Mobile

Samsung, Microsoft to show off Windows 8 tablet next week

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Now that Samsung has become well-known for its slick Android tablets, the company may be setting its sights on a tablet running Microsoft’s upcoming Windows 8.

Next week at Microsoft’s BUILD developers conference, the two companies will show off a new Windows 8-powered Samsung tablet,  AFP reports. If true, it will mark the first time that Samsung has collaborated with Microsoft on a new hardware devices, a source points out.

It certainly makes sense for Microsoft to tap Samsung’s expertise, as the company has in short order become a premiere Android smartphone and tablet manufacturer. Samsung has also braved other platforms, including phones on Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7, as well as its own Bada platform for low-end smartphones. It also makes sense for the company to find shelter on other platforms, as its dominance on Android may be threatened by Google’s recent $12.5 billion Motorola purchase.

What Microsoft needs for Windows 8, which is being touted as both a hybrid tablet and traditional desktop OS, is an experienced hardware partner that can create devices on-par with Apple. Samsung seems like the most logical choice. In June, we reported that Microsoft was putting together an official Windows 8 tablet to take on the iPad — it just may be this purported Samsung tablet.

Microsoft has already teased a bit of the Windows 8 interface, which borrows heavily from Windows Phone 7’s Metro UI. The company will be pushing the benefits of Windows 8 and its tablet interface at the BUILD conference next week, reports Reuters. Microsoft has a lot to prove at the event, mostly that it’s attempting something fresh and new with Windows 8 instead of just merely copying Apple.

Windows 8 and its companion tablet hardware are expected to launch around this time next year.