We're Not Touching Windows 7 Tablets With A Ten-Foot Stylus

There's no way Windows 7 tablets aren't going to suck. We're going to see a lot of them this week. And they're going to suck.

They're going to be fat. One of the ways they're going to distinguish themselves from the invading armada of cheaper, tinier Android tablets, is that they're to be bigger. Here's a great idea: Take a portable thing and make it less portable. Also, the beefier chips required to push Windows—at least, unless we see some new ARM-based Windows 7 tablets—means these things need bigger batteries. More weight, more space, more junk.

But! Battery life is still gonna suck. Sure, they'll have bigger batteries than Android tablets, but don't realistically expect the kind of endurance runs you can pull out of the tablets running more effiecient mobile OSes. Windows + Intel chips = power gobbler, even with SSDs.

And oh yeah, they're running Windows 7. Shoving a desktop OS on a tablet fundamentally doesn't work. It hasn't. It won't. Ever. The smooshy, half-assed efforts to paint over them with a "touch-friendly" interface—necessary, because hey, a desktop interface doesn't work for a tablet—are typically designed by imprisoned malnourished children given boxes of broken crayons. And they only glom over half the OS, at best. The third-party software for these kinds of tablets is limited, to say the least.

The thing is, we've seen these things before. Just a year ago, HP announced one held by Steve Ballmer himself, and then was so ashamed of it they effectively shitcanned it, burying them under the "enterprise" label. In fact, it wouldn't be shocking to see a lot—if not most—of the Windows 7 tablets being pushed for "enterprise." Which in this case, is code-name for "suck." And 'spensive.

Which brings us to the last point: All that suck is going to be pricey too. Android tablets, iPads—probably even PalmPads—are going to be around or under $US500. These radioactive product spambits? Most closer to $US1000.

If we find one that miraculously doesn't suck, we will totally let you know. We hope we're wrong! Honest. Otherwise, don't expect to see 'em on Gizmodo. We'll be busy getting nerd boners over tablets that could be actually great, like the PalmPad.



    *cough* Samsung Tablet in AU is AU$999, which is currently $1005USD.


      Which is why the crap that retailers in Australia feed us about the exchange rate and imports causing the price difference is crap. They do it becuase they know Australia is a small market and the people who usually buy their products will buy them anyway, at twice the price.

    As I type this on my iPad I have to disagree. My iPad is nothing more than a toy, a good toy, but still a toy. With a Windows tablet I can plug in a keyboard and mouse and have a full PC but still have a tablet.

    The reason they are marketed to enterprise is because if you actually want to do work you need more than a big phone.

      "With a Windows tablet I can plug in a keyboard and mouse and have a full PC but still have a tablet."

      You all so need to plug in a power-cable.

      So basically you've got yourself a desktop computer there champ.

    this is the worst article I've ever read on Giz...

    "Here’s a great idea: Take a portable thing and make it less portable" oh yeah... of course... because that failed horribly when apple did THE EXACT SAME THING to make the ipad! ... that is the point where I gave up on the article and just skimmed through the rest...

    "Shoving a desktop OS on a tablet fundamentally doesn’t work. It hasn’t. It won’t. Ever."

    what an alarming lack of imagination... clearly just another sheep looking at the past... the interface of an OS is just it's tiny, thin outer layer... sure it can easily be done wrong, but it can so easily be done right as well!

    if it doesn't work, it will be because they did it wrong, not because of newton's apparent 14th law of physics that says "desktop OS's don't work on tablets"...

    at least if it does work, it will be something you could ACTUALLY CALL a computer... not just an appliance only useful for things where Apple see a revenue stream...

    regardless, - and I know the Aus Giz guys are alot better at this than the US ones - remain objective! I'm so sick of these random articles where Giz declares that something will be shit, and then when they actually get the product, proceeds to view it with this unwarranted bias... just like that latest nokia phone.

    Wow - I like a website that knows where is stands. I look forward to other stories with this level of pig headed self certainty and absolute blind conviction.

    Okay then. I look forward to taking my views elsewhere.

    Waaaaaaaaaay too many "manifestos" on this... what is it? Geek gadget blog? How could you possibly have such a big head? There's thosands of gadget blogs where I don't have to read baised options that don't actually SAY anything.

    "Gonna suck"

    "Otherwise, don’t expect to see ‘em on Gizmodo" - I must be imagining the Asus Windows Tablet I see a few stories up then.

    What a transparent bit of trolling your own site..


    - Lets calm down for a sec..
    - Let focus on what we actually do on a day-2-day basis and see how technology fits into that spectrum

    My 2 cents...

    If your a business user (not much of a game player) then....

    1. Have a laptop/desktop that does the grunt of the work then do presentations to clients on a tablet (iPad or honeycomb based *insert vendor*... so far I have found iPad to excel in this)

    2. Read books (if you don't like e-books its highly likely you won't like any tablets for that same reason)... I like the interactive magazines (national geographic) and the occasional Amazon downloaded HBR, et al.

    3. Access Cloud based documents for USB dongle free life (Tablets with access to apps such as Dropbox, Sugarsync, et al should do)

    4. Travel a lot like me then I just carry the iPad for presentation over projector - Light and Insane amount of battery life

    5. Light editing of documents (I use the Keynote app to design presentations on the go... eg. on the Flight to Sydney etc)

    6. email - I find the tablet just sufficient for all my email and calendar needs with a couple of good apps for note taking in regular handwriting -> again iPad seems to have best of the crop - so far anyways.. keen to see what honeycomb has to offer

    I'll truncate it there... having deployed technological strategies into businesses and consumer based organization its a challenge to do so for products only suited to the NEEDS & LIFESTYLE OF THE USER... NOT JUST CAUSE they are COOL LOOKING TOYS

    Of course if you are a game player then these things would be different.

    Once again.. I have embedded tablets into my life to ease the burden of simple work on my laptop (which weights 5 metric tons) and leave it behind where it really belongs in today's world -> Plugged into your power socket at home/work


    Hmm, another 'toys out of the pram' post from Giz USA. Is the site run by kids or what?

      Unsurprisingly, this is the same author who wrote that rather unprofessional "non-review" of the Galaxy Tab back in November.

        Haha, just noticed that. Also the same writer who declared Gizmodo wouldn't review the Nokia N8, again, rather immature and thankfully not a path followed by Giz Australia.

    I have to say that my experience is completely opposite to the main thrust of this article.

    I've been using a tablet (i.e, a small laptop with a flip over screen) for years, and it's fantastic. Small, light and portable it gives me everything that a desktop does with little compromise.

    Windows 7 running on an SSD is excellent, both in terms of usability and battery life. It did cost more than an ipad, but when I look at what each can do... well you get what you pay for.

    I've played with a Windows 7 tablet not long ago and the functionality of the device was great. Easy to navigate, runs smoothly and it's ultra portable.

    Well I'll go against the trend here and say I am in full agreement with the writer of this article.

    The iPad works because the OS was designed from the ground up to be fast, finger friendly, portable and power efficient. It was therefore an easy jump from the iPhone to the iPad for Apple as they made sure there were an enormous amount of native apps designed specifically for it's form factor. Funnily enough it's been a runaway success.

    In contrast Windows 7 is not designed for touch, is power hungry and a massive memory hog. Have fun navigating around without a stylus too because your fingers simply aren't tiny enough to access many of the small UI elements in Windows 7.

    If you want Windows7 on something portable, why on earth would't you just buy a cheap netbook?

      But here's another question: If I want a thin, limited functionality tablet, running low powered programs, why on earth wouldn't I just buy an iPad or android tablet?

      Putting Windows 7 on a tablet is going to make a differnt device for a differnt market.

      Back in the day, I had an old convertible Fujitsu tablet running Windows and loved it. This is going to work for the medical profession and any other industry that'll want a proper OS to run proper work programs. Calling it now.

      Ridiculous short sighted article by Gizmodo.

    Bit of a narrow view there. After waiting too long for the Notion Ink Adam (Android), I spent AU$762 on an ExoPC (Win 7). I wanted:
    a)1080p HDMI output for use while travelling.
    b)A colour e-book reader that displayed ALL file types.
    c)Mobile Internet on a larger screen than my phone.
    d)Compatibility with existing software.

    Guess what? I got all of those things and - for my purposes - it certainly doesn't suck. Looks & sounds fantastic on a 54" plasma & page turning is a dream compared to some e-ink based readers I've tried. Battery life? Meh. It lasts a lot longer than a Bris-Melb flight and I'm never that far from a power point anyway. Also the SSD gives decent load times. I wonder how much of the over-excited fanboy dramatics comes from people who've never actually used one of these things for months , in real life?

    And maybe you'd like to consider how professional it looks when tech writers announce that they've made up their minds about a whole class of devices and refuse to even touch them? Tried the Asus EP121 with the Wacom stylus yet? It's OK - it's not a 10' stylus if that helps. It won't hurt you.

    I don't know how it compares to other tablets but my Windows 7 tablet works fine. When at home I can plug in all the hardware I use with my desktop pc and use it like a desktop and then if I need to work away from home I just unplug everything, pick it up and walk off with everything I need with me. It's the same as having a desktop you can take with you. It's not perfect, these things never will be but I like how you don't need to duplicate, or convert stuff to make it work, you can even use the same software that you're used to. Like I say it's not perfect but it's not as bad as this article makes out and for sure I wouldn't be without mine now.

    Not the normal, balanced views we're used to from Gizmodo...

    Someone got a bone to pick?

    And now the Samsung XE700 (Slate) shows that it is possible to be a tablet, laptop replacement AND run ALL the usual Windows stuff.

    But it is not the instant on (misnomer really = screen off) to the internet and email/messaging always active device that iOS/Android devices are. But then I have a Galaxy Note for that.

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