Windows RT tablets coming from Samsung, Asus, Lenovo and Toshiba this year

In addition to Microsoft's Surface line of tablets, which were announced back in June with great fanfare, four other major device manufacturers will be releasing their own Windows RT tablets later this year. Asus, Samsung, Lenovo and Toshiba have all signed on to produce Windows RT tablets.

Microsoft took a very measured approach to selecting what OEMs would be allowed to produce the first generation of Windows tablets, according to the Chinese Economic Times. The three Windows RT ARM chipset manufacturers, Qualcomm, NVIDIA and Texas Instruments, were limited to partnering with up to two manufacturers.

NVIDIA went with Lenovo and Asus, Texas instruments chose Toshiba, and Qualcomm decided on Samsung and HP. HP has since passed on the ARM RT tablet idea, so it is rumored that Qualcomm will be going with Dell instead.

Once January rolls around, Microsoft plans on opening up manufacturing rights to other companies. Keep an eye out for the first batch in late 2012, with another rush in Q1 of 2013.

Source: Chinese Economic Times; Via: UnwiredView

  • What happened to Nokia?
  • Right now there's no reason to believe Nokia are making a tablet really. I'm more excited to see what the other OEMs bring to the tablet space, and let Nokia focus on WP8
  • No reason to believe!?!
    Nokia's executive (Ahtisaari) said openly they are working on a tablet 3 months ago and 30% of his time is sunk on it.
    Also that MS insider from twitter said Nokia was one of the 4 launch parners for ARM tablet. Somebody please refresh my memory who that guys name was. Quoted here multiple times.
  • Ah very fair point I had forgotten about the designer. Again that's not official, they're eyeing the space but I expect they want to bring their mobile division back to stability first before they commit to anything past Research and Development
  • No reason he would say specifically that they were working on when if they werent.  He would of had some vague answer or response. 
  • Nokia has worked on so many things that were never released. Obviously they are working on a tablet, but that doesn't mean they'll be there this year.
  • What about coffee tab?! Just a mockup?
  • Yeah, coffee tab is just a fan mockup
  • I have to disagree with you on this Jay. As ascotti notes below, Ahtisari has revealed Nokia is working on a tablet. I think it will be critical for Nokia to be a major player in the tablet space and I'm really looking forward to see what they bring.
  • Point taken, see my response above :)
  • They can't announce that yet probably because it's not official yet.
  • I assume you ask about Nokia for build quality, but I'm sure Surface will hold that top spot for quite some time.
  • Who cares about Nokia? They can't make a better tablet than MS.
  • I think they can. Look at the sweet polycarb shells for Lumia 800/900.
    Imagine a large tablet shaped on of them :)
    New materials, new ideas - thats what we want as consumers.
    Elegance, an object of desire.
    If you look at the recent article on this very site about satisfaction, PRICE was _not_ one of the main criteria for product selection.
    In other words, westerners have money to burn, and their gadgets are super important to them. Just look at all the wild childlike hysteria and toys going out of prams over Lumia not getting Apollo.
    No, what we want is s3xy gadgets. Nokia _can_ do aspirational things. Look at PUREVIEW!
    HTC, Asus (tranformer) Samsung (series 9), Lenovo (quality all round). Even HP and Dell "could" do it if they took a few risks. Unfortunately the spreadsheet pushers always prevent that from happening, Apple don't live with those dumb internal creative restrictions. (Look at the mess HP board has)
    Microsoft made the surface as a design point / leadership product. Showing what can be done with some R&D and some focus. Either these Eastern manufactures WAKE UP! or continue to lose out to Foxcon and Apple. Up to them really. The criteria for success is so obvious it hurts, but just they aren't delivering.
  • new materials? like melted magnesium? The surface is pretty much what you would expect out of a company like Nokia. A larger 900? what works well for a phone form factor doesn't necessarily work well for a tablet
  • Microsoft Surface by Nokia
  • Each chip partner can pair with up to 2 manufacturers. Texas Instruments, a long-time supplier of chips to Nokia, currently only has one partner. Where's Nokia? Wait for Nokia World.
  • A good move in my opinion.  I'm hoping one of them brings a good 7in Tab to the market otherwise I'll just be going with the SurfaceRT.  On the other hand if Samsung can bring us a WP8 device based on the Galaxy Note 2(5.5in c/ pen) then I'll be just as happy with that.
  • Dude, you are not getting a Dell (RT, this year)
  • This is only for "RT" Tablets. HP already said they will focus on X86 tablets (like the Surface Pro).
  • Good. Though I'll still probably grab The surface RT. I'm guess that Barnes and Noble will be working on a 7 inch RT tab.
  • I love that Microsoft announced the Surface to set a standard that challenges OEMs to make something better or cheaper. You know they would've gone the lazy route if left to their own.
  • I still think their efforts will be crap in comparison.  Perhaps Lenovo could produce something of quality but I doubt it will be as cool.  Samsung will peddle their usual standard (certainly not bad, not amazing either).  the big surprise might come from Dell.
  • Cool, still getting the x86 though :)
  • +1
  • Agreed
  • and there should be about 20 x86 models by the end of the year (according to Intel).
  • So does this mean that there might be an advantage in getting one chipset over another?  I suppose, Surface RT withstanding as we still don't know if this is US only, I would go with Samung, Lenovo or Toshiba - each use a different provider.
    And, I'm not holding my breath that Surface RT will be available in the UK before other manufacturers get product out.
  • Yeah Microsoft is not going to spill the beans on anything Nokia is making.
  • I agree... MS will let Nokia have it's day when they are ready to announce it. Probably September 7.
  • I hope MS or Nokia spills the beans on a cutting edge new WP8 phone to rival the iPhone 5 in October. I believe manufacturers need to start releasing some products on the same date as others so they can get equal media hype and diversify the mobile space more. Let face it, even when apple isn't releasing the next iPhone or iPad, the media hypes them up everyday, so why not try to disrupt them a bit?. If the competing devices are astetically pleasing, consumers will potentially purchase something other than the iPhone. By giving the the iPhone an unrivaled release period, they're shooting themselves in the foot; everyone will have already used the upgrade eligibily on their mobile carrier thereby losing out on potential sales.
  • Message to manufacturers, "Go Hard or Go Home"! If you can't make a phone that will look just as compelling sitting next to an iPhone on a store shelf, then you should stick to low end pay as you go phones.
  • this! Win8 must release before the next iPhone if they want more sales.
  • I don't thinks it's going to happen, there's news floating around the internet today stating a Sept release of the iPhone 5. The only chance they have to gain sales is to start floating images of a great looking WP8 prototype via the internet now that might make people second guess getting an iPhone 5, but they're probably not smart enough to do that. I am a die hard WP user/fan, but it irks me to see them dragging ass
  • Wouldn't it be great if the Surface has been a Nokia product all along but somehow they're keeping that a secret? Imean, every key board color tone already match that of a Lumia 900. I'm just saying....
  • That's what I was thinking as well. That'd be awesome.
  • Mind blown....
  • Seriously? They aren't better than MS. You Nokia fanboys are a trip.
  • I want a x86 model :)
  • +1
  • Cant wait to see what kind of games i can force it to run
  • this is the first time in years that I've been excited about Christmas.  So many new MS products coming.  I'm so anxious.
  • I want an Intel doc station and arm to go in the tablet itself. Is that so much to ask
  • +1 GILLION
  • 4 major names looking good
  • I can't wait to see all these REAL computer TABLETS in the stores
  • Hmm...
    Texus Instruments only has one partner so there's room for one more manufacturer!  Since Nokia have already suprized the community with a chip from TI in the 700 I wonder if they could be working an RT Tablet in secret as well.  Nokia certainly need a boost
  • thats what I was thinking...
  • can't wait get one and I would go for Samsung brand. IPad is just boring has hell to use. Hahahha
  • After reading how Lenovo graced there employees with a nice share of bonus money, I'll be getting my Surface from them.
  • You can only get your Surface from Microsoft...
  • Nokia informally indicated they were making a tablet in two form factors. One will be a 10 or 7 inch tablet to compete with the iPad/iPad mini (we assume its an RT Tablet but who knows) and a second tablet to compete with the Samsung Note. Nokia described the note competitors as a crossover device so it could run windows phone but I doubt it. No timeframe has been specified so they may not roll out a device until 2013, but they seemed to hint at the Lumia lineup expanding at the same time as the windows 8 launch. We know they'll be first to market with a windows phone 8 device because they have an event they've already mentioned.
  • Yet, goodies! I bought an old iPad to cover basic browsing and uverse controller needs but need a much more useable tablet. Surface and competing tablets I hope prove to be it, otherwise notebook will be bumped up on my upgrade list. Yeu!
  • My preference goes to Surface, of course, but if it takes too long to come to Europe I wouldn't mind an Asus RT, they're doing interesting devices, design-wise.
  • Have the specs for the MS tablets been released?