AfterDawn: Tech news

Microsoft's Surface Mini is ready to ship, but the company can't figure out how to market it

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 11 Apr 2014 0:42 User comments (11)

Microsoft's Surface Mini is ready to ship, but the company can't figure out how to market it Last year, it was reported that Microsoft was working on a "Mini" version of their Surface tablet, one that would be between 7 and 8 inches in size, just like the standard bearer in the market, the 7.9-inch Apple iPad Mini.
According to a new report, the new Surface is already produced and ready to ship, but Microsoft is still working on how to market the tablet.

The device will look just like the full-sized 11.6-inch Surface tablets, potentially even including the built-in kickstand that allows for easier viewing.

While other tablets in the size range market themselves as media consumption devices (think iPad Mini, Nexus 7), Microsoft is said to be considering marketing the device as the "ultimate" in note-taking, adding OneNote and digital pen support.

It is unclear when the device will be officially launched, it is a safe bet that it Microsoft decides to go with the note taking route, then it will be available in time for the fall college semester.

Source:
BI

More news

Previous Next

Related news

 

11 user comments

111.4.2014 2:37

If it's still the Windows 8 RT version, sorry, I'll pass, I don't care you HOW you market it. You just can't polish up a shine on the RT turd. If it's a "Pro" variant, then it has a chance.

211.4.2014 9:16

Pro would not be practical on a small device! RT is fine and works elegantly, smooth and fast... In the real world, I haven't yet met anyone who doesn't agree after test driving a Surface 2 and usually after having used the amateur android or iOS tabs.

311.4.2014 9:25

I've tried both pro and rt versions and I'd never touch an RT version again.

411.4.2014 10:56

Originally posted by magictown:
Pro would not be practical on a small device! RT is fine and works elegantly, smooth and fast... In the real world, I haven't yet met anyone who doesn't agree after test driving a Surface 2 and usually after having used the amateur android or iOS tabs.

I guess you never met me...if I only need to do the things RT does, I'd rather have Linux or Android.

If the thing is durable they might try marketing it to warehouses; I can't count the number of warehouses and "dirty job" manufacturing centers that I've seen running those old Linux netbooks...and usually there are at least a few tasks that people have to walk to get to a windows desktop/laptop plugged in somewhere (usually a thousand paces away). But the keyboard would have to be well attached; tablets won't work; the screen would be unreadable after 10 minutes with dirty fingers.


511.4.2014 11:44

I dont think there will be any spark with this mini surface. Windows RT is too limited and their marketing the thing is if its a full version of windows 8.1 which I think is why So much is being sold now. The limited amount of app in the windows store is terrible, like if your trying to access a site on IE and its not displaying correctly you can go and download another browser because its the only on thats available for the unit. No downloading apps that you normal use on your laptops or deskptops. If its not in the store nothings happening for you and if its in the store a lot of the metro apps arent even compatible with RT yet they just want to say windows 8.1



611.4.2014 12:41

There's absolutely nothing stopping a full Windows variant operating well on a smaller device; after all, it's been done in the past, you know, although not quite in this form factor. In fact, it might do better as power requirements (and thus heat) will be a good bit lower.

@magictown: The only businesspeople you will find who have ANY time for RT are executives. That said, many of them, and just about ALL managers/engineers who deal with practical matters will want a REAL version of Windows. As KillerBug mentions, a small, light full-windows tablet has a lot of promise on the factory floor.

It's also important to note that NONE of the Surface RT models have been selling very well. M$ took a big writeoff on the 1st ones, and the Surface RT 2 is still hitting the "lack of any useful apps" wall, as a Google search for "surface RT 2 review" iterates over and over. Not having access to the main Windows ecosystem is a huge negative for many, if not most serious professional users.

@biglo30: While I agree that RT is a big, useless boondoggle, it's not certain yet what OS choices, if any, will be available for the tablet. One can only hope a "Pro" version is extant.

@KillerBug: I'm sure they'll have a "type case" that fits, much like the full-size variant, which also happens to be easily washable and water-resistant =) . If this thing really does have a "Pro" model (and has at least half-decent specs), I think they might finally have some decent competition for Apple in the tablet market. If not... I dunno.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 11 Apr 2014 @ 12:43

711.4.2014 12:52

"Lets build something and then decide what to sell it as and who to sell it to." - Genius Microsoft.

811.4.2014 12:56

If it is just a touch case, that eliminates the factory floor. Those guys grab their netbooks by the edge of the keyboard and walk around swinging the thing without even bothering to close it...it doesn't just need hinges; it needs oversized steel hinges with big screws. That's a big part of the reason they don't often use laptops...that, and you want something small with solid state storage if you are going to balance it on a 1" steel bar (the solid state is for when it falls twice a day).



911.4.2014 13:03

Wow. Good thing netbooks are so cheap o.O' .

Well, there ARE 3rd-party options for the original and 2nd-gen Surfaces, so maybe someone will offer a more-hardened "type case". That said, if you're too damn lazy to close a damn flap, you need to be smacked in the head, engineer or not.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 11 Apr 2014 @ 13:04

1011.4.2014 17:03

Well why don't you market it the way you ALWAYS market your products, Microsoft??? Bombard the consumer with ads everywhere that mean nothing and charge lots of $$$$ for a piece of shit nobody wants.

1111.4.2014 17:19

Well, that remains to be seen.

I'm no M$ fan, but honestly, they haven't been in the tablet market for very long. Look at how long it took the other players in the market to overcome their birthing pains, after all.

If they can learn to price the things properly AND lose RT, I think they have a very good chance. Otherwise, no. If it won't run legacy Windows applications, there's simply no reason to invest in an annoying OS that runs in a gimped ecosystem, especially if it costs more than the "equivalent" (but in the case of RT, actually far better) iProduct or Android tablet.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 11 Apr 2014 @ 17:20

Comments have been disabled for this article.

News archive