No-one except Microsoft really knows how well the Surface is selling, but speculation is rife.
Detwiler Fenton, a Boston-based brokerage firm, said in a research note today that Microsoft is likely to sell just 500,000 to 600,000 Surface RTs in the December quarter.
The analyst, a bit like Steve Ballmer, blamed it on poor distribution of the tablet.
“Lack of distribution is killing the product,” Detwiler Fenton explained. “Mixed reviews and a [$499] starting price tag certainly don’t help, but lack of retail exposure at Best Buy and others is severely depressing sales.”
Potential buyers are not able to get a hands-on with the device themselves, which can be a deal breaker with a new product like the Microsoft Surface.
Currently, there are just 31 Microsoft stores and 34 smaller holiday kiosks in the U.S. Given that paucity of stores, the average consumer’s is pretty likely to see the device in an ad, but unlikely to come across the tablet on sale.
As a potential buyer who just purchased a Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 11 mainly because it was actually available in my local store, the story does ring true, but we will have to reserve judgement until Microsoft reveals official figures hopefully early next year.