Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Cheaper, lighter Microsoft Surface tablets may be coming this year

Many would consider the Android tablet market to be all but dead and Apple to be the king of tablets. However, Apple used to be able to boast about capturing over 60% of the global shipments for tablets back in 2011, but that number has gone down to around 30% by 2017. Still, even Google agrees that the Android tablet market isn't as healthy as it could be and they've been transitioning over to Chrome OS for their 2-in-1 devices. New information has come out that Microsoft plans to get serious about the low-cost tablet market and is scheduled to release a $400 device during the second half of this year.

While shipment totals aren't the best metric for analyzing the overall tablet market, it's one of the most accurate pieces of data that we can aggregate across companies. In reality, though, people don't upgrade their tablet as often as their smartphone, so it's difficult to figure out how many active devices each company has on the market. Tablets were very popular when they were first introduced but sales figures have shown that fewer people are buying them due to a number of reasons.

Microsoft has had their hand in the tablet market with the Surface line, but with a different approach. Companies like Apple and Amazon have opted to capture the low-end t0 mid-range segments of the market, while Microsoft went all in with the Surface line that could end up costing you over $3,100 depending on the configuration. These were more fully fledged PCs in a tablet format, and while there is a market for those devices, the market is much smaller than those who are just looking for something to watch a video or casually browse the internet on.

Bloomberg is reporting that Microsoft is planning to compete head-to-head with Apple in this lower-priced tablet market by the end of this year with a new Surface tablet. We're told Microsoft's new tablets are said to feature a 10-inch display, will have round edges like Apple's iPad, and will come with USB Type-C connectivity. Intel is slated to provide the main processor and graphics for these devices that are said to be running Windows 10 Pro.


Source: Bloomberg



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