Report: Microsoft’s Windows Small Screen Touch Program Fails To Attract Brand Vendors

Acer W3 Windows 8 PC1

Microsoft launched a new program called Small Screen Touch (SST) program which offered licensing discounts on Windows touch devices with a display size of 11.6-inch or below. Based on a report from Digitimes, this new program is struggling to attract notebook brand vendors to develop tablets according to their sources from the upstream supply chain.

While you may question their reliability of sources, it is somewhat evident from the fact that Acer’s 8.1-inch Iconia W3 is the only tablet in the retail channel that was part of the SST program. Even after subsidizing, the cost of $500 is not attracting consumers away from cheap Android tablets of same/similar specs.

Also the inclusion of Microsoft Office in small screen devices as part of SST program is not helping much to boost sales according to the supply chain sources.

What do you think?

Source: Digitimes

About the author  ⁄ pradeep

Pradeep, a Computer Science & Engineering graduate.

  • Ewinxp2

    I think Microsoft needs to release a small tablet at the 199.99 price point. If no one else will do it, they should do it themselves.

    • RandomPerson224

      ^This x1000, though that Acer W3 is running regular Windows and not RT. I’d still love to see something that compares to the Nexus 7 in both hardware and price

  • Joe_HTH

    I don’t know where they get their facts, but the W3 is not $467. It’s $380, and it’s a crappy tablet. Microsoft simply needs to release an 8″ Surface for $299, and preferrably make it a high end small screen device with 1080p screen, NFC, and LTE.

  • JustMe

    MS again needs to show how it’s done. At least after the SUrface tablets we got some decent ones. BUt new tablets coming out still use old hardware!! OEM’s just don’t get it…

  • ustudio

    don’t worry they are coming? ms is the republican in this race meaning that the media is trying to do anything they can to make the other guys win, doesn’t matter what ms does they’re gonna say some thing bad about it, be patient they are coming probably even phones that can run win 8rt, Microsoft is secretive, Nokia is secretive, Samsung is, Hp is , Dell is, the only oem that isn’t secretive is u guess it, the only 8 inch available and probably the worst one.

  • Mark Bryant

    I don’t think anybody really cares about Office being on a small screen tablet. It’s not really a selling point. Almost every reviewer has said the W3 is a piece of crap so Microsoft have nothing to offer in this range. It’s up to them to make their own quality hardware but make it priced competitively, not premium like the Surface RT.

    • Joe_HTH

      Yet it always seems to be a selling point for iOS, considering all the whining about Office not being on iOS. All these articles about how Microsoft is missing out on at least 2 billion dollars by not putting out Office on iOS.

      As for premium, I’d prefer to have a high-end 8″ Surface Mini at $299 than a low end Surface Mini at $199.

  • cybersaurusrex

    I don’t think Microsoft’s OEM partners are interested in selling high-end Windows tablets. They’d rather sell low-end Android tablets because it’s cheaper for them & less risky if they fail.

  • Asgard

    OEMs has become a very big problem for MS. It seems they cannot do anything right. They have been selling crappy hardware so long that it seems to be too much for them to compete in the new market. MS did a very smart more when they introduced the Surfaces. And they need to continue fast.

    • arrow2010

      OEMs seem to be happy making meager profits while Apple/Samsung make everything.

    • SocalBrian

      I don’t think it’s reasonable to hold Microsoft blameless here. For two decades Microsoft (along with Intel) has set baseline PC specs, determined the upgrade cycle, been a major cost to OEMs, and limited innovation. The current OEM situation is, at least in part, a mess of their own making.

  • Gromanon

    I just want a 8″ Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 SoC or 22nm Atom quad-core SoC, Windows RT or 8 with good screen and not more than $350, is this too much to ask!?

  • Vish2801

    Looks like rumor to me as 8.1 is in testing mode and not even RTMed. We’ll see new hardware in late 2013.

  • arrow2010

    Screw the OEMs. Microsoft is the one taking all the risks, they should just make their own full line of tablets and PCs.

  • Juan

    Digitizes is most of the tome wrong so wouldn’t hold what they say as truth, I know for a fact there will be at lease 4 mini tablets for the fall including the Acer w3.

  • Bugbog

    Most people that critique Microsoft for not being more successful in the tablet space, usually, at some point or other, always bring up the cost of the Windows License as a reason for the OEMS not being more productive. I just don’t understand the reasoning behind this logic? After all the O.S. IS Everything! All the hardware components in the world are useless without the O.S.! Yet people keep expecting Microsoft to nickel-&-dime it?!

    Acer, in its recent reveal, waved the W3 with ‘full Windows’, which thereby necessitated an [expensive] Intel chip, which increased the cost, despite the use of low-cost components, ultimately resulting in a crappy product! Yet they (and others) are constantly producing multiple low cost Android tablets?!

    I fairly certain that if they’d produced an RT tablet, it would have resulted in a better product than what the W3 has turned out to be!

  • Windows 8

    the OEM’s are useless and slow ! they need to fall in live and stop living in the small amount of profits in android space, or they will be left out of the growth cycle and would become bankrupt……
    It is MS that allows these oem’s to behave like this, they should cancel the licenses of one or two and see the panic reaction of all others… then these oem’s would be scurrying to be sitting pretty in MS;s lap and work harder.

  • Agosto Nuñez

    I hope to see smaller Windows 8 Tablet-P.C.’s priced around € 90,- even if the specs are unimpressive, they’ll gain market-share, thus will attract more developers to make more applications, thus will attract more people to buy high-end Windows 8 Tablet-P.C.’s, all Windows 8 needs are a loss-leader and some killer-apps.