Acer CEO: Microsoft Should 'Think Twice' About Surface

It's well known that hardware manufacturers are none too happy about Microsoft's foray into tablets with the Surface, and even the company itself had admitted it will screw over PC manufacturers. Acer's CEO certainly shares that opinion -- and he's being fairly vocal about it.

In a recent interview with the Financial Times, Acer CEO JT Wang decided to get some things off his chest. Best of all, he explained:

"We have said [to Microsoft] think it over. Think twice. It will create a huge negative impact for the ecosystem and other brands may take a negative reaction. It is not something you are good at so please think twice."

Wang wasn't the only one to speak his mind, either. Campbell Kan, Acer's president of PC global operations, explained:

"If Microsoft is going to [have a] hardware business, what should we do? Should we still rely on Microsoft, or should we find other alternatives?"

So get ready for, I don't know, Ubuntu Acers? Clearly, there's dissent amongst the ranks of once loyal Windows PC manufacturers. While Microsoft certainly doesn't seem to be thinking twice about its latest, daring moves into hardware, it's yet to be seen whether such a tactic will be alright in the long term. [Financial Times via All Things D]

Image: Friprog/Flickr



    Microsoft seems to have forgotten that hardware manufacturers aren't its partners, they're its customers.

      Um, actually the consumers are the customers. We pay for Windows, not the hardware guys in actual fact, the price is just included in the devices price. MS and certain HW vendors have an agreement to pre-install Windows on new machines at a very reduced price (OEM), while standalone Windows is expensive.This encourages people to rather buy completely new hardware when upgrading to a new version of Windows, that simply buying standalone Windows.

      This benefits both parties... and that means partners. I actually think the hardware guys need MS more than MS needs the HW guys.

      Let Acer or whoever start selling laptops with Ubunto only and see how quickly their revenue goes into freefall.

    It will only negatively effect their partners if they can't step up and release quality hardware.

    Hot Tip for Acer: Stop releasing generic nasty crap


      MS is not new to the world of hardware. They've been doing peripherals for ages and full custom systems for a solid 6 years. They've made mistakes but right now Xbox360 is arguably the best console on the market.

      Step up or step out, Acer. Fact of the market is you won't get my money if you don't make something worth buying. If MS wasn't any good at hardware, why would you feel threatened? If MS is good at hardware, shouldn't Acer be better? If not, why not?

        PS3 is a far better piece of hardware that Xbox360, however, the 360 is close. Microsoft's online experience is what might push them over the line into "arguably the best console on the market."

        But I agree, MS will have no problem managing a hardware business.

    I have to agree with dkNigs. I see M$ Surface RT and Pro tablets as the top of the line in the surface products and doing this can only and should make the rest step up and say "We can do better" and actually do better as they have been doing this how much longer than M$?

    "It is not something you are good at so please think twice."

    Yeah, that's rich coming from Acer.

    Oh, BOO HOO Acer. Hey, maybe um, like, releasing some good products would help? Maybe?

    Microsoft: "We think Acer should think twice before using Android on any devices." Two-way street.

    Microsoft is trying to ensure its operating system is running on innovative products and ultimately to do that it has had to lift the game. We still don't know the pricing, but as Barry highlights I am sure they will be top of the range so the last 'customer'/'partner' that should be scared is Acer. I'm sure Microsoft's current thinking is that no matter what they do in the hardware space, they will still sell the same (or more) windows seats.

    I think MS need to decide who they are and what they do (best).
    I know it may seem sexy to produce hardware especially when you primarily supply software and a lot of your partners seem uninspired in what they are loading that software on to BUT if it comes at a cost of losing footing in your stronghold why take the risk?
    Sure it must be tempting to create a fully integrated seamless "package" of your software and hardware but often times you can win the battle but lose the war in the long run. They need to focus on what's important. Compete against Android and the like.

      What? You think a decade or so in the gaming console market has taught them nothing? I'd suggest the risk is minimal. There simply aren't any viable alternatives to Windows for any of these companies. Windows has a 90% marketshare which gives MS license to do pretty much whatever they like. I'd liken the situation to supermarkets introducing their generic brands in the 1980s - a win for consumers that forces partners to lift their game, instead of sitting on their arses and letting someone else do all the work. It also gives MS a focus to market to customers more effectively.

    Could Wang have said anything more contradictory? How does Microsoft "create a huge negative impact" if it's not "something they're good at"?

    What better way to force your 'customers' to make device's capable of competing with Apple than make one yourself.

    Microsoft saw the problem they got them selves into, leaving innovation to their 'customers', and have returned by designing a beast called the Surface.

    Either their 'customers' step up and innovate or fail. Pretty simple really.

      I think that's a harsh assessment. Asus, for example, have been kicking a lot of goals. They invented the netbook (and let's be honest, a tablet is just a next-gen netbook so they basically created that whole market segment) and the Win8 devices they showed in Taiwan recently are going to make everything Apple have look incredibly lame when they hit the market. I'd also suggest the worst thing about their Transformer tablets and Pad-Fone is the OS they have to run. The form factors are brilliant and genuinely innovative. Sony have also shown some spark with their current Vaio Z-Series, using Thunderbolt to much better effect than Apple have.

    Hardware Manufacturers are only crying like babies because they can only put out generic, derivative garbage.

    I agree with dkNigs, i use to work for a surf clothing brand (wholesale) and when we launched our own website selling our own clothes, retailers around australia went nuts saying we are hurting their sales etc. If it is making an impact on your business clearly you have to step it up, not complain and hope they stop doing what they have already spent time and money producing

    It's time for Linux to take a foothold on the market, because it appears many companies are not pleased with Windows 8. This may be the dream come true, because Microsoft is a piece of shit company. Since Windows 8 is changing up everything, other competitors are probably thinking "if they're creating a whole new desktop interface.... then why not just go with Linux? ".

      because people will still hear "Microsoft Windows" and they will know what it is regardless of its looks..... You tell them it is Linux and they will look puzzled and ask why it isnt Windows

        P.S. You do realise that you can still run Windows 7 programs on Windows 8 right?

        Windows 8 = Fancy Start menu.

      Although people keep saying Windows 8 looks crap, blah blah the fact of the matter is that Windows 8 will be the first OS to lead the computing world into a fully touch compatible world. The mouse is on the way out and soon Apple will be forced to release a new touch focused OS for the Macs. Everyone will look back and realise that wow.. Microsoft knew what they were doing. Companies like acer are all scared cause the big boss has entered the playing field with the Surface, so they need to up their game and stop releasing sub-par hardware as they have for years. By all means if they want to switch to Linux and have a OS not fully compatible with the mobile market which is taking over the computing industry then by all means go ahead..... Meanwhile Microsoft will be laughing all the way to the bank, as will Samsung & Asus as they can actually release high quality gear with the full compatibility of W8 across their mobiles & tablets & PCs.

      Linux is never going to have majority market share because computers have been made for anyone to use SIMPLY - compiling a program to use is not simple nor is learning an ENTIRLEY new operating system. It does not have the features businesses require and I doubt it will come close anytime soon.
      Microsoft Excel is one of the most powerful data mining tools available (in use with SQL and powerpivot) and enterprise businesses will continue using it because it just works.

      Bwaaaahahaha... You should rather call yourself Sgnikwah Nevets. He has an IQ that is inversely proportional to Steven Hawkings.

      And when their customers all want to install the hundreds, perhaps thousands, of dollars worth of Windows software on their Linux machines, what are they going to tell them? Linux is for sheeple who don't have anything better to do with their lives. The rest of us need to get things done and we already have the tools we are most comfortable with to do them. Now that I've stopped using Firefox, there is not a single application I rely on every day that will run natively on Linux. Whilst some may be able to work around that with things like WINE, the vast majority of non-computer-savvy users would run a mile. I used to think Linux was a great idea but after dipping my toe in on several occasions over the last 13 or 14 years I don't think it is any closer to being a viable alternative than it was a decade ago.

      Oh, and BTW, there is no "whole new desktop" in Win8, just the same old desktop from Vista that was carried over into Win7, with a few minor tweaks. All your desktop shortcuts are there, so are your gadgets (if you have any), Taskbar, system tray and all the rest of it. The only noticeable change is the lack of a Start Button but all the functionality it provides is still available, in a vastly improved package.

    Maybe it's because acer know how rubbishy there stuff is (and yes unfortunately I own an Iconia). Anyway I thought they didn't care about tablets?

    Acer has its own bigger problems to worry about then worry about what Microsoft is offering...

    Can you smell that?? It's called fear. MS is onto a winner and the HW guys are QQ'ing because they look like fools (which they are for the zero innovation they provided in like 10 years.)

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