Samsung to show a Windows 8 tablet next week, report says

New OS would be alternative to Android, now under heavy legal attack

Samsung reportedly will unveil a new tablet computer that runs on the Windows 8 OS next week at Microsoft's BUILD conference in Anaheim, Calif.

Samsung said it had no comment on the tablet report, which first appeared in the Korea Economic Daily, citing an unnamed source. The report has subsequently appeared on the AFP news service and the Wall Street Journal. The BUILD conference begins Tuesday.

Microsoft could not be reached for comment on the report.

Running Windows 8 in a Samsung tablet would become a convenient alternative to the legally imperiled Android OS used in Samsung's Galaxy Tab computers. It would be Samsung's first Windows-based tablet, although it already makes Windows-based laptops.

Today, a German court ruled that Samsung cannot sell the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Germany because its design is too similar to Apple's iPad 2.

Apple has lodged a number of patent and intellectual property lawsuits in various countries against Samsung and other Android tablet and smartphone makers. Samsung has also sued Apple over intellectual property issues related to wireless technology used in tablets and smartphones in recent months.

Experts have counted at least 19 lawsuits in nine countries where the two companies are battling, including one that Apple filed in April in U.S. district court in California. A hearing is set for October on that matter.

Samsung said it will appeal today's ruling. However, turning to another OS such as Windows 8 would give Samsung an arguably quicker alternative means of selling tablets.

Legal experts noted that taking the technology route could be much faster than working through a number of courts on patent disputes or entering into protracted discussions with Apple on licensing fees, which could ultimately raise the cost of Samsung products.

Jack Gold, a technology analyst at J. Gold Associates, said if Samsung has a Windows 8 tablet coming it would only partly be designed as a hedge against Android lawsuits brought against Samsung. He noted that Samsung is a large manufacturer with a long history of supporting a wide range of operating systems on various products, even though Samsung only has built Android tablets thus far.

"Samsung delivers one of everything and supports [almost] every OS out there, so this [Windows 8 tablet] is not out of character at all," Gold said.

For example, Samsung already makes laptop computers running on various Windows versions, he noted. "A Windows tablet would be an extension of Samsung's laptop line, but at the same time would appeal to those users who want to stay on Windows, and especially business users who want to keep the same apps running," Gold said.

Samsung has already made smartphones running Windows Phone 7, along with other manufacturers, but that is a fairly different OS from Windows 8.

Ironically, Samsung was an early supplier of the "ill-fated Windows tablet PCs," which some term the Ultra-Mobile PC, or UMPC, that appeared on the scene several years ago, Gold noted.

"Samsung has historically been on board with new devices and form factors and has worked closely with Microsoft and Intel in the past, and continue to do so now," Gold said.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His e-mail address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

Read more about mobile and wireless in Computerworld's Mobile and Wireless Topic Center.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags mobileMicrosoftAppleoperating systemssoftwarehardwareWindowshardware systemslaptopsMobile and WirelessMobile OSes

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Matt Hamblen

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?