When Microsoft built the Surface Pro, the designers packed the power of an ultrabook in the body of a tablet. Unfortunately, they also made the device nearly impossible for a typical consumer or even an in-house tech to service and repair. On this week's episode of Cracking Open, I take you inside the Surface Pro.… Read more
The 128GB model of the Surface Pro tablet is trickling into Microsoft stores again after quickly selling out earlier in the month.
Microsoft stores at Century City (Los Angeles, Calif.), Palo Alto, Calif., Boston (Prudential Center), and Huntington Station, N.Y., all had "limited stock" of the 128GB model, CNET confirmed today. Other stores, such as ones in New Jersey and Texas, didn't have the model this morning.
Representatives at two of the stores said that they couldn't guarantee availability at the end of the day due to the model's popularity.
The 128GB Surface Pro … Read more
Sales of Microsoft's Surface may not set the tablet world on fire, but CEO Steve Ballmer still sees a key role for the device.
In an interview published today by MIT Technology Review, Ballmer snuck past the initial question of whether he was pleased with Surface sales.
"I'm super-glad we did Surface," Ballmer said in response. "I think it is important -- and not just for Microsoft but for the entire Windows ecosystem -- to see integrated hardware and software."
But the CEO did concede that Surface isn't likely to dominate the PC … Read more
Apple's "limited innovation" in tablets this year will make it vulnerable to newfangled PCs -- so says a Citibank analyst.
Yes, you heard that right, PCs. While financial analysts write lots of research notes about Apple every week, this one from Citibank analyst Glen Yeung -- sent out early in the week -- got my attention.We believe Apple will launch an iPad Mini Retina and a thinner/lighter iPad5 (both likely sporting newer processors) in 3Q13...iPad innovation of this nature is insufficient to reverse share loss.
Whereas we see limited innovation in tablets in 2H13, … Read more
Microsoft provided another update at the end of this week regarding the availability of its sold-out 128GB version of the Surface Pro.
A February 15 Surface Blog post said that those ordering through the Microsoft online store in the U.S. can place an order for the 128GB model and have it ship in two to three weeks.
The new post also provided updated information for those wanting to "reserve" the Intel-based PC/tablet hybrid Surface Pro devices. Up until now, Microsoft officials have declined comment when asked whether users would be able to pre-order Surface Pros.
Here'… Read more
The 128GB Surface Pro is a rare commodity at the moment. And stiff eBay asking prices reflect this.
In fact, it wouldn't be a stretch to say that some eBay vendors are hoarding the device, trying to cash in on the scarcity.
Though pretty common with hard-to-get Apple products, it's unusual to see this with a Windows product -- and it's Microsoft's first PC, to boot.
One seller, with a stack of at least 10 Pros, is asking $1,300 for the 128GB model. Other sellers are asking $1,399 and even $1,499. The regular … Read more
I know that there are many industry leaders who would dearly love to come into work, remove their cashmere coats, and dance on the boardroom table.
So few are afforded the opportunity -- or, quite frankly, have the courage or the moves.
Yet Microsoft's Surface Pro is such a liberating piece of machinery that you can cast your inhibitions into a distant closet and make like an inebriated spider.
That is one conclusion that might be reached from viewing Microsoft's new danceathon to launch this elusive product.
What might seem odd to some is that this ad is … Read more
Microsoft is now a hardware leader, according to the company's chief financial officer.
Speaking at the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference today, CFO Peter Klein characterized Microsoft as a mentor of sorts for the rest of the PC industry.
"There are always things we can do like the Surface that's good for the ecosystem, good for customers," he said, responding to a question about vertical integration.
The "ecosystem" is essentially code for the PC industry, while "vertical integration" implies doing both the software and the hardware -- which Apple has been … Read more
Don't try to repair Microsoft's Surface Pro tablet yourself.
That's the advice from the folks at iFixit, which rated the Surface Pro a mere 1 on a 10-point scale of repairability, with 10 being the easiest to repair.
The firm found that there are more than 90 screws in the device, and that there was a high risk of cutting a crucial wire just by opening the tablet, potentially destroying it. Likewise, the display assembly is also extremely difficult to remove and replace. There's also a lot of adhesive used in the tablet.
"Unless you … Read more
Microsoft's new Intel-powered tablet isn't being advertised as a gaming platform, but maybe it should.
The Surface Pro handles Diablo III and Portal 2 at near-maximum settings, according to a post by Jason Evangelho at Forbes.com.
Gamers "represent an important -- and arguably sizable -- potential demographic for Microsoft. As the company knows from its wildly successful Xbox platform," he wrote.
At the moment, Microsoft is marketing Surface as a business tool, with no mention of its gaming chops.
The closest it gets is ad copy about Intel's laptop-class Core i5 processor and the … Read more