Microsoft’s Surface tablets starts at $499.99

posted in: Technology News 0

Microsoft announced the pricing of their upcoming Windows RT powered Surface tablets. It starts at $499.99 for the 32GB model. For $599.99, there is a 64GB model. And for $699.99, you can get a 64GB model along with one of those new fangled Touch Covers.

The Touch Covers will be sold separately for $129.99. If you want a more traditional keyboarding experience, a Type Cover can be picked up for $139.99

Unfortunately, there’s no word on the x86 Windows Pro version which is arguably the most interesting version with its ability to toggle between traditional desktop and tablet interfaces.

From a hardware perspective, the Surface pricing is in line with the iPad’s. It may not have a high DPI screen like the latest iPad but it does have more storage capacity, Mini Display Port out and a MicroSDXC slot.

From an ecosystem perspective, however, it’s a tough sell. For $499.99, I would like access to the most and best applications available for my hardware device. Apple can accomodate that. Microsoft? Not so much. It’s another reason why the x86 version is more compelling.

The Microsoft Surface w/ Windows RT will be available on Windows 8 launch day, October 26th, 2012.

The Microsoft Surface Was What I Wanted


If Microsoft released their Surface tablets two years ago, I may have actually picked one up then. Both Surfaces — the Windows RT and Windows 8 Pro editions — lined up with what I wanted from a tablet years ago. But now that I own an iPad and a Macbook Air, I don’t see a place for a Microsoft’s Surface in my life.

The Windows RT version of the Surface is an iPad rival and that’s a dangerous proposition for Microsoft. They are pitting this ARM tablet and its app marketplace against the App Store and I do not envy their position.

Their Windows 8 Pro tablet is a much more interesting product because it’s more of an Ultrabook/Macbook Air competitor. This tablet is geared towards productivity with its built in digital pen input and x86 compatible OS. While both the ARM and x86 tablets support Microsoft’s new (and potentially innovative) Smart Cover and keyboard hybrids, I believe the x86 version seems to be better suited for that kind of input.

Despite what Apple and Microsoft may say, ARM processors are just not powerful enough for the kind of productivity that I want. They can put a lite version of Photoshop or Office, but until we get enough power out of those ARM processors, x86 is what I want for productivity.

To me, ARM tablets like the iPad are for consumption of the web, video, games and magazines. And until Microsoft, Google or Apple make significant leaps forward with ARM machines, they’ll remain consumption devices. But unfortunately as consumption devices, Apple reigns supreme.