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What does the new Microsoft Surface tablet cost?

Microsoft Surface Tablet

And that's the real question, isn't it? When it comes time to put up or shut up -- and Microsoft's not yet saying when or where you'll be able to buy one of the new Surface tablet laptop thingies -- just how much are you going to have to shell out? Here's the official line.

Suggested retail pricing will be announced closer to availability and is expected to be competitive with a comparable ARM tablet or Intel Ultrabook-class PC. OEMs will have cost and feature parity on Windows 8 and Windows RT.

Not exactly long on details, is it. But even if it's competitive with a comparable ARM tablet (of which there are a scant few, by the way) or an Intel Ultrabook, you're still going to be handing over several hundred dollars. What's more is that nobody's saying whether the Surface Touch Cover -- that's the official name for the keyboard cover -- will be optional, or if it'll come with the tablet. 

That's long been a complaint about tablets like the ASUS Transformer Prime. By the time you buy the tablet and optional keyboard, you're well within laptop costs. But we'll all keep our fingers crossed.

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Reader comments

What does the new Microsoft Surface tablet cost?

48 Comments

I already know that this will simply cost too much. Sad, and I hope I'm wrong but I bet it's high. I want/need something in the $400 range and I bet this is $599 starting price at least. Oh well, maybe there will eventually be a cheaper 7" version or something.

Well if the cheapest RT model costs $599, it will be priced just like the iPad with the same internal memory specs (32GB).

Yeah the casing sounds expensive.
I'd say $600 at a minimum.
Getting a little too close to laptop pricing.
Looks awesome though.
Now will office run on Arm?

My bets are on MS subsidizing a huge part of the cost for devices to reach a desired market penetration. Similar to Xbox initial strategy. Make money on accessories and software and services. I am soo ready for this... =D

I'm sorry to say it, but I'm going to have to bet against you on this idea.  For example, Apple has the highest margins in the hardware industry and can't build products fast enough.  They have showed that people will pay top dollar for quailty products. Also, MS has to price their products in line with their OEM partners.  It would make no short term or long term sense for Microsoft to de-value their product lines.

I want this as long as it's in a reasonable price range for me. Definitely getting rid of the Android tablet I bought for this thing. So beautiful.

How much was the HP web os pad? I mean it sure looked good but is was priced right? Once HP dropped the price / discontinued the flew off the shelves. Microsoft has to undercut Apple. It would be crazy to price the same when Apple has 100 apps for every 1 Microsoft has. Just look at the new Vizio styled Macs. I guarantee you they fly off the shelves. Microsoft better price them right or it'll suffer the same fate as the Zune player.

I assume there will be quite a range in price between the WinRT and not going with the optional touch cover to an Intel and going with the optional touch cover. I suspect the latter will cost more than an iPad that is for sure.

The problem for the RT version is that Apple will probably announce a cheap iPad nano (7") for the holiday season which will start at probably around $299. So the RT version without gimmicks like 3G shouldn't be more expensive than $399 or it will be the new kin for MS.

Microsoft hardware (Zune, keyboards, webcams, Xbox) has never been bargain priced at launch. Still cheaper than Apple but never "That's a steal!" prices.

But apple tablets are tried and tested. Hopefully they do well but I see there being battery issues from the outset.

"Surface comes with an integrated kickstand and a revolutionary, 3mm thin, pressure sensitive cover that doubles as a fully functioning keyboard and trackpad." per surface.com website. Looks interesting at best, have to wait on some of the reviews

I find this quite interesting. I emailed MS three months ago about a new feature idea that allows you to switch sessions between laptops, desktops, phones, and tablets.

They were quick with me and simply stated that you only need one computer.

Oh well.

Anyone find it funny how that "xbox surface" spec sheet was leaked or released and then they announce  a windows tablet built by microsoft and called surface?  Not to mention that they made sure to let people know that "surface" is a line of products?  it may mean nothing but i'm curious.

I'm not rich by either means ,I just know how to appreciate things and not complain all the time, you should try it.

"...But even if it's competitive with a comparable ARM tablet (of which there are a scant few, by the way)..."    All of the iPhones and iPads are using ARM chips manufactured by Samsung.

yes BUT! A5 was designed by apple and it's a unique type or ARM chip (nothing "special")  the production is more expensive than the rest of samsungs chips. 
I hope microsoft is making a GOOD deal with nvidia.... my heart tells me that they will be using tegra 3. Unlike google with android.... microsoft knows how to squize and optimize their resources (I say this after seeing what they did with WP7.5 and only ONE core).
I would pay $400 for the ARM version without thinking twice...  I would definitely think twice if the price is $500 :D and there's NO way I would pay more than that for the ARM basic version.

So getting one, even if it's an extra 100 than an iPad. Finally a tablet that can do it all with USB..........

OMG!, this is awesome, and the colors are sooo Nokia, hahaha, I like these tablets but i guess i'll wait for Nokia's tablet, it'll be beyond amazing!!!

RT windows will be $499 and $599 ("Comparable to other ARM tablets") and the Win Pro version will be $899 and $999 (as "comparable to ultrabooks").
 
If memory serves... the definition of an ultrabook was not necessarily the weight & size as defined by Intel, but components and a price point of 999. (Under $1000)

It will have laptop-pricing because it is a laptop - an ultra-thin, superportable laptop with touchscreen. You know how much my x201t was? If the pro thing is under 1000, it's a fair deal. It will probably be around 800, assuming ms will underprice to get the things of the shelf. But 499? For the ARM hopefully but not quite certainly - it is more than the iPad, and that costs again...? For the pro version that's unrealistic. That's like demanding a BMW to be priced like a Daihatsu. No way.