Microsoft has shied away from talking official Surface tablet sales numbers almost religiously so far, and most of us realised the truth long before Steve Ballmer admitted it the other day: the numbers ain't good.
In fact, they're bad enough that Microsoft has actually spent more on advertising Windows 8 and the Surface than it's brought in from selling its ill-fated tablet so far.
And we're not talking profit either – we're talking pure revenue. According to Microsoft's obligatory Form 10-K submission with the SEC over in the US, it has raked in $853m in revenue so far from its Surface lineup.
That would mean a loose sales estimate of around 1.5m to 2m based on a $400 to $500 average selling price (and remember the original price of the entry level Surface RT was as high as $500, though it has dropped since).
To put that low earnings figure in perspective, Microsoft's sales and marketing costs jumped $1bn in the fiscal year being reported, and it says that includes “an $898 million increase in advertising costs associated primarily with Windows 8 and Surface”.
Yes, that's $45m more than it made from selling the Surface.
And finally, it is a mere 4.4% of the $19.2bn the Windows Division earned in total over the year.
As that final point reminds us, Microsoft is one of the few companies big enough to swallow up the kind of losses the Surface is clearly making.
Should the Surface's successor prove to be a success, Microsoft will be able to write off the first generation as a trial run, a luxury not many tech companies can afford these days.
But success is by no means guaranteed, especially with Windows RT having been so badly received it's made the Windows Vista era seem like the good old days. Microsoft's got a lot of work to do.