Microsoft is planning to release affordable Surface tablets with Windows 10

Microsoft похоронит Apple бюджетными планшетами Surface

The good news is that Microsoft is finally planning to launch low-priced Windows 10 tablets under the Surface brand. The move is aimed at taking market share from Apple's iPad, which dominates the lower-cost tablet market.

The tablets will reportedly sell at a starting point of about $400 and have 10-inch screens and USB connections as well as several options for upgrades.

What's interesting here is the report claims these tablets will ship with Intel processors, and not an ARM chip as so many assumed Microsoft would opt for in a new non-pro Surface device. After the tablets didn't resonate with consumers and product reviewers, Microsoft pivoted to the more-expensive Surface Pro, a line which has gained steam and likely contributed to demand for a pro-oriented iPad, which Apple launched in 2015. Last year Apple sold nearly $20 billion in iPads, whereas Microsoft's professional Surface line sold just $4.4 billion.

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One of my contacts said that Microsoft is planning to announce at least one new low-end Surface device in July 2018. Microsoft is also working on cheaper Surface Pen, keyboard cover, and mouse.

In March, Apple launched a new iPad model for $329 geared toward education users. It appears that the Microsoft's Surface-branded tablet will compete with this model. Microsoft, which hasn't finalized its plans, is expected to price the cheapest versions of the new device at about $400. As always, there will also be 64GB or 128GB variants, along with an LTE model for cellular connectivity too. It will be powered by Windows 10 Pro probably with an S mode which locks you to Microsoft Store apps.

Moreover, the new tablets will keep the familiar kickstand first seen on the Surface RT, though these new 10-inch Surface tablets should be 20 percent lighter than the standard Surface Pro. Microsoft officials have maintained the raison-d'etre for Surface is to establish new, untapped computing categories, not simply to make hardware for the sake of making hardware.

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