Bold Call: Microsoft To Pass Android, Grab No. 2 Spot In Tablets Behind Apple

Morgan Stanley analyst Kathryn Huberty upped her sales projections for the tablet computer market Thursday, and argued that Microsoft will grab the number two spot in the market, after Apple iPad and ahead of tablets running Google‘s Android software, with the launch of Windows 8 later this year.

Huberty and the tech team at Morgan Stanley are now estimating shipments of 133 million tablets in 2012, up 57% from their original estimates; and 216 million tablets in 2013, up 112%. No surprise there, tablet sales have been growing fast — despite high-profile stumbles by Hewlett-Packard and Dell — thanks to demand for Apple’s iPad tablet computer.

The bold call: Microsoft will grab a substantial chunk of the market with the introduction of Windows 8 later this year. “Our survey suggests 25% of users expect to buy Windows 8 tablet and Office is a key feature, especially for those considering their first tablet purchase,” Huberty and her team wrote in an analysis of the market released Thursday.

The Redmond, Wash., software giant should be able to attract tablet builders by bundling its two strongest personal computer brands — Office and Windows — the analyst argues. “Our analysis suggests Microsoft could charge $82-114 for Windows and Office before OEMs would lose money on tablets,” Huberty writes.

Microsoft better hope Huberty is right, because if Microsoft can’t make itself relevant in the tablet market now, the value of its Windows and Office brands will only get weaker over time as Apple and Google push alternatives to Office such as Apple’s iWork and Google Docs on iOS and Android tablets.

For Microsoft, it’s now or never.


About contra

Film maker. Video game historian. Will put more in here this section soon!
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