Microsoft massively discounts anemic-selling Surface RT tablets to schools worldwide

“Microsoft [yesterday] announced a new program that will see schools around the world able to purchase the company’s Surface RT tablet hybrid in bulk at a reduced per-unit rate,” Alex Wilhelm reports for TNW.

“Only the 32 gigabyte, Windows RT-based model is part of the program,” Wilhelm reports. “Here are the prices schools will be offered: Surface RT (32GB) – $199 USD (Estimated Retail Price is $499); Surface RT (32GB) with Touch Keyboard Cover – $249 USD (Estimated Retail Price is $599); Surface RT (32GB) with Type Keyboard Cover – $289 USD (Estimated Retail Price is $629).”

MacDailyNews Take: Garbage with a Kickstand! Now up to 60% off! While supplies last! Click!!!

Wilhelm reports, “This, as you surely have noticed, is not the first time that Microsoft has in recent months enacted a steep price decline on its Surface line of devices. At TechEd North America, and Europe, the company sold heavily discounted first generation Surface hardware. And the company announced a 10,000 unit giveaway to teachers at an educational technology conference. The company quite obviously has stock on hand to distribute.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Get yer Zunes while they last!

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Jonathan M.” for the heads up.]

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        1. Residential real estate search websites should now have a check mark option for “Educational system doesn’t use Surface” filtering because you don’t want to live in an area full of crying angry children.

    1. It’s still a good idea for Microsoft, as it’s a way to clear inventory ahead of a refresh of its product line, spinning the program as charitable support for a noble institution.

      They may also harbour the delusion that use of these devices by children will create a halo effect, but with no ecosystem I can’t see it.

      If I were them I’d clear channel and scrap the refresh, retreat to enterprise ground where I’m strong, and entrench there.

      1. And after the refresh they will realize they can keep the same discount because they didn’t loss any money. Future headline “No school known to purchase discounted Surface RT”.

  1. I always wanted a Microsoft Surface tablet for a project but I couldn’t afford it, Now thanks to microsoft I can, I will buy one and extract the battery and the screen for my automated toilet paper dispenser… I hope it doesn’t crash during a crucial moment :/

  2. Throwing a wrench into educational systems with junk like this should be banned. Kids and teachers will wind up getting frustrated with maniacal software, schools will be loosing money on expensive licenses requirements and such.

    Instead of focusing on advancing education MS, is flooding the market and the schools with junk.

    MS, from the makers of free concert tickets, “Please use our junk!”

      1. And massive disappointment. The sooner they get used to that, the sooner they can join the ranks of the rest of us, and everybody else on the bloody planet.

  3. How pathetic. I don’t know what Microsoft is thinking. Do they really think that by giving away or highly discounting their product is good press? If anything, it highlights a failed product and a company desperate to move product. Ballmer ‘s ineptitude and total lack of vision is embarrassing. Microsoft is in dire need of someone with vision and an innovative edge. There isn’t anyone like that in their executive management team that I can see that can offer that. Apple has Cook and Ives, two men internationally know for being innovative leaders on the world stage. Microsoft has Ballmer, a man known for acting like a bafoon, throwing chairs, losing his temper in public, and making a total ass of himself. I’m just amazed this guy is still in charge. It’s obvious his lack of vision and leadership is destroying Microsoft, yet he still hasn’t been ousted. I don’t get it, how is that possible?

    1. Don’t forget, Ballmer has sought to solidify his position and authority through management purges and threats of massive restructuring.

      The corporate structure, with its working groups, personnel practices, silos and the rest prevent any serious opposition from arising, and with Ballmer’s college buddy Bill gates controlling votes in the Board of Directors, it seems assured that Microsoft’s “vision” will continue to lead them down the road to irrelevance.

  4. Pathetic to actually sell Surface tablets to schools even at a discount as they won’t be supported at all and will no doubt go the way of the Zune.

    Talk about bad PR down the road. This sounds like the death knell for hardware tablets from Microsoft.

    1. It really does, and it exposes Microsoft’s crass sales-centric thinking: abandon failed products with little fanfare, and count on consumer forgetfulness and apathy to nullify any bad PR down the road. Should that fail to sufficiently quiet dissent, announce a New Product to siphon off any residual negativity. The press these days are readily played.

  5. So I guess the catholic school girls dancing like Zulu tribesmen on the African plains didn’t create the sales they wanted? I guess that demographic was too poor to buy it and the demographic that could knew better and didn’t care for the low character advertising dancers. As we all know dancing and pointing your device at the sky means its an incredible divice! :/

  6. Selling something below cost from a company that can afford it is called price dumping, and it’s illegal. But only if there’s a government in charge that does anything about it.

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