Google, Microsoft bullying Asus into scrapping dual-boot devices

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Asus’ vision of a dual-boot Windows/Android tablet-laptop hybrid may never come to fruition. That is if Google and Microsoft have anything to say about it. According to a new report in the Wall Street Journal, the two companies are pressuring Asus to drop plans to release the Transformer Book Duet TD300, which was unveiled earlier this year at CES 2014.

While neither player has commented on the matter, both have their own ways of making sure Asus complies with their wishes, which also include dropping Transformer AiO dual-boot machines from their lineup. Microsoft can easily withdraw marketing funds essential to propping up the device in the eyes of consumers. While the open source nature of Android makes it more difficult for Google to demand Asus removes it from the hybrid device, the company can withhold access to the Google Play Store and the operating system’s suite of Google-connected services.

The same has been heard before in the lead up to CES. Intel sees dual-boot Android/Windows devices as an avenue toward restoring flagging PC sales, and the January trade show was planned as a major stepping stone in getting such devices into the hands of the public. It was clear at the time that Microsoft and Google were not as interested in such an arrangement, with both resorting to similar tactics as those mentioned above. Microsoft even insisted that companies planning to show off dual-boot devices opt to convert their hardware to Windows-only.

Interestingly, Microsoft has at times shown a difference of opinion when it comes to smartphones. The company, according to reports, was actively lobbying Android manufacturers like HTC to include the Windows Phone operating system on their Android devices. A rumored Windows Phone/Android device from Huawei appears likely to launch this year. Could it meet the same fate as the Transformer Book Duet?

Perhaps the bigger question: do we even need dual-boot devices? While some benefits can be minced out, it’s hard to make a solid argument in their favor.

[via WSJ]

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  • Ben Wellington

    I only read the title but that sounds like BS!

    • New_Guy777

      Check out what happened to the Samsung Ativ Q… there really is something out there that hates dual boot…

  • OMFCody

    Is Microsoft in any position to not want this to happen? They would be the biggest beneficiary..

    • Michael Quinlan

      I agree. Microsoft should be doing whatever they can to get their crappy OS in as many hands as possible, but instead they’re maintaining their 800 pound gorilla attitude.

      • Duong Duc Ngo

        Windows is better then Android, you will never see workstations with Android. Android is a mobile OS that will not compete with a full function OS. Now Windows mobile is a POS.

        • New_Guy777

          That was the beauty of this thing… Full windows, not the mobile version, plus Android

  • Vadim Marchenko

    F…k M$, Create Android / Ubuntu dual boot). They even can run in paralell Canonical demonstrated that last year

  • http://www.halfey.me/ Halfey Halphstein

    People have been dual booting their PCs for a long time (Windows + Linux) so why would dual booting Windows and Android be a problem? The reason people need or want to do that does not matter. Unless Google can make Android officially available for desktop then I don’t think Google is in any position to stop it.

    • TONY ALDO

      Average people don’t know how to / don’t do it.

      • bigdawgx

        So then what’s the problem??? Only a select few will do it so no one will lose market share they wouldn’t have already lost.

    • Carl Rood

      Yes, but those are people who know how and want to install two OS’s. Manufacturers never really sold and markted dual boot devices.

      • http://www.halfey.me/ Halfey Halphstein

        And that should not stop Asus from testing the waters. No OEM before has done it but it doesn’t mean Asus can’t be the first one. And Asus clearly made this targeting those who want/need the dual-boot environment.

      • No_Nickname90

        But you *can’t* dual boot Android. That’s the problem right now. There is Bluestacks, but then Windows is still running, slowing my computer down. And since Bluestacks isn’t native, it’s not the best alternative… =.S

  • Give ‘em the boot

    To me, a windows tablet is almost useless for personal reasons. At the same time, an Android table is useless for work. I don’t want to buy and carry around two, plus a phone, plus a laptop. Dual booting would be a dream come true to be honest.

    I find it amazing how much Google once preached about openness and chastised competitors for being closed, and now that they have reached the top they are becoming more closed and restrictive every day.

    • bigdawgx

      Agreed!! There can be useful purposes!!!
      If the OEM’s can make it happen, then why not??

      • No_Nickname90

        I want to add on to this. I like to use Windows programs when mobile programs don’t work. I also play PC games occasionally.

        I’d also like to use Android when I’m out and about. No need for the full windows experience if I’m just web browsing and stuff. The Android side would have less lag.

        I can see the convenience, clearly. I’m a targeted customer. I hope this comes out. This was going to be my next laptop. =.[

    • ac

      I agree about a dual boot Tablet/Laptop being perfect dream. Android for personal, Windows for work. That would be a no brainer for me and part of the reason I was so disappointed that the Samsung ATIV Q was scrapped, after being announced at a Samsung event. Nonetheless, part of me feels that the reasoning behind Google not being open to this is due to patent issues. I remember that being a talked about case with the ATIV Q, so maybe that’s the same situation here. Whatever patent is involved, it’s enough for both Google and Microsoft to feel like it’s not worth the can of worms that would open up, once a product is actually on the market.

  • fredphoesh

    I wonder if the story BEHIND this is that perhaps allowing MS and Andriod to run on the same device would create a precedent for MS plans to have Android apps run on their phones, thereby cutting Google out of the equation on potentially billions of purchases.

  • Max

    I can’t imagine a dual boot tablet could actually be good in current case. If it ran both OSes at the same time it would eat up all its ram, if you had to shutdown/startup to switch oses it would take to long to switch to be useful. Plus windows RT is garbage, so it would need full on win 8 to have any useful features, although torrenting could be interesting…

  • uniquename72

    “Perhaps the bigger question: do we even need dual-boot devices? ”

    As someone who is heavily invested in the Android ecosystem, but who has a real job and occasionally needs to use Windows software, the answer is yes.

  • androidscales

    evil M$ can just F$K du$l boot remember sybase , wordperfect, fox pro

    • Sean Royce

      Calm down dude.

  • Hyacinth Smith

    Bullying is not the same old issue it used to be. With social networking and computers and cellphones it’s become an around the clock problem. It’s now a health issue.Think of this It is the lack of knowledge of, or the unwillingness to recognize, or the deliberate denial of the existence of the serial bully which is the most common reason for an unsatisfactory outcome for both employee and employer. Be brave don’t be a victim be safe and keep protected check this out at http://bit.ly/1nctEuL.

  • http://www.vgchartz.com SuperChunk

    Nope. The only reason I remotely care about having a Windows system is for Steam games. My phone/table needs to remain full android and my laptop/pc could be Chromebook if it worked with Steam (I don’t want another console, aka steambox).

  • loooney2ns

    I wish there were dual boot devices. I would gladly have paid more for a device that did both. Instead, I bought a Dell Venue 8 and a Dell Venue 8 Pro and I carry both. What a pleasure it would be to just carry one!

  • Cci Buildings

    Anyone that thinks that duel booting machines wouldn’t be useful, someone please shoot the f_____rs!

  • jtphd

    This is disappointing. I own an ASUS Transformer Book Trio and love it! It is the best of both worlds. First, a fully functioning workhorse of a laptop that obviously runs MSOffice. Second, an Android tablet with all its benefits and well-stocked app store. I’ve been waiting for this machine for several years because, as I travel a lot, I don’t want to carry a laptop and a tablet. Bad move by MS and Google if they follow through.

  • jtphd

    One additional thought. I bought my Trio at NCIX.com for $905 (currently $999 and not in stack), less than I would have paid for a quality ultrabook and a good tablet. The Trio is hard to find (try Canadian sites). In any event, the Duet, at 13+” is probably too big for a tablet.

  • Mex5150

    I’m assuming most of the people saying dual boot is the answer to all their dream have never actually used a dual-booted system on a daily basis (or ever), it’s a total PITA, you quickly find one side greatly outweighs the the other, then you start trying to find work-arounds so you can stay where you are rather than jumping to and fro, leaving the unused side getting less and less use. Both companies have decided it isn’t good for them, so it’s academic anyway, but I can think of only a very few occasions where it would be genuinely useful for the end user with day to day usage.