By all measures, the launch of Microsoft's (MSFT) Ultra Mobile PC, Origami, was a dud. People are seeing it as yet another attempt for the software giant to force the world to adopt tablet computers, when that market may simply not exist. While Origami was largely expected to compete with everything from the iPod to Sony's Playstation Portable, it's recognized as being just yet another subnotebook - too large to put in your pocket, and too small to replace your laptop. Quite the niche, eh? (See: CoolTechNews: Another Failure for Microsoft)
But the company's not done. Dean Takahashi of the beleaguered Mercury News is claiming that in a separate project, Microsoft is planning a device that primarily acts as a video game player, and also plays music. It's suggested the machine is being championed by the group behind the XBox 360, and it too will compete with - you guessed it - Apple's (AAPL) iPod and Sony's Playstation Portable. The machine's debut, much like Windows next generation operating system, Vista, is not expected for more than a year. Undoubtedly, we will continue to hear rumors about this constantly until then, and when it too fails, Microsoft will go after the iPod ... again.