Japanese Ryota Musha, 41, right, and Hisanori Kogure, 31, show off new iPad tablet computers they purchased, in Tokyo Friday, March 16, 2012. They are unlikely to buy Microsoft's tablet -- just like millions of others.
Third to the party is too late to the party for Microsoft, which was slow to follow Apple and Google in making tablets, analysts say.
Touchscreen-enabled tablets like Apple's iconic iPad are a big thing in technology today, but are Microsoft's next big thing, according to Reuters. And that's too bad for the Washington software giant, which is lagging far behind Apple and Google, the wire service reported.
"We have seen very limited success outside of Apple with its iPad," said Carolina Milanesi, an analyst with Garter.
Microsoft is unlikely to win more than 4 percent of the tablet market this year, according to reports, while Apple will control 61 percent, and Google 32 percent with tablets equipped with its Android platform.
Microsoft's new tablets will be equipped with Windows 8 once the operating system is released. But even with the tablet market doubling to 119 million tablets sold in 2012 alone, Microsoft is expected to be playing a distant game of catch-up.