Microsoft never made public how many of its Surface tablet devices found buyers since they were launched, though unofficial estimates are painting a rather grim picture of the tablet’s sales record. Three people privy to the company’s sales claim Microsoft has sold little over a million of its Surface RT device, while in reality the Surface Pro only managed to entice about 400,000 buyers. In stark contrast, Apple’s iPad range went in for 22.9 million sales in the quarter ending December 2012.
The Surface tablet series marks Microsoft’s first attempt at mainstream tablet hardware, and is being touted as the best series of devices to showcase the company’s computing solution in the new age. It is interesting that the Surface Pro sales numbers were being ignored to portray the Surface tablet as a hit with consumers. Most of the stores carrying the Surface Pro resorted to flashing the ‘Sold Out’ signs soon after it was launched, leading many to believe it has garnered great support from its intended business clientele. That is clearly not the case if the above sales figures are indeed true. At least Microsoft has been putting more effort towards making the Surface tablets available in more markets, which will add some more to the sales figures.
While the Surface RT suffered from the lack of sufficient apps that would make owning the device a worthwhile experience, a price revision to make it more affordable could generate some buzz around the device. In contrast, the Surface Pro is being touted as the device that can be both a tablet and a laptop replacement, though this may be what drowned the device. The market does not seem to be ready for such a hybrid tablet/notebook just yet, and the high price tag and low battery life of the Surface Pros helped lead to its lukewarm response. Both the Surface tablet variants already score on quality, though a price cut for the Surface RT and a hard keyboard cover for the Surface Pro with a built-in battery that won’t add to the tablet’s cost might bring the Surface tablets right back in the game.