[Rumor] New Small Surface Device to have 7.5-Inch Display and Price of $399 or Less

Discussion in 'Surface Forum Site News' started by dgstorm, May 3, 2013.

  1. dgstorm

    dgstorm Editor in Chief Staff Member

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    [​IMG]

    Here is some new intel on the next-gen smaller sized Microsoft Surface tablets we keep hearing about. Supposedly, the smaller cousin to the current Surface tablet will come in a 7.5-inch display size and will be priced at $399 or less. Here's a quote with a few more details,

    So, it's tough not to be a little pessimistic about this news. First, that pricing is a bit on the steep side. This device will be competing directly with the Google Nexus 7 at $199.99 and the Apple iPad mini at $329.99. It will be a tough sale for the average consumer to opt for this at anything more than the other two. Second, if the release time of next year is true, then that is another whole Christmas season that Microsoft will let slip through their fingers.

    This isn't the best way to gain traction in a market that is starting to move closer to a saturation point already. Still, we will keep pulling for MS. If anyone can rise to the occasion, it's the folks at Redmond. Of course, this rumint could turn out to be bogus as well. Share your perspective.

    Source: PhoneArena
     
  2. J515OP

    J515OP Super Moderator

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    Of course just rumors but points taken. The idea that devices must come out at certain price points is ridiculous. Of course the general public is going to say oh this should only cost $x but that isn't reality. Most pricing demands by John Q. Public are just wishful thinking. I sort of get tired of hearing this for every new device launched. "Oh it's 7" then it should be no more than $200."

    The reality is that most major tablets aren't that cheap. The Nexus 7 is an exception which makes it a great bang for the buck. By the way the Nexus 7 starts at $199 and quickly goes up. Samsung prices above that, Apple prices above that, Amazon prices above that, Barnes & Noble prices above that and MS will price above that. A lot of times you do get what you pay for and there is no shortage of cheap Chinese tablets to prove the point that cheaper is not always better. If the new Surface has a high res screen, the latest ARM chip, 2GB of RAM, micro SD, Mg Vapor case, USB, micro HDMI and 32GB of storage it will certainly be worth more than $200.

    How can people even dream of pricing a device without knowing the specs? If you want a cheap tablet go buy a cheap tablet and good luck to you ;)
     
  3. tonyz3

    tonyz3 New Member

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    They would really fly off the shelf if MS includes the keyboard for free...:mad2:wait where have i heard that before...:wink: But i must add if that timeline is true than i will join in with the Mitch team of dumb things MS did. After the holidays i hope that part is a rumor.
     
  4. pallentx

    pallentx New Member

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    I hope they can get the price point down. I'm considering this for the kids for one reason - Microsoft Family Safety would allow me to manage it just like the home desktop. You can set usage hours and have some content control.
     
  5. J515OP

    J515OP Super Moderator

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    What specs and price would you consider?

    Tegra 3 (the current chip which will be much older by release), 1400x1050 display, 16GB storage, micro usb/HDMI, Micro SD, 1 GB RAM, front facing only cam, GPS, Wifi only, Vapor Mg.

    This still puts it in the Nexus7/Mini iPad/Galaxy Note 8 range for specs and price at "$399 or less."
     
  6. scharp

    scharp New Member

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    "I sort of get tired of hearing this for every new device launched. "Oh it's 7" then it should be no more than $200.""

    If people are making the arguement that the new RT should be priced at the 200 or 300 dollar price point, I don't think they are saying "give me the greatest specs for 200 bucks". Most likely they are saying that to compete, Microsoft needs to spec their tablets at those price points. Is gps, 1050p display, vapor mg all that important? Maybe to some but Apple has shown time and time again that the market would prefer a large library of apps over a highly spec'd machine. I don't think Microsft wants the RT to be a niche market so it's silly to expect them to cater to the much smaller demographic of people who want a faster device, even if it appears that is what they are doing.

    With the RT, Micosoft is either trying to compete with Android and IOS or they're merely trying to establish a foothold in the mobile market. If it's the former, then their only option is to undercut their competetors as they are not going to catch up on the apps front anytime soon and specs only matter if you're competing on the same platform. If it's the later, then it doesn't bode all that well for current or prospective RT owners as they will most likely have to wait even longer for a competent app store.
     
  7. J515OP

    J515OP Super Moderator

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    I think it is a very real implication in the demands that the moderate to high end specs are expected at a budget price point, not just a budget tablet at budget prices. I definitely see this with all new tablet announcements not just MS (look at the press on the Galaxy Tab 3 and Note 8 and iPad mini). My guess is that MS is not trying to compete directly with Samsung and Apple when it comes to direct device sales. They have always been the software and relied on partners for the hardware (Amazon just leaked an Acer 8" Atom based Win 8 tablet for $379).

    With Surface Pro the have very realistically shifted the conversation about touch devices and where Windows 8 hardware can go. With the Surface RT they have opened an entirely new path with ARM. There certainly is a long way to go on the developer/apps front but MS has already taken the biggest steps down that road with an OS that even incorporates the idea (first traditional OS with apps and app store). It is a big deal to bring the mobile ideas to traditional pcs.

    Now it is a matter of time and perseverance. Eventually they may build up to an equal market share (30% each Apple, Android, Windows) in the tablet/phone space which is where all the market action is now while most likely maintaining 80%+ of whatever is left of the PC market. At least those are my best guesses given the current state of things.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2013
  8. machistmo

    machistmo Active Member

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  9. machistmo

    machistmo Active Member

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    Intel And Microsoft Speed Up Windows RT's Death - Seeking Alpha

    Acer's 8-inch Windows 8 tablet shows up on Amazon with a $379.99 price tag | The Verge
     
  10. J515OP

    J515OP Super Moderator

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    That is the Acer. The first two sentences of the seeking alpha link are telling, as is "Windows RT is basically Windows 8, but it won't run any legacy applications, probably won't recognize most Windows-oriented peripherals". He even goes on to say only Atom works with things like printers when RT actually does this. The final nail in the credibility coffin is this "It's an 8 inch full Windows 8 tablet powered by an Intel Atom Z2760, and it will sell for $380. This is a real iPad Mini competitor." Full blown Windows on Atom is beyond a competitor to an iPad mini with only processor speed possibly being somewhat comparable. Clearly this guy doesn't know much about RT devices since the peripheral support is amazing for any tablet not running full blown Windows. Kristalsoldier has made many posts about the very things this guy says RT is no good for and she makes the exact opposite case for RT thriving.

    I think Windows RT may have some struggles ahead but disagree with the reasoning in the article. This guy could have some good points if he didn't discredit himself by being so clearly wrong about some things and showing he knows nothing about RT. At least the final conclusion is investing advice and has nothing to do with his earlier errors. On the final point I still disagree and believe it is to early for MS to drop its Intel hedge. First we already know Haswell will ship with usb issues so how can that be a sign to go Intel only? Second it is more than a hedge. Giving up ARM means conceding smaller tablets an phones which are huge markets and a great place for MS to let RT live. So why dump all that? Third Atom is improved but has a terrible reputation that has not been repaired with the public. Is a sudden change of attitude about Atom guaranteed enough to not have to hedge?
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2013
  11. scharp

    scharp New Member

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    Actually what he says is "Printing to traditional Windows X86 compatible printers works", in reference to the atom tablet.
    You chose to infer from that statement "RT will not work with printers". But the truth is somewhere in the middle. Atom tablets have better compatibility with older printers.

    To be fair, I think what he means is it will take away sales from the ipad mini. Is that something you want to disagree with?

    I don't think he knows too much about the RT either but if someone makes the mistake of saying 1+1=3, are you going to disagree with his statement that 1+3=4?

    Those issues don't affect current or upcomming Atom chips, which is the main focal point of that article. Basically, his argument is that the Atom chip is not leaving any room for the RT. That is pretty evident. He mentions Lenovo but Samsung is certainly also rethinking their plans with the RT and I doubt they'll be the last.

    Only if they give up ARM altogether. If they give up ARM and windows, why would you think they will have to abandon ARM and Windows Phone as well? And this new Acer tablet (if it's actually real) shows us you don't need ARM in the lower end tablet market. I know, a real sting and travesty to those of you who can't live without your RTs, but you can't expect a company like Microsoft to keep supporting a niche product. You can only hope

    I agree but I think the reputation is more associated with netbooks rather than the Atom chip. However, even if it isn't, if we were to conclude from your statement that Atom tablets will not be successful due to poor market penetration for whatever reason, than I think you kinda proved the authors view about the RT.
     
  12. J515OP

    J515OP Super Moderator

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    It is a definitely implied that RT can't do this. It is simply wrong and not somewhere in the middle. Atom tablets don't have better compatibility with older printers. It is a Windows 8 driver issue with the only advantage being you can install drivers in Win 8 that aren't included but not in RT. If the printer company doesn't make a Win 8 driver you will have the same issues either way.

    I don't think Atom based devices are really competitors with iPads. They are in a different category like e-readers are in a different category. Other than being based on the same size and the general argument that all 7"/8" devices are competitors with each other an 8" RT tablet is no less a competitor than an 8" Atom tablet to an iPad mini.


    Actually I see it more like saying if 2^2 =4 then 3^2 also = 4. Why? Because you can make the argument from the example that squaring something makes it equal to 4 in the way 2x0=0 and 3x0=0. In one case you get a correct result from the logic but not in the other. Bottom line is he is saying RT is a failure for certain reasons when he doesn't seem to understand RT which for me takes away some credibility about his points.

    What is the main point of the article? In the title and body it appears to be one thing and in the conclusion another. If lack of features and Intel improvements are killing off RT that is one thing. If RT is a hedge against Intel that is another. Why give up your hedge forcing improvements by Intel?

    RT runs on ARM. MS might as well have called it Windows ARM. Windows RT and Windows Phone are converging. MS has made a move to consolidate them at the core levels. So why give up RT tablets and only focus on phones when you can get two for one with RT tablets and Windows Phones? ARM is the major player in the low end tablets and Intel's Atom chip has done nothing to change that at this time. It may never change that because despite improvements in power and efficiency bringing legacy features into the equation can be its own drawback and reason enough for RT tablets.


    Netbooks are how most people see the new Atom "tablets" from the very players who have pulled out of making RT devices. It is far from proven that Atom has a place at the table is cheap powerful tablets. ARM on the other hand totally dominates this market. Core chips are game changers when they hit the right power specs. Atom chips and ARM chips are on a much more convergent path in terms of power and performance and at the moment ARM is the go to choice. All other things being equal I see people continuing to choose ARM because they know the names of the chips from their phones and tablets particularly thanks to all the hype that goes into marketing phones.

    The big advantage of Atom is the ability to run legacy but it remains to be seen if that is enough to convince the masses that they should be choosing an Atom tablet over and iPad or Android tablet. Certainly Apple and Google have not indicated an intention to make Atom devices available along side their ARM devices so it is going to be a hard market for Atom to crack. Even if you assume equal shares of the cheap tablet market (33% each to Apple, Google and MS) and that MS does it only with Atom chips 2/3 of the market is still going to be ARM. This is why I disagree with the author's point that MS should drop RT because it is a hedge that is no longer necessary. RT broadens MS's partner base and opens doors in both the phone and low end tablet (low end being relative to Intel Core powered tablets) arenas. When there are only two players, in this case Intel and ARM, it doesn't really make sense to ever drop your hedge against one of them. In the end RT may lose out to full Windows in the market and not be worth further development by MS but that is far from a given at this point in the game and certainly not a reason to short ARM.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2013

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