Microsoft will release the first version of its Surface tablet computer Oct. 26, simultaneous with the general availability of Windows 8, the company says.

The statement, included in Microsoft’s annual Form 10K, reiterates what the company said at the Surface unveiling, but the confirmation is notable in part because of reports that the company was having a hard time securing enough magnesium to produce the device in large quantities.

“The next version of our operating system, Windows 8, will be generally available on October 26, 2012,” Microsoft says in the regulatory filing. “At that time, we will begin selling the Surface, a series of Microsoft-designed and manufactured hardware devices.”

The first release of the Surface will be a tablet running an ARM processor and Windows RT, the version of Windows 8 for ARM processors. The company has said previously that a second version of Surface will be available about three months later, running Windows 8 Pro on an Intel processor.

The last big unanswered question is price. Reports of a starting price of $1,000 have been debunked. Microsoft has said only that the price of the Surface is “expected to be competitive with a comparable ARM tablet or Intel Ultrabook-class PC.”

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  • Kevin Foreman

    We live in very interesting times…..

    I’m looking forward to exploring the app store, much like I do with every new phone.

  • guest

    Would be nice to know what they plan to charge for it, and where you’ll be able to buy one.

    • Todd Bishop

      Pricing hasn’t been announced, but they have said that it will be available in Microsoft’s own retail and online stores.

  • Guest

    Sweet! This is going just as well as we had hoped. Most Intel Ultrabooks I’ve seen have been at the $700-1000 price points. This would be a good place for Surface to come in, given all the features it offers that blend the best of Ultrabooks and limited-feature tablets.

    I can’t wait for October! This year’s Pagan Christmas shopping season just got a lot scarier — for the competition.

    • mikeschr

      Except that the Surface RT that’s releasing in October doesn’t run desktop Windows or legacy programs, only the Metro part. Ultrabooks run regular desktop Windows. Apples and oranges.

      • Guest

        Ah, my mistake. A Surface RT would be an even better deal, in that case. It’s going to be a bountiful quarter for Microsoft.

  • Dale Goff

    Great to see this article and have confirmation of the Win8 availability.
    Saw the photo used and it is the same shot that Sela Software is using for their Microsoft Surface Tablet give-away:

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