Microsoft has something steaming hot at …

Microsoft has something steaming hot at his hands, something to make even the most fervent Apple-cart fanbois cringe in envy. I think we’re all aware of Microsoft Courier dual-screen tablet.

Why I believe Microsoft Courier can succeed?

  • Self-protective design. Similar to Nintendo DS/DSi, both screens protect each other in a closed state. Apple Tablet does not promise any protective design, making caring for 7-10 inch screen an issue to consider.
  • LCD Tablet for the masses. Wacom Cintiq plays Adobe’s game and holds a high price tag of $999 barring amateurs and enthusiasts from access to LCD drawing. Even without pressure sense of Wacom tablets, Courier could prove to be the best way to learn people to draw using reference material, positioning art into panels for comics or storyboards.
  • Usability-minded product focus with real-life applications. Apple Tablet’s expected marketing will be too much focused on multimedia and gaming. Rumored support for iPhone apps will provide initial productivity boost but iPhone apps are known to provide constrained or pseudo-usability. It will take time, or might prove impossible, to provide the level of integration that Courier could provide out of the box.

Why I believe Microsoft Courier can fail?

  • Exorbitant price. Given that demonstrations has shown Courier being targetted at designers, engineers, and such. first generation hardware can make this device unreachable for the general population at prices over $800. EeeReader from ASUS may be the alternative, stealing the basic design and cheap-ifying it.
  • Closed Platform. Without SDK and third-party support, tossing information in a spiffy OneNote or drawing with MS Paint inspired Corel Painter wannabe can get old pretty fast. The worst thing that could happen to Courier is to end up a closed platform, or Apple-like cripped hardware held back by business policy not to make it too open to developers. Once again, Microsoft will have one chance to play fair ot lose the game to the taiwanese companies. ASUS would love if M$ plays El Jobso with Microosft Courier, as it’s a chance for EeeReader.

What are you going to use a Microsoft Courier in your life?