Are you willing to pay £399 for the Microsoft Surface for Windows RT?

Are you willing to pay £399 for the Microsoft Surface for Windows RT?So Microsoft is finally taking pre-orders for the Surface for Windows RT tablet in the UK (and another seven markets) ahead of its Windows 8 slate going on sale next Friday.

And as expected, the pricing strategy pitches the Surface into direct competition with the Apple iPad, rather than the el-cheapo Android 7-inchers.

But with the cheapest option setting you back £399, and arriving without the Touch Cover that everyone seems to love so much, it's certainly got its work cut out.

If the Touch Cover is a must-have, you're looking at £479, while bumping up to 64GB of internal storage lifts the price still higher to £549.

The Touch Cover alone is a penny shy of £100, and the keyboard-equipped Type Cover has been priced at £110.

So is Microsoft's debut tablet worth the asking price? I'd have to lean towards the negative given the other options out there. It's certainly not an extortionate price, but that doesn't mean it'll fly off the shelves.

Microsoft can count on a fair bit of brand loyalty-based sales from traditional PC types looking to stay within the Windows family, while the unique look and feel of the Modern UI will attract a fair few supporters too (though that doesn't mean they'll go for the Surface specifically).

But I can't help but think that treating the Touch Cover and Type Cover as paid-for extras rather than integral parts of the Surface's core appeal is a mistake.

Either way, the Surface for Windows RT is available to pre-order now from the Microsoft Store.

Read more about: Microsoft Surface RTWindows 8

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12 comments

dasher  Oct. 17, 2012 at 11:08

Gawd knows what this makes the price of the Intel model!?!
My understanding is RT can only run things from the Windows Store so no other Windows based applications can be installed on it.

satchef1  Oct. 17, 2012 at 11:16

Time will tell. I'd like to get my hands on one before I judge, but I think Surface looks good enough to be most people's only PC. The touch cover, expanded connectivity options and cursor support make it far more powerful in this role than the iPad. Bundling Office is a nice touch too.

JanSt / MOD  Oct. 17, 2012 at 11:51

Gawd knows what this makes the price of the Intel model!?!
My understanding is RT can only run things from the Windows Store so no other Windows based applications can be installed on it.

True.

richto  Oct. 17, 2012 at 12:18

Ordered mine. They have already sold out of the 32GB one without the keyboard - it is on backorder for 3 weeks.

Intel models are expected to be circa $900 - but they are very powerful bits of kit and not really like anything else yet on the tablet market. e.g. The iPad cant run Apple OS-X applications.

Once the Pro ones come out, likely I will eBay my RT one and upgrade...

bilbob  Oct. 17, 2012 at 12:35

It's a bit steep, but to be fair, this isn't meant to be the baseline price for the surface RT devices, it's clearly a premium device, the build quality looks fantastic...
Still, it's a lot, especially when it seems we will be buying atom powered x86 win8 slates for similar cash...

blizzard7  Oct. 17, 2012 at 20:35

Ordered mine. They have already sold out of the 32GB one without the keyboard - it is on backorder for 3 weeks.

Intel models are expected to be circa $900 - but they are very powerful bits of kit and not really like anything else yet on the tablet market. e.g. The iPad cant run Apple OS-X applications.

Once the Pro ones come out, likely I will eBay my RT one and upgrade...


Fudge, I was waiting till payday till I ordered mine >.<

socialjeebus  Oct. 18, 2012 at 03:33

Ordered mine. They have already sold out of the 32GB one without the keyboard - it is on backorder for 3 weeks.

Intel models are expected to be circa $900 - but they are very powerful bits of kit and not really like anything else yet on the tablet market. e.g. The iPad cant run Apple OS-X applications.

Once the Pro ones come out, likely I will eBay my RT one and upgrade...


Fudge, I was waiting till payday till I ordered mine >.<


There is the Samsung Slate, but it has been marketed awfully.

Still I'll be getting a Pro from work so that's me sorted.

JanSt / MOD  Oct. 18, 2012 at 07:22

The Samsung Slate was/is overpriced. Add flaws like the usb-socket in the dock rather than the tab etc...

I still think this may become the next netbook.
It's pointless imho to compare the Surface toi the iPad, also. The iPad is all about fun and quick consumption in an easy fashion. It's meant to be a guilty pleasure.
Microsoft rehashing the umpc is a different story.
Not saying the Surface is bad. not saying it isn't gorgeous and in many ways 'superior' to the iPad or Android tabs. But I think the pitch as a full proper PC may eventually backfire. And many consumers will realise a tab/pad is better fun and a real PC/laptop better for work...
Just thinking. That doesn't mean that individuals won't make the best of it. Also, no secret here: I wouldn't touch Win8 with a bargepole, so I'm entirely biased.

socialjeebus  Oct. 18, 2012 at 07:37

The Slate is way overpriced I definitely agree there (though not with my employee's discount courtesy of my brother-in-law!).

Me too I'm no big fan of Windows 8 but I think that many companies will be interested in the Surface Pro (my company makes us use our Galaxy Tabs rather than print documents and provides a very basic HP laptop - so they could effectively kill two birds with one stone).

JanSt / MOD  Oct. 18, 2012 at 08:51

The Slate is way overpriced I definitely agree there (though not with my employee's discount courtesy of my brother-in-law!).

Me too I'm no big fan of Windows 8 but I think that many companies will be interested in the Surface Pro (my company makes us use our Galaxy Tabs rather than print documents and provides a very basic HP laptop - so they could effectively kill two birds with one stone).

Yes, true - the Pro will be of interest to companies. Same as winmo or BB used to be.

Stelph  Oct. 18, 2012 at 13:45

The Slate is way overpriced I definitely agree there (though not with my employee's discount courtesy of my brother-in-law!).

Me too I'm no big fan of Windows 8 but I think that many companies will be interested in the Surface Pro (my company makes us use our Galaxy Tabs rather than print documents and provides a very basic HP laptop - so they could effectively kill two birds with one stone).

Yes, true - the Pro will be of interest to companies. Same as winmo or BB used to be.


Will it tho? The previous Windows Tablet had very poor sales I believe

JanSt / MOD  Oct. 18, 2012 at 14:07

stelph, I was just saying that to sound more objective...
But in fairness, the 1st gen Win tablets were short of unusable.

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