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Microsoft Surface Estimated to Have Sold Only 1.7 Million Units Since Launch

Microsoft filed its annual Form 10-K with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) today, revealing that the Microsoft Surface lineup has garnered only $853 million in revenue for the company, which is less than the recent $900 million writedown the company took for the Surface RT.

And as GeekWire notes, it's also less than the "$898 million increase in advertising costs associated primarily with Windows 8 and Surface.” The numbers account for all Surfaces sold from the device's original fall launch until the end of Microsoft's fiscal year on June 30.

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While Microsoft did not reveal how many Surface units it sold, GeekWire does estimate that it sold approximately 1.7 million units by the end of June, which roughly corroborates a Bloomberg report in March claiming that Microsoft had sold 1.5 million Surface devices.

As The Loop's Jim Dalrymple points out, Microsoft has sold 1.7 million Surface units in 8 months, which is a far cry from the 3 million iPads Apple sold in 3 days last November, the 14.6 million iPads it sold last quarter and the 57 million iPads Apple sold since the Surface launched.

Late last week, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer told employees at an internal Microsoft town hall meeting that the company had "built more devices than [Microsoft] could sell" in reference to slowing Surface sales. Recently, Microsoft has been trying to sell more devices by aggressively marketing the Surface RT as an iPad competitor with negative ads and was forced to drop the price of its Surface RT prices by $150.

Despite the slow sales of the Surface tablets, Microsoft is said to be pushing forward with plans for a second generation tablet.

Top Rated Comments

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17 months ago
That's what happens when you release a s*** product.
Rating: 75 Votes
17 months ago
Siri: 14.6 Million in Q3 of 2013.

Surface: I'm sorry I can't do that.
Rating: 72 Votes
17 months ago

That's what happens when you release a s*** product.


Except it really isn't a #$%& product.
Rating: 39 Votes
17 months ago
That's 1.7 million more than I expected. So I guess I'm reading this as good news for Microsoft!
Rating: 35 Votes
17 months ago

That's what happens when you release a s*** product.


Microsoft Surface is actually a pretty good product ... better than Android or even iOS in some respects.

I think the failure has more to do with marketing - the confusion between RT and Pro. Also, forcing consumers to use Windows 8 on the desktop did help to engender good will. Lack of developer support didn't help. Partnering with Nokia (a dying phone company) to produce a line of bum phones didn't help Microsoft's image either.
Rating: 32 Votes
17 months ago
Steve nailed it again:

"When sales guys run the company, the product guys don't matter so much, and a lot of them turn off. It happened at Apple ... and happened when Ballmer took over Microsoft ... I don't think anything will change at Microsoft as long as Ballmer is running it."
Rating: 20 Votes
17 months ago

Except it really isn't a #$%& product.


Given the available alternatives and my evaluation of about 7 different Windows tablets: Yes it is. And the market agrees.
Rating: 19 Votes
17 months ago


Not that I'm complaining. As long as Ballmer is CEO, that's one less competitor for Apple.


...which isn't really good for anybody except Apple's staff and shareholders. Competition is what makes companies give it their best, not monopolies.
Rating: 19 Votes
17 months ago
People are saying the Surface is a good product, but it's still Windows!

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The problem though is that Microsoft was late to the party with tablets - and with a low marketshare as a result of this they won't have many developers making apps for them. With no apps, few will buy the tablet. With few buying it, it will have a low marketshare... and so the paradox continues.


It wasn't just being late to the tablet market... Apple had groomed consumers with the iPod for years before the iPhone, and then along comes the iPad and it was a natural extension and expectation. Microsoft never had that luxury/smarts.
Rating: 18 Votes
17 months ago
Here is the problem.

IT IS WINDOWS.

Every single person I know has at least one major horror story using a windows computer. Why would they ever want to spend that much on a tablet version of it?

The reputation to windows with consumers is.. well a crappy experience.

Does not matter how many BILLIONS of dollars is spent by microsoft, that reputation of Windows is forever it's legacy.

That is why I and many others, will never go back. :apple:

FYI, I still have to use windows on a daily basis, and it is has not gotten better since I switched :rolleyes:
Rating: 16 Votes

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