Microsoft cuts price on Surface RT to $349

surfacertMicrosoft is looking to jumpstart sales of the Surface RT, dropping the price on the 32GB tablet from $499 to $349. The 64GB device also is getting a price cut, dropping to $449.

The price cuts were spotted by Computerworld, which noted that the new prices were being offered through the Microsoft store as well as on Best Buy and Staples and may be an effort to clear inventory in advance of a new slate of Windows RT devices.

Microsoft also recently inked a deal to provide 10,000 teachers with Surface RT devices as part of its Windows in the Classroom Surface Experience Project.

Free might be the best price for the device, according to Microsoft watcher Paul Thurrott, who writes that the device is a “piece of junk.” He notes:

Folks, put away your credit cards: Surface RT isn’t a good deal at any price.

The issue here is simple. Windows RT is the first-generation version of a new kind of Windows that is completely incompatible with the Windows desktop applications you actually use and much of the hardware peripherals you already own. And Surface RT, based as it is on current generation ARM hardware that was designed for smart phones and media tablets, is simply too underpowered to provide a satisfactory experience.

Previously on GeekWire: Microsoft stacks up Surface vs. iPad with mixed results

  • http://www.windowsobserver.com/ Richard Hay

    Well I disagree with Paul as I think it is a great companion device and if you understand its limitations then you will not be confused on what you are getting.

    • Guest

      However, the masses seem to agree more with Paul than you. Otherwise it’d be flying off the shelves. And if it doesn’t even sell at the new price point, then Paul is probably spot on with his assessment that “Surface RT isn’t a good deal at any price”.

      • Stupid Troll

        Most of the masses have never even tried it, tool.

        • Guest

          Thank you for your comment, Stupid Troll. Ever wondered why the iPad didn’t have that problem?

          • Stupid Troll

            Um, because it was the first modern tablet, tool? And wasn’t coming to market three years late against two entrenched competitors, and initially offered in limited distribution only and at higher prices to appease OEMs?

          • Guest

            And how do you explain away Nexus 7′s success?

  • Guest

    Apparently Paul has done a complete 180 from when he noted SurfaceRT’s beneficial features, including high build quality, in a multi-part review originally:

    http://winsupersite.com/windows-rt/why-surface-rt-part-1-multiple-users

    His first criticism (above) is actually no different than an iPad or Android tablet. So it’s unclear why he even mentions it, though it sort of indicates the bias he’s coming from. The second one is subjective. My own use of SurfaceRT is that performance is good to adequate depending on what you’re doing, though obviously we’d all like faster. It’s perhaps also worth noting that reviews on Amazon from real users, not tech pundits, are extremely favorable. So “piece of junk”? Hardly. But that makes for great clickbait on the Supersite and when it gets picked up on sites like GW. Best choice at that price vs alternatives? That really depends on how badly you want or need Office.

    • Guest

      “Extremely favorable”, yet MS still had to reduce the price to $349. Denial much?

      • Guest

        Reviews on Amazon are from those who already bought at the original price. Overall popularity of the device is a separate matter. Logic much?

        • Guest

          Oh I agree that a tiny fraction of people think this is the best tablet since sliced bread. It clearly doesn’t matter though.

          • Guest

            It clearly matters in the context I used it in, which was to refute Paul’s “piece of junk” conclusion (along with supplying a link to his earlier feelings which directly contradict his new statements). Unless of course you’re still having a problem with logic and think the opinion of several hundred users is worth less than that of one? And favorable reviews by early adopters is an important factor in new product launches. It’s just not sufficient to guarantee success, but then nobody said it was.

  • Guest

    Very nice. Surface RT represents an important stepping stone from limited-function ‘blets (LFTs) such as iPad and Android to full-function ‘blets (FFTs) such as Surface Pro. The LFT market has plateaued as customers have run into the limitations of such devices: running one app at a time, poor integration with third-party devices they already own, and so forth. Although FFTs’ price points are often rather onerous, more in line with ‘ptop prices, we believe that as customers become acclimated to mid-function ‘blets (MFTs), they will demand more of their LFTs and, should LFT vendors such as Apple and Asus not provide these advanced features, MFT and FFT vendors stand to benefit.

    We like this strategy.

    This post does not represent the position of any company or government.

    • Guest

      You clearly have never used a ‘droid ‘blet or else you would see how full ‘nction they can actually be. I run over 90% of the tasks I can do on my l’top and for the remaining 10 ‘cent I prefer a solid d’top over an l’top. ’cause shitty k’boards aren’t great for p’gramming anyway.

      Doesn’t matter if you like the strategy or I don’t, the key is that hardly anybody seems to like it enough to buy those devices.

      • Guest

        If you’re so happy with your driod tablet, why are you here crapping all over MS’s entry?

        • Guest

          Not happy, just keeping it real, that’s all.

          • Guest

            Trolling isn’t “keeping it real”, not matter how desperately you try to convince yourself otherwise.

          • Guest

            This is a COMMENT section, where people can leave comments. Some positive, some negative. There is NO rule that all comments need to worship MSFT or any other company for that matter. You don’t like my opinion, tough cookies. Not everyone loves MS products, that’s not trolling. If anything, that’s an understatement.

      • Guest

        Although you might be satisfied with a Gooblet today, imagine you have 382.155 U.S. dollars in your account and you’re in the market for a ‘blet. Would you buy a Goblet or a WinRT MFT?

        Considering all the features a WinRT MFT gives you over a Gblet LFT, we would recommend spending your $ on an MFT. For the time being, we will allow you to keep your Glet.

        Just because you own a Glt, though, doesn’t make it the ideal solution for your 90% cmpting needs. An MFT, by definition, can do more than the LFT you bought when a comparable MFT was more $. Of course, a FFT would be even better, but currently it’s a lot of $.

        This post does not represent the opinion of any corporation, government, or non-governmental organization.

        • Guest

          I’ll make it simple: 90% cmp’ting needs = $199!

          • Guest

            Good news! Surface RT is available to educational institutions for $199. As your instructor, I can get one for you for that price. Just lemme kno’!

          • Guest

            I’ll bet you I have more advanced education than you will ever have Mr. instructor. Your ridicule speaks volumes and just indicates that you know you’ve lost the argument. Fact is that for $199 I can get a Nexus 7 with an outstanding mobile experience for most casual computing tasks. There just isn’t anything out there in the MS space that comes even close.

          • Guest

            No one is questioning your past decision to purchase Nexus 7. My point is that today, for the same money as that LFT costs, one can purchase a Windows RT MFT. Given the choice between an LFT and an MFT for the same $, I’d choose the T with M.F.s.

            This is not about winning or losing; I do not consider you my opponent. I only desire that the men and women of compuland shall purchase the devices that best meet their needs and wealth.

  • http://www.intrinsicstrategy.com/ FrankCatalano

    Side note: That offer of 10,000 free Surface tablets to teachers attending the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) conference in June was followed by a price cut for educational institutions, with Surface tablets starting at $199. Definitely a trend here.

  • Robert Wampler

    what if you just want to use office that’s on it and stuff like media and email and Netflix? these does have some great things they can do for what they are. It can do more than an ipad just still not a lot of apps yet but catching up at a good speed. I my self have a surface pro and I love it. Do a lot of photoshop and Civ 5 on it.

  • ms_sux

    Just another in a long line of shitty products (vista, win 8, any browser…). I wish they would re-org themselves out of business.