Nokia reportedly working to launch a Windows 8 tablet in Q4
Nokia could be launching a Windows 8 tablet in the fourth quarter of 2012. According to an unnamed source cited in a Digitimes report, the tablet will feature a 10-inch display and a dual-core chipset from Qualcomm. To be built by Compal Electronics, the tablet's first manufacturing run will produce 200,000 units to be released in the fourth quarter this year "at the earliest."
Moreover, a report on eWeek pointed to a form filed by Nokia (NYSE: NOK) last week with the Securities and Exchange Commission. In it, Nokia made a reference to how products such as tablets could threaten its attempts to gain market share in the smartphone market. This shows that the company "clearly recognizes the need to expand onto form factors beyond smartphones," concludes the report.
It doesn't take a genius to figure out that Nokia would be in a vulnerable position if it opts to only compete in the smartphone arena. Plus, Microsoft (NASDAQ: MFST) probably needs some solid Windows 8 tablets to attract consumers and businesses--and what better way than to work closely with Nokia?
For now, excitement is mounting for Microsoft's upcoming Windows 8 operating system, which saw the free Consumer Preview exceed a million downloads in 24 hours. While Microsoft has yet to make a formal announcement, the general expectation is that it will be available at the end of this year. The use of a quad-core chip in Nokia's rumored tablet appears to match earlier reports that referred to the use of quad-core chips in Windows 8 tablets.
It remains to be seen if Windows 8 tablets will take off, given their late entry to the tablet scene. Certainly, Windows 8 on ARM will arrive as the underdog in a fragmented market that is already heavily invested in various platforms such as Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL) iOS, Google's (NASDAQ: GOOG) Android and even Amazon's (NASDAQ: AMZN) Kindle Fire.