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CES could see a version of Windows for tablet devices being introduced, if current rumours circulating are to be believed.

Its Windows version for low power mobile devices including tablets, if it goes ahead, will be the first major bid by the software giant to develop a presence in the tablet market, occupied by Apple since the arrival of its eponymous iPad.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer is to deliver a keynote speech at CES 2011 in January, presenting new several new tablets from the likes of Dell, Toshiba and Samsung rumoured to run on Windows 8 system.

They already announced tablet partners were making Windows Embedded Compact devices earlier this year so confusion abounds as to whether the new launch will be just an update to this.

The struggling company are hoping their new batch of tabs will hold an edge over the iPad because they move beyond play, people familiar with the slates have said.

This new release, if realised, will reduce Microsoft’s reliance on Intel’s heavy duty chip technology, who are tipped to use chip technology from companies including Advanced Micro Devices and UK-based ARM, a first from the company whose relationship with Intel is so intertwined they are often referred to as ‘Wintel,’ according to the Wall Street Journal.

Microsoft were one of the original founders of the tablet concept in the 1990s, developing with pen-based versions of Windows on devices that use x86 chips.

 

The news comes as the software makers just announced strong sales of their Windows 7 system for Smartphones, which they said has been well received by mobile makers, selling over 1.5 million in the six weeks since its launch.

“We know we have tough competition, and this is a completely new product,” says Achim Berg, Microsoft’s Business VP for Windows Phones.

“We’re in the race – it’s not a sprint but we are certainly gaining momentum.”

Indeed, tab users need not rush to the shops just yet – the device is said not to be available for another two years.

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