When designing Windows 8, Microsoft (NASDAQ:
) made a brilliant movie: it decided to scrap the old,
mouse-friendly interface and focus on touch. The company knew
this was risky; bloggers and analysts told them so for months! It
was a risk Microsoft wanted to take. The Xbox maker knew that, as
tablets and smartphones continue to take over the PC industry
(and as laptops evolve into tablet-style devices), users would
want to touch their computer screens. While the old, Windows 7
format was great, Microsoft knew that it would not survive in a
touch-heavy world. Thus, the company deconstructed everything
consumers knew about Windows and produced an entirely different
First-month sales were
, but many critics still insisted that Microsoft had made a
mistake. Others wondered if Microsoft was simply ahead of its
Those critics were silenced this week when Google (NASDAQ:
, the company's new flagship, ultra-powerful laptop.
Designed to take on the MacBook Air, some might argue that
Google copied the Apple (NASDAQ:
) playbook in designing Chomebook Pixel. Even so, the notebook
contains one key feature not currently found within a single
MacBook: a touch screen.
This decision -- to add a touch screen to its most expensive
(and arguably most important) laptop -- is irrefutable proof of
where the industry is heading. It shows that Microsoft was not
merely ahead of its time; it was the company to spark this
In looking to the future, the Windows maker pushed ahead with
winning technology that others were too afraid to explore. Now
Google is following suit, wholeheartedly validating Microsoft's
Up until now, Apple was content to differentiate between Macs
and iDevices through the use of touch screens. The company knows
that if consumers purchase a touchable Mac, they may no longer
have the need for a next-generation iPad.
Now that both Microsoft and Google are pushing ahead with
touch, Apple will inevitably follow suit -- and much sooner than
it may have if its competitors had waited.
While Apple is frequently commended for being an innovator
(the Chromebook may not even exist without the MacBook Air), the
company recently caved and developed a slightly larger iPhone to
appease consumers. Now Apple is rumored to be developing an
iPhone with a 4.8-inch screen. This was brought on by Samsung and
other smartphone manufacturers that are building larger
Similarly, Apple was
the thought of a small tablet. The company changed its mind when
Google, Amazon (NASDAQ:
) and other manufacturers began to sell millions of seven-inch
Now that a similar trend is occurring with touch screen
laptops, Apple will be forced to release a touchable MacBook
within the next 18 months.
(c) 2013 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment
advice. All rights reserved.
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