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Samsung cancels plan to launch Windows RT device in U.S.

January 11, 2013|By Salvador Rodriguez
  • Samsung has decide not to release the Ativ Tab, a tablet that would have run Microsoft's Windows RT operating system.
Samsung has decide not to release the Ativ Tab, a tablet that would have run… (Joe Klamar / AFP/Getty Images )

Samsung has canceled plans to release a Windows RT device in the U.S. because of "modest demand" for machines running the scaled-down version of the Microsoft operating system.

In an interview with CNET, the South Korean company said it decided to cancel the release of the Ativ Tab in the U.S. because of low demand and also because of the amount of money it would cost Samsung to advertise the benefits of buying a Windows RT machine.

"When we added those two things up, the investments necessary to educate the consumer on the difference between RT and Windows 8, plus the modest feedback that we got regarding how successful could this be at retail from our retail partners, we decided maybe we ought to wait," said Mike Abary, Samsung's senior vice president who oversees the company's U.S. PC and tablet businesses.

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Windows RT is a scaled-down version of Windows 8 designed for tablets. The software is more limited than full Windows 8, but Windows RT is supposed to allow for the creation of less expensive Windows-running tablets.

However, Samsung found that despite using Windows RT, it couldn't attain the price point it wanted without making trade-offs, CNET reports.

"It's not an issue on Microsoft's side," Abary said. "It's more an issue of how the product was built and some of the trade-offs we had to incorporate in it."

Abary told CNET that Samsung hasn't completely ruled out Windows RT devices in the future.

But the company's decision to hold off for now is not good news for Microsoft.

Windows 8 has failed to give PC sales a boost the way previous versions of Windows did, and Samsung isn't the first company to bail on Windows RT.

"We want to see how the market develops for RT," Abary told CNET. "It's not something we're shelving permanently. It's still a viable option for us in the future, but now might not be the right time."

Microsoft declined to comment.

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