Why Microsoft’s Surface tablet is doomed

“Given that there’s recently been a lot of publicity about the Microsoft Surface, I’m certain that some of my readers may be considering purchasing one or more for their business computing needs,” Geoffrey James writes for Inc. “If so, you’re making a huge mistake. Because the Surface is based upon Windows, it is, and will remain, inherently unstable and insecure. That’s because Windows itself is a security and stability nightmare.”

“Microsoft’s track record in handhelds, phones and tablets is so horrible that, in my humble opinion, it would be nuts to bet your business upon the chance that Microsoft “might get it right” this time,” James writes. “Consider: Microsoft’s failures in this market include Windows CE (1996), Windows Tablets (since 2001) the Zune (2006), not to mention the Kin (2010), a device that despite massive advertising reportedly sold only 500 units.”

James writes, “It’s a truism in software design that adding complexity to an unstable program always increases its instability. Because of this, it is inevitable that the Surface environment will experience even more security and stability problems than previous versions of Windows… What’s the alternative? Not to put to fine a point on it, the answer is: ‘anything other than the Surface.’ I’m serious thinking of ‘taking the leap’ to only using my iPad simply to avoid the support headaches that are inevitable with Windows.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Nicholas C.” for the heads up.]

Related articles:
App developers shun Microsoft’s Surface tablet – December 4, 2012
Microsoft Surface Pro to offer only half the battery life of Apple’s latest iPad with Retina display – November 30, 2012
Microsoft’s Surface Pro iPad killer to start at $899 – November 29, 2012
Microsoft’s Surface tablet flops, orders reportedly cut in half – November 29, 2012
TechCrunch’s Siegler reviews Microsoft Surface RT: ‘It’s time for a drop test – right into the garbage can’ – November 19, 2012
Slate reviews Microsoft’s Surface tablet: Too slow, mercilessly buggy; why is it so bad? – November 6, 2012
InfoWorld reviews Microsoft Surface RT: A disappointment; you’re better off with Apple’s iPad – October 31, 2012
Gizmodo reviews Microsoft Surface RT: Do not buy; inferior to Apple’s iPad; the worst of both worlds – October 25, 2012
The Verge reviews Microsoft Surface RT tablet: ‘The whole thing is honestly perplexing; who is this for?’ – October 24, 2012
ZDNet’s Kingsley-Hughes: Microsoft’s Windows 8 is an awful, horrible, painful design disaster – June 8, 2012
Analyst meets with big computer maker, finds ‘general lack of enthusiasm’ for Windows 8 – June 8, 2012
Dvorak: Windows 8 an unmitigated disaster; unusable and annoying; it makes your teeth itch – June 3, 2012
The Guardian: Microsoft’s Windows 8 is confusing as hell; an appalling user experience – March 5, 2012
More good news for Apple: Microsoft previews Windows 8 (with video) – June 1, 2011


  1. Microsoft Surface is doomed because the other day at our local mall, where Microsoft and Apple stores coexist, there were literally 3 people in the Microsoft store while it was a full house at the Apple store…

  2. But I need a full version of Microsoft Office, the ability to save the files locally, and upload them to my school’s website all from a simple device. Surface is the only thing out there that has all that, other than a laptop or desktop.

    1. “…I need a full version of Microsoft Office, the ability to save the files locally, and upload them to my school’s website all from a simple device. Surface is the only thing out there that has all that…”

      Apart from the fact it is not a simple device.

      1. I’ve had mine for nearly a month now and it is a simple device. Ever hear of Windows 8 Metro genius? My iPad has now be relegated to my car as a permanent GPS because the Surface-RT is everything the iPad should have been.

    2. The only thing from your list that the Surface has is Office (and the Surface RT does not even have the full Office).

      Think a moment what you actually NEED to do. I doubt it is running and slaving to Office. What you NEED to do (based on the fact you’re working at a school) is write texts and make presentations. There are plenty of alternatives to Office.

      Now, it is possible that your masters and IT departments have implemented a solution that is based around Microsoft products, and it is that which forces you to be enslaved to Office. Take the fight to your masters and IT department for their foolishness.

    3. What is the advantage of Surface over a similarly priced or cheaper ultrabook? Based on the specs when announced, Surface was not significantly thinner or lighter than ultrabooks, and apparently has a similar battery life and processor power.

      Not a trolling question, just wondering.

    4. @ Steven, you forgot to add that you also need all those ports and expandability options, not to mention being able to open it up and upgrade the hardware, Oh, there’s also the anti-virus stuff you have to install, and run your disk optimization program every week and reinstall the OS once a month.

      With all that in mind, how about simply buying an El Cheapo W8 laptop. What advantages does the Scarface bring to the game?

  3. I think MS is going to have a hard time at it. I was at the Verizon store yesterday and looked at all of the tablets while I was waiting. My take: If Android manufacturers can keep pumping these tablets out at these prices, and economically sustainable for them, they will take the mainstream market. They are cheap enough that you can carry around and not worry if they get beat-up, especially parents.
    But then again, the last generation mini models will be priced more competitively come October . We’ll see when the mini 2 is unveiled next year.

  4. There are hoards of affordable Windows Laptops all running Win 7 and priced at $300. Buy that and an iPad mini and your Christmas money will have been well-spent. You’re happy, your teachers are happy, and Santa’s happy because all that loot weighs but a trifle.

  5. Although I agree that the Surface is going to be the next Zune, Geoffrey James reasons are not why it will. He has made himself look stupid. Legacy malware will not be the problem. The Win 8 modern (metro) apps are only sold through the MS store; like iOS through iTunes. They are vetted; MS copying Apple again. RT only has modern apps. The Surface pro may have this problem; however 7 did address a lot of legacy problems. The MS fanboys will have to STFU about how open MS is. The Mac is now more open; you can write an app for ML and not have to sell it through the Mac App Store. Win8 apps have to use the old Win7 format to be side loaded. James needs to do some research.

  6. “…not to mention the Kin (2010), a device that despite massive advertising reportedly sold only 500 units.”

    That should be changed to “(possibly because of) massive(ly) creepy advertising…”

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