Microsoft Is Apparently Building Up To 5 Million Surface Tablets

Windows Surface Tablet White Color Thumb2 Microsoft Surface got priced on Tuesday, coming in at $100 cheaper than the 32GB new iPad

According to reports Microsoft is building up to five million of the devices for 2012.

Microsoft remaining coy over device prospects, but behind-the-scenes-production suggests otherwise

The Wall Street Journal claims three-five million Surface R devices are in production. Microsoft indicated a low-key push for the product during its unveiling and in subsequent interviews; the device is a design barometer for partners. The company is also opening Microsoft Stores, which may feature the device.

Windows Surface Tablet White Color

However, the bulk production began during September. Microsoft unveiled the first TV advertisement for the product, focusing on the click-on Touch Cover. Pre-orders are coming across many territories, from Microsoft’s store and third-party retailers. Touch Covers retail separately for $120. Microsoft doesn’t have a reputation among casual consumer for offering premium prices. That group of consumers knows Apple will provide a good experience and first-class design, and therefore are willing to pay the premium.

Competition Fierce For Competitive Place In Tablet Market

The reason for three-five million units is because Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire, from Google and Amazon respectively, sold inside that figure. Unlike Surface, the devices were seven-inch tablets aimed to present a cheaper alternative than the iPad at around $200. Microsoft seems to be pitching for a full-featured device replacing the PC, though Windows RT exclusively runs apps from windows Store. Windows Pro can run apps from outside the app store.

For comparison, Apple sold 17 million iPads during Q3 2012. It’s that kind of success Microsoft needs to achieve if Windows 8 is to be successful in the tablet market. It’ll be interesting to see how Microsoft markets third-party devices, and whether it previes the hardware before Windows 8 launches as part of its celebration event.

Windows 8 launches October 26. Surface launches October 25, at midnight, technically October 26.

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Jonathan is a writer on the technology and video game industries. He is comfortable with using Mac OS X and Windows; he began using Windows with Windows XP during his early double-digit years, and started using OS X in 2009 on a MacBook Pro. He began gaming on the SNES back in the 90s.

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