Microsoft's new Surface ad shows it's for consumers, too

Microsoft's new Surface ad shows it's for consumers, too

Summary: Can Microsoft's Surface compete in an already crowded tablet market?

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With all of the hype around the iPad mini, it's easy to forget that Microsoft has its Surface tablet coming to market. The company has yet to confirm price, but if you're willing to place your bets on Microsoft, the company will officially start selling the first of two Surface tablets on October 26.

surface

I say the first of two because Microsoft will offer both an ARM-based Surface RT device (on sale October 26), and then an Intel-based Surface Pro device approximately three months later. Mary Jo Foley discovered this link which details the specs, and even makes mention that the Windows RT Surface, which is targeted at everyone, comes with Office Home and Student 2013 RT.

Mary Jo Foley has been tracking the Surface for sometime and yesterday reported that there will be many pop-up stores in time for the holidays.

It's clear that Microsoft is betting big on the Surface and is definitely looking at ways of differentiating it from the iPad and Android-based tablets. As you can see from the video below, Microsoft is not really showing off too many features, other than the ability to "Click in" a keyboard. That said, with it sporting the latest version of Office, it's going to be a great differentiator if the marketing is done right. Imagine having a tablet that you can just "Click in" a keyboard and it's a fully functioning PC? Many companies have tried to offer that solution, but having Microsoft itself offer it could be just the differentiator needed to see the Surface as a replacement to the PC, and not an "in addition to", like the iPad and other tablet devices that are currently in the market.

I'm excited to see what others with hands-on time say about the Surface. Also, it will be interesting to see if Microsoft can price it right. As Larry Dignan pointed out, the Surface is Microsoft's "biggest and best hedge against a declining PC market". He couldn't be more right, with many people now looking to see if they can just use a tablet device instead of buying a new PC.

The first Surface Ad is below:

Topics: Microsoft, iPad, Mobile OS, Mobility

Joel Evans

About Joel Evans

With more than 15 years of mobile, Internet and wireless experience, Joel specializes in taking existing brands and technologies into the mobile and wireless space. Joel is currently the VP of Strategy Integration for Mobiquity, an enterprise-class mobile solutions provider.

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9 comments
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  • Impressive

    That was a very impressive ad. It should certainly get people to take a look at Surface.

    Much better than Apple's idiotic ads that imply their users are dummies. Steve Jobs would have boiled that ad genius in silicon. Hopefully it's not indicative of any downward slide at Apple.
    harvey_rabbit
  • Impressive

    That was a very impressive ad. It should certainly get people to take a look at Surface.

    Much better than Apple's idiotic ads that imply their users are dummies. Steve Jobs would have boiled that ad genius in silicon. Hopefully it's not indicative of any downward slide at Apple.
    harvey_rabbit
  • Completely magical

    This ad "just works" lol. Take that Apple. iPad looks like a joke now.
    charlesdjones1
    • absolutely magic

      thanks to fairy dust, we expect Surface ReTards tablets will be flying off the shelves...
      theo_durcan
  • Microsoft's new Surface ad shows it's for consumers, too

    Of course its for consumers too and there was no reason to think it wouldn't be. Consumers would be the first ones to buy the Microsoft Surface. Analysts are already predicting millions to be sold. This ad helps in that its catchy and fun to play with. You can't go wrong with the Microsoft Surface.
    Loverock Davidson-
  • I don't like it

    I like the parts where lots of people have them. That works as a way to sell it as a volume item, much like how Apple shows the iPod shuffle/nano.

    However, most of the video is spent literally with dancers clicking the keyboard on.... Is this just a reflection at the iPad's lack of a proper keyboard?

    I'd rather see the old video. Sometimes Microsoft has better style in their pre-release videos. For instance, the music in the Windows 8 Consumer Preview video is better than in the Release Preview vid, and the content is far better. The Release Preview video looks more like it's trying to sell PC form factors, not the software. And some of the most emotional videos were brought out for Windows Live Wave 2. Anybody have any links to those old videos?
    Joe_Raby
  • Smart marketing

    Microsoft is smart to market this to students. They've got eyes that are good enough to still work effectively on a 10" screen, fingers small enough to type on the keyboard and are among the few ordinary consumers who really need a full Office Suite. I could see Surface being popular with that crowd. I know that back when I was an undergrad would have loved something like that. I wrote my papers on a Compaq LTE notebook computer and felt like the coolest kid in town back then.
    dsf3g
    • Not sure how many college students are going to watch this

      And think, "Oooh, I want to jump around campus snapping my tablet."

      Also, looking at this ad objectively we see Microsoft pushing the keyboard and kickstand exclusively. Not a thing about using Windows 8 on the Surface. Odd that they're spotlighting hardware features as opposed to the OS, ostensibly the far more important product.
      matthew_maurice
      • That's the hardware thing...

        They haven't launched windows yet... I've read how Steve is dangling his surface from the keyboard, which in fairness he's holding between just two fingers ( think dead rat ) ... The little green wheels are held in place using the same technology that's been powering Apple Macs for decades.

        Shame there's no GPS radio, not even in the Pro.
        Badboyabout