After last month’s $150 price cut for the underperforming Surface RT tablet, Microsoft announced that the Pro version will receive a $100 discount through August 29. The $100 savings lowers the price of the 64GB and 128GB Surface Pro, “laptops in tablet form,” to $799 and $899, respectively.
“We’ve been seeing great worldwide success with Surface RT pricing and keyboard-cover promotions over the past several months and our proud to offer Surface Pro at more affordable prices starting today,” a Microsoft spokesperson said, in comments sent to Engadget. “People who buy Surface love Surface, and we’re eager for more people to their hands on Surface and share their excitement.”
In July, Microsoft announced a staggering $900 million loss for fiscal Q4 2013, attributing it to lower-than-expected sales of the Surface RT tablet. Allegedly, the tech giant built between three and five million units, but sold only one million of them. In an attempt to move unsold inventory, Microsoft slashed the price of the Surface RT by 30 percent. From its launch last October to the end of June, the Surface RT recorded underwhelming total sales pegged at a paltry $835 million – even less than the $900 million write-down.Enjoying this article? Click here to subscribe for full access. Just $5 a month.
“[The write-down] comes out of the company's total Windows revenue, though it’s worth noting that Windows revenue still increased year-over-year. Unfortunately, Microsoft still doesn't give specific Windows 8 sales or revenue numbers, but it probably performed well this quarter to make up for the big Surface RT loss,” explained The Verge.
It isn’t clear if the Surface Pro is experiencing similarly weak sales as the Surface RT, or if the latest price maneuvering is simply due to Microsoft preparing to launch a new model – perhaps one containing Intel’s latest Haswell CPU. “It could also be a sign that production costs are lower,” said Liliputing.
The mid-range Surface RT, Microsoft’s first tablet, features an NVIDIA Tegra 3 processor, a 1366 x 768 pixel display, and custom Windows RT software tailored for a tablet experience. The Surface Pro packs far more impressive specs, with a 1.7GHz Intel Core i5 Ivy Bridge CPU, a full-HD 1920 x 1080 pixel display, and the complete Windows 8 operating system. The Surface Pro also supports digital styluses.
At present, the $100 discount is only available to customers in the U.S., Canada, China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan.