HP's Todd Bradley dismisses Surface RT as 'hardly competition'
So far, only Microsoft seems to be really interested in Windows RT. Seeming as they're the ones that are making the ARM-compatible version of Windows 8 you'd expect them to be interested, but their OEM partners? Microsoft's decision to go it alone and make their own hardware with the Surface RT tablet could be construed as indicative of the state of Windows RT, but we'll just let HP Executive Vice President and head of the massive Printing and Personal Computing division Todd Bradley say it in his own words: "It tends to be slow and a little kludgey as you use it. I just don't think it's competitive. It's expensive. Holistically, the press has made a bigger deal out of Surface than what the world has chosen to believe. If you want to go to any of the 30 Microsoft Stores in the United States to buy one, I think you should probably do that."
Big words, coming from the man in charge of the then-Personal Systems Group when it launched the webOS-powered HP TouchPad more than a year ago, didn't sell it very well, and then saw it get cancelled just 49 days later. One could say that not only has Bradley soured on mobile-based operating systems (Windows RT can't run traditional Windows apps, while Windows 8 can - yeah, it's poor marketing) and maybe even ARM processors thanks to his experience with the TouchPad, but we'd say that's shortsighted.
It's not in the cards right now that HP's going to produce a webOS tablet in the future, let alone the near future, but as the iPad line and a whole manner of Android-powered tablets have shown, devices with ARM chips at their core aren't a bad concept. In fact, they're a great concept. Considering how late Intel has been to the tablet-ready processors game, right now ARM's pretty much the only concept. So much so that we wouldn't be surprised if in a few years we're talking about ARM chips eating into Intel's stranglehold on the traditional PC computing market.
For their part, HP's got a few Windows 8-running Intel x86-powered tablets on the way, and for Bradley's sake we hope they're not slow and kludgey - expensive wouldn't surprise us, though. And unlike Microsoft's Surface you'll probably be able to buy HP's tablets from the likes of Amazon and Best Buy, though we can't really say that's a better experience than Microsoft's dedicated retail stores.
Oh, and Todd, if you want to show Microsoft what an ARM-powered tablet can do with a proper tablet operating system, don't forget what you spent a lot of money on a while back is still there, waiting for some hardware...