Microsoft’s (MSFT) current strategy for selling its Surface tablet is puzzling to say the least. The company only offers its flagship tablet online or from one of its 32 Microsoft Stores throughout the United States and Canada. According to a predominate Microsoft blogger, however, the company may soon expand the Surface tablet’s availability to additional retail outlets. Paul Thurrott of Windows IT Pro has been informed by one of his “most trusted sources” that the Windows RT version of the Surface will be offered in traditional brick-and-mortar locations “within days.” More →
Brokerage firm Detwiler Fenton on Wednesday predicted that sales of Microsoft’s (MSFT) Surface tablet may fall below 1 million units in the slate’s debut quarter. The firm estimated that Surface sales in the fourth quarter could be as low as 500,000 units, well below earlier estimates of between 1 million and 2 million units. Detwiler Fenton’s forecast may be premature, however. Speaking to CNET, Rhoda Alexander of IHS iSuppli said that Microsoft’s tablet may sell more than 1 million units in the December quarter. In fact, the analyst estimates Surface sales could reach as high as 1.3 million units. The Surface RT tablet was released on October 26th, so if its sales were to exceed a million units then the company’s first tablet would equal initial sales of Google’s (GOOG) Nexus 7, which were estimated to be around 500,000 units a month. It has also been reported, however, that Microsoft may have cut Surface orders in half following the tablet’s slow launch.
While some see potential in Microsoft’s Surface tablet, most industry watchers appear to have written off the device at this point. Orders were reportedly cut in half following a slow launch, and Microsoft’s (MSFT) debut slate has been hammered time and time again by reviewers and analysts. The latest to pile on is Boston-based brokerage firm Detwiler Fenton, which estimates that when all is said and done, Microsoft will have sold fewer than 1 million Surface tablets in the slate’s debut quarter. More →
Despite a “modest” Surface with Windows RT launch, Microsoft (MSFT) is adamant about building more hardware. According to insider MS_nerd, the Redmond, Washington-based company could be preparing three unannounced Surface tablets for release by the end of 2013. The first tablet will reportedly be called the Surface RT 2 and will sport a 8.6-inch display and Qualcomm chipset instead of the NVIDIA Tegra chip used in the current Surface RT. The second tablet will supposedly be a Surface Pro with an 11.6-inch display with a “yet-to-be-released AMD ‘Temash’ APU” instead of a the current Intel (INTC) Core i5 processor. Lastly, MS_nerd says Microsoft will release “Surface Book” with a 14.6-inch display and Intel 22-nanometer “Haswell” chip. More →
Microsoft (MSFT) announced pricing for its upcoming Surface Pro tablet last week and tech bloggers’ heads immediately exploded. The Surface Pro — Microsoft’s first own-brand Windows 8 offering — will start at $899 for a unit with 64GB of internal storage. That price includes a stylus, an accessory that will be appreciated by some potential users but certainly not all, but it does not include a Touch Cover or a Type Cover keyboard. Microsoft’s unique keyboard cover accessories are one of a few key differentiating factors that help set Surface tablets apart, so many viewed this omission as yet another strike against the Surface Pro. More →
Who would have thought a couple of years ago that Research In Motion (RIMM) would be on the ropes and Microsoft (MSFT) could be getting close? Well, me… but not many others. Microsoft’s latest strategy of trying to make a no compromise tablet has resulted in, you guessed it, compromise. It’s not as polished as an iPad, it’s more limited in almost every possible way, it’s slow, clunky, unresponsive at times, offers a worse display, weighs more, and is thicker. Plus it costs over $100 more when you factor in a Touch Cover or Type Cover keyboard. Plus, you can’t even run Windows applications even though you get the actual Windows desktop. More →
Not only is Microsoft’s (MSFT) Surface Pro tablet running Windows 8 expensive starting at $899 for a 64GB model, but it’ll also have a less-than stellar battery life, according to the company’s Surface Twitter account. Fielding a question regarding the battery life of the Surface Pro, Microsoft said “#Surface pro will have approximately half the batter [sic] life of Surface RT.” The Surface RT can last about eight hours on a single charge, which means the Surface Pro will only last about four hours. The battery life might seem low at first, but remember, the Surface Pro has an Intel (INTC) Core i5 processor and higher 1920 x 1080 full HD resolution touchscreen display. While the third- and fourth-generation iPad with Retina display can easily get 10 hours of battery life despite pushing more pixels, they aren’t powered by a laptop/desktop processor.
Microsoft’s (MSFT) Panos Panay on Thursday announced that the company’s second Windows tablet, the Windows 8-powered Microsoft Surface Pro, will launch in January starting at $899. The base model will include a high-definition display, 4GB of RAM, a 1/2-inch-thick magnesium case and 64GB of internal storage along with microSDXC support for up to 64GB of additional memory. Microsoft will also make a 128GB version available for $999 and both versions will ship with an included “Surface pen” stylus. More →
When just about every other tech site on the planet saw a dud in Microsoft’s (MSFT) Surface with Windows RT tablet, we saw gorgeous hardware and a great deal of potential. Even after using it for a month, we still found a lot to like about Microsoft’s debut Windows slate and said if and when the company irons out Windows RT’s wrinkles, the company could have a real winner on its hands. According to a new report, however, the Surface has been anything but a winner so far. More →
In today’s world of disposable electronics, where new models can instantly make old ones feel obsolete, it’s often impossible to know how long hardware will be supported down the road. Although Microsoft (MSFT) greatly annoyed Windows Phone 7 users by making devices that were incapable of updating to the new Windows Phone 8 OS, the company looks to do right with Surface tablet owners in terms of providing regular software updates. Microsoft will support the Surface with Windows RT for four years until April 11th, 2017 according to a support page discovered by ZDNet. That’s good to know for anyone looking to buy a Surface. BGR reviewed the Surface and found it to be a robust and solid piece of hardware, but we said it was ultimately bogged down by finicky software issues and lack of a compelling library of apps.
The Microsoft Surface got off to a shaky start. Preorder demand seemed strong for Microsoft’s (MSFT) debut tablet but the company made it a point to note that initial supply would be limited following the Surface’s launch. CEO Steve Ballmer then stated on multiple occasions that Surface sales have been relatively slow, likely in an effort to keep investors’ expectations in check. Microsoft’s partners have slammed the Surface time and time again, and analysts have done the same. Is Microsoft’s premiere Windows hardware offering doomed to crash and burn? More →
I’m obviously not above criticizing Microsoft (MSFT) myself, but I am getting somewhat annoyed by all the Windows OEMs that keep taking potshots at the Surface. The latest anti-Surface outburst came from HP’s (HPQ) PC boss Todd Bradley, who called the Surface “slow and a little kludgey” and said that it barely qualifies as competition. While some of this criticism may be warranted, it should never be uttered by the likes of HP. Why? Because poor performance from Windows OEMs is one of the reasons Microsoft felt compelled to make its own hardware in the first place. More →
In an apparent attempt to become a hero for people who have way too much time on their hands, Los Angeles-based attorney Andrew Sokolowski is suing Microsoft (MSFT) because the Surface tablet doesn’t deliver as much hard drive space as advertised. Per CBS News, Sokolowski is upset because his purported 32GB Surface only really has 20GB of usable storage since more than one-third of the hard drive is taken up by Windows RT, Microsoft Office and several preloaded apps. More →