SAN FRANCSICO (CBS 5) – Seldom do two tech titans have as much on the line at about the same time as Apple and Microsoft do this fall. Apple’s new iPhone and Microsoft’s new tablet will be defining moments for each company.  High stakes for them and a big decision for you: Apple. Android, or Windows?

The latest credible rumours suggest Apple will roll out the fifth iPhone on September 12th. Meanwhile, Microsoft has confirmed it will launch Windows 8 and it’s new line of tablets on October 26th.

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Apple, of course, has been masterful in its mobile device offerings. iPhone and iPad are some 70% of the company now, relegating iMacs, MacBooks, iTunes, software and the rest to footnote status.

Microsoft needs a home run badly or it’s out of the mobile game. The company’s XBox is huge, but Windows powered phones and tablets have minuscule market share and not a lot of time to reverse that.

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The Windows 8 software looks very impressive to CNET and is being deployed on phones, consoles, PCs and tablets. But if Microsoft can’t convince consumers it powers a family of devices that are meaningfully different and better than Apple and Android, they will be in dire straights by 2014.

It’s no surprise Apple would want to release the new iPhone a little early because, as the latest earnings report showed, earnings were a bit soft because people stood on the sidelines waiting for Apple’s next phone. Must-do improvements to the iPhone would include a bigger screen, fast 4G connectivity and improved ties to Apple cloud services that can match what Google offers.


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