Microsoft appears to be recruiting new talent into its development team as it looks to increase its Surface product portfolio following last month’s tablet unveiling, according to multiple job vacancies posted on the company’s careers website.
Many of the vacancies appeared on the day the firm announced the Windows 8 Surface tablet during a “mystery” event in Los Angeles on June 18, with some others posted as recently as August 2, seeking engineers and managers to help build the “next generation” of Surface devices.
One listing seeks a mechanical engineer with an “understanding of touch display architecture and experience in mechanical integration of large touch displays into electronics products,” which could point to the Surface team working on producing a successor to their Perceptive Pixel 80” wall screen. Microsoft did previously say it wanted to make these cheaper.
Another advertisement for an electrical engineer requires experience with “the electrical design and qualification of AC-DC power supplies and adapters,” which is almost certainly for battery-powered devices like laptops, tablets and smartphones.
“The Surface Team focuses on lighting up Microsoft experiences with touch first computing. A fundamental part of our strategy is having desirable and powerful devices that enable the experiences people want, and elicit their excitement. Creating these devices involves a close partnership between hardware and software engineers, designers, and manufacturing. We are currently building the next generation and Surface needs you,” a majority of the 61 adverts read.
So far, Microsoft has remained quiet about whether it intends to release more “Surface” tablets, though many industry experts believe it would be necessary in order to compete directly with Apple. Their rival provides a perfect example of what is achievable by marrying software expertise with hardware in one complete package.
Microsoft’s OEM partners are unlikely to be quite so optimistic about these developments however, especially Acer who openly criticized their intentions to release the Surface tablets alongside Windows 8 on October 26. If anything, the move by Microsoft will push tablet-making OEMs to produce more compelling offerings that ultimately will reward consumers with better products.
The Apple iPad (3rd-gen) includes a Retina Display operating at a resolution of 2,048 x 1,536. Powering the new iPad is a dual-core A5X processor with quad-core graphics, it also gets upgraded optics in the form of a 5MP backside illuminated sensor that features a 5-element lens, IR filter and ISP built into the A5X chip. Apple claims The new iPad is good for 10 hours of battery life and nine hours when using 4G LTE.
The BlackBerry PlayBook is a tablet that runs BBOS featuring a 7-inch display with 1024 x 600 pixel resolution. The sides of the PlayBook are coated with a soft-touch rubber that has a quality feel and provides some grip. A 3.5mm headphone jack is present as well, on the bottom of the tablet are three ports: micro-HDMI, micro-USB, and a three pin accessory dock connector.
The Google Nexus 7 has the distinction of being the first device to run the Android 4.1 "Jelly Bean" operating system. It measures 198.5mm x 120mm x 10.45mm in size, weighs 340g, and features a 7-inch IPS display that is protected by scratch-resistant glass. The Nexus sports a 1280 x 800 pixel display. It runs a quad-core Tegra 3 processor and 1GB of RAM, it also comes in 2 versions: 8GB and 16GB capacities.
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