Good deal: Microsoft’s Surface price cuts are permanent


Thought you might miss out on Microsoft’s(s msft) Surface price cuts because they’re expiring? Nope, that’s not the case at all. According to ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley, they’re permanent, indicating a new wave of Surface devices in the works. With Windows 8.1 launching in mid-October, it’s a safe bet that month will also include new hardware announcements.

In the meantime, consumers can save $100 on either a Microsoft Surface Pro tablet — $799 to start — or a Surface RT tablet, the base model now priced at $349. And as reported earlier this week, Microsoft is dropping the price of its Touch Cover for both devices. Going forward, the snap-on keyboard will cost $79.99. Microsoft is also dropping the price of its Surface RT bundle, which includes a keyboard, to $399.

Microsoft’s hardware partners aren’t sitting still either. I noticed, for example, that the Asus VivoTab Smart can be had online for $399. That’s a full Windows 8 tablet running on Intel’s(s intc) Atom processor and includes 64 GB of internal storage. I’d actually consider it over the same priced Surface RT bundle even though Asus doesn’t include a keyboard at that cost. Battery life is similar between the two but the Asus model can run nearly any Windows software.

asus vivotab smart

Regardless of my personal preferences, if you want to take a Windows tablet for a spin and save some cash, now’s not a bad time. Just realize that newer models are likely around the corner.



Standing in line to attend a pro soccer game, I saw some guy walk up and strike up a conversation with the people behind me. It soon became apparent he was a Microsoft shill trying to convince them the Surface was worth having. I expected him to roll up his sleeve and display ten fake Rolexes. It was sordid.


$399 for a netbook alternative is a great deal – far cheaper than an iPad yet offers much more in functionality and features.

Surface RT is still in my mind the best slate for the money. Had MS gone with this pricing form the start, I’m confident the platform would now be enjoying a much wider acceptance.


Hate to say it, but $800 is still too expensive for what they are, and $80 for a soft plastic touch keyboard cover is still absurdly high – remember, they reportedly cost $16 to manufacture. They should be $30-$35 tops. In the $650 range *with* a touch cover, I’m in. Any more and I really have to consider alternatives, of which there’s plenty, both in terms of price and form factor.

I’d very much like to buy one, but I simply can’t bring myself to support the profiteering on electronics today. $600+ cell phones, $1,000 tablets, etc.


eBay’s front page now has the (refurbished) RT with Touch Cover keyboard for $199. How the mighty have fallen.

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