Microsoft new competitor to the iPad, the Microsoft Surface, today went on sale at all Microsoft retail, holiday and online stores in the United States and Canada.
Running Windows 8 RT, the Surface is intended to showcase the new Windows 8 operating system.
Choosing to produce the Surface was a strategic decision for Microsoft, to avoid leaving tablet implementations of Windows 8 solely in the hands of its hardware partners like Dell, Acer, HP and the like.
The beautifully designed Surface has a starting price of US$499 for the 32GB version. A US$599 version is bundled with a black Touch Cover and a 64GB version bundled with a black Touch Cover is priced at US$699.
The Surface is available in Microsoft stores and online at http://www.microsoftstore.com.
A variety of accessories will also be available, including Touch Covers in five vibrant colors — black, white, magenta, cyan and red — priced at US$119.99
It is available in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States.
In China and Hong Kong, Surface will be available online at Suning. More details are available at http://www.surface.com.
Additional Product Information for the Surface With Windows RT:
- Software – Surface with Windows RT comes with Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013 RT Preview (2) (which includes Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Excel and OneNote)
- Exterior – 10.81 x 6.77 x 0.37 inches, 1.5 pounds, VaporMg casing, dark titanium color, volume and power buttons
- Storage – 32 GB (3); 64 GB
- CPU – NVIDIA T30, 2 GB of RAM
- Wireless – Wi-Fi (802.11a/b/g/n), Bluetooth 4.0 technology
- Cameras – Two 720p HD cameras, front- and rear-facing
- Audio – Two microphones, stereo speakers
- Ports – Full-size USB 2.0, microSDXC card slot, headset jack, HD video out port, cover port
- Sensors – Ambient light sensor, accelerometer, gyroscope, compass
- Power Supply – 24W power supply
- Warranty – One-year limited hardware warranty
- Apps (included) – Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013 RT Preview (2) (Word, PowerPoint, Excel and OneNote), Windows Mail and Windows Messaging, SkyDrive, Windows Internet Explorer 10, Bing, Xbox Music, Xbox Video, and Xbox Games
Microsoft is clearly hoping that the Surface will be a game changer in the tablet industry and help it establish a beachhead as the momentum moves from desktop to mobile. What do you think of its chances?