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New report explains why Microsoft ditched plans to launch the Surface Mini

Published Jun 30th, 2014 7:30AM EDT
Microsoft Surface Mini Release Date

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Microsoft’s line of Surface brand tablets have easily been among the most sleek and well-made Windows devices the world has ever seen. What they haven’t been, however, is a hit with consumers or enterprise users. Microsoft continues to improve its Surface lineup each year, having most recently launched the new 12-inch Surface Pro 3 tablet that features what quite possibly the most impressive laptop/tablet hybrid design we have ever seen. The devices are still a tough and expensive sell in a market driven by price, however, and they don’t offer much in the way of truly useful differentiation.

Apparently, Microsoft’s much-rumored Surface Mini tablet didn’t offer much differentiation either, and a new report claims Microsoft cancelled plans to build the smaller tablet at the last minute.

Citing its usual anonymous supply chain sources, Digitimes on Monday reported that Microsoft called off its plan to mass-produce and launch the Surface Mini tablet back in May. According to the report, the decision to cancel the device was made because the tablet lacked differentiation compared to other small tablets, and also because the company received “negative responses” from its various brand vendor partners.

The Surface Mini’s design had reportedly been finalized and testing had been completed before Microsoft decided to cancel plans to build the device at the last minute in May. The report claims Microsoft still paid the costs for module development and production equipment.

Finally, Digitimes notes that the Surface Mini Microsoft had planned to launch featured a display measuring between 7.5 and 8 inches diagonally and an ARM processor, and it was powered by Windows RT 8.1.

The report does not state whether or not Microsoft plans to launch a version of the tablet sometime in the future.

Zach Epstein
Zach Epstein Executive Editor

Zach Epstein has been the Executive Editor at BGR for more than 10 years. He manages BGR’s editorial team and ensures that best practices are adhered to. He also oversees the Ecommerce team and directs the daily flow of all content. Zach first joined BGR in 2007 as a Staff Writer covering business, technology, and entertainment.

His work has been quoted by countless top news organizations, and he was recently named one of the world's top 10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes. Prior to BGR, Zach worked as an executive in marketing and business development with two private telcos.