Microsoft to sell Surface at retail stores

December 11, 2012
Microsoft said Tuesday it would make its Surface tablet computer available to outside sellers as soon as mid-December, citing interest from retailers as well as consumers.

Microsoft said Tuesday it would make its Surface tablet computer available to outside sellers as soon as mid-December, citing interest from retailers as well as consumers.

"The public reaction to Surface has been exciting to see.We've increased production and are expanding the ways in which customers can interact with, experience and purchase Surface," said Surface general manager Panos Panay, without providing any specific sales figures.

A Microsoft statement said retail stores in the United States and Australia would be the first to sell the introductory Surface model with Windows RT, which has many features of a tablet along with an attachable cover-keyboard.

A separate statement from the retailer Staples said it will carry Microsoft Surface at all its retail stores and Staples.com as early as Wednesday.

Retail availability in other countries will be announced in the coming months, said Microsoft, which began selling the Surface through its website, its "pop-up" holiday stores and permanent branded stores.

"Our plan has been to expand the retail presence for Surface after the first of the year," said Steve Schueler, head of retail sales for Microsoft.

"Based on interest from retailers, we are giving them the option to carry Surface with Windows RT even earlier."

Although Microsoft has provided no sales data, analysts have said Surface is getting only a small segment of the tablet market led by Apple's iPad, Amazon's Kindle and several others powered by the Google Android system.

Microsoft also announced that some of its pop-up stores would remain open past the year-end holidays and several would become permanent Microsoft retail outlets.

"These stores will transition into either permanent brick-and-mortar retail outlets or specialty store locations," a company statement said.

Surface, with a starting price of $499, is now sold at Microsoft retail stores in the United States and Canada and online in the US, Australia, Britain Canada, China, France and Germany.

Microsoft said last month that its Surface Pro, a version of its new tablet aimed at business users, would be available in January starting at $899 for US customers.

Explore further: Microsoft preparing to open temporary stores for the holidays

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4 comments

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BSD
1 / 5 (5) Dec 26, 2012
I wouldn't buy one, but it may be useful if it can run Linux or BSD. What's with the sickening colours?
ValeriaT
5 / 5 (1) Dec 26, 2012
If it doesn't run the native Windows application - where is the actual advantage of such device? It has no 3G / GPS, application market is 50x smaller than the Apple's one, applications cannot be installed to external slot - which is pathetic, as the operating system itself consumes whole half of memory without warning of customers. Not to say, the Metro design and UI sucks. I'm long-time fan of Microsoft - but this is enough for me.
BSD
1 / 5 (5) Dec 26, 2012
We bought a toy "computer" for a 2yo that makes sounds and talks. It was coloured bright yellow and blue. The MS Surface looks to be only marginally more sophisticated.
zslewis
not rated yet Jan 01, 2013
I wouldn't buy one, but it may be useful if it can run Linux or BSD. What's with the sickening colours?


if it can linux or bsd? you bug me. fake smarty pants. if you know anything, you'd know the answer to your "if".

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