Michael Dell: Windows And Android Tablets Make Sense, Everything Else Is “Noise”

Windows 8 start screen

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On Dell’s earnings call yesterday, CEO Michael Dell revealed that he’s pretty excited about Windows 8 for tablets, while still planning to work with Google’s Android platform as well.Here’s how he answered a question from an analyst about the Google-Motorola deal:

We’re still quite interested in Android. I’ll also tell you that our early work on Windows 8 on the tablet side looks to be pretty encouraging. And so, we think it’s shaping up to be a competitive environment. I don’t think beyond those 2 that there are viable alternatives that make sense. So there’s a lot of other noise out there in the market that I don’t think will amount to much of anything.

The comments are a little self-serving — these are the only two tablet platforms that Dell can use, since the others aren’t licensed to third-party manufacturers. But based on early sales figures for HP’s TouchPad and RIM’s Playbook, he looks to be right so far.

Naturally, he didn’t mention the only tablet that really matters today — the iPad.

A roadmap leaked earlier this year showed Dell shipping its first Windows 8 tablet in early 2012, but that time frame seems very optimistic, given that Microsoft hasn’t even released the first public preview — much less a full beta — of the new OS.

Dell might announce and unveil a Windows 8 tablet at CES in January, but it probably won’t ship until later in the year.

The company’s stock is down more than 10% this morning after yesterday’s earnings report, when the company lowered its revenue guidance but raised earnings expectations for the year.