Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) has finally revealed the release date for its first Surface tablets. Microsoft today confirmed that Surface tablets will be released on October 26 along with Windows 8. In its recent filing with Securities and Exchange Commission last week it stated “The next version of our operating system, Windows 8, will be generally available on October 26, 2012. At that time, we will begin selling the Surface, a series of Microsoft-designed and manufactured hardware devices.”
There was no surprise as in its earlier announcements also, Company has told that Surface products “would be available the same time that Windows 8” was launched.
Along with the release date, Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) has included throughout the annual report the disclaimers about the success, or lack thereof, of Windows 8, stating “In fall 2012, we are launching Windows 8…Its success depends on a number of factors including the extent to which customers embrace its new user interface and functionality, successfully coordinating with our OEM partners in releasing a variety of hardware devices that take advantage of its features, and attracting developers at scale to ensure a competitive array of quality applications. We expect to incur substantial marketing costs in launching Window 8 and associated services and devices, which may reduce our operating margins.”
The Surface products are expected to be offered in two price forms. One, a comparatively cheaper version will run on Windows RT on top of ARM chips and other the costlier version will run Windows 8 Pro powered by Intel “Ivy Bridge” processors. About the pricing, Microsoft revealed “Suggested retail pricing will be announced closer to availability and is expected to be competitive with a comparable ARM tablet or Intel Ultrabook-class PC.” On the basis on above statement, experts have estimated that Windows RT products could be between $500-$600 range and Windows 8 Pro Intel-based products could go up to $1,000, or possibly higher.
Some of the released specifications for the products include, 10.6” HD displays and a kickstand. They will be 9.3mm and 13.5mm thick and will weigh 676g and 903g respectively. Also both the versions will be accompanied by a new case incorporating a thin keyboard. Regarding memory, Pro version is expected to come with 128GB of memory while RT is expected to have 32GB or 64GB.
Important reminder, the release date is for Windows RT tablets only. The Intel-based Surface Pro is expected to be released 90 days later, according to Microsoft.