A More Pragmatic Microsoft

Nice to see some frank talk about their vision needing to evolve.

The Guardian reports:

Larson-Green, who is executive vice-president of Devices and Studios at Microsoft, said that the aim of Windows RT was “our first go at creating that more closed, turnkey experience [that Apple has on the iPad]…” but that Microsoft now has three mobile operating systems: “We have the Windows Phone OS. We have Windows RT and we have full Windows. We’re not going to have three.”

And:

“So the goal was to deliver two kinds of experiences into the market, the full power of your Windows PC [on the Surface Pro], and the simplicity of a tablet experience that can also be productive. That was the goal. Maybe not enough. I think we didn’t explain that super-well. I think we didn’t differentiate the devices well enough. They looked similar. Using them is similar. It just didn’t do everything that you expected Windows to do. So there’s been a lot of talk about it should have been a rebranding. We should not have called it Windows.”

Notably:

Meanwhile Windows Phone has been scaled up to larger and larger screens, such as the 6in 1520, and smaller 8in tablets with Intel architecture have begun to go on sale – leaving Windows RT with no obvious niche.

Also a great quote from Richard Windsor, commenting on his blog on this news:

If Microsoft can apply this pragmatism to the rest of the company and to its choice of CEO, we might just have a phoenix rather than a turkey.

This isn’t just a matter of the non-Pro models having lower specs or less features, they’re entirely different software platforms. Confusing to consumers and developers, and the value proposition is even murkier with Windows Phone in the mix.