Indeed that is a winning positioning as evidenced by this
Update: Delta to equip 11,000 pilots with Microsoft Surface 2 devices for their electronic flight bags [surface YouTube channel, Sept 30, 2013]
A recent Gartner Survey Says Entertainment Accounts for Half of Device Screen Time [press release, Sept 17, 2013]. Statista made the following conclusion out of that:
This was on the same day as the new Microsoft Surface family was announced which clearly showed that Microsoft is targeting its next-gen Surface products to the productivity market:
With this Microsoft clearly indicated its major direction for the 10.6 inch tablet devices. They are meant for the production uses and they cost consequently (much) more than either the high-end devices from Apple, Samsung and other global brands, or the top of the local brand Android tablets supplied by the extremely agile “race to the bottom” ecosystem of the so called white-box manufacturers.
From On The Record With Microsoft’s Surface Bosses Panos Panay And Brian Hall [TechCrunch, Sept 13, 2013]
WHY KEEP SELLING THE SURFACE RT FOR $349?
TechCrunch: Where does the $349 Surface RT fit into the Surface family, and who is the product aimed at?
Panos: Surface RT still brings, for its value, a lot of the qualities of being productive. Now keep in mind that it will upgrade to Windows 8.1, and it will take on Outlook, and it will give you the features of being a productive tablet.
It’s not as fast, but you are also not paying as much. Doesn’t have the second stop in the kickstand, it doesn’t have the better screen, but you are also not paying as much, so it truly is a value. If you want the most productive tablet from a value perspective what you are getting there, or from a cost perspective, I think that is what we are offering.
Hall: We do think that we’re establishing a variant of the category. To date people have thought of tablets entirely through the iPad lens. We’re doing a variant of the tablet, which is the productive tablet. And so at the iPad level, if they come in and say do you want an iPad or a productive tablet, and we have Surface 2, it is the most productive tablet at its price point.”
Surface RT $349+…….. Surface 2 $449+……….…. Surface Pro 2 $899+
NVIDIA Tegra 3 (T30)…..….NVIDIA Tegra 4 (T40)……..Intel Core i5-4200U
Apps (included): Mail, Calendar, People, Internet Explorer 11, Photos, Music, Video, Games, Skype, Fresh Paint, Calculator, Reading List, Reader, Scan, News, Weather, Sports, Travel, Finance, Health & Fitness, Food & Drink, Help, Camera, SkyDrive, Sound Recorder and more
Related Associated Press articles (usually republished by a large number of media):
– Microsoft unveils new Surface, fixes shortcomings [Sept 23, 2013]
– Review: New Surface tablets make typing easy [Sept 24, 2013]
Related CNET article: Surface 2 declassified: How Microsoft made Surface into the tablet the world said it wanted [CNET news, Sept 23, 2013]
Hands-on: new Surface 2 accessories add backlit keyboard, docks [CNETTV YouTube channel, Sept 23, 2013]
Related CNET article: Surface 2 accessories step up: Backlit Type and Touch Covers, Power Cover, Docking Station (hands-on) [CNET review, Sept 23, 2013]
Microsoft’s Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 get a boost from some useful new extras. The good news is, older Surface Pro users can take advantage, too.
How do you improve upon the Surface, Microsoft’s tablet-as-PC that debuted last year? Internal upgrades are always welcome: more battery life, a better display, amped-up graphics. But the real killer apps of the next Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 tablets might once again be the accessories.
The Type Cover was the one part I loved the most about the last Surface Pro, for good reason: it worked great, felt small, and acted as a screen cozy. The Type Cover 2 and Touch Cover 2 make small but very important improvements: they both add backlit keyboards, and the Touch Cover 2 has far more sensors under its microfiber surface.
The $130 Type Cover 2 has four colors now (2013 is the “Year of Colorful Electronics”) — cyan, magenta, purple, and black — and a quieter click mechanism, plus the pressure-sensitive touch pad works with Windows 8 gestures. The $120 Touch Cover 2 has faster type responsiveness in addition to the backlighting and added sensors, but I imagine most people would spend the extra $10 for the Type Cover. All of these will work with older Surface Pros and new Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 tablets. Surface RT owners, you might be out of luck.
There’s one other new cover, and it’s the one I’d buy: the Power Cover (price not available yet), a thicker Type Cover accessory that adds a battery pack, adding 50 percent more battery life, and charges the Surface (Surface 2, Surface Pro, and Surface Pro 2 — again, sorry Surface RT users) in your bag when not in use.
Besides new keyboard covers, Microsoft also debuted a $200 Docking Station, a long-awaited (and needed) way to connect your Surface easily to extra ports while on a desk. Tall, angular, and black, it’s a tiny bit bulky but slides around the Surface Pro or Surface Pro 2, locking into the side ports and offering up one USB 3.0 port, two USB 2.0, audio in/out, Ethernet, and a Mini DisplayPort. It’s not much different from other charging docks seen on laptops and tablets, but the Docking Station also allows users to use the Type/Touch Cover at the same time — and, you can daisy-chain extra monitors via Mini DisplayPort.
Microsoft will also be offering a Car Charger ($50) for Surface road-recharging, and a Wireless Bluetooth Adapter ($60) to enable typing covers to work when disconnected from Surface, which might be helpful for long-range operation — but, then again, you could always purchase a separate wireless keyboard for the same price.
Do these make a difference in a crowded tablet market? The dock keeps the Surface competitive with equivalent Windows 8 tablets for business markets. The keyboards continue to be excellent. But the Surface 2 and Pro 2 accessories, while refined, are hardly surprising. They are, however, undeniably useful.
Surface Pro 2
Surface Pro 2: Microsoft’s Newest Tablet PC // Hands On [Mashable YouTube channel]
Surface 2: hands-on with Microsoft’s new Windows RT tablet that ‘doesn’t slow down’ [Engadget YouTube channel, Sept 23, 2013]
The related Microsoft press release
– Announcing Surface 2, Surface Pro 2, and new Surface Accessories [Panos Panay on the Surface Blog, Sept 23, 2013]
– Surface 2, Surface Pro 2, and new accessories announced [Windows Experience Blog, Sept 23, 2013]
– SkyDrive’s new 200 GB plan: Enough storage for a photo every hour from birth to graduation [Inside SkyDrive, Sept 23, 2013]
Microsoft unveils Surface 2, Surface Pro 2 and new accessories [press release, Sept 23, 2013]
Note to editors: The battery life figure provided below was corrected following publication. Surface Pro provides up to 75 percent more battery life, not 60 percent more as was previously indicated.
NEW YORK — Sept. 23, 2013 — Microsoft Corp. on Monday announced that the Microsoft Surface family of tablets is growing. Two new Surface models — Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 — along with an expanded portfolio of new Surface accessories, will be available at Microsoft retail stores, http://www.MicrosoftStore.com and select third-party retailers and commercial resellers in 22 initial markets, including Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States on Oct. 22 and China in early November. Additional markets will be announced in the coming months.
Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 each benefit from significant updates, including improvements to processing power and battery life, to display and camera resolution, and to the Kickstand, now with dual angles, so it’s more comfortable for you to use your Surface on your lap or at your desk. Enhancements in Windows RT 8.1 and Windows 8.1 Pro make Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 even more powerful and customizable.
Customers can pre-order Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 starting at 8 a.m. EDT on Sept. 24, 2013, athttp://www.MicrosoftStore.com, Microsoft Stores, and Best Buy in the U.S. and Canada, as well as select retailers in most Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 launch markets.
To help people get the most out of Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2, customers purchasing either device will receive free Skype calling to landlines in more than 60 countries for one year, unlimited Skype WiFi on their Surface 2 or Surface Pro 2 at more than 2 million hot spots worldwide for one year, and 200 GB of free SkyDrive storage for two years.
Surface 2 is the most productive tablet for personal use. It offers all the entertainment and gaming capabilities you expect from a tablet, along with the ability to get work done. Surface 2 is powered by an NVIDIA Tegra 4 processor, making apps run faster and smoother and increasing battery life to up to 10 hours for video playback. The 10.6-inch ClearType Full HD display now renders 1080p video for enjoying shows and movies, and its full-size USB port has been upgraded to USB 3.0 for up to four times faster file transfers. Camera resolution has also increased, with a 3.5-megapixel front camera and 5-megapixel rear camera, both capable of capturing 1080p video and featuring improved low-light performance, making face-to-face conversations with your favorite people crisp and clear. Even with these and other upgrades, Surface 2 is slightly thinner and lighter than its predecessor.
Surface 2 will ship with Windows RT 8.1, bringing improvements in key areas such as personalization, search, multitasking, built-in apps, the Windows Store experience and cloud connectivity. The new Xbox Music allows you to stream millions of songs for free, and an updated Video app and great games from the Windows Store such as “Halo: Spartan Assault” will ensure that you never run out of ways to play. When it’s time to get serious, Surface 2 is pre-loaded with Office Home & Student 2013 RT and Outlook 2013 RT; simply click in a Touch or Type Cover and get to work.
Surface 2 is available in 32GB and 64GB configurations; it will start at $449.
Surface Pro 2
Surface Pro 2 is the successor to Surface Pro and, like its predecessor, is a true laptop replacement, capable of running virtually all your Windows software including the full Microsoft Office suite , as well as apps from the Windows Store. Surface Pro 2 offers the portability and simplicity of a tablet when you want it and the power and flexibility of a laptop when you need it. It is powered by a fourth-generation Intel Core i5 processor which, combined with other improvements, delivers increased performance and up to 75 percent longer battery life than Surface Pro.
Starting at $899, Surface Pro 2 will be offered in 64GB and 128GB configurations with 4 GB of RAM and 256GB and 512GB configurations with 8 GB of RAM.
Full specs are available at http://www.Surface.com/pre-order.
Today’s announcement also includes seven new accessories that will make Surface even more flexible, more portable and more productive:
Touch Cover 2. Thinner and lighter than the original Touch Cover, measuring only 2.75 mm thin, Touch Cover 2 features backlit keys for even better readability. Touch Cover 2 is more rigid, registers keystrokes with greater accuracy and features updated sensors that support a variety of gestures across the entire keyboard. Touch Cover 2 has an estimated retail price of $119.99. It will be available for pre-order on Sept. 24 in all markets where Surface devices are available for pre-order.
Type Cover 2. Type Cover 2 features the same super-thin, lightweight design of the original Type Cover, but it’s now backlit and will be available in Cyan, Magenta, Purple and Black in the coming months. It’s also more rigid, providing a better lap-typing experience, and is designed to be noticeably quieter when striking keys. Type Cover 2 will have an estimated retail price of $129.99. It will be available for pre-order on Sept. 24 in all markets where Surface devices are available for pre-order.
Power Cover. Power Cover delivers the same great typing experience you get with Type Cover while extending the battery life of your Surface 2, Surface Pro and Surface Pro 2 by up to 50 percent to help you make it through that late-night meeting or the entire flight. Power Cover will have an estimated retail price of $199.99 and has a projected release date of early 2014.
Docking Station for Surface Pro. The Docking Station for Surface Pro lets you quickly connect Surface Pro and Surface Pro 2 to desktop PC peripherals in a single step, taking you from laptop to desktop in an instant. While Surface Pro or Surface Pro 2 is docked, it can connect with an external monitor, Ethernet, speakers and power supply. PC peripherals connect via its one USB 3.0 port and three USB 2.0 ports. The Docking Station for Surface Pro will have an estimated retail price of $199.99 and has a projected release date of early 2014.
Wireless Adapter for Typing Covers. The Wireless Adapter for Typing Covers connects magnetically to any Touch or Type Cover, letting you type from anywhere in the room using Bluetooth technology, so it is even easier to connect Surface to a TV or monitor and type from another location, such as the couch. Wireless Adapter for Typing Covers will have an estimated retail price of $59.99. It will be available for pre-order in the U.S. and Canada beginning Sept. 24.
Car Charger with USB. Car Charger plugs into most cars’ power or lighter ports and charges Surface without the need for an additional adapter. It also features a USB port to allow simultaneous charging of a phone or other device. Car Charger will have an estimated retail price of $49.99 and has a projected release date of early 2014.
Arc Touch Mouse Surface Edition. This special-edition Arc Touch Mouse has been updated to match the look of Surface. Like other Arc Touch mice, it is designed for comfort and flattens for portability. It connects via Bluetooth 3.0, freeing Surface’s USB port for use by other devices. Arc Touch Mouse Surface Edition will have an estimated retail price of $69.99 and will be available for pre-order in the U.S. and Canada on Sept. 24. Distribution in additional markets is projected to begin in the coming months.
More information on Surface is available at http://www.Surface.com.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
The information contained in this press release relates to pre-release software products that may be substantially modified before their first commercial release. Accordingly, the information may not accurately describe or reflect the software products when first commercially released. The press release is provided for informational purposes only, and Microsoft makes no warranties, express or implied, with respect to the press release or the information contained in it.
 System software uses significant storage space. Available storage is subject to change based on system software updates and apps usage. 1 GB = 1 billion bytes. See Surface.com/storage for more details. Initial quantities of Surface Pro 2 with 512 GB will be limited.
 Office sold separately.
 The Black and Purple Type Cover 2 will be available for pre-order. Other colors will be available in the coming months.
 Adapter required; sold separately.
For broadcast download:Visit http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/news/presskits/surface for b-roll clips.