Bill Gates defends Windows 8 and Surface

While Microsoft has yet to give any official sales numbers for its Surface tablets, research firm IDC claims that the company shipped 900,000 Surface units in the first quarter of 2013. In an interview on the CNBC business news cable TV network, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates defended Microsoft's efforts in entering the tablet market.

The interview was conducted in Omaha, Nebraska in a joint talk with Warren Buffet, the chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway. When asked about what the world will look like in the future with tablets competing with the PC, Gates stated that Windows 8 was designed to work with both tablets and PCs and the Surface tablets can have the portability of a tablet with the uses of a PC. He said:

It's going to be harder and harder to distinguish products, whether they are tablets or PCs. With Windows 8, Microsoft is trying to gain share in what has been dominated by the iPad type device. A lot of those users are frustrated. They can't type. They can't create documents. They don't have Office there. So we are providing something with the benefits they have seen that have made that a big category without giving up what they expect in a PC.

Gates also said there are a number of strong tech companies out there, including Microsoft, Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon and Samsung. He added:

If you do deep software both on the client and deep services, if you have things that are unique for businesses, which is a particular strength of Microsoft, the software business is an amazing business to be in both in terms of growth and the profitability dynamics.

Source: CNBC

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I'm happy with Windows 8 - Gates will defend what he has to at the end of the day. He also can only say so much without throwing his friend and MS CEO under the bus.

That's what I love about Windows 8 so much. Getting all the benefits of a tablet, and all the benefits of traditional desktop computing. It really is (to me) the best of both worlds.

And I'm not afraid to say that I use it on my non-touch screen laptop. Sometimes I just want to sit back in bed and play some games that normally were restricted to mobile devices like my iPod or Nexus 7. Now, I can have that tablet experience right off my laptop. But, keep in mind that if I need to do some work, I'm also given that capability. I don't have to use two separate devices, when one can have both experiences.

Of course the man will defend this product. His bank account needs to grow fatter and fatter. Look Bill, I love what you've done with your foundation. I was the biggest Microsoft fanboy in the 80's, 90's, and up to Windows 7. Billy, the majority of Windows 8 users hate the product. This is Neowin, and the support for Windows 8 is a small fraction of the bigger scale of people who wish you all would go back to the drawing boards.

As far as I know Bill Gates is still on the board of directors of Microsoft, so what's he going to say "Windows 8 sucks balls?" Of course not. I'll be more interested what he says about Microsoft when he has ZERO ties to the company.

I am more than confident that the Bill on the home computer using XP or 7. And the fact that he defends so differently and can not be. It would be surprising if it were otherwise.

Very astute observation. One of many unintended consequences when an OS was designed for the tablet platform while ignoring the needs and requirements of laptop and desktop users.

TsarNikky said,
Very astute observation. One of many unintended consequences when an OS was designed for the tablet platform while ignoring the needs and requirements of laptop and desktop users.

Ignoring? How?

DarkNet said
Things must not be good for Windows 8 and Surface when the title uses the word 'Defend". Just saying.
Well, Windows 8 is slowly climbing up in marketshare. It's even increasing in Steam users as well.

I don't think it's that bad. A lot of people are making a big fuss out of nothing, but that's just me.

the only gimp are the people who complain about windows 8. Heck I see no reason why you can't be as productive or even more with Windows 8 when you have all the same features of windows 7 and speedier more feature pack desktop.

I am more productive using Windows 7. Hell my company just ordered a bunch of new computers and requested Windows 7. The change was too drastic. Not everyone is a geek.

I also don't like the flat looking desktop. It is a huge step back in the eye candy department all in the effort to make the desktop battery friendly for tablets.

Deihmos said,
I also don't like the flat looking desktop. It is a huge step back in the eye candy department all in the effort to make the desktop battery friendly for tablets.

Thats BS. The desktop UI is rendered by the GPU if it has Aero or not. Getting rid of Aero has zero affect on battery life as either way the GPU is doing about the same amount of work. It's not exactly demanding to render 2D transparency effects, it's not 1995. The reason they got rid of Aero is because it's dated (from 2007) and cheesy looking.

Some people (with bad taste) might like that sort of thing, but many don't and the clean "metro" style design is how graphic design is heading, not just with MS but loads of stuff, it's everywhere now. For instance look at pretty much any new site deign, it's nearly always more metro style - because it's better. Even Apple are copying it with iOS 7, same with Google.

Aero does not look cheesy and it does not look dated. Windows 8 looks like Windows 7 when for some reason aero gets turned off and your eyes start to bleed.

Microsoft said in order to have better battery life on tablets they removed aero glass and other desktop effects. They did not get rid of aero either just some of the effects.

warwagon said,
Aero does not look cheesy and it does not look dated.

You realise it's 2013 right? Aero is old tacky dated looking cheese. It's the reason why iOS and OSX also look so dated - because they use the same stuff like: gradients, transparency, wood/leather/metal emulation, drop shadows, shiny/glossy buttons and icons... this stuff is DATED and any graphic designer will tell you this.

Deihmos said,
Microsoft said in order to have better battery life on tablets they removed aero glass and other desktop effects. They did not get rid of aero either just some of the effects.

MS have never said this. People that know nothing about this stuff just assumed this.

W32.Backdoor.KillAV.E said,

You realise it's 2013 right? Aero is old tacky dated looking cheese. It's the reason why iOS and OSX also look so dated - because they use the same stuff like: gradients, transparency, wood/leather/metal emulation, drop shadows, shiny/glossy buttons and icons... this stuff is DATED and any graphic designer will tell you this.

You mean the Windows graphic designers that are probably still using Windows 7 because they hate Windows 8?

W32.Backdoor.KillAV.E said,

MS have never said this. People that know nothing about this stuff just assumed this.


I read this from microsoft developers themselves when asked about it. I cannot find the direct quote but Paul mentions it. http://winsupersite.com/articl...ew-rip-aero-20032012-143133

I'm curious why Microsoft never explained the need to remove Aero. But let me offer up a reason, one that the company had mentioned previously with regards to the down tuned Aero version that's appeared in Windows 8 builds so far and is mentioned in this mammoth post, too, but not with regards to the desktop:

It's all about battery life.

Aero, with all its glassy, translucent goodness, is bad for battery life. Metro, meanwhile, which is flat, dull, not transparent, and only full screen, is very good for battery life.

W32.Backdoor.KillAV.E said,

Thats BS. The desktop UI is rendered by the GPU if it has Aero or not. Getting rid of Aero has zero affect on battery life as either way the GPU is doing about the same amount of work. It's not exactly demanding to render 2D transparency effects, it's not 1995. The reason they got rid of Aero is because it's dated (from 2007) and cheesy looking.


Are you sure?? Yes both are rendered by the GPU, but I'm pretty sure how they are rendered is different. I can't think of a modern way of explaining it, but thinking of it in terms of 2D and 3D modes in older games... 3D Acceleration. 2D vs 3D clocks maybe? Anyway, that is how I have understood the difference to Aero being off or on. I'm pretty sure Aero being enabled does put a greater load on the GPU than it being off. The eye candy can't possibly be free. And a higher GPU load is going to equal greater power consumption, at least for the GPU.

Microsoft is trying to gain share in what has been dominated by the iPad type device. A lot of those users are frustrated. They can't type. They can't create documents.

They can't?

Frustrated? No I don't think so. Maybe a small percentage but not the majority. Most users just surf web, play games, and facebook.

Also, the two major things that would help boost Windows Tablet sales are: price and amount of apps. They need a lot more application developers and the price for Windows tablets needs to drop significantly! Microsoft needs to give developers special rewards/bonus for creating apps on Windows 8 like Apple does. The price of Windows 8 tablets needs to drop by a few hundred to like $250 because $499+ is just too expensive for most people!

Windows 8 is nothing short of an amazing base to a greater future in PC computing. It's about time Windows has broken free of its limiting shell.

myxomatosis said,
Windows 8 only replaced its “limiting shell” for a different one.

In what way is Metro limiting? It can scale to any modern computing device, allows for multitasking (which will be expanded upon in the upcoming "Blue" update), Has a more secure sandboxed environment, and are better on resources than x86 programs are.

Dot Matrix said,
In what way is Metro limiting?

People on this forum have given you countless examples on countless occasions. You're asking for the sake of asking.

.Neo said,

People on this forum have given you countless examples on countless occasions. You're asking for the sake of asking.
This guy will defend Windows 8 to his death, or anything Microsoft. People give countless reasons as why Windows 8 is not an innovative step forward.

JHBrown said,
This guy will defend Windows 8 to his death, or anything Microsoft. People give countless reasons as why Windows 8 is not an innovative step forward.

Of course it is. You just don't know it yet.

Seriously, with 8, I have the power of Windows on any device imaginable. Can't say that about Windows 7, Vista, XP, etc.

One of the main bullet points on why Windows is so successful is it's library of software; you don't have that on Windows RT devices. Using that library of software on a touch device isn't any better than it was on Windows <= 7.

Dot Matrix said,
Windows 8 is nothing short of an amazing base to a greater future in PC computing. It's about time Windows has broken free of its limiting shell.

show me any comment before windows 8 came along to back up your claims.
I would like to see some complaints you posted from years ago stating that the start menu for example is really bad and a new full screen system is needed asap.
Get it ?

I think you like it so you wanna jam it down everyone's throat and if they resist they are dirt bags who need to be silenced.

JHBrown said,
This guy will defend Windows 8 to his death, or anything Microsoft. People give countless reasons as why Windows 8 is not an innovative step forward.
That doesn;t mean "I" have to see it that way.

Interesting discussion about China and piracy at the end. Imagine the revenues Microsoft would have if piracy wasn't so rampant there.

Scroogled said,
Interesting discussion about China and piracy at the end. Imagine the revenues Microsoft would have if piracy wasn't so rampant there.
Has anyone ever heard of Apple suffers from piracy in China by way of hackintosh's?

zeke009 said,
Has anyone ever heard of Apple suffers from piracy in China by way of hackintosh's?

hackintosh is a pain for setup many times and even when you complete the setup you end up disappointing as you will feel dumb down and handicap from using OSX.

Apple suffers from counterfeiting rather than software piracy. The 'fake mac' community is small enough (and modern computer hardware is expensive enough) that there's not much of a Chinese market for something cobbled together to run Mac OS X.

If you consider the 'fake goods' market (knock-off iPhones, imitation iPads, etc) then Apple has a problem in China that even extends to "fake Apple Stores".

There is a culture difference between China and the west with respect to "copies" in the sense of "imitation" and in the sense of duplication of digital assets. It's probably too difficult to articulate clearly in a comment but I think if you can use Las Vegas as an example. If you can convince a child that the Paris Paris Eiffel Tower is "real" then for your purposes it is indistinguishable from the one in Paris France. The other sort of immitation is more like tribute bands: you know it's not "real Elvis" but if you get enough of the quintessential quality of an Elvis concert then you might still judge the experience genuine even though you know it's "not real Evis". It's not an identical experience, but it has enough similar properties that you don't care.

The majority of Apple counterfeits fall into this class - as do many of the more complicated imitations (like "fake disneyland", "fake English Towns", and "fake Whisky"). If you can't make a convincing duplicate then you might as well try and just duplicate the important part fo the 'experience' or the essential qualities of the thing you're copying. In the west we tend to see those sorts of copies as sub-par (imagine how upset you would have been getting a Go-Bot instead of a Transformer as an 8-year old kind on Christmas). In China the attitude is more in line with how Americans see things like Las Vegas and roller-coasters.


Software piracy is more of the first kind: you make what is (practically) indistinguishable from a genuine article. Software piracy is easy enough that it doesn't make sense to try for the second form - just like it doesn't make sense to make "Guccl" shoes when it's trivial to imitate the real thing convincingly.

coderchi said,

hackintosh is a pain for setup many times and even when you complete the setup you end up disappointing as you will feel dumb down and handicap from using OSX.

Once I've installed Osx on my Pc , just to show to a friend that it's possible.
And then I've removed it. If I switch to an other Os, it would be Linux.

Scroogled said,
Interesting discussion about China and piracy at the end. Imagine the revenues Microsoft would have if piracy wasn't so rampant there.

lost revenues lol
right.....

Windows 8 is fine and is a great os! It just needs time to adjust to its new UI! I can still run programs dating back to the late 90s on it also! Any Windows tablet will instantly smash Ipad and Android tablets.

Edited by Brutechicken, May 6 2013, 2:45pm :

Brutechicken said,
Windows 8 is fine and is a great os! It just needs time to adjust to its new UI! I can still run programs dating back to the late 90s on it also! Any Windows tablet will instantly smash Ipad and Android tablets.
I really like Win8. But spit and polish was missing on the retail release. Especially as a tablet OS there is just too much that you are *forced* to do in the classic desktop interface. It really sounds like Blue is going to make it so if you're just in need of tablet uses you can stay in a touch first environment.

With that in mind, I hope they never do away with the desktop on Windows as it's much more productive. Just let me live in one or the other or both as I choose. Windows is supposed to be about choice, I hope they deliver it.

It will smash ipads and androids, why have two devices when you can have one.

It's faster than Windows 7, sure the Metro side of it is very fresh but it's app ecosystem will mature to the point of it being a lot more useful. In the meantime you can ignore metro and enjoy the faster desktop with newer features.

The Windows 8 hate on this side is utterly ridiculous, possibly just trendy for the moment. I agree with some minor gripes but on the whole it is comfortably better than Windows 7.

Ok and we were like expecting him to defend something else? Its BILL GATES for crying out loud! Of course he is gonna defend it. He is basically like the software in Windows 8 called Windows Defender.

Not sure the "Headline" is accurate as he is just stating the obvious. Oh well neowin, for a site that likes to call you on calling someone a troll they sure troll a lot with these headlines.

A few weeks ago there was an article on this very site when Woz said that he thinks, not knows, thinks, there will be great things from Apple in the future, and then defended what they are currently doing. The Apple fanboys, after months of criticizing Woz as being old and out of touch whenever he complimented a product from another company, rallied around him as being great, no other company has a person like Woz, and even someone who works for this site claimed that Gates has not done the same for Microsoft (even though I provided quotes to the contrary).

Now Gates does what Woz did, and it is because this site is biased towards Microsoft, it is not news, it is expected that he should do it, blah, blah, blah, whine, whine, whine.

This goof also defended Windows... with Windows Defender. LOL JK, I had to.. but nah nah, Win8 is doing just fine on my part. Aside from bitcoin setup, everything else is smooth as a bean.

Gates has a bee in his bonnet about tablets, he's been telling anyone who will listen for well over 10 years that tablets are the way of the future. Time and time again they have failed. So now his strategy is to sell the hardware too - well looks like the tribe has spoken, and they are a failure too.