are a few things that Microsoft may want to keep in mind.
The iPad Mini, Nexus 7, and Amazon Kindle Fire HDX all have one thing in common that none of the Surface models had; they were just tablets and nothing more. They had no physical design that allowed for a keyboard attachment. They were exactly what they were. It's almost as if the Surface and Surface Pro are experiencing an identity crisis. Even so, if Microsoft is able to follow suit with the other mini tablets out on the market, they may be able to stand out a bit more in that particular forefront.
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Hopefully Microsoft will keep the new Surface Mini a bit more accessible. By sacrificing a bit of productivity, allowing it to run on Windows 8.1, and keeping it as just a tablet, they just might see themselves pushing more towards the front of the tablet pack.