At FAM, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer acknowledged the momentum seen by Apple's iPad in the market for slate-style, consumer-oriented computers -- a sector that his company has been trying to crack, without as much success, for the better part of the past decade. "They've sold certainly more than I'd like them to sell, let me just be clear about that," Ballmer said after raising the topic of Apple's iPad. "We've got to make things happen. Just like we had to make things happen on netbooks, we've got to make things happen with Windows 7 on slates, and we're in process of doing that as we speak."
That was a reference to turnaround seen by the company in the market for small, Web-oriented notebook computers, also known as netbooks, a sector of PC market that Microsoft has come back to dominate after open-source Linux operating system jumped out to an early lead. Ballmer said Microsoft is in a good position to work with PC makers on compelling alternatives to iPad, based on its work in areas such as digital ink and touch-based input. Another boost will come with release of Intel's Oak Tree line of low-powered computer processors early next year, he said.
Tablets and slates are a "job one urgency around here," Ballmer said. "Nobody is sleeping at the switch."
More Info: Steve Ballmer Outlines Consumer Achievements and Strategies (.docx)