Microsoft has worked hard to establish itself in the tablet space, and its first effort, the Surface, has been the subject of much critical acclaim. Yet the estimated sales figures posted by the Redmond at its annual Form 10-K with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing suggests there’s much work to be done if the company is to compete with some of the big players in the game. With Surface, Microsoft took the hybrid approach to target both iPad like form factor and the Ultrabook market, but with less than impressive sales as demonstrated here, neither field will be feeling the heat from the Surface range.
The RT version of the tablet, which runs on an ARM processor and was released late last year in time for the launch of Windows 8, has been considerably less successful than the Pro iteration, with reports emerging earlier this week that many millions of units remain unsold. This would go a great way to explaining why the Surface RT recently saw a price drop, yet with so few apps available for RT tablets and no legacy support, even lowering the cost may not be enough to save Microsoft with this one.
Despite the flagging sales of Surface RT, Microsoft remains dedicated to developing the ecosystem, but with both Surface models clearly struggling to make more than a fleeting impression, the company is going to have to make some big changes to its strategy.
Those figures lead up to the end of June, the fruit company shifted a whopping 3 million iPads in just three days back in November. Moreover, the Cupertino tablet has shifted 57 million units since the launch of the Surface, and even though Microsoft would not have expected to make much of a dent against the rampant market leader already, the comparative figures are certainly disheartening.
The Surface RT is now a full $150 cheaper than it was when it first launched last year, but with some commentators already suggesting that the Surface RT is a non-starter, one hopes that Microsoft has a few more tablets up its sleeve.
Here’s to hoping that Microsoft fixes up the whole scenario with a newer model with powerful internals and whatnot.
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