Mobile Devices

February 11, 2013

Microsoft's Surface Pro Sells Out Quickly, Company Cagey on Number of Units Released

Microsoft may be on to something with its new Surface Pro, the latest version of the company’s heavily advertised tablet that snaps in and out of a kickstand and keyboard. The Surface Pro, which uses Windows 8 Pro and an Intel CPU, follows the October release of the Windows RT model, the slightly more spare model of the tablet. 

The new Surface Pro, which became available yesterday for U.S. customer on Microsoft's website, sold out in just hours. The first version of the hybrid tablet-PC to sell out was the 128 GB model, for $999, followed by the smaller-storage version with 64 GB for $899, NBC News is reporting this morning.

The Surface Pro, which is also slated to be sold by Best Buy and Staples, was also out of stock on the websites of those companies.

Microsoft did not reveal how many models it had put up for sale, so it’s difficult to determine how impressive this news is.

The company reportedly maintains that sales were “amazing.”

“Customer response to the launch of Surface Pro has been amazing,” said a spokesperson. “The Microsoft Online Store is currently out of stock of the Surface Pro. Our priority is to ensure that every customer gets their new Surface Pro as soon as possible. We are replenishing our supplies as quickly as possible.”

Experience is causing many to be skeptical of the reasons for the sellout. GeekWire notes that tech companies can be very good at disguising their inability to provide an adequate initial supply – instead trying to leave the impression that shortages are caused by mobs of people wanting to get their hands on this hotness.

The launch of the Surface RT received mixed reviews. The tablet garnered generally positive reviews on the hardware, but opinions on the software and user experience varied. Wired reviewer Mathew Honan stated that while it is “one of the most exciting pieces of hardware I’ve ever used…extremely well-designed; meticulous even," the tablets are "likely to confuse many of Microsoft’s longtime customers."

TechCrunch, Matt Buchanan at Buzzfeed, and Gizmodo recommended against purchasing the tablet. Gizmodo cited the Surface’s high price tag and what he considered to be an inferior user experience to Apple’s iPad.

Edited by Braden Becker

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