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Acer Pulls Back From Windows To Focus On Android and Chromebook

Soulskill posted 1 year,14 days | from the giving-up-the-ghost dept.

Microsoft 253

SmartAboutThings writes "More bad news for Microsoft: Acer is apparently rethinking their Windows strategy, planning to offer fewer Microsoft products and focus more on products delivered by Redmond's rival Google, in the form of Chromebooks and Android devices. This comes after Acer's second-quarter earnings call, where the Taiwanese company posted a surprise second-quarter loss, having unexpected lower sales and rising expenses. Acer's change of plans comes not long after Asus' CEO announced that the company would no longer make Windows RT products until Microsoft proves there's real demand."

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From the ashes into the fire? (0, Flamebait)

Carewolf (581105) | 1 year,14 days | (#44518941)

So they are pulling out of one pointless OS (WinRT) and focus an another even more pointless OS (ChromeBook).

When will they ever learn?

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (4, Interesting)

jellomizer (103300) | 1 year,14 days | (#44518961)

Microsoft really dropped the ball with RT. That is the problem. They really should have added some PC Compatibility for some legacy systems. Sure you don't need to go back to windows 95 apps. But being able to run any .NET applications may have made it useful.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (2)

bhcompy (1877290) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519083)

Or they should've priced it like the Kindle Fire. Dumb price for a limited product. No .Net is fine, simply because Metro is completely consumer oriented, but you have to price it for consumers

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (4, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519229)

Isn't it slightly breathtaking how Microsoft has put more than a decade into CLR/CIL and all the .NET framework stuff, theoretically putting themselves in a surprisingly good position for multi-architecture support (given a software ecosystem dominated by proprietary applications from loads of independent vendors and substantial demand for legacy support: Linux and BSD do multi-architecture better; but only for situations where 'just ship the source, stupid' is considered viable, and Apple's 'if it were legal, we'd personally execute anybody who produces software compatible with OS versions older than the one we currently ship' approach allows them to bludgeon the ecosystem into compliance; but isn't a matter of technical sophistication), and then utterly fucked up their foray into ARM?

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (2)

dimeglio (456244) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519421)

Microsoft were simply short sighted in their attempt to overtake the iPad. However, its sheer size and bulldozed-like marketing will more than offset any past failure. I predict a new version of RT will soon be shipping which will deal with problems the initial tablet encountered. Unless of course, they keep running with their blinders on.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (2)

bhcompy (1877290) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519593)

Problem like price will be dealt with with clearance of unsold hardware. Woot has already has some cheap Windows tablets recently.

Problems like features/software that people want for professional use(or power user use) won't be dealt with either if how they treated WP7 is any indication

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (4, Insightful)

Karzz1 (306015) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519595)

I predict a new version of RT will soon be shipping which will deal with problems the initial tablet encountered.

From what I understand, the problems associated with Windows RT cannot really be fixed via a new version.

Marketing this product as "Windows", which confused the market place. A true lack of applications. A completely locked-down hardware device. Being extremely late to an already saturated market. These are all reasons that RT failed to gain much traction.

In fact, from what I understand, the hardware itself is not terrible though WinRT is a love or hate thing.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (4, Interesting)

Alter_3d (948458) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519983)

Unless of course, they keep running with their blinders on.

Like refusing to reinstate the start menu on Windows 8.1 and forcing that metro crap instead of listening to their customers?

Classic theme song! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519489)

The GOOOOBOTS! The GOOOOBOTS!

The GOOOOBOTS!

The GOBOOOOTS!

Re:From the ashes into the fire? 2nd ARM Foray (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44520157)

Actually, this is MS's second ARM foray, the first being Windows CE for the "Pocket PC" (PPC) and "Handheld PC" (HPC). The cult of followers is still somewhat active (more or less nostalgically) at http://www.hpcfactor.com/ . CE is still alive today as Windows Embedded Compact (seems to be mostly for vertical market devices/apps such as bar code scanners/POS terminals, etc.) - see:
http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/news/features/2013/jun13/06-13EmbeddedCompactGA.aspx

Interestingly, that linked page has a link to another "interesting" announcement: "Microsoft Windows Embedded 8.1 Industry Release Preview now available" ( http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/news/Features/2013/Jun13/06-27WinEmbPreview.aspx ). That seems to indicate an ultimate convergence of their original ARM OS with Win 8 RT, so maybe it will stay alive in that vertical markets niche.

Hmm - wonder if I could retrofit Win Embedded 8.1 for my old HP Jornada 728 HPC - those wonky tiles could work on its 640x240 touch screen ;-}

YMMV

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (2)

MightyYar (622222) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519373)

some PC Compatibility for some legacy systems.

I actually want more than that... why can't they make almost-full compatibility? Apple did it at a time when they were a much smaller company. Sure, higher-performance x86 apps would suck on ARM, but the UI wouldn't need to be emulated. Maybe they couldn't get Office to run well or something and decided against it. Maybe they were in a rush. Or maybe they just totally misread the market.

There is little reason to buy an RT tablet until the ecosystem improves, and now it looks like the partners are bailing before the ecosystem will have a chance to grow. Thing is, they could have had an instant ecosystem with emulation.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519449)

Same could be said about OS X and iOS, yet it never is.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (1)

Bert64 (520050) | 1 year,14 days | (#44520139)

Or just not branded it as "windows"... If it was branded differently then people wouldn't have expected compatibility, and thus wouldn't have been disappointed when they found out that it wasn't compatible...

It seemed to work well for apple with ios/ipad, noone expected to be able to run mac applications on them.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (2)

Luckyo (1726890) | 1 year,14 days | (#44518975)

Basically they need something, anything to compensate for disaster that is windows 8, until MS comes back to reality. MS can carry over the dry period with it's MS tax and other parts of its business, OEMs not so much.

It's not so much lack of learning as desperation to keep the revenue flow going in the current market.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (4, Insightful)

MachineShedFred (621896) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519997)

They could fix this so easy and fast, but they don't because they are bull-headed and know what their customer wants (or, at least, think they do.)

If there is a mouse / keyboard, use the Win7 UI.
If there is a touchscreen and no mouse, use the tiles.

Regardless of the above, put a radio button in the control panel to easily switch between the two.

I just fixed Windows 8.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (5, Informative)

chill (34294) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519029)

Considering they were profitable with those, they have learned.

I just bought an Acer C7 Chromebook for my 5-year old son. He uses it to watch YouTube videos. My wife liked it so much, she has taken it over and I'm buying another one.

99% of what she does in through the browser. Actually, make that 100%. There isn't anything she uses the computer for that doesn't have a web interface. Stick AdBlock Plus in Chrome and you have a machine that boots from cold to fully ready in 7 seconds, with a fast, clean browsing experience w/Flash and PDF support. (And the only time it boots from cold is when there is a full Chrome update that requires a restart.)

Chromebooks are fantastic devices for what 80% of the population does with computers. For $199 it was by far and away the best thing out there.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (-1, Flamebait)

beefoot (2250164) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519147)

Yes. Chromebooks is the device you want your 5 years old spending time on watching youtube. I don't know about you, when my kids turn 5, I want them to start writing programs and learn how computer operates. Chromebooks won't be my choice.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (1)

gnasher719 (869701) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519183)

Yes. Chromebooks is the device you want your 5 years old spending time on watching youtube. I don't know about you, when my kids turn 5, I want them to start writing programs and learn how computer operates. Chromebooks won't be my choice.

That's excellent; although maybe a bit early.

That said, the market for computers aimed at people who want their young children to learn how to write programs isn't very big.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (5, Informative)

h4rr4r (612664) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519195)

Why?

You can put the thing in dev mode and do whatever you want. You can even install another OS. So you get a $199 laptop meaning no great loss if it gets dropped or destroyed by the kid and he gets a great first computer.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (2)

alen (225700) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519233)

what if your kid hates programming and anything like it and wants to focus on the liberal arts?

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519301)

Then they'll most likely never earn enough to pay for all the DRM protected content they wish to consume.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519469)

Then you get him a toy grill and a latte machine so that he can prepare for his future career flipping burgers or being an under paid "barista".

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44520165)

that is terrible career advice. the robots will be doing those jobs. Now getting him a playskool call center funplace is preparing him for the exciting world of debt collection and car insurance sales.

Chromebook a success; Microsoft Not. (5, Interesting)

tuppe666 (904118) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519039)

So they are pulling out of one pointless OS (WinRT) and focus an another even more pointless OS (ChromeBook).

When will they ever learn?

The reason why they are focussing on the chromebook is because its selling. In fact its the fastest growing part of an otherwise lackluster PC Market. The fact that it loosens Microsoft Grip on them is a massive bonus.

Re:Chromebook a success; Microsoft Not. (1)

xgerrit (2879313) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519193)

The reason why they are focussing on the chromebook is because its selling. In fact its the fastest growing part of an otherwise lackluster PC Market.

Average people aren't buying Chromebooks, they're buying "that $199 email laptop." And the fact that it's the "fastest growing part of the PC market" is a very nice way of saying that customers aren't willing to spend $500 on a laptop anymore.. they're replacing their old computers with the cheapest thing they can find.

Yes, that's the Chromebook. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519653)

Carewolf: "The Chromebook is a failure!"
Tupe: "No, the Chromebook sells quite well"
You: "No, they're not buing a Chromebook, they're buying 'that $199 laptop'"

Which would be the Chromebook right? So they're buying the Chromebook, which means that someone is selling it, right? Which means it's selling, right?

So what, exactly is the point of a tone that indicates that Tupe was wrong?

Or is your complaing "They are buying it wrong!!!!"?

Re:Yes, that's the Chromebook. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519883)

Your forgetting that Taupe is Google fan boy of the highest order and never misses a chance to troll on Slashdot

Re:Chromebook a success; Microsoft Not. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519701)

The point is to the average consumer, that $199 laptop is now powerful and simple enough for their needs.

Microsoft violated rule number one with any computer product: NEVER EVER replace simplicity with complexity. Windows 8 (RT, Pro, et. al) are an attempt to simplify by making things more complex and changing the paradigm. They're doomed to failure.

Re:Chromebook a success; Microsoft Not. (4, Interesting)

Karzz1 (306015) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519703)

I dropped several hundred dollars on a new laptop for my wife about a year ago. Her uses: YouTube, FaceBook, web mail.

A chromebook might have been a much smarter investment for her, as she doesn't use half the functionality her laptop offers. Also, even though her laptop is orders of magnitude more powerful than the first servers I worked on, it *still* takes several minutes to cold-boot Windows. In fact, she recently got an Android phone and has pretty much forgotten about her laptop, using the phone for her online consumption instead.

Re:Chromebook a success; Microsoft Not. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519879)

Sorry, and this is relevant how? The fact is... people are buying Chromebooks, no matter how you'd like to label them.

Re:Chromebook a success; Microsoft Not. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519919)

Back when Ellison was pushing for the Network Computer( NetPC) over 10 years ago it was a desktop appliance and WinTel was able to counter it with cheap hardware and discounted licensing and marketing programs which effectively killed it. Today, the Chromebook hits the laptop space but Microsoft and Intel aren't so close any more and Microsoft is unable to provide a compelling software package to compete as they scramble to figure out if they are a Windows phone company, a table company, a touch screen desktop company or an online office software company.

This could be another iPhone moment when they miss the chance to nip it or maybe an Internet moment when they turn the ship. But turning the ship today means missing lots of other opportunities they have in the cross hairs.

Re:Chromebook a success; Microsoft Not. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519825)

I've heard from a few different sources that education institutions are picking up on the Chromebooks too. With little marketing going into them, it would seem their usefulness and price points are hitting the mark. A rebirth of the NetPC it would seem.

"fastest growing" (4, Insightful)

MachineShedFred (621896) | 1 year,14 days | (#44520071)

Yeah, when you go from 0.1% to 0.3% of market share, that's 300% growth, which far outstrips everyone else. Ask Microsoft how they feel about being the "fastest growing part" of the smartphone business since Windows Phone 8 also shares that particular title.

Note: I am not disparaging ChromeOS or Chromebook with this post, I'm only pointing out how useless the term "fastest growing" is when applied to a platform that has been on the market for like 18 days (sarcasm).

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519067)

Acer isnt "pulling out" of WinRT - Acer never had a WinRT-based product!

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (2)

Karzz1 (306015) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519731)

Aaahh.. but they never specified WinRT in the article, now did they? The articles were referring to full-blown Win8.

And you really can’t blame Acer for not sticking with Windows 8, as the company has put on the market a good number of different-sized tablets, laptops, hybrids and even all-in-one PC units. -- from the article

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (5, Funny)

squiggleslash (241428) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519111)

For reasons most of us don't understand (myself included) the Chromebook is apparently selling like hot cakes, with some manufacturers finding they sell more Chromebooks than all their Windows laptops put together.

And if you think that doesn't make sense, you're in good company, but you only have to look at sales of a device of an even more crippled laptop*, one that doesn't even have a keyboard and requires use only of applications (themselves even more stripped down than normal) that the manufacturer approves of, that costs more than many regular, full sized, full spec'd, laptops, to understand that the market doesn't always produce winners that nerds like you and me see as obvious.

* Four letters, first is lowercase. Rhymes with "Sad".

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (4, Insightful)

somersault (912633) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519149)

Most people don't need fully kitted out laptops any more than you need an amphibious tank, or your own private GPS satellite network..

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (5, Funny)

iusty (104688) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519377)

Most people don't need fully kitted out laptops any more than you need an amphibious tank, or your own private GPS satellite network..

An amphibious tank, connected to my own private GPS satellite network? Awesome, where do I sign up?

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (5, Funny)

NatasRevol (731260) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519607)

It's right next to the Surface RT display.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519687)

No, but when it's cheaper, why not?

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (2)

h4rr4r (612664) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519171)

They are cheap, that really is it.

If you put them in dev mode and install a better OS they are quite decent. I may buy a pixel just for the display.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (5, Interesting)

edremy (36408) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519223)

Having just bought a (Samsung) Chromebook, I think you ought to try one. It's considerably cheaper than either a real laptop or a (full size) tablet. Unlike cheap laptops, it has an 8 hour battery life, can't get a virus and boots in 10 seconds. Unlike a tablet, it has a 13 inch screen and a typeable keyboard. It has a ton of hidden functionality if you figure out how to access it. Yes, it only runs a browser, but I can get my email in a browser, edit documents/spreadsheets/presentations in a browser, access Evernote and similar services, etc. It won't replace my main computer, but it works great as a travel device.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (2)

jones_supa (887896) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519549)

Is there any hacker functionality, or is it mostly a web browsing and content consumption computer?

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (2)

alen (225700) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519251)

my ipad might not have the paper specs but i can use it on the train to work and on the couch COMFORTABLY
apps like Pulse and flipboard you don't need a keyboard

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519267)

Similarly to OSX or Android, ChromeOS is a lot of what we love about *nix minus the staff that scare the average Joe.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (2)

MightyYar (622222) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519767)

Those cheap laptops are totally unsuited to lap time on the couch. They are heavy, hot on your legs, and have a crappy battery. Many also have a loud fan if you dare to do something like play a game. In my experience, the durability is also bad and constant couch time is hard on things like cheap screen hinges. With an iPad, you can surf all night on the couch and still have enough juice to fall asleep in bed reading. (I have a Kindle - not quite as nice, but same argument applies).

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44520003)

I must not be "in good company", because it makes perfect sense to me, and I've never owned or used a Chromebook, aside from fiddling with one in Best Buy for about 3 minutes.

The simple fact is that not everyone is a hardcore computer user like the slashcrowd. I worked on the original IBM PC, and have been using Linux since the earliest days (with dalliances with every OS on a PC, mini, or mainframe you can name along the way), and if there's one thing I've learned it's that no one should ever think of "the computer market" as a monolithic entity. Computer users are like people who use motor vehicles. Some rent, some lease, some buy. Some are content with an old beater, some want cutting edge, high-performance. Some want green (like my EV), some don't care what it is so long as it gets them safely from A to B at an acceptable cost.

One size does not fit all. Give people a cheap way to have fast, very low hassle access to what they want online, and they'll line up to buy it. And with Chromebooks, they are.

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519185)

If it was as pointless as you say, the parentheses wouldn't have been required...

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (0)

oh_my_080980980 (773867) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519923)

LMOL yeah because Android devices aren't selling...moron...

Re:From the ashes into the fire? (1)

couchslug (175151) | 1 year,14 days | (#44520155)

Chromebook sales are strong. It's all about money, and that is not pointless.

Stop writing about Windows (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44518945)

Why are you giving them free press. Except couple grandmas nobody is using Windows. Much better choices are available.

Re:Stop writing about Windows (1)

jellomizer (103300) | 1 year,14 days | (#44518979)

And most of the industry. Don't forget about say 85% of the people who use Desktops and Laptops.

Re:Stop writing about Windows (3, Funny)

somersault (912633) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519115)

Nonsense! All of those users are just installing ChromeOS as soon as they get the machines home. And switching to Emacs instead of Word.

Re:Stop writing about Windows (2)

NatasRevol (731260) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519625)

Emacs??!?!?!?!?

LaTex is the bees knees!

Re:Stop writing about Windows (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519661)

My brother the non-nerd who would be in love with his roku if it had a browser and is actively looking for a replacement that does. He is the kind of guy that buys a chromebook and since I just recently saw a display of them at walmart he probably will have one sometime in the next couple months. All he does on his current PC is a little online shoping, weather, addicting games, pandora, or facebook.

Re:Stop writing about Windows (2)

fisted (2295862) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519151)

Those all qualify as grandmas.

PC gaming (1)

tepples (727027) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519517)

Is everybody who develops PC games, develops mods for PC games, or even just plays PC games also a grandparent?

Re:Stop writing about Windows (2)

TheP4st (1164315) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519263)

Why are you giving them free press.

Because in difference from the far too frequent slashvertisments this actually is news for nerds, stuff that matters..

Re:Stop writing about Windows (1)

jones_supa (887896) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519615)

Why are you giving them free press. Except couple grandmas nobody is using Windows. Much better choices are available.

Shut up. Every news article is "free press" for someone if you look it that way. Windows is a big thing in IT world so it's good to hear about it too.

Bullshit (2, Insightful)

rodrigoandrade (713371) | 1 year,14 days | (#44518967)

This is a well known negociation strategy to get better deals from Microsoft. Remember when Dell threatened to go AMD-only?

Acer is a big laptop OEM, especially in emerging markets. What are they going to put in them? A browser OS? Really?

Re:Bullshit (3, Interesting)

intermodal (534361) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519165)

I've been an Acer user for two generations of laptops at this point, and in each case, I bought it to run Linux. I know I'd certainly have liked to not pay the Microsoft Tax on 'em.

That said, why do you have such a problem with a "browser OS" as you call it? If there's one thing I noticed when I went back to school a while back to finish a degree, it's that most students could certainly have gotten by with nothing but this so-called "browser OS".

Re:Bullshit (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519665)

He obviously has a problem with OSs that don't run the apps he needs. So does anyone who needs to actually get work done on a computer.

most students could certainly have gotten by with nothing but this so-called "browser OS".

Ah, yes, because such hallmarks of computer tools for productivity and advanced learning, such as Pinterest, Facebook, Soundcloud, and Twitter all work fine on ChromeOS.

Re:Bullshit (1)

intermodal (534361) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519959)

That's certainly consistent with the level of what most of my classmates seemed to be getting done.

Re:Bullshit (1)

Clsid (564627) | 1 year,14 days | (#44520015)

A lot of students can actually get by without even buying a computer even if you are studying computer science, since there is always the lab.

Re:Bullshit (3, Interesting)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519269)

Given that (in terms of vendor margins, and thus price elasticity under hardball negotiations) MS licenses are probably the most flexible component that goes into a Wintel box (with Intel CPUs being the other one), any negotiation strategy that works at scaring MS a bit is probably worth a great deal of money indeed.

HDDs, RAM, passives, OEM assembly sweatshops, plastic mouldings and metal stampings, are already cut to the bone, so being able to tell scary lies to Microsoft is probably worth as much to a PC OEM as amazing expertise in JIT supply chains or other elegant re-engineerings of the actual manufacturing and distribution process.

Re:Bullshit (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44520075)

that means making deals with Microsoft and using Windows means they need to put more hardware in devices and therefore add cost which they can't get much of any profit from. And you really think this is about negotiating when the segment is selling well while Microsoft's is fading? A company like Nokia might be fooled into this once its CEO is replaced with a Microsoft employee but Acer?

Re:Bullshit (4, Informative)

xgerrit (2879313) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519423)

This is a well known negociation strategy to get better deals from Microsoft. Remember when Dell threatened to go AMD-only? Acer is a big laptop OEM, especially in emerging markets. What are they going to put in them? A browser OS? Really?

This is probably a troll, but I'll play along...

I thought the same thing until I checked Amazon and Best Buy. Search either one for Chromebooks and you'll turn up a bunch of products with thousands of reviews. This one's even listed as a #1 Best-Seller [amazon.com] among laptops. Go ahead and do the same for Windows RT. It's okay, I'll wait here.

Now I'm not endorsing Chromebooks. I didn't even realize they were still available because I'm sure as hell not buying one... but that's two major retailers that have tons of models (including ones from Acer) that seems to be doing ok.

So I guess their "negotiation strategy" is going to be really really effective, because it also happens to be true.

Re:Bullshit (3, Insightful)

GauteL (29207) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519481)

The article says "fewer Microsoft products", not "no Microsoft products". Windows PC/Laptop manufacturing is incredibly competitive and consequently profit margins are razor thin. Acer has decided to narrow their line up to increase their Windows product profitability. At the same time, they've decided they can get a bigger slice of the ChromeBook market.

This sounds a little less sexy than the headline.

Makes sense (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44518969)

Nobody ever got fired for buying Android.

Windows Titanic (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44518977)

We're all waiting for Windows Titanic, that one big unsinkable ship that rides the waves of the internet!

Re: Windows Titanic (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519051)

You do know that the RT actually stands for "Real Titanic" ?

Re: Windows Titanic (1)

game kid (805301) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519261)

I always thought "Ridiculous Tragedy" myself.

Re: Windows Titanic (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519309)

I just picture that big ape Ballmer throwing his Rotten Turds at his customers.

acer build inexpensive low quality tech .. (1)

weeb0 (741451) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519003)

Maybe the problem is not the OS, but the hardware itself. I bought 1 mainboard and 1 modem, I had a lot of problem with their products. The same with our laptop where I work, always having compatibility and hardware problems. Maybe people understand and never buy a second acer product ?

Re:acer build inexpensive low quality tech .. (1)

Errol backfiring (1280012) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519085)

Yup. I learned the hard way as well. Had an Aspire One, which came with BIOS problems built-in. Countless BIOS upgrades later, the problems (hanging machine) are still not fixed and Acer has given up any interest, so there is a guarantee it will never be fixed. I will never buy anything from Acer again.

Re:acer build inexpensive low quality tech .. (1)

somersault (912633) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519215)

Sounds more like the CPU is overheating

Re:acer build inexpensive low quality tech .. (1)

weeb0 (741451) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519285)

In my experience, an overheating cpu will shutdown the machine. 2 of my toshiba behave like this. The solution is to remove the shitty thermal paste they uses and put a better one :-) but, it is inexpensive to try it.

Re:acer build inexpensive low quality tech .. (1)

somersault (912633) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519387)

The first desktop I bought with my own money used to just hang I think, often working for up to 30 minutes before having issues. Me and my dad spent a week or two trying to diagnose it, checking IRQs, updating drivers and the BIOS, reinstalling Windows, etc. Applying new thermal paste sorted it out.

Maybe Microsoft just needs more time (5, Insightful)

xgerrit (2879313) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519031)

One of Microsoft's biggest fears from the late 90s was that the web browser would become more important than Windows and instead of just being an application, it would become the platform. If only Microsoft had been nimble enough to change their strategy in the past 15 to 20 years...

Re:Maybe Microsoft just needs more time (1)

alen (225700) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519455)

they did try, but failed with IE6
then google and firefox came along with extensions

Re:Maybe Microsoft just needs more time (2)

alen (225700) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519495)

the Windows and Office guys were printing all the money and killed anything that endangered their revenue stream. now that the money flow is ending they are probably panicking. old story.

google does something similar with their ad business bringing in all the cash and has some risk. apple's rule is that every product they sell has to make a profit at the cash register.

Kaboom! (5, Interesting)

wjcofkc (964165) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519035)

Every time I read a story about the failure of win8\RT I am greeted by an involuntary image in my mind of Balmer piloting the Hindenburg, and the disaster that followed. It amazes me that he is still in charge.

Re:Kaboom! (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519105)

Oh the humanity!

Re:Kaboom! (2)

Noughmad (1044096) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519499)

Oh the developers!

Re:Kaboom! (1)

Sockatume (732728) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519553)

The Hindenberg didn't have any fore warning. I prefer to picture the captain of the Titanic responding to the impending iceberg by having the helmsman maintain his course, then asking the engine room for ramming speed.

Re:Kaboom! (1)

wjcofkc (964165) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519791)

Well, I did say it was involuntary, but I will meditate on the Titanic analogy. To be honest, since I don't use any kind of Windows Whatever OS or MS anything, I would just assume purge my mind of the whole mess. Time to go listen to some Tibetan Bowls on my MacBook, or maybe my Slackware box, or my Android...

In a related note.... (4, Funny)

8127972 (73495) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519097)

....Microsoft employees were spotted moving chairs out of CEO Steve Ballmer's office.

Re:In a related note.... (2)

Tamran (1424955) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519431)

That would be like throwing chairs on the deck of the Titanic!

microsoft knows it... (3, Insightful)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519221)

I believe the recent move that makes Office accessible to Android (even if it is a cloud version and a wrapper) is very significant.

The Microsoft crew knows that Android will at least be a major contender for OS share and maybe even beat them. I think they are starting to get ready for a world where Windows isn't the automatic choice by the corporate zombie crowd and it will be just as viable to give your non-power users an Android-based desktop. They are smart enough to know that the possibility for that is there.

Give the graphic designers a mac. Give the business power users a Windows 7 PC. Give your secretary an Android Desktop. Give a geeky workers that need raw power a Linux box. Well get closer to giving everyone the correct tool for the correct job.

Won't save you Acer (1)

AdmV0rl0n (98366) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519297)

All I've seen in general is that Acer make average and poor PC equipment, knocked out generally at below market prices as their model, and with at best average support.
To be fair I've over generalising somewhat - but what I laid out applies to too much of the Acer family.

Moving to Chrome and Android will be a simpler model. The problem is that its a full on race to the bottom. Your value as Acer is null. Its in the OS. And beyond that, unless you are on the winning edge hardware wise and winning at review level, you'll face the full on might of Samsung and Google and Apple, and they will out device you anyway.

Just box shifting the edge, and on cost is heading to a level where only the huge vendors left standing will be left, and where the Soc costs leaves only enough margin for those vendors anyway.

Unless you are that vendor, you will be where you are in PC land in only months.

The only place in tech for smaller outfits is one of excellence and boutique level stuff. Acer needs to become something other than yet another box shifter, or its dead.

They should seek out being an alienware or Origin level vendor where their is a price premium and an extra service - but the problem is this is Acer.

Acer sucks. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519361)

The reason your windows machine's aren't selling is because you make piss-poor products Acer.

Maybe Surface RT Sucks (1)

tuppe666 (904118) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519909)

The reason your windows machine's aren't selling is because you make piss-poor products Acer.

When Microsoft crapped all over its OEM Partners(sic), by releasing a device its reference model..and like you have just done announced how rubbish its OEM partners are. Microsoft Spent a billion on Advertising making less in revenue for its sale...and its X86 Twin the Surface Pro, had to devalue its inventory by $900million.

Perhaps a better strategy would have been to treat its partners...as just that partners instead of Victims especially considering OEM now have choices...clearly something Acer is willing to take advantage of.

Gateway (1)

Frankie70 (803801) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519629)

I have never owned an Acer branded product but have owned a Gateway laptop from Acer. 2 Keys broke in the 2nd month - wasn't covered by warranty. The charger slot slipped into the case after 6 months. Repair was covered by warranty but it was a patch-up job - they had to stick something to something.14th month, motherboard developed a problem which required motherboard replacement. Since it was out of warranty, I junked it.

Acer Iconia tablet (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,14 days | (#44519647)

Andoird. Highly recommended Unpaid endorsement.

Bad news for Microsoft ... (4, Interesting)

gstoddart (321705) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519697)

For the last 20+ years, companies have made hardware for whatever Microsoft was making, because it was the gravy train.

Now all of a sudden they're realizing they're footing the bill to make products focused around Microsoft stuff, and that isn't always working for them if the stuff Microsoft is making nobody is interested in. In fact, it has become a liability in some instances.

The manufacturers have more options these days, and if the Microsoft products aren't selling, they can make more money by focusing on the Android and other stuff.

So Microsoft really needs to pay attention, and learn that they need to better understand what it is people want and why -- because there is increasingly not as much certainty that a MS product will sell, and if you're sitting on your laurels collecting revenue from OS and Office upgrades, you will get overtaken.

Their tablets aren't doing stellar, their phones aren't nearly as popular, nobody seems to like Windows 8, and they've pissed off everybody with the XBone -- and while they may be entrenched in corporate environments and likely to stay there, at the consumer level, they seem to be foundering.

Acer hmm... (1)

Jaktar (975138) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519761)

I don't think anyone will really feel the effects of a few less underspec'd machines being on the market. Anyone who could have bought an Acer can still get their underspec'd machine from HP, Lenovo, or any other number of manufacturers.

Collapsing Market (1)

tuppe666 (904118) | 1 year,14 days | (#44519939)

I don't think anyone will really feel the effects of a few less underspec'd machines being on the market. Anyone who could have bought an Acer can still get their underspec'd machine from HP, Lenovo, or any other number of manufacturers.

Your right they won't, but its not because others will make up a shortfall. Its because the PC market has been shrinking for 5 quarters now with no end in sight.

interesting timing (1)

RedHackTea (2779623) | 1 year,14 days | (#44520021)

I just bought an Acer chromebook for my parents. Everything works well, and I have no complaints about the Acer hardware so far... except for the Wifi card -- or it could be the software. It won't work with our wireless router's WPA2, so I had to switch to WEP... which we all know is pretty much no security...

Excellent! (1)

pecosdave (536896) | 1 year,14 days | (#44520145)

I love my Acer netbook, and I know they quit making them due to pressure from Microsoft. If they start making normal Netbooks again I'll be a happy camper.

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