If analysts are right, the reason Microsoft is being coy about Surface tablet sales is because they are more subdued than even Microsoft's own conservative predictions.
The Microsoft Surface RT is a PC. It’s not a mobile device and it’s not a tablet, it’s a PC. And Microsoft’s first self-branded computer. It is, in short, the physical incarnation of Microsoft’s Windows 8.
The expectations and competition for the Surface are daunting.
Microsoft has renamed, or partially unnamed its Surface RT tablet to merely the “Surface.” The Surface RT struggled in the market through its first year in the wild. It has been mostly replaced by the new, and quite nice, Surface 2.
However, Microsoft intends to continue selling the Surface RT for some time, perhaps getting rid of unsold inventory, at a reduced price.
Here’s a non-surprise: Microsoft is discounting its line of Surface Pro 2 tablets by $100 to $200, configuration depending. When Microsoft announced the Surface Pro 3, a device that has received stronger reviews by the media than its predecessors, we asked if it would continue to sell the Surface Pro 2.
When it comes to Surface RT and Pro tablet sales, Microsoft (MSFT) PR has lost all credibility. Why's that? Just look at Microsoft's statements about special Surface RT price discounts and sales on July 15 -- and then fast forward to July 18, when the software giant said it's taking a $900 million writeoff for the Surface RT tablet failure.
In what has the look and feel of dueling Surface Q4 sales outlooks—with the over/under set at 1 million units—the stage is being set to label Microsoft’s (NASDAQ: MSFT) tablet as either a dud or a reasonable, measured success for the period.
Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) might be planning to sell its Surface for Windows RT tablet for $199, a staggeringly low price to potentially counter Google Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire tablets. Is Microsoft ready to make some Surface tablets loss leaders, figuring to make up the shortfall on application and media sales, according to a published report?