Microsoft Starts Surface Pro Sales To Clear Old Stock

As a billion-dollar part of Microsoft’s portfolio, the Surface team has carved out a role for itself both in Redmond and the wider world of consumer electronics. That means it is on the treadmill for regular updates to its hardware, and it looks like the Surface Pro portfolio is getting ready for a new addition.

The news come from noted Microsoft correspondent Paul Thurrott, who points out the recent price cuts to the Surface Pro. Across the board you’ll find $200 discounts on the base machine:


As is always the case, there was no real heads-up about this sale, which is just casually noted on the front page of the Microsoft Store website…. Here are the sale prices, which are good for 4 days only, or through September 3. I’m not sure if this is U.S. only but that wouldn’t surprise me.

Surface Pro with LTE Advanced (image: Ewan Spence)Ewan Spence

That’s the sort of sale you employ when you are looking to clear inventory out ahead of an upcoming release of new hardware – enough to shift stock but not enough to Osborne the line. Which leads to the question of what comes next.

The obvious answer is something groundbreaking. Microsoft’s dual screen tablet/phablet/laptop hybrid with two screens in a clamshell orientation – Project Andromeda – would certainly be a stunning choice, sources have cooled in the last two months on its potential release.

In any case, this wouldn’t directly be a reason to chop the Surface Pro price to make space for a new form factor. By taking Occam’s Razor to the price, it’s easy to argue that a refresh of the Surface Pro is going to take place.

The Surface Pro is already out on the cutting edge of technology. Andromeda’s new form-factor would be bleeding edge, but I don’t see any indication that there’s something the Surface Pro could bring to the table that could blow the world away. An update now is going to be a nice little polish of the specs, tightening up certain areas, and using production lessons to shave away at some of the specifications.


2018’s Surface Pro is going to be very close to 2017’s Surface Pro, although I’m sure lots of talk about thinner screens, more processing power, and faster responsiveness will be on show if there is a launch.

Microsoft also dropped the cardinal numbering of the device, so the Surface Pro 5 became the Surface Pro (2018). If there is to be a refresh, then the Surface Pro replacement will be the Surface Pro. While the geekerati will pay attention to the year in the brackets, most buyers will just see Surface Pro, note the current specs match the competition, and sign off the departmental purchase.

This places the Surface team in a curious position. The storming is done, the forming is done, this is the norming of the Surface Pro. Can a boring update maintain momentum?

The experts at providing a minimal update alongside a blaze of PR work for Apple. Microsoft’s approach with the Surface portfolio has been compared to that of Apple’s. If it can similarly continue to keep the community engaged with a ‘mere’ spec bump, then the billion dollar business unit has a long and happy life ahead of it.


Now read my review of using the Microsoft Surface Book 2 during the recent Edinburgh Festival Fringe… 

Source link