[UPDATE] Pricing for new Windows RT tablet line to begin at $500 for 32GB model without Touch Cover; scaling to $700 with covers and additional memory; Microsoft confirms pricing, launch date.
[UPDATE] Following the publication of this story, Microsoft re-launched the Surface RT landing page, confirming the earlier report.
The original story follows below.
Microsoft has, perhaps prematurely, unveiled pricing for its upcoming Surface tablet line. Pricing for the RT models appeared on Microsoft's official website today, and was quickly removed, but not before TechCrunch snapped a screenshot of the page.
According to the screenshot, a 32GB Surface tablet running on Windows RT will cost $500, and will not come bundled with a Touch Cover (a magnetic screen cover that doubles as a keyboard). The same 32GB model with a Touch Cover will run $600, and a 64GB model with a Touch Cover is pegged at $700.
The Surface RT tablet line is expected to launch alongside Microsoft's new Windows 8 operating system on October 26. This pricing is in line with Apple's newest iPad iteration, which begins at $500 for a Wifi-only version and scales to $700.
Microsoft's Surface RT edition, which runs on a Nvidia ARM processor, is one of two models the company is planning. The other is an Intel Core processor-driven Windows 8 Pro unit. Information regarding that model is expected to arrive sometime later.
Both Surface tablets will feature a 10.6-inch "HD display" with Corning Gorilla Glass 2.0, as well as a full-size USB port, microSD card port, and multiple configurations of system RAM. Microsoft is also touting built-in kickstands for the Surface tablets, as well as screen covers with built-in keyboards. The cover combos will come in two varieties: the Touch Cover will provide a 3mm-thin gesture-sensing keyboard for typing, while the 5mm-thin Type Cover offers moving keys for those who prefer a standard keyboard feel.
From what I've heard, Windows RT isn't quite as feature-full as Windows 8, and I'm not sure why anyone would specifically want a surface tablet with an ARM chip in it anyway. Power consumption might be marginally better, but performance of an x86 chip should be significantly better. Give me a tablet with a low-voltage Trinity APU and I'll buy it. Too bad Microsoft isn't offering it.
I'm guessing these are Tegra 3, which is pretty old at this point. Meh.
$100 for that little keyboard cover, thats quite a lot, considered its a ARM powered tablet, $600 might be a bit too much.
Could be more practical note taking device for school, if the RT versions run Office, specially OneNote. Switching between lectures and music, then taking a picture of the board for quick note references with its cam...64GB at 700 tho...I could just use pen and paper....
I think Microsoft and other manufacturers of Windows 8 tablets are going to have the same problem they did with Windows 7 tablets. The problem is that the pricing isn't worth it no matter how nice they make the specs sound or the OS is. I believe Apple has been one lucky company in that it has a loyal fan base --- allowing it to get away with murder basically. I own Apple, Google and Microsoft products. I bought iOS, and Android products to test both trying not to be bias. I like some things about both but Android is proving to be my favorite minus compatibility issues with some apps on different brand products. The fact is the experience of using a tablet still isn't worth giving up my laptop/desktop which has more horsepower. Buying a tablet is an impulse not something I have to have, keep the price point at a level that makes it hard for consumers to say no. $300 - $400 would have been a great price. Look at the Nexus 7 tablet, it's a great deal at an unbelievable price---even with the smaller screen. The concept with tablets is to bring the price down not drive it higher. I think no matter how many businesses buy tablets they will never rival the number of casual consumer's who buy tablets and Apple can prove that .
Yeah, nobody should be competing with Apple on price when they're charging $600+ for a tablet. I can buy a laptop with a real processor for that much money. Apple gets away with it because people buy their products regardless. Nobody's going to want to buy a "lesser" brand name for the same price, even if it's got slightly superior specs.
Heck, even at $400, I'd have a hard time spending the money on a tablet instead of just building a new computer.
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Microsoft has been attempting tablets for like a decade now. They just haven't managed to execute it well enough. Remember Slate?
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Steve Jobs did not make Apple successful in the early 80s, Steve Wozniak did that with his computer designs (mainly the Apple II). Jobs definitely drove the company back from the brink though when he came back, via making products that put form over function.
"Windows was Apple's project and Microsoft hijacked it and became dominated."
That's great, except Windows 1.0 didn't really resemble Mac OS at all. The biggest similarity between the two was the fact that they were both GUIs.
It's not like Microsoft said "Jobs is dead, now is the time to release our tablets!"
Ha... No... We're in the middle of resecetion (bordering depression) with unemployment figures through the roof. This just shows how out of touch some corporations are with the rest of society. I would really like a tablet and was going to choose the surface but not at those prices. Another hundred dollers (£75) for a cover/keyboard? No way. Would rather buy a new laptop.
I just can't justify the price for the product. If I'd be getting the tablet I would get the 64gig model and $700 dollars is just to high. For just a few hundred more dollars I could get a smaller gaming laptop/netbook that would be much more useful to me. Now if the price point of the tablet was $400-$500 it would be worth considering.
Not going to lie these windows tablets do look pretty nice. If the apps I need are on it I'm so getting when instead of an android tablet when I replace my ipad soon.
For all those people bitching about the price, should perhaps take a course in microeconomics before bitching. Just remember Microsoft kills Apple when it comes to certain target markets. The only reason why Apple crushes everyone when it comes to certain products is because they are Master Sheperds. CNN has a good article you might wanna check out http://www.cnn.com/2012/06/19/tech/microsoft-surface-ipad/index.html
Compared with the Samsung Galaxy Note with stylus, this is expensive. The Touch Cover is the unique selling point and $100 for a keyboard/dust cover is high.
@HIT3kNology that CNN article is good they had me at "It's sacrilege to some Apple fanboys" MS must really love the sound of that
So it's only competing with the iPad.... I figured as much, but you never can be too sure about these things. I wonder how they're going to accept the loss? Even if it is a better product, they still have to convince their target audience that their first try is going to be better than something that has been out for a few years. We could be looking at a "Zune" tablet.
I'm looking forward to seeing this and seriously considering for purchase. I have an iPad. it has it's uses, but limited to surfing web, checking email and storing pictures from camera when on the road. Like most most people in the world, we run Windows. Apple has a good OS but most companies in the working world run Windows. I'm not converting...no need too. not spending money for Apple apps when I already have Windows equivalents. The Surface tablet will offer a lot of versatility, USB, microSD slot and Office included...all in handy tablet form! It might not take Apple's tablet share...but the majority of the people I know that use the iPad find that it's an expensive web surfer and end up giving it to their kids to play games with. For $500 you can get and Xbox or PS3 plus games these days! I hope Surface is a success...maybe it's the kick-starter, along with Windows 8 Microsoft needs start innovation again!
@Agronot ?... professional photo, journalist, artist ETC... use apple in the professional world, and have for years.
Business users can use Google apps or other open source apps that get the job done.
This is the one that competes with the iPad. There's another Surface line coming out in January (Surface Pro) that has full Windows 8 and Intel processors rather than ARM. That one will be in a league of its own.
Unfortunately, I'm going to have to agree with certain people here. Microsoft isn't going to exactly persuade people to purchase the Surface over the iPad. They just can't try to compete for customers at the same exact price range. I mean if they are really trying to grab tablet consumers, they would price it $100 or so less, or perhaps a similar price tag that comes with the keyboard; if you want the keyboard, forget it, prepare to pay $700. This is is drawn primarily from the specs, and from the fact that I am looking at this as a dedicated Microsoft fan-boy, I guess you could say.
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@buccomatic You can't install any plug-ins (eg Flash) on Xbox360. You have to rely on websites that use HTML5 video. A lot of the most popular websites have already made the move to HTML5 for supported browsers (eg YouTube). Other sites are moving slower with their migrations or are just stubborn.
Nice looking piece of junk. Maybe the next version is going to have any use, right now, with only 2k shitty apps, it's quite useless. And skype is not a Metro application.
So.... cant i just get a Windows 8 tablet and have access to a fully functional and supported Windows OS instead of the super limited Ipad or Android ones?
@grove12345 Partially. Most media functions, Microsoft Word, and the same interface will be available to you. Notable things you can't do: use upper-level software (especially the hardcore editing stuff, or engineering programs), play graphics-intensive video games (no one expects that anyway, but it is better than the iPad on this end), and I don't believe it has desktop mode.
Surface Pro will have actual Windows 8 rather than Windows 8 RT, an even better form (w/ wedge keyboard or something), and an i5/i7intel processor. That'll be 1000 bucks, but hey it's a really cool, light, touch-screened laptop replacement.
@grove12345 Windows RT tables will only run Metro apps and are limited to what you'll be able to get from the MS app store. Windows Surface Pro tablets coming out early next year will have the full Windows 8 OS that can run any Windows 8 compatible apps.
Can someone please tell me this fascination with tablets? Are they for people that think laptops are too big? What do they provide that is not already available????
@Kravyn81 In my novels tablets have practically replaced paper. The uses for them at the moment are pretty limited but with a little imagination they could be very power. They are what the printing press was to the codex and what the codex was to scrolls/wax tablets.
@Kravyn81 It's all about the transition to the touch interface, size and portability. People want something thin, light and with a big enough screen for working. Tablets satisfy those needs.
At that price point I really can't see RT making any headway in the tablet market. Outside of integrated Office, which really isn't necessary anymore for the vast majority of end users, I really don't see anything that it offers that current tablets don't already offer.
@freedomspopular Doesnt need to offer anything - its just for giving the people a choice. Its like asking why Ford carrier on making cars as the Hondas do exactly the same. Also i would certainly consider a MS tab to get away from the annoying Apple software, and since i wasnt overly impressed with Android on a tablet this is another option.
Hmm they are competing with the iPad at the same price points. I dont see this really making much of a dent in the iPad sales share of the market.
What is wrong with the pricing? Apple sells their 16gb wifi model for around $500 as well.
I agree, and the price are reasonable. But I think that this price should have included the keyboard. The surface is a very nice device, looks amazing, and the built quality looks good. But lets not forget that this is the RT version.
Microsoft needs to make a big hit in the tablet market, and they can do this buy making the price extremely appealing to a lot of users. I'm not sure an entry level of 500$ for the RT version does that...
@M-S-M-S @NaturalDisplay that is what i meant.. for the RT version, they could have priced it around 50-100 dollars cheaper if they are selling it without the keyboard cover.. the price has to be something to lure people away from iPads.. at a similar price, people might still opt for the iPad.. majority of people buying that do so for the ease of use, build quality, reputation etc.. they arent going to search around as much, esp if their friends and family members have an iPad
Microsoft's MS Surface is the equivalent of what Apple did to MS in the smartphone market.
Where Apple took the smartphone idea and made it better/mainstream, MS is now taking the Tablet and making it better/mainstream AND they are releasing the Windows Phone 8 which is also better than the iphone by comparison.
This puts MS in a position of great advantage.
@Landsharkk "Windows Phone 8 which is also better than the iphone by comparison." Who's comparison? Yours? What comparison was done for this amazing analysis?
Windows Phone, Android, and iOS all have their strengths and weaknesses. People have ideas of how they want to interact with their devices and each of the 3 top choices offers something different. Nobody is wrong for choosing one over the other. You are wrong for putting a quantitative value on each and placing one above the rest.
@Hvac0120 @Landsharkk I think what Landsharkk was attempting to say, is that the hardware in some of the new Windows Phone 8s, such as the Lumia 920, are more advanced from a design/technical perspective than the iPhone 5 is. I agree with you though that might be a mute point as consumers want what they are more comfortable interacting with. Which is why Apple remains strong.
@mav_destroyer This is not just a tablet...its a Laptop/tablet Hybrid. You get the fun of a mobile OS along with a full fledged desktop :D its actually a pretty sweet deal for those who arnt sure if they want a laptop or a tablet
@mav_destroyer PC? No. Laptop? Probably.
@NaturalDisplay How many programmers, photo editors, etc do their work on a laptop? I do my software development on a multi-monitor PC. Professionally laptops are only useful for small stuff in the field. Otherwise maybe college students.
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