Microsoft undercuts Apple in education, selling Surface RT for $199

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2014
Attempting to carve out a niche for its low-selling Surface RT, Microsoft took a step into Apple's territory this week, offering the device to schools and universities for as low as $199.

surface


From June 24 to August 31, Microsoft will offer K-12 schools and universities the opportunity to purchase 32GB Surface RT tablets starting at $199. That price is lower even than some versions of Microsoft's bestselling productivity suite, Office. Adding a Touch Keyboard Cover to the package will bring the price to $249, and adding the more capable Type Keyboard Cover will bring the price to $289.

Microsoft initially revealed the discount on Monday, when the story was picked up by ZDNet. The company has since taken down the original information, though it confirms that the deal is valid.

The offer is available in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China (via Digital China), Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States.

At $199, Microsoft has knocked off more than half the cost of the Surface RT, which usually retails for $499. The Redmond giant may be looking to clear inventory ahead of a refreshed version of the device, which is thought to have sold fewer than one million units in the ten months since its release.

That price point also dramatically undercuts Apple's educational pricing for its iPad, which it offers for $399. Microsoft will also be giving away 10,000 Surface RT units to teachers attending the International Society for Technology Education convention in San Antonio this month.

The Surface devices were meant to be the spearpoint of Microsoft's push back against the success of Apple's iPad. The tablets came in two flavors, one running Windows RT ? a version built for low-power ARM chips ? and the other running the full Windows 8.

Microsoft billed the Surface tablets as "reference designs" meant to show its manufacturing partners the capabilities inherent in its hybrid operating system that blends traditional computing with the touch interface popularized by Apple's iOS devices. The new Windows builds have had a tough initial outing, though, with Windows 8 sales sputtering and Windows RT sales virtually nonexistent.
«1345

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 94
    drblankdrblank Posts: 3,385member
    Giving away 10,000 units? They are that desperate for market share? Pretty bad. If I were a teacher, I'd sell the damn thing.
  • Reply 2 of 94
    dreyfus2dreyfus2 Posts: 1,072member
    So, for $249 you will still get a device for which there is no software, and nobody is really working on any. They could as well buy a PlayBook, I am sure BB would agree to $99.
  • Reply 3 of 94
    timmydaxtimmydax Posts: 284member
    "Selling so well, we're giving them away"

    The same can be said of those crippled "chromebooks". Of course, this shouldn't be misconstrued as bribery. That would be wrong.
  • Reply 4 of 94
    chandra69chandra69 Posts: 638member


    After this Microsoft claims... they gained market share 

  • Reply 5 of 94
    bdkennedy1bdkennedy1 Posts: 1,459member
    Getting one of these in school is like getting a marked up 20 year old math book. Kids are going to stomp on this thing.
  • Reply 6 of 94
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,729member


    I'd be very curious to hear the rational behind an educational bulk purchase of the RT. I am not saying there isn't one, just that from where I am sitting, I can't see it. I mean, you can always argue that due to the price of course literature it is better to buy empty notepads (same amount of paper, same size, same number of pages), but I am pretty sure that the argument wont hold up to scrutiny.

  • Reply 7 of 94
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 20,405member


    I pity the poor school administrator/IT person who's a sucker for this.


     


    I can see seriously cash-strapped schools falling for this sad ruse....

  • Reply 8 of 94
    island hermitisland hermit Posts: 6,217member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post


    I pity the poor school administrator/IT person who's a sucker for this.


     


    I can see seriously cash-strapped schools falling for this sad ruse....





    Yes... but won't it be funny when Microsoft has to announce that sales "still" didn't pick up after this promotion.

  • Reply 9 of 94
    saareksaarek Posts: 1,530member
    Well, they'll probably lose money on each one. They're literally trying to buy their way into the market.
  • Reply 10 of 94


    MS taking a page from the HP Touchpad playbook: get rid of the dang things.  Except MS didn't get the new pricing quite right, like HP did.

  • Reply 11 of 94
    island hermitisland hermit Posts: 6,217member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TeaEarleGreyHot View Post


    MS taking a page from the HP Touchpad playbook: get rid of the dang things.  Except MS didn't get the new pricing quite right, like HP did.





    I just want those clicking and snapping ads to stop.


     


    [ in reference to the really bad HP ads that finally stopped when the HP tablet tanked ]

  • Reply 12 of 94
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,951member
    I just want those clicking and snapping ads to stop.

    I thought it was hilarious that they used a bunch of dancing and juggling to try telling us it's a serious product.
  • Reply 13 of 94
    jkichlinejkichline Posts: 1,369member
    Firesale anyone?
  • Reply 14 of 94
    umrk_labumrk_lab Posts: 550member
    So, MSFT has once again managed to find captive users , to whom nobody asks for their opinion ..
  • Reply 15 of 94
    bigdaddypbigdaddyp Posts: 811member
    Why would you buy these for a school? Serious question. Is there any any class room appropriate software? Are text books available on them? I haven't heard of any big software releases for the things. So $200 for a calendar/datebook, that can browse the web? Even at that price I can't see why schools would do a large order of them.
  • Reply 16 of 94
    tbelltbell Posts: 3,146member
    jkichline wrote: »
    Firesale anyone?

    Exactly. I would take one if it was given to me. I would use it to surf the web, email, Netflix, and to use Word.

    That said, schools would be foolish to buy them. RT is dead. The concept was nice, but Microsoft messed up the marketing by referring to it as Windows when it did not run Windows apps.
  • Reply 17 of 94
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,745member
    Don't educational institutions have standards that have to be met for tech equipment used by minors? Using such devices would surely be detrimental to childrens education. :no:
  • Reply 18 of 94


    MS just doesn't get it. It needs to be "best in class" to have any chance of success. And MS does not have any track record for any "best in class" products or SW. Not OS, productivity SW, Mobile SW, phones and now tablets. They just make crap! Ugh!

  • Reply 19 of 94
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,745member
    I don't know because I don't read much about MS technology but I sure hope these things are highly recyclable. I'd hate to think of the environmental impact of them all in landfills.
  • Reply 20 of 94
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,745member
    bigdaddyp wrote: »
    Why would you buy these for a school? Serious question. Is there any any class room appropriate software? Are text books available on them? I haven't heard of any big software releases for the things. So $200 for a calendar/datebook, that can browse the web? Even at that price I can't see why schools would do a large order of them.

    I guess MS still hang on to the idea that the software designed by Steve Jobs for the first Mac, you know,'"Office" that Steve hired Microsoft to create for the Mac but then brought out on their own Mac OS rip off AKA Windows, is still their gravy train for another thirty years and don't know how to come up with anything else on their own.
Sign In or Register to comment.