Who’s Making Hybrids?
Microsoft’s Windows 8 will serve as both a tablet and laptop operating system. This will allow PC makers the opportunity to produce laptop/ tablet hybrids.
Apple CEO Tim Cook likened it to merging a refrigerator and a toaster. Cook stated, “Anything can be forced to converge but the problem is the products are about tradeoffs,” and “You begin to make trade-offs to the point where what you have left at the end of the day doesn’t please anyone.” He then claimed that Apple will not produce an iPad/ MacBook hybrid.
It’s worth noting that Steve Jobs claimed that Apple would not produce a video playing iPod, a year-and-a-half before video enabled iPods hit the market.
Are Hybrids Inherently Bad?
I don’t think that hybrids are an inherently bad idea. If Windows 8 doesn’t suck, and Microsoft and their manufacturing partners produce products that are both lightweight and comfortable to use, then it could work.
What does worry me is an iOS/ OS X convergence. Should Apple dumb OS X down to the lowest common denominator and force users to acquire all software via the Mac App Store, that would be catastrophic. Apple gets away with exercising a lot more control over their users than Microsoft does. That’s ok (I guess) for phones and tablets. However it’s horrible for general purpose computing.
Should Apple do this, they will lose me as a customer.