EXCLUSIVE: Microsoft is set to mount a massive point of sale marketing campaign for a new Windows 8 tablet which is set to be launched this week. Australian retailers have already been briefed on the device and are ready to go with new in store displays.
Both Harvey Norman and JB Hi Fi will have in store interactive Windows displays that let consumers interact with the new device gaining access to both video and eBook content via the in store kiosks.
Microsoft’s marketing for the new tablet is wrapped around the slogan “Designed for on the go”.
It’s also being positioned as “Built for gaming,” “Awesome entertainment” and “Perfect for work”.
Microsoft is set to launch the device tonight at an event in the USA.
ChannelNews has already seen illustrations for the new in store displays.
What is not known is whether the new tablet is 7″ or 10.1″ inches.
Several manufacturers including Samsung, Acer, Asus and Toshiba are set to launch similar Windows tablets shortly, the move is set to put pressure on the sale of Android based tablets.
Also unknown is whether the new tablets will run Intel or ARM processors.
The company on Friday invited press via e-mail to the LA event, to be held at 3.30pm Monday local time – that’s 8.30am Tuesday Sydney time – at a location to be disclosed later.
“This will be a major Microsoft announcement – you will not want to miss it,” the invitation said.
According to the WSJ, the device will use a version of Microsoft’s current operating system called Windows RT that works on chip designs from ARM of the UK.
The move is aimed at taking a bite from Apple, which controls both the hardware and software for its computers and mobile devices. Microsoft, by contrast, has traditionally ceded design and marketing of hardware to customers such Dell and Hewlett-Packard.
It is seen as a risky move for Microsoft, which has had both successes – such as its Xbox game console – and failures – like its Zune music players – in selling its own branded hardware.
Also, the move seems certain to anger other hardware makers Microsoft is currently encouraging to make devices based on the forthcoming Windows 8. Those devices, unlike the one to be unveiled in LA, are expected to use Intel processors.