So Microsoft has announced Surface – an answer to Apple’s iPad and a bridge between mobile devices and the new Windows 8 system.
It looks fine.
But to me it seems to suffer from a lack of ambition which is prevalent with companies in the post-iPhone world.
Everything, from Sony’s tablets, Nintendo’s Wii-U, Samsung’s Smart TV, is a reaction to Apple. Devices are springing up everywhere. They all look fine.
But fine isn’t really going to rock the world.
And I don’t understand why these companies, with the resources at their disposal, don’t want to rock the world.
Microsoft have the technology to make Surface a world changing technology.
They could think big, for a start.
They could announce that the world is our Surface. That Surface is more than just the latest iPad killer or smartphone replacement.
They could tell us it is a new way in which to experience the world.
And then they could show us how by revealing a series of products they already have but which are tuned to work together.
Like the tablet device they showcased.
Like the Windows Phone they will be talking about soon.
Like the Xbox they already have.
Or the Kinect technology they have developed.
Or the SmartGlass concept they showed at E3.
And they could take that on into every part of our lives and tell us that Surface is more than skin deep. That it goes where we go and enhances our world.
I want a device to turn my TV into a Smart TV. I want a device that turns my speakers into Smart Speakers. Or my mirror into a Smart Mirror.
There’s so much talk about the ecosystem these days. But it’s in its infancy. Presenting a strong, expansive product line could make that a reality so that you really can let your interests follow you and enjoy them wherever you are.
Microsoft shouldn’t be allowing people to weigh up options and decide between iPad or Galaxy or Surface. It shouldn’t come down to whether a device has USB or HDMI or more or less memory or anything like that.
It should come down to a radically different vision that lets me see the benefits of wrapping THEIR Surface over MY world.
Otherwise I’ll just stick with my iPad and stay in my comfort zone.
Which is fine.