Earlier this month, I wrote an opinion piece that put forward a number of reasons why Microsoft’s new Surface tablet may have a surprising impact on the iPad. That was based on the assumption that the Surface would be priced competitively — like Microsoft said it would be.
But according to one European retailer, the entry-level slate running Windows RT — not full Windows 8 — will be priced from 6990 kr (Swedish Krona), which is approximately $1,013. If this is correct, Microsoft is wasting its time on releasing the Surface, and Apple needn’t worry about it stealing any of the iPad’s market share.
As I’ve said before, the Surface looks great, and it has some huge advantages over other tablets — including the iPad. The Pro version, for example, can run desktop Windows apps, which means it’ll launch with access to the world’s largest software catalog, and is quite capable of replacing a notebook computer.
But that doesn’t mean it can get away with a massive price tag. It still needs to compete with the iPad — which currently holds more than half of the market share — and tablets like the Nexus 7 and the Kindle Fire have proven that the only way to do that is to be priced competitively.
According to Swedish retailer Webhallen, the Surface won’t be. Webhallen has the 32GB Windows RT model, which features an ARM-based processor, priced at 6990 kr (approx. $1,013). The 64GB version with the same ARM-based processor is priced at 9990 kr (approx. $1,448).
But of course, everyone’s going to want the Pro version, which features an Intel processor capable of running full, desktop-version Windows 8 apps. Prices for this model start at 12,990 kr (approx. $1,882) for 64GB of storage, according to Webhallen, and rise to 14,990 kr (approx. $2,172) for 128GB of storage.
That means that even the basic Surface tablet, which no one really wants, is going to cost you around $514 more than a new iPad, or $614 more than an iPad 2.
Let’s hope, for Microsoft’s sake, that Webhallen has those prices completely wrong. Because if they’re accurate, the Surface has no chance.