Microsoft to Relaunch Windows Slates Again at CES

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Steve Ballmer Demoing HP Slate-Style PC at CES 2010

According to the New York Times, Microsoft will once again be pushing their vision of the slate or tablet computer at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2011 in January.

According to people familiar with Microsofts plans, Steve Ballmer, Microsofts chief executive, is expected to announce a number of these devices when he takes the stage at C.E.S., showcasing devices built by Samsung and Dell, among a number of other manufacturing partners.

Microsoft has been long talking up the tablet or slate form factor over the years, but none of their products have reached mainstream success.

In fact, this time last year, rumors were full force about Apple's then-unreleased iPad. Talk of this Apple tablet dominated rumors and generated a lot of interest at 2010's CES even though Apple wasn't even a participant. Microsoft even demoed an HP slate PC which never ultimately came to market. Meanwhile, Apple's iPad has been seen as a huge success.

Microsoft's newest effort is said to be running under the Windows 7 operating system and is being aimed at a more productivity focused device than the iPad:

The company believes there is a huge market for business people who want to enjoy a slate for reading newspapers and magazines and then work on Microsoft Word, Excel or PowerPoint while doing work, explained a person familiar with the companys tablet plans.

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