Microsoft Courier's Devolution

Illustration for article titled Microsoft Couriers Devolution

These fresh images and details of Microsoft's Courier paint a slightly different device than the one uncovered a few months ago—tinier seeming, perhaps less genre-busting, and a more direct iPad fighter.

Advertisement
Illustration for article titled Microsoft Couriers Devolution
Advertisement

This take is built on the same mobile OS core as Windows Phone 7 and Zune HD, powered by Nvidia's Tegra 2 hardware. It's supposedly thinner than an inch, under a pound, and about the size of a 5x7 photo when closed.

As you can see, the device seems even smaller (Update: maybe not), the interface, though still pen-based, seems less whizzy based on these stills than the wildly complex and sophisticated (or maybe just complex) interface shown earlier:

Advertisement

Is Courier progressing or regressing? It's hard to tell—we're not sure where in Courier's development these concepts are from vs. our initial reportage. But if they are newer, a few things stand out.

• Courier's grown to be more realstic and less different, which is not uncommon for mind-bogglingly radical-seeming products. (Our mind was blown by the original interface, anyway, for better or worse.)

Advertisement

• Shifting from using Windows 7 as its core as Mary Jo Foley first reported to Windows CE6 and mobile guts puts it more squarely against the iPad, using a similar philosophical approach of scaling up to a tablet, vs. scaling down as Microsoft's always done before. (Which makes sense, given that this is supposedly J. Allard's project—he'd want to use E&D's own goods to power his tablet.) Also, mobile guts are cheaper than low-power laptop guts.

Advertisement

• This could be one of the several prototype tablets J. Allard's got—which would explain why there's versions that seem more like full Windows 7 vs. Windows Phone 7.

Advertisement

• Engadget pegs the launch date later this year, though we've heard separately that Courier won't show up anytime in 2010.

• We're still pretty excited.

[Engadget]

Advertisement

Share This Story

Get our newsletter

DISCUSSION

My biggest fear since I first saw the Courier was knowing that the iPad and other tablets launched before it did. By that I mean that now they know what price range to sell in which means they might use cheaper materials, smaller sizes, less memory, different OS, etc. Because nonetheless they're going to want to sell tons.

I just hope it's as badass as the first demo's we've seen ._.