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Microsoft Sells Less Surface Tablets Than Planned

March 16, 2013

By Cynthia Herbert :: 11:28 AM

Surface sales disappoint MicrosoftSales of Microsoft’s new Surface RT and Pro tablets have taken off at a much slower pace than the company had expected, according to reports published by Bloomberg earlier this week.

The company has sold only 1 million Surface RT tablets since launching them last fall, and only about 400,000 Surface Pros, the version of the tablet that runs the full version of Windows 8. The Pro line was introduced last month.

Microsoft has invested significant money and development effort into Windows RT, which allows for a version of Windows 8 to run on an ARM architecture chipset rather than the traditional Intel architecture that runs more than a billion PCs worldwide. The company views this new architecture as an important platform for its new low-power, smaller devices.

Slow sales reports were surfaced almost right after the initial tablet launch. Microsoft’s supply chain sources noted in mid November that the company had already halved its planned order from around to 4 million to 2 million units.

Microsoft’s new tablets move it right into the competition crosshairs with both with Apple’s iPad and Google’s Android tablets – difficult markets because they are already very well established.