The biggest problem I have with this article is the secondhand hearsay from Acer engineers complaining that MS wants to charge $80-$90 royalty per device, at the same time it is directly competing with them by offering Surface as a MS-branded device.
First, wherever you heard that royalty fee, it sounds like b.s. No way are OEMs going to pay that much to put Windows RT on their tablets. Probably something more like $10.
MS isn't just competing against the iPad, it's also competing against Android tablets -- and Android is free. It's tough to compete against "free", but if Win RT is as good as many are hoping, maybe they can get $10 per tablet for it.
I never promised consistency ;-) but I will say:
Apple has no OEM biz, Msoft does.
Samsung was fast to copy the iPad, Msoft was slooow as a Zune.
Google continues collaborating with OEMs, Msoft has started going it alone on an ad hoc basis.
Is Msoft allowed to change course? You bet.
Are they doing it in a way that burns its OEM customers? Seems like it to me.
Win 8 comes in a version for the x86 for use in everything from tablets to desktops and another version--called Windows RT--for ARM based systems,mainly tablets.
Surface uses Win RT and Nvidia's Tegra ARM SoC.
I have not heard who makes the Surface for Msoft. Has anyone else?
Microsoft has a close hardware partner to work with, Nokia, in addition to all the other Windows device manufacturer. I wonder why Microsoft do not work with Nokia, giving them a leading position in the market. Well! If Nokia had no interest in tablet market would explain it.