Acer CEO wants Microsoft to "think twice" about Surface tablet

Microsoft announced its Surface tablet in June, and immediately questions were raised about how other PC makers felt about Microsoft launching their own branded PC tablet product. Today, the head of one of the biggest PC sellers, Acer, clearly feels that Microsoft should pull out of this market.

The Financial Times reports quotes Acer CEO JT Wang as saying:

We have said 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.

He added, "If Microsoft is going to do hardware business, what should we do? Should we still rely on Microsoft, or should we find other alternatives?"

Oliver Ahrens, Acer's senior VP and president for Europe, Middle East and Africa, was quoted shortly after the reveal of the Surface that he didn't think it would be successful. However, he added that Acer, the fourth largest PC maker worldwide, still has plans to release four or five Windows 8 products in 2012.

Other top PC companies, such as HP and Lenovo, have been pretty silent about their feelings about Microsoft's Windows 8 tablet. However, in a recent interview with Neowin, Frank Azor, the general manager of Dell's Alienware division, had this to say about the Surface:

Microsoft is an important partner to Alienware and Dell and Dell will be delivering a full portfolio of Windows 8 tablets – and other products -- later this Fall.  I think the Surface sets a bar for all of the tablet manufacturers out there to beat and I have no concern in Dell’s ability to do so.

Source: Financial Times

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56 Comments

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It's about time OEMs start looking to alternatives to Microsoft. Hopefully Windows 8 is the final nail in Microsoft's coffin.

Mike Frett said,
It's about time OEMs start looking to alternatives to Microsoft. Hopefully Windows 8 is the final nail in Microsoft's coffin.

It's about time OEM's started making quality hardware. Hopefully Microsoft kicks them up the bum.

Or you know, they could keep making utter rubbish hardware and just change software with their tail between their legs instead.

Confirming the obvious--Windows-8 for tablets; Windows-7 for laptops and desktops. Select your hardware and then select your OS.

Help Desk : How many I help you?

Customer: Hi I recently bought the surface tablet and I'm trying to install my halmark greeting card studio installed on it.

Help Desk: I'm sorry Any windows software you have ever owned is not compatible with that tablet.

Consumer: Why not? I bought a windows tablet.

Help Desk: Because it's running an ARM CPU, i'ts incompatible with x86 software.

Consumer: This tablet runs windows. I also run windows at home on my computer and I don't have any issue with installing software, so I just don't know why the software isn't installing on this tablet.

Help Desk: I've already explained why, the version of windows on the tablet is different than the one on your other computers

Consumer: But it's still called windows so it should work.

*gunshot heard*

Acer is saying that because they don't have anything to beat, what I consider to be a benchmark tablet device released by Microsoft in order to up the ante!

Come one OEMs, put your back into it and come up with something better than Surface.

As for their threat of seeking an alternative, there are none. They can't make iOS tablet and Android is far from enterprise ready (There, I said it!).

It's quite ironic that Acer and other OEMs have been doing similar stuff of their own (as in "betraying" MS): using Android and Ubuntu instead of Windows! They're no better.

Acer's concerned that the Surface will have 10 times more build quality than any product they'll ever make. Ever heard of those stories about computers melting? It was probably an Acer.

Surface is just a reference tablet computer showing how it minimum should be done. MS made a big deal about the click sound to the stand etc., and that was just them urging OEMs to pay closer attention to detail and make something original for once.

But go ahead Acer.. throw out Microsoft and build your own Android/Linux distro for tablet and computer use. You can bundle as much bloatware you want then!

Sonne said,
I hope this is a sign of things to come, the moving away from Windows

I hope this is a sign of things to come, the moving away from cheap designs and hardware

Seriously, Acer, step up to the plate and hit a homerun. OEMs are scared because the Surface looks sexy and built to last. Stop making crappy products and show us you can make a solid device that rivals Surface. That's what MS is wanting you to do. Your confidence in your ability to do so is making me not so quick to consider Acer as an alternative. So far it's Surface for me but Dell or Samsung could get my $$ too. Acer, stop whining.

laserfloyd said,
Seriously, Acer, step up to the plate and hit a homerun. OEMs are scared because the Surface looks sexy and built to last. Stop making crappy products and show us you can make a solid device that rivals Surface. That's what MS is wanting you to do. Your confidence in your ability to do so is making me not so quick to consider Acer as an alternative. So far it's Surface for me but Dell or Samsung could get my $$ too. Acer, stop whining.

Amen brother. From what I hear, its HP's fault MS even decided to do the Surface Tablet on their own to begin with. Microsoft first was teaming up with them to do a flagship tablet for Windows 8 (remember the HP Slate Steve Ballmer was holding CES before last that everyone was asking about?). But they were doing the same old BS OEM crap, and trying to cut corners. Just look at the Google Nexus series of devices, and you'll see what MS wanted for themselves. Hardware that shows off what the platform is about. Pretty much, they couldn't trust the OEMs to do it, so they did it themselves.

Any OEM that has something negative to say about the Surface, is an OEM you probably shouldn't consider buying Windows 8 hardware from. They're too pu$$y to do what's needed to make a device worth buying.

SikSlayer said,
Any OEM that has something negative to say about the Surface, is an OEM you probably shouldn't consider buying Windows 8 hardware from. They're too pu$$y to do what's needed to make a device worth buying.

(Emphasis mine)

actually MS has been relatively great at hardware with the one major mis-step being Xbox RRoD. But they knew that was an issue and had to get to market. They did well with the replacement project. Mice, Keyboards, etc. Great.

Not everyone will be able to afford a Surface as it looks to be premium priced so Acer should be fine.

simplezz said,
Acer needs to start selling Ubuntu laptops. That will make Microsoft think twice.

Well just go ahead and do it, Apple and Microsoft won't really care.

simplezz said,
Acer needs to start selling Ubuntu laptops. That will make Microsoft think twice.

Dell tried that a few years ago, and well... can you buy a dell with ubuntu preloaded on it nowadays?

Wait, Acer is telling Microsoft that they aren't good at making hardware? Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. My Acer Windows tablet is a cheaply made piece of junk that has terrible driver/tech support. I can't wait to replace it with a Surface.

Where average people will get lost:

Help Desk: "Your apps don't work because this is a arm tablet"
Idiot: "No. This is a Microsoft tablet! You know The Surface?"
*facepalm*


Who or what is Acer again, didn' they leave the US in the 90s......

Ok seriously, As a project Manger, Why would I want to develop for more then 1 or 2 OS's.

I would have increase of cost for staff ad training, without guarantee of returns. I am not Saying Windows is the Greatest, but from a Production Point I'd would stay here.

I really do not want to see 1989 again, when you walked into a computer store and had to pick from the C64, Apple IIE, Amiga, TSR-80, and 5 other computers................

What Acer should do is see Surface for what it is...a hero device that is going to be sold in small quantities due to its limited retail presence. Acer should use Surface to challenge their hardware engineers to come up with their own hero Windows 8 tablet and be prepared to advertise it properly.

What Microsoft could do to assure OEM's is say, look if you drive Windows based tablets to 50% of the overall "tablet" market in x months...we will stop producing Surface.

I've had two Acer laptops that the plastics cracked and fell apart.
I'd never buy another Acer product ...ever again

This is actually a really good deal for consumers as it will drive diversity and set a benchmark.

Not great for 3rd parties who have innovate to work for their money (although I think the Transformer series is an exception)

drazgoosh said,
"Other alternatives"? Seems like 2013 is the year of Linux

Obviously they'll stick with Windows for Desktops and Laptops but only use Android for all their phones and tablets.

drazgoosh said,
"Other alternatives"? Seems like 2013 is the year of Linux

You are joking right? LOL
People have been saying that for the last 20 years. Never going to happen.

thealexweb said,

Obviously they'll stick with Windows for Desktops and Laptops but only use Android for all their phones and tablets.

But that's what they have been doing all this while .. havent they ?

kinpin said,

But that's what they have been doing all this while .. havent they ?

Well they could have been planning a Windows Phone or Slate and will now cancel them.

thealexweb said,

Well they could have been planning a Windows Phone or Slate and will now cancel them.

Yeah, and they would be doing that at their own expense.

A340600 said,
OK. I'll see what Dell has to offer, if nothing looks good then it'll be Surface Pro.
There is also the Asus Transformer Book, even though I haven't heard anything about it since it's announcement

georgevella said,
There is also the Asus Transformer Book, even though I haven't heard anything about it since it's announcement

They never stated if it had pen support while the low end atom-based 810 was stated to have a Wacom digitizer. I really wish they have Wacom in the transformer book and have a model with at least 8GB RAM, maybe even a SODIMM slot in the 14" version they stated to be in development.

I will NOT buy a computer with less than 8GB of RAM no matter how good the rest is. The computer I bought in 2009 has 4GB RAM, we should be at 16GB for high-end $1000 laptops now. I put 16GB RAM in my laptop, but that's because it has two SODIMM slots to and not RAM soldered right to the board. We could use a new micro RAM slot for ultrabooks and tablets because manufactures are refusing to put more than a measly 4GB in.

georgevella said,
There is also the Asus Transformer Book, even though I haven't heard anything about it since it's announcement

I don't remember hearing about this one, but I just looked at a video on Engadget. I think that there might be a 13" version. I want a tablet with a good screen size (and resolution).

Hello,

As I understand it, ARM (and other SOC) tablets, ebook readers, MP3 players, etc., do not use the same conventional DDR memory that conventional (x86/x64) PC's use, but rather a low-power variant which is specifically designed to be integrated onto the system board.

I am not an electronics engineer, but it seems to me that redesigning for use with some kind of SO-DIMM (µ SO-DIMM?) board would increase design complexity (extra trace length to layout on system board), increase BOM cost (cost of the memory slots plus attaching them to the system board), result in increased heat (at the location of the SO-DIMMs) and perhaps even some decreased battery life and performance (electrical load issues from having to go over the SO-DIMM's connector).

Many people who are looking at tablets/slates/dynabooks/{insert-favorite-name-of-Post-PC-device here} probably have, or at least regularly use a PC (notebooks and netbooks included) and are, I think, looking for a kind device without the complexity of a PC that is slim, has good battery life and let's them do web-browsery things and run a few apps. The model that you're talking about, or an upgradeable device platform is, I think, not what the average consumer is looking for, and it's unlikely that such a platform could be manufactured economically

BobSlob said,
Acer... find a different OS alternative... good luck

I actually would like Acer to give MS the finger and take Android to the next level as a tablet/laptop hybrid line, a la Asus and the Transformer series.

I think Acer should think twice about releasing cheap plastic crap that adds nothing interesting to the market. But hey, I'm just some stupid consumer, what do I know?

Acer CEO JT Wang said,
We have said 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.

Translation: We, Acer, suck at making hardware, so please Microsoft stop making quality hardware! We are desperate!

I, for one, respect Dell's enthusiasm for the competition. It will be interesting to see what OEM's do to win customers from the surface.

Routerbad said,
I, for one, respect Dell's enthusiasm for the competition. It will be interesting to see what OEM's do to win customers from the surface.

Indeed. Dell's reaction to Surface is the right one, well done.. Acer's, well, isn't. Suffice to say I won't be buying an Acer product any time soon.

Dell are a quality manufacturer whereas Acer are pooping their pants and rightfully so with half baked junk that they release

Routerbad said,
I, for one, respect Dell's enthusiasm for the competition. It will be interesting to see what OEM's do to win customers from the surface.

The Dell guy has class.