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Pressure for Asus to cancel dual-boot tablet

Google, Microsoft reportedly against plans to coexist on one machine

Pressure for Asus to cancel dual-boot tablet
Asus Chairman, Jonney Shih with the Transformer Book Duet TD300

Computer vendor Asus may cancel its plans for dual Windows-Android devices due to operating systems makers' objections.

Asus introduced the Transformer Book Duet TD300 at International CES in January this year. The TD 300 was described as a convertible, dual-boot machine that could run both Microsoft's Windows and Google's Android operating systems. Information week reported that Asus envisioned the new tablet would be a work machine by day and a personal media device by night.

Now, online sources say that the device may be cancelled due to disapproval from Google and Microsoft.

Asus has "indefinitely postponed" plans to sell the device, according to sources cited by The Wall Street Journal. The postponement comes after Microsoft and Google made clear to Asus their feelings about the device. It is said that each platform maker wants devices to run only one platform; there is no incentive for Google or Microsoft to allow the other's OS to coexist on the same machine.

Patrick Moorhead, an analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy, explained there are several ways in which Google and Microsoft can put pressure on their hardware partners. Android may be free to use, but in order to access Google Services - the Play Store and vital apps such as Gmail, Maps, and YouTube - hardware makers have to agree to certain restrictions. Google can withhold Play Services if it does not like the device, which would all but negate the appeal of the Android OS. Similarly, Microsoft can withhold marketing money if it is not pleased with what hardware makers do with their devices.

Google declined to comment on the Journal's story, but Microsoft said it "will continue to invest with OEMs to promote best-in-class OEM and Microsoft experiences to our joint customers."

Huawei confirmed plans this week to bring out a dual-boot smartphone that runs both Android and Microsoft's Windows Phone, and said it will sell the smartphone in the US later this year, but with this recent news it is suggested that these plans may also be put on hold.

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