Microsoft is said to be working on a new type of PC: very low-powered, therefore inexpensive, subscription-based computers with integrated advertisements. For now, this idea only appears in a job posting, but it may well come to fruition in the future.
Would you be willing to pay a low price for a PC if it was subscription-based and had ads? This track is in any case considered by Microsoft. ZDnet spotted a job offer that explicitly mentions this project.
According to the job posting posted on Microsoft Careers, the idea would be to sell a cheap PC whose price would be compensated by advertising and subscriptions. For this last point, the firm could use its Windows in the cloud, Windows 365.
Low-cost PCs, Microsoft’s new Eldorado?
This job posting for a software manager says a lot. Perhaps it even betrays the next direction that the Redmond firm would like to take. It indicates that the new recruit will lead the new wave of innovation at Microsoft, thus defining a new model of hybrid applications between the local and the cloud.
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Microsoft is already showing its know-how in terms of the cloud for the general public, in particular with OneDrive, Office 365 and the Xbox Game Pass. The company could go much further with this new strategy thanks to its totally dematerialized Windows. No more need to sell overpriced computers, since the user will only need a good Internet connection. Windows 365 already exists for professionals, it could happen for individuals. Couple that with in-app ads and we have a business model that looks viable.
As ZDnet notes, Microsoft also performed interesting changes internally, placing the Windows 365 team under the leadership of Panos Panay, product manager for the Surface line. From there to imagining a Surface Cloud in the future, there is only one step…
In any case, inexpensive Windows PCs could interest an audience that no longer necessarily wants to put a thousand and a hundred into a PC. There are already low-cost Windows PCs, but they are struggling to convince, especially against Chromebooks who managed to hold their own in this segment.