Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Microsoft Makes Another "Nearly Sold Out" Claim For the Surface Line

timothy posted about a year ago | from the superficial-seems-about-right dept.

Businesses 262

Microsoft made some confident sounding claims about sales of its first-generation Surface tablets before it became clear that the tablets weren't actually selling very well. So make what you will of the company's claim that the second version is "close to selling out." As the linked article points out, the company has "fallen short of offering any real explanation as to just how “close” to selling out the Surface 2 and Pro 2 really are – nor have they indicated how many were on hand to order in the first place."

cancel ×

262 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Who cares about? (3, Insightful)

faragon (789704) | about a year ago | (#45051925)

Metro interfece is nice, but useless without software.

Re:Who cares about? (4, Funny)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | about a year ago | (#45052003)

Metro interfece is nice, but useless without software.

Microsoft interfeces? Sounds like shitty interfaces to me!

Re:Who cares about? (5, Interesting)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year ago | (#45052043)

Microsoft interfeces? Sounds like shitty interfaces to me!

They are still bitter that they had the idea for a tablet long before Apple, but when they announced it, it was to a big yawn. When Apple did it, everyone pissed themselves like excited dogs, and then when Microsoft tried again... everyone said they stole the idea from Apple. Microsoft usually can see the train coming long before it arrives. For some reason though, they rarely manage to get on the train. Execution and follow-through has always been a problem for the organization; Especially now that the CEO is a dancing monkey-man who knows the price of everything but the value of nothing.

Kind of sad, really. Apple continues to gain marketshare and is making more money with it's 1 out of 8 people using Apple products than Microsoft is with 7 out of 8 using their OS. How incompetent do you have to be to lose when you've got 8 times the marketshare? :\

Re:Who cares about? (3, Funny)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about a year ago | (#45052093)

Microsoft usually can see the train coming long before it arrives.

Microsoft's train of thought is still boarding at the station.

Re:Who cares about? (2)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year ago | (#45052193)

Microsoft's train of thought is still boarding at the station.

I'm not sure their thinking process [prostockdetectors.com] qualifies as a train. I'd say that looks more like the rail equivalent of the short bus.

Re:Who cares about? (1)

interval1066 (668936) | about a year ago | (#45052325)

How far can this train metaphore express itself?

Re: Who cares about? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052349)

I'm not sure, but the end of the line must be coming soon.

Re: Who cares about? (2)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year ago | (#45052567)

I'm not sure, but the end of the line must be coming soon.

Meanwhile, Balmer was seen walking nearby, complaining about how this stairway never seemed to end, and how poorly designed it was because the banister was so low.

Re: Who cares about? (1)

Dupple (1016592) | about a year ago | (#45052589)

Not until they have moved their proprietary software to another platform...

Re: Who cares about? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052125)

Microsoft made gigantic errors and, as per usual, failed to follow the progress and trends of mobile computing technology. There's no real reason why they didn't however incompetence at all senior levels was the true cause for Microsoft's lack of innovation and competition.

Re:Who cares about? (4, Insightful)

rjstanford (69735) | about a year ago | (#45052175)

They are still bitter that they had the idea for a tablet long before Apple, but when they announced it, it was to a big yawn.

Having the idea is, sadly, the easy part (and Microsoft was far from the first - check out Sun's future doodles from a few decades ago). Its getting all the pesky details right and having a solid combination of hardware, software, and demand that's tricky. That's what Apple is far better at than the current Microsoft.

Re:Who cares about? (1)

mysidia (191772) | about a year ago | (#45052289)

check out Sun's future doodles from a few decades ago

Where can you find these?

Re:Who cares about? (4, Interesting)

skeib (630324) | about a year ago | (#45052581)

I'm not sure when MS came up with their first tablet sketches, but Apple made this film in 1987: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JIE8xk6Rl1w [youtube.com]

It's scaringly accurate.

Re:Who cares about? (5, Insightful)

Capt.Albatross (1301561) | about a year ago | (#45052241)

Microsoft usually can see the train coming long before it arrives.

In my reading of its history, Microsoft has spent a good deal of its existence catching up with one train or another. Two notable examples: GUIs and the internet.

Re:Who cares about? (1, Insightful)

linebackn (131821) | about a year ago | (#45052651)

Microsoft usually can see the train coming long before it arrives.

In my reading of its history, Microsoft has spent a good deal of its existence catching up with one train or another. Two notable examples: GUIs and the internet.

That is what it looks like in retrospect, but to put it metaphorically, Microsoft was already on a different train hoping it would take them where THEY wanted to go.

In the case of the Internet, they were on the train headed for making their proprietary MSN service the one true ultimate information service. I think they kind of hoped the Internet would just go away, but that didn't happen. :)

In the case of the GUI, they were already on the train of supporting and enhancing existing DOS software. It wasn't even entirely in their hands as they weren't the ones producing the hardware (How would you do a GUI when you were expected to support IBM monotext video cards?)

And now they are on they are on the tablet craze train, when outside of Apple, that is not where the rest of the world is going.

Re:Who cares about? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052313)

They are still bitter that they had the idea for a tablet long before Apple

Citation needed. They had the idea for a tablet long before 1987 [wikipedia.org] ? There were several tablets in development around that same period, some of which made it to market, yet none of them were from Microsoft. Microsoft began working on their first tablet in 1999.

Re:Who cares about? (5, Informative)

mysidia (191772) | about a year ago | (#45052365)

They are still bitter that they had the idea for a tablet long before Apple, but when they announced it, it was to a big yawn.

ATT ran a series of advertisements in the early 1990s [youtube.com] . In which they featured a pen-based computer "sending a fax from the beach" and a computer in a car giving turn-by-turn directions.

Before the advent of modern cellular technology, wireless data, and GPS.

Apple started working on the Newton in the 1980s, and the product was released 1998-ish. Years before Microsoft had the idea of the Tablet PC in ~2000.

There were a number of simplistic tablet-like devices and PDAs that came out in the 80s, as well, from various other manufacturers, such as the "Pencept", the so called "Pen computing" fad; the GRIDpad, the Momenta pentop, NCR 3125 Pen computer, HP OmniGo 100, DEC Lectrice, Palm Pilot.

Re:Who cares about? (4, Interesting)

RMingin (985478) | about a year ago | (#45052399)

You know, I keep hearing this, but MS's vision for tablet computing was very, very different. I actually owned several examples of MS's tablet PCs, and then owned a first gen iPad. I now have a Nexus 10, in case anyone wondered.

The Tablet PC (TPC) was big, heavy, had horrible battery life, and almost always was a convertible laptop as well. They pictured the laptop becoming a portrait orientated clipboard lookalike, with the full processing power, heat, noise, etc of the laptops of the day.

Apple launched the iPad and it was thinner, lighter, cooler-running and longer-lasting than any major laptop of the time. Laptops were just starting to hit the 5 pound mark and still be usable, iPad was around 1 pound. laptops were still pushing 15-16" displays very hard, the iPad was right around 9 inches diagonal. Laptops were generally between 1 and 2 hours run time, the iPad did anywhere from 8 hours on up, depending on how you had power management set up.

Sure, the broadest strokes of your statement are true. Microsoft announced tablet PCs years before Apple and everyone yawned. However, it wasn't (only) because it was from Microsoft. It was because the idea was premature, and the MS version we were sold sucked rather hard.

Re:Who cares about? (2)

mysidia (191772) | about a year ago | (#45052483)

The Tablet PC (TPC) was big, heavy, had horrible battery life, and almost always was a convertible laptop as well. They pictured the laptop becoming a portrait orientated clipboard lookalike, with the full processing power, heat, noise, etc of the laptops of the day.

That's what the technology was capable of the time --- you needed the CPU power, to run the applications, therefore you needed all the thermal management that comes along with it.

Apple's tablet came at a later time, when CPUs had greatly improved --- the ARM chips were available, Intel had Atom; you could make really thin, light, low-power, no-fan laptops (At the time called Netbooks)

Apple's great idea was to try to do tablets again at that time, AND make the interface touch screen, AND use the interface from their successful iPhone, which was fabulous and perfect for mobile computing; the Windows 7/Vista desktop was not up to touch-based mobile computing.

Re:Who cares about? (0)

skeib (630324) | about a year ago | (#45052613)

So what you're saying is that MS chose to make a shitty product and launch it prematurely, while Apple chose to wait until the right hardware was available and then design a suitable OS for it?

Sounds about right :)

Re:Who cares about? (1)

Scoth (879800) | about a year ago | (#45052653)

with the full processing power, heat, noise, etc of the laptops of the day.

This was where they failed for me. I had a couple different Fujitsu Stylistics, and overall I loved it. OneNote was great for notes, and had pretty decent handwriting recognition. I could run any Windows application, and overall it did great. I could sync notes across devices and access them anywhere. It was pretty impressive stuff for ~2000. But the big downfall was the jet engine fan and battery life. I'd be in a quiet classroom or office meeting, and the fan would kick on. I'd get That Look from people and it got old. I also usually only managed to get 2-3 hours out of it, although I did have a spare battery I'd carry around for it. I usually had enough juice to last a whole day of college classes, but sometimes not.

It'd also get pretty darn hot when I was doing anything that ran it very hard, but note-taking didn't usually do that.

Re:Who cares about? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052479)

>> Microsoft usually can see the train coming long before it arrives.

This is true and I was one of the early users of their phone products (ref xda-developers), spending a few thousand dollars on the products out of appreciation. However, when we were refused updates and cooking bios access, many quit and refused to return.

To pioneer you need to support those that appreciate your vision.

Re:Who cares about? (1)

thewebdude (1276170) | about a year ago | (#45052531)

What about the Newton? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple_Newton [wikipedia.org]

Re:Who cares about? (4, Interesting)

Bert64 (520050) | about a year ago | (#45052699)

The problem is they are too tied to the idea of tying everything to windows...

They put windows on a tablet, and the interface of both the os and its applications were unsuitable for tablets, making them awkward to use and thus undesirable. Apple didn't tie their tablet to osx, they made a different systems designed for a touch interface and it sold.

Similarly microsoft refuse to accept that windows is a poison pill, they seem to think that people love the brand and will buy anything thats branded as windows when in reality they are more like an incumbent monopoly telco - they have lots of customers in their core market because they are seen as the only game in town, but they are almost universally despised and people will actively avoid them when they have a choice.

Windows is associated with crashing, unreliability, complexity and malware... Users now believe that these are inherent and unavoidable problems in the computer market, and don't want to bring these problems to their phones.

Re:Who cares about? (1)

lennier1 (264730) | about a year ago | (#45052113)

It's actually the best description I've seen in a long time.

Nice... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45051927)

As a MSFT investor and C# developer, I can't be any happier. It baffles me to see Objective-C as a choice, puke!
And yes I want garbage collection and namespaces because I want to be productive, thank you.

Re:Nice... (2)

jaredm1 (1620295) | about a year ago | (#45052363)

I too had felt the same way, Java & .NET both seem like more modern development tools that free the developer from having to think about memory management and instead focus on what they want to create. Having recently been using Objective-C my perspective has changed quite a bit. I have some background in C & assembly so the concept of managing memory is not entirely foreign. I am finding the Cocoa APIs to be very clean and nice to use. Managing memory is also not as painful an experience as I recall from my C days. Objective-C apps should be more efficient (which really matters on battery-powered devices where processor usage is still important) and indeed it is. I believe it is one of the reasons Android and its apps still lag even when compared to older, less powerful Nokia phones.

Re:Nice... (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year ago | (#45052631)

I use C++ and I never think about memory management.

Once every six months or so the memory checker will beep at me. It's always a trivial fix.

The best part is: I know that files aren't staying open outside their scope, etc.

Re:Nice... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052395)

C# is by far inferior to C++, C (or Objective-C) and even Java since it only runs on MS systems. C# was written in C++. Get an education my friend. I think your investments in MSFT are blinding your judgment. I say sell before its too late.

Re:Nice... (4, Funny)

ArcadeNut (85398) | about a year ago | (#45052533)

Guys, guys... lets talk about something we can all agree on like Abortion or Religion... we know everyone here isn't going to agree on which language is best...

Re:Nice... (1)

91degrees (207121) | about a year ago | (#45052669)

C# runs on Linux and Mac via Mono.

But really, who cares about it only running on MS systems? If I write software for MS systems then that's the system I want it to run on.

Re:Nice... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052513)

"And yes I want garbage collection and namespaces because I want to be productive, thank you."

Why not get a colostomy bag plumbed in permanently on your meat-android body as well. Would that not make you similarly more productive?

2 available for preorder, 1 sold (3, Funny)

master_kaos (1027308) | about a year ago | (#45051929)

Nearly sold out! But the 1 was sold to Ballmer, as an expensive coaster.

Re: 2 available for preorder, 1 sold (2)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | about a year ago | (#45051985)

Yea, I thought manufacturing was supposed to scale with demand, which is why almost no other companies make announcements every time a batch is consumed.

Re:2 available for preorder, 1 sold (1)

jaredm1 (1620295) | about a year ago | (#45052387)

Was he reported to throw it across the room when he heard it too did not come with Solitaire? I mean, how else was it gonna help him get through inane board meetings!?

lower production volume? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45051931)

if they are truly "selling out" it's only because the new models' production runs were a tiny fraction of their predecessors.

Re:lower production volume? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052357)

Maybe Surface 2 is nearly sold out but my invention of "pet lint in-a-box" was such a hit it sold out first day (production volume of 1). So now sold-out figures point to making "pet lint in-a-box version 2). MS, we how to screw with sales bs too!

Yeah but... (1)

Dr_b_ (112464) | about a year ago | (#45051935)

They only made one unit.

Re:Yeah but... (2)

mwvdlee (775178) | about a year ago | (#45052031)

They nearly sold out when, at the counter, the customer said "Cool, now I can finally use some apps" to which the salesman replied "Oh, I'm sorry, you have the wrong tablet, let me get you an iPad or Android tablet".

i don't buy it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45051937)

...and haven't seen a single one of them in the wild. For a productthat's closeto selling out, I'd expectto see at least one in the wild.

I don't believe a word they say (3, Insightful)

DavidinAla (639952) | about a year ago | (#45051943)

Given the fact that Microsoft has shown a willingness to badly mislead on this subject, the company has zero credibility about it. It's possible they're being completely honest and accurate about it this time, but since we've seen them lie (or "mislead" to put it charitably) before, how can we know? This is common for many, many companies, but when a company starts down this road, we lose the ability to trust anything they say in the future.

Hooray, marketing! (1)

Rinikusu (28164) | about a year ago | (#45051949)

If anything, a good marketer is worth her weight in gold. A story I once heard about the importation of fabric from India (Madras fabric, although no one in what was once called madras knows it as such.. it's just fabric there...) that it was cheap and durable, but the colors bled something awful when washed. Customers were returning clothing made from this fabric in droves for the "defect" of fading. The industry was losing their asses and turned to a marketer.. who turned it around by marketing the fade as a feature, not a bug ("Something magical happens when washed!").

I think the same thing is at work, here, but I'm not so sure anyone still wants to be a turd, no matter how much Mugatu wraps it up in tin foil.

Re:Hooray, marketing! (1)

bitt3n (941736) | about a year ago | (#45052051)

If anything, a good marketer is worth her weight in gold.

If that's so, why aren't the morbidly obese more employable?

Re:Hooray, marketing! (1)

geoskd (321194) | about a year ago | (#45052549)

If that's so, why aren't the morbidly obese more employable?

Because they are not very good at marketing. Duh.

Re:Hooray, marketing! (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about a year ago | (#45052655)

Yes, a great marketer is an useful asset. For some reason, Microsoft has managed to miss the boat, train and pretty much every other bit of transport when it comes to selecting a marketing plan. "You make a grown man cry" (Windows 95). Dozens of confusing names - Surface, Surface Pro, Surface RT, Windows RT, this, that. Dozens of confusing Skus. Zune brown. ** Any ** consumer oriented Microsoft advert.

It's not that Apple is so polished marketing wise, it's just that Microsoft continuously manages to swing and miss. I'm not sure they even understand that they're supposed to face the pitcher's mound.

We can trust them (1, Funny)

symbolset (646467) | about a year ago | (#45051961)

They would never lie to us.

Re:We can trust them (1, Insightful)

asmkm22 (1902712) | about a year ago | (#45052079)

I'm actually getting really tired of this type of comment. I see it pretty much every time a company or government is involved in the story. Yeah I get it; you can't trust them. Can we move on now and stop fishing for easy mod points with obvious posts?

Re:We can trust them (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052111)

Not as long as this type of comment is an auto +5. The consumer has spoken and they demand more!

Re:We can trust them (1)

symbolset (646467) | about a year ago | (#45052547)

Can you propose a more effective method than ridicule for changing undesired behavior? That would be helpful.

Re:We can trust them (1)

sjames (1099) | about a year ago | (#45052115)

It may seem obvious to you, but then the fanbois and apologists show up and prove that it's less obvious than you would hope.

Re:We can trust them (5, Interesting)

Alef (605149) | about a year ago | (#45052443)

I don't know, to me it's about as predictable and unnuanced as a so called fanboi comment. I read it as a satirically formulated straw man argument in support of a cynical standpoint that one should put absolutely zero trust in anything a government or corporation says. A standpoint which I find rather disingenuous.

Certainly they could lie to us, but most likely they are not. For whatever reason, many corporate leaders and politicians seem to adhere to a curious ethic where blatant lies are shunned, while deception or dishonest interpretations are perfectly okay. There is a difference between the two, because the latter can help you penetrate and understand what they are really saying. If you look at the carefully selected wordings of public statements, you can often get a clue as to what they are actually avoiding to say, instead of just dismissing everything as "lies".

Just to give you an example from recent public discourse: When a big cloud service provider says something along the lines of: "we have not given the NSA direct access to our servers", they are probably speaking the truth. Assuming that, it suddenly tells us something about how the NSA actually has been spying; namely by intercepting the traffic between the servers, possibly on site. Otherwise, the company would probably have said "we have not given the NSA direct access to our data centres", or something similar. The key is what they are not saying, and what words they are using.

In this particular case, some obvious question would be: How many surfaces were manufactured? Are we talking about all of them, or a first (perhaps small) batch? How should we quantify "close" (to selling out)? With the correct interpretations to these questions, they are probably not lying.

Re:We can trust them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052245)

Alternatively, you can simply ignore them, or are you so high and mighty the world has to bend to your preferences?

Re:We can trust them (3, Insightful)

spire3661 (1038968) | about a year ago | (#45052261)

We keep repeating it because other morons keep forgetting it.

Re:We can trust them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052291)

We'll move on when they fix the shit. Not before.

Hey I murdered someone last week. But can't we just move on? Geez.

Re:We can trust them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052641)

No WE CAN'T FORGET IT.

You go back to sleep if you want. If you work in a US tech company selling shit overseas, better get ready for job losses, sunshine.

Re:We can trust them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052339)

Actually, no, they really would not. They have whole departments that do notting else but bullet prove any press release so no one can claim they are lying. You really need to learn the difference between lying and corporate speech.

Delta agreed to buy a million units (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45051987)

on the condition that their business allows them to hire 985,000 more pilots over the next year. Otherwise, the deal will be pro-rated, but meanwhile MS can recognize the revenue.

Technically correct (1)

microcars (708223) | about a year ago | (#45052017)

is the best kind of correct.

I know someone who has been sued many times over the years. Normal course of business this and that.
Told me he "never lost a lawsuit". That is because he settled all of them out of court for undisclosed sums.
So technically he is correct. He never lost a lawsuit.

Re:Technically correct (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about a year ago | (#45052085)

In a similar fashion, most nerds on Slashdot have never been turned down by a beautiful woman.

Re:Technically correct (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052303)

Yeah we settle them for undisclosed sums of money.

TFA nails it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052059)

From TFA: ... it instead turned out that initial stocks of the Surface Pro were paltry to say the least and it was 100% guaranteed to sell out – perhaps as part of Microsoft’s deliberate plan to build hype around the thing.

Which of course didn’t work – it wasn’t a great many months later we learned that overall sales were weak and un-shiftable inventory was massive.

This time around, Microsoft has again fallen short of offering any real explanation as to just how “close” to selling out the Surface 2 and Pro 2 really are – nor have they indicated how many were on hand to order in the first place. As such, it’s hard not to see the situation with the same raised eyebrows as before and wonder if it’s another game of smoke and mirrors.

If you really want to move Surface Tablets (1)

ALeader71 (687693) | about a year ago | (#45052075)

Sell it for $300 and let me run Android on it. No fair refusing to open up your hardware information to the community. I dig the form factor, but I hate the OS.

Re:If you really want to move Surface Tablets (1)

Holi (250190) | about a year ago | (#45052597)

Close, it's 350

but no you will not be able to run android on it.

Easy... (1)

MikeDataLink (536925) | about a year ago | (#45052077)

They made three of them. Ballmer bought one, Gates bought one. The last one is sitting in Best Buy waiting for someone to buy it.

Re:Easy... (1)

geoskd (321194) | about a year ago | (#45052611)

They made three of them. Ballmer bought one, Gates bought one. The last one is sitting in Best Buy waiting for someone to buy it.

I've got ten bucks that says that thing is mine! I'm going down there right now to get it.

Who cares? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052087)

Seriously, this is front-page material for Slashdot? MS says they have "nearly sold out" their Surface supply. What do any of us actually care? Why does anyone but MS managers care? Ooh, it's almost sold out now I want one. I didn't want one before but I gotta have everything that's almost sold out. Can't leave that last box of Corn Flakes on the shelf.

Re:Who cares? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052345)

It's front page news, not because what it says, but what it doesn't. This is the first time *ever* I've heard a company go public and try to gain attention to the fact that they _almost_ sold out an item. They are actually telling us that their marketing ploy with a very *small* stock which they expected to rapidly deplete *didn't* work out. I.e, even though they plotted to understock, they ended up overstocking. Significant.

We sold three ... we are very close (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052107)

... to selling off the full inventory ..... once we sell the other 9,999,997 collecting dust in the warehouse.

really? (1)

Tom (822) | about a year ago | (#45052129)

It's almos as if they were fishing for ridicule. Are you guys sure there isn't a whiteboard somewhere in MS marketing where they track the scores of who can make the most ridiculous statement and still be taken seriously by at least some media?

Re:really? (3, Informative)

JWSmythe (446288) | about a year ago | (#45052329)

Nah, they're doing just like they always do.

When they say "Windows 19 sold 14 trillion copies" before the release, what they really mean is that they sold most of the inventory from the manufacturer warehouse to vendors. For example...

BestBuy has something like 2,900 retail stores.
Walmart has about 10,130 stores.

That's 13,130 stores. At 100 units each, that's 1.3M units shipped. Every one of them was sold, as they've been sold to the stores. Not a single one is in the hands of a consumer yet.

They don't indicate the batch size. On the first edition, they had an overstock of 6M units, so we could assume the batch was about 8M. 1.3M shipped to the above two vendors. 0.7M to other vendors. 6M unsold, because the vendors never moved them all.

On this version, if they only produced 1M, they would be 0.3M under, creating this artificial lack of supply. If they can hype it up, and people buy out what's already been shipped to vendors, the vendors will order more. They could probably get 2M sold to consumers, from the perceived inability to get one.. Consumers are dumb. They'll say "oohh, they're almost sold out! I need to get one while I can!"

Re:really? (4, Insightful)

RespekMyAthorati (798091) | about a year ago | (#45052515)

Consumers are dumb. They'll say "oohh, they're almost sold out! I need to get one while I can!"

That's what MS believes. I don't think it works anymore.

Re:really? (1)

geoskd (321194) | about a year ago | (#45052685)

Consumers are dumb. They'll say "oohh, they're almost sold out! I need to get one while I can!"

at those prices, consumers are a lot more discerning than MS thinks. That's why they fail almost every time they try. The upper limit of consumer stupidity is (in my experience) around $200-$300 USD. anything more than that is beyond the amount of money people are willing to spend on an impulse buy. People coughed up a ton for the iPhone because they needed a phone anyway, and could justify the higher price tag because the difference fell below that magic threshold. The iPad was something of an anomaly, and MS thought they could produce the same results as Apple, but MS does not have any of Apples glitter, and should in no way expect to be able to sell to the top of the market any time soon. Even Samsung isnt trying to sell product with the same margin as Apple because they have smart people in marketing who tell them that their products are not so well positioned that they can charge a premium for the name. MS marketing is either lying to management and telling them they can sell to a market segment they have no hope of penetrating, or management is ignoring their experts... Either way, MS is trying to sell to the highest margin segment of the market, but there is only one way to get into that segment: You get there first with exceptional products. Everyone else has to settle for eroding the margins.

They are nice devices! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052153)

To be honest, they are really nice devices! The Surface 2 Pro goes up to 512 GB in storage (the first tablet that I could consider switching my desktop to!), and the hardware is pretty solid in most respects.

The teletubby user interface actually works for touch screens, that's what it was designed for. No problems there. The only real problem I have with the Surface 2 is the price. It's astronomical, especially as the storage size increases.

If Microsoft just could drop the price I would be very very interested in these devices. They are just selling Surface 1 for educational organisations for -45% price, and I'm seriously pissed off that I can't get one :(

My Car (1)

rjstanford (69735) | about a year ago | (#45052155)

My car is also almost sold out! In fact, its no longer on the market due to forecast internal demand. Wow! It must be amazing1111!!!!1!

translation (1)

sjames (1099) | about a year ago | (#45052157)

All our hard work has paid off! Those channels are more stuffed than ever before.We'll deal with the buyback clause quietly in a quarter or two.

Microsoft Kin (1, Interesting)

bmo (77928) | about a year ago | (#45052167)

Remember the Kin?

I do.

You don't? Never seen one in the wild?

I've never seen one in the wild either, just like I haven't seen any kind of Surface (RT,Pro,Pro2) in the wild either. Sold out, eh? Sold out as in "pushed into the channel by threatening our customers over discounts for other things"?

The Kin is sitting in the landfill, on top of the concrete covering the pile of Lisas. It may soon have company.

--
BMO

Re:Microsoft Kin (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052243)

I've seen them in the Microsoft stores that are popping up in malls. You know, those stores that, when you walk past them, are completely empty?

Re:Microsoft Kin (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052405)

My wife had a Kin, back when we were dating. When it died, and she started using an old feature phone instead, I could suddenly understand what she was saying on the phone. Around that time, she became my fiance. Now we're married, and she has a Nexus 7.

Re:Microsoft Kin (1)

bitt3n (941736) | about a year ago | (#45052535)

Remember the Kin?

Microsoft missed a great marketing opportunity when, following the demise of the Kin, they failed to call their next mobile offering "The Next of Kin"

What would make it sell... (1)

Shavano (2541114) | about a year ago | (#45052229)

There are some features they should really consider adding that would make it blow away an iPad for utility:

  • USB host port -- Yes, a HOST port. Sure would be nice to attach a mouse or printer if you want. OH WAIT, they did. It's a full size USB 3.0 port.
  • SD card slot -- OH WAIT! It has that too. It's a micro-SD and a full size would be nicer, but still: removable storage.
  • Video out port -- OH WAIT! It has THAT too. Damn. You need to buy an adapter to convert it to a standard HDMI connector. No idea why they didn't go with a HDMI micro port. They really should have, since that's a common standard.

   

Re:What would make it sell... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052265)

omg, did you just copy the currently-running ipad vs surface television commercials?

Re:What would make it sell... (1)

Dracos (107777) | about a year ago | (#45052293)

  • Apps.

Maybe. This is MS after all; outside of XBox, they have absolutely no clue how to market to consumers.

Re:What would make it sell... (1)

Arker (91948) | about a year ago | (#45052523)

How well documented is the hardware?

If Microsoft builds enough they might wind up going real cheap here in another year or two. If there are free drivers the things might be worth picking up then.

Re:What would make it sell... (1)

ericloewe (2129490) | about a year ago | (#45052687)

Surface 2 - your typical mess of binaries for this and that characteristic of ARM.
Surface Pro 2 - typical ultrabook hardware, so it should be relatively well supprted.

Re:What would make it sell... (1)

RespekMyAthorati (798091) | about a year ago | (#45052527)

All of which are available in a ASUS tablet, at a much lower price.

Re:What would make it sell... (1)

Holi (250190) | about a year ago | (#45052645)

Which is the reason Microsoft is making the Surface in the first place. Do you really think they care if they lose a billion dollars on the hardware if it increases demand for windows 8 devices?

Re:What would make it sell... (1)

skeib (630324) | about a year ago | (#45052627)

Well, it looks like the market has spoken on these things. I've never heard an ipad user complain over the loss of any of those things. External storage is a mess because it makes you have to expose the file system to the user. Bluetooth and wifi beats USB host mode any day, and all tablets have hdmi out, so that's not really an advantage for the Surface.

The surface has nice hardware, a decent OS (apart from the desktop mode, which really does not work in full HD with touch), and a totally worthless ecosystem.

Re:What would make it sell... (1)

ericloewe (2129490) | about a year ago | (#45052683)

DisplayPort is better than HDMI, and in practice mini DisplayPort to HDMI adapter are only slightly more expensive than micro HDMI to HDMI.

Re:What would make it sell... (1)

Morpeth (577066) | about a year ago | (#45052703)

Don't confuse the iZombies and MS knee-jerk haters with facts or information... they don't like that. Seriously I wish CmdrTaco was still here, there used to be some editorial objectivity back in the day. Now it's just 'post any MS article for automatic mod ups' .

Relationship to Microsoft's University Propoganda (1)

jfz (917930) | about a year ago | (#45052247)

Microsoft is so desperate to get people to supply apps for their platforms, that they are sending Marketers to University students which try to convince them to learn .NET and write software for their tablets through fake workshops and "student sponsored" events. "Learn .Net, get a job!", etc.

This got me thinking about how much money, waste, and energy is being pumped into maintaining this vertical integration with developers. Irregardless, the sheer destructiveness of this "funneling" of young minds into closed technology tracks must be a huge hidden cost on society.

Microsoft Stats (3, Interesting)

Mondor (704672) | about a year ago | (#45052263)

Microsoft is well known for juggling with stats. As an example - their stats of Windows Phone popularity in UK.

Here is an oversimplified example: There are 100 devices on the market, 70% are mine, 5% are yours. I sell 60, he sells 30, you sell 20. What is your market share now? 11.9%. There is no word about the cap that market has for your devices.

So, while you are selling less than anyone, your market share grew twice for the period, bigger than of anyone else (perhaps because for Android such growth would mean gaining 140% of the market share).

The point is - if you produce 10 tablets and sell 9, then perhaps you sell more tablets that Apple, if counted in percents. But your stats are miserable when counted in real units. Microsoft relies on percents more and more over the years, refusing to provide real numbers, and I can't help but to conclude that they are trying to play big, while being in trouble.

Why not wait for them to go on sale (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052351)

then we might see the actual figures.
Then we can compare it to the initial sales of other competing devices.
Perhaps then we can see how they compare to the likes of the iPad etc.

Personally, for them to be saying 'sold out' this far ahead of the release then I have to wonder how many that have actally odered. Methinks it is a whole lot less than Apple will sell when they release an upgrade to the iPad.

You i8sensItive clod! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052381)

copy a 17 Meg fil7e

25 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052393)

They had 25 units to sell, 11 still in stock.

Almost sold as in... (1)

mysidia (191772) | about a year ago | (#45052409)

  • Early demand more accurately estimated this time --- few units produced, therefore, the few that sold of the first batch, are almost all of them; OR: bulk of units artificially delayed for second shipment in order to increase the chance of a sellout
  • A small number of units were labelled "Surface2"; the rest of the batch is labelled "Surface 2" [Revision B]; When we say 'almost sold out' "we're not including the Revision B units, just the Surface2 [base]"
  • A deal with a 3rd party is negotiated to buy almost all units that are available, with a variable delivery schedule, and retail customers given priority (the 3rd party company having to wait until next shipment on units that they were superceded on) ----- therefore, all or nearly all the units are "sold"; when a customer walks into the store and wants to buy one, they'll take delivery priority over the 3rd party company though, and get assigned that unit instead.

Same old, same old (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052417)

And now, given the latest stats showing the iPhone 5s leapfrogged to Numero Uno, next thing we'll see is how all the wonderful MS Nokia phones featuring Win8 are a cat's hair away from selling out too. And how they can make an exception and help you out getting yours if you CALL WITHIN THE NEXT 5 MINUTES. Operators standing by waiting your call...

The preorder batch is almost sold out! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052529)

And that means what exactly? if a product is truly popular, we'll see more than a pre-order batch made, so there will be more... are there more manufacturing runs of the surface 2 / pro planned? if it was *SOOOO* popular, MS would be hot to produce more... and I'm not seeing any announcements like that yet.
Is this Microsoft's way of saying that they might actually sell all the units they produced for the preorders? why would anyone care? it would be something else to hear "demand is great enough that we're producing additional batches"... but "we're almost sold out (of the preoder batch)" is just not impressive...

I need a MS article filter (1)

Morpeth (577066) | about a year ago | (#45052649)

because every time anything is posted about MS, it's just an echo chamber here, umpteen useless uninformative posts about how evil, bad, etc MS is (and usually how awesome Apple is). I don't even know why /. bothers to post any MS articles, the comments are the exact same every time -- pointless with no value.

could someone tell me exactly what... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45052663)

a 'Surface' is? i have yet to see one in the wild, in a store, on a table, at a kiosk, in a Radio Shack, etc...

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>