Microsoft CEO calls Surface tablet sales “modest”

November 12, 2012
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    It’s been a little less than a month since Microsoft launched its Surface tablet, widely regarded as the flagship product for Windows 8. In a recent interview with a French magazine, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has revealed that Surface sales have been “modest”. With no firm sales numbers to go by, it’s safe to assume that Microsoft Surface didn’t exactly explode onto the scene, but cannot be labeled a failure. In that respect, the Surface launch is reminiscent of early Android Honeycomb tablet launches, such as the Motorola Xoom.

    The Surface tablet has received generally favorable reviews from everyday users, and this is certainly a success for Microsoft. So why exactly have sales been “modest” rather than fantastic? For starters, the Surface tablet launched within days of major announcements from Apple and Google. It’s hard to get consumers excited about a relatively unknown tablet priced near $600, especially when Apple announces a new iPad for $330. Throw in the $200 Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire, and you realize that Microsoft’s largest obstacle comes in the pricing department.

    Take a look at Android tablet sales and you’ll notice a trend. Honeycomb tablets like the Xoom, and the original Galaxy Tab 10 sold modestly, but it wasn’t until the launch of cheaper 7-inch tablets like the Kindle Fire and Nexus 7 that things really started taking off for Android tablets.  However, Microsoft may already have a solution to this problem in the form of a rumored cheaper 7-inch tablet branded as the Xbox Surface. If Microsoft decides to use the Xbox brand for a cheaper device, the name alone will bring out droves of gamers and boost sales.

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    Comments

    • Guest

      I was going to jump in a buy one but something made me wait. Since then I have had chance to use them several times.

      In my opinion it is awkward, buggy, with variable performance and struggles in the simplest of games. All that for £400 with around 16GB of the advertised 32GB available for use.

      When I find whatever it was that made me wait, I’m going to thank it sincerely. I love the two 32GB N7′s I bought for a couple of pence less, both with just under 29GB of the advertised 32GB available.

      Nice try MS, but ultimately, no thanks!

    • Reality Bites

      I was going to jump in and buy one at release, but something made me wait. Since then I have had chance to use them several times.

      In my opinion it is awkward, buggy, with variable performance and struggles in the simplest of games. All that for £400 with around 16GB of the advertised 32GB available for use.

      When I find whatever it was that made me wait, I’m going to thank it sincerely. I love the two ( one for the wife ) 32GB N7′s I bought for a couple of pence less, both with just under 29GB of the advertised 32GB available.

      Nice try MS, but ultimately, no thanks!

      • http://twitter.com/bryanilee2 Bryan Lee

        Sounds like a troll to me. Would you care to share what bugs you ran into?

    • wickets

      I ‘played’ with one on Saturday and camethisclose to buying one, but didnt for 2 reasons:

      First and absolutely most importantly, it only comes with wifi. A tablet without 3g/4g connectivity is useless

      secondly, a lot of ipad apps just arent available to use

      Its all unfortunate because it is a great tablet and the keyboard is really nice

      • http://twitter.com/TheBlackHand2 The Black Hand

        “secondly, a lot of ipad apps just arent available to use” LOL Think maybe because it’s a Windows 8 tablet and not an Ipad, genius?

        • wickets

          the black hand; are you always such a bitchy prick and completely mindless thoughtless and stoopid????? Question is rhetorical, no need to answer. Anyway, well donr and now you can go back to blowing your msft stakeholders

          • Guest

            Oh look, it’s Lida and Melina… Ummmm, you so stoopid and stuff.

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