If it survives the next few years, Microsoft’s Surface RT will have quite a story to tell. The slate was Redmond’s first real foray into the hardware domain. Seemingly, the technology titan learned more from the tablet than it managed to sell the devices.

Things like hardware bugs, software issues, retail channels, models, accessories, ads, promotion, pricing, and more importantly international availability — this was a worthwhile experiment.

And while sales of the Surface Pro seem to be coming along well enough, the first generation Surface RT will provide Microsoft with a number of valuable lessons that will suit the company well once it debuts its second generation Surface lineup later this year.

For now though, Microsoft has lined up several discounts and promotions for its premiere slate, with the most recent being the $150 price cut it recently made official.

Sure it came at a cost to the tune of $900 million write down, but it looks like the price cut is finally working. ZDNet is reporting that the 32GB version of the Surface RT was temporarily sold out at Walmart.com earlier today.

This may not seem all that much in the grander scheme of things, but considering the fact that Walmart is a massive, massive vendor, there is fair chance that the retailer sold out its large inventory of devices.

People that were planning to purchase this device knew that this probably will be the best price they can get for it for the foreseeable future and jumped in. Either way, if the slate has indeed started flying off the shelves, then this may just be enough to give Microsoft some ideas for the ideal pricing in the future.

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  1. Would like to know their initial stock levels for sure. I think the issue is apps. I am not one of those who thinks apps are everything but when RT run’s 99% of its apps from the Windows Store, we need some good, killer apps for it. It is slowly making progress but it has to get better if RT is to survive.

    • What is an example of a killer app? For the iPad there are a lot of apps but none are killer apps. In the RT it comes preloaded with the most important killer app in Office. With 8.1 Outlook is being added when it should have been on the original RT.

      • If I put it in this context, Killer as in something that will pry an iPad or Android tablet away from someone who refuses to change. Office alone isn’t enough.

        • I have an iPad and there are no apps worth a damn. It doesn’t even have anything to make a document. I have the iPad since my work provides it but if not I wouldn’t want the POS. So define a killer app maybe Angry Birds.

          • I said from day one…the iPad is a big iPhone. But aren’t most non-Microsoft tablets just that…bigger versions of a mobile OS?

          • That I agree with. It is the same with the RT version.

  2. I pointed out long long ago that when there’s not enough apps, they have to slash the price to build up market share. Then app developers will jump in. They missed the Black Friday Sale, Boxing Day Sale. They don’t call it Back 2 School Sale. Instead, they make it look like a fire sale right now.

  3. Rodney Longoria / July 30, 2013 at 12:50 pm /Reply

    Just curious … what apps are missing exactly? What would be considered a “killer” app?

    Like garak0410, I don’t think apps are everything either. I could care less if there are 100,000 or a million apps available, so long as I have the ones I need. I have an Xbox for games for when I’m home (tablets or cellphones aren’t powerful enough for the games I play and even if they were, they’d be too much of a resource hog on my battery life). I have a smartphone for making calls when I’m away from home. I have a REAL camera for taking photos—and I don’t need Instagram for masking a bad shot. I have a laptop for everything else to cover my technological needs.

    I think our culture today has spoiled us. Instant gratification, and all of that, is the real issue here. I can wait until I get home to check emails or reply back to texts (unless I’m expecting something important—and trust me, 99% of what I get from either is NOT so important enough that it can await MY leisure to reply back). My parents have less stress and more joy in their lives than I do, and I find it funny that the only tech items they own is a cellphone and HDTV. Go figure!

    Don’t get me wrong. I love technology and staying in the loop as much as the next guy (hence, is why I’m on this site), but I don’t allow it to infringe upon every waking moment. Apps for me are time killers (is that what you meant by “killer” apps?), and there is too much to enjoy in the real world for me not to get caught up in the craziness of online crap that doesn’t really matter at the end of the day in having a quality life.

    Sorry for getting off-topic here but sheesh, guys! Get out and enjoy life more and don’t worry about what everyone else is or isn’t doing.

    • As I replied above, killer would be something to pry an iPad or Android tablet from people who refuse to change.
      I can’t agree more with your statement. I have an XBOX but it is mainly for streaming and media. I have some XBOX games and Kinect games make for great family time. If I want a serious game, I usually get that on the PC (and my Surface Pro plays games rather well.)
      Yes, instant gratification drvies app sales and the need for apps. When if you take your time, you can get what you need from a full browser (re: a Surface tablet)…and if I can digress, sometimes I think gadgets and technology add more stress to our lives… 🙂
      And yes, most apps are time killers…I have some games loaded on my Windows Phone but I’ll play them when in a position where I am just waiting and need to kill time…but even then, I’d rather be reading something to increase my knowledge…

    • I agree with one of the earlier posters. The majority of apps on the iPad are not what I would consider “killer apps.” I think a lot of this is Microsoft being caught in a catch-22. Everyone keeps talking about them not having as many apps as everyone else. They’re constantly talking about pushing for more apps, but the reality of it is that probably 60% of the apps out there probably aren’t used heavily. I don’t think MS needs to necessarily have “killer” apps as they just need to make sure they have all the most popular ones and they work just as well as on the other to platforms.. They need to make sure they have all the social networking and dating apps. They need to have the most popular gaming aps. They need to make sure they have the most popular music, radio, and streaming apps. I just don’t think most people are being honest about tablets. Everyone keeps talking about all the features it has to have for them to by a Windows tablet. If people were truly being honest a Windows-based tablet is more usual than an iPad or Android based tablet at the same price point, even if it doesn’t offer a lot of extra features they don’t have. Even the most basic Windows-based tablet is going to have certain features those don’t have simply because it’s Windows-based.

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