Report: Steve Ballmer Confirms That Next Generation Surface Is In The Works

Steve Ballmer


We all know that Microsoft faced a bad financial struggle related to Surface tablets with their $900 million write off related to current generation Surface models inventory. In an internal event held at Microsoft, Steve Ballmer expressed his concern that Windows devices are not selling well enough. He also revealed that Microsoft is currently testing next generation Surface that will feature ‘typical improvements’  and the internal response to the next gen Surface has been positive.

Other tidbits from the address are that Microsoft is hoping to carry the third quarter momentum into Q4 and that, like many organizations, they will be investing heavily into professional services in the next fiscal quarter. Other obvious talking points included the fact that Windows 8.1 was heavily shaped by user telemetry and  was why Microsoft reintroduced the Start button back into Windows 8.

Are you looking forward towards next generation Surface?

Read more from the link below.

Source: Neowin

  • frankwick

    I hope Surface 2 was in the works the day the completed Surface 1.

  • Talal AlReyami

    It was only Surface RT not Surface Tablets as they haven’t do any inventory adjustment for Surface Pro out of the 900m USD. As he stated they have made few more Surface RT of what they could sell

    • Truitt Dill

      All of RT was kind of a flop…

      • Iain Simpson

        I would not say a flop it took up 8% of the tablet market fairly quick, the 900 million write down was expected with the price drop and too many made. MS need to just name the consumer win rt just Windows Tablet or something. drop the desktop completely from rt and of course much better spec’d units.

  • CX1

    Thinner, lighter, fan-less, 8+ hour battery Pro please.

    • freshfelicio

      and quick! The Surface Pro 1st gen was released at 9th February 2013, we now almost have August, if they want to update once a year like iPad they should hurry up, maybe they even get it finished before christmas. I mean, all they have to do is put a Hasswell in it instead of Ivy Bridge and you have your 8+ battery life, and that’s all I want. School starts next month and I wanted to take notes with OneNote, but 4-6h battery just isn’t enough. MacBook Air has 12+!

  • Duel

    New RT? Hope not.

    In reality what could it offer what surface 1 already doesnt offer? And which really make difference and make people want to buy it. The problem isnt the device itself, so the next one isnt going sell any better.

    You need a very big HOOK to compete against android and iOS tablets and i cant think any.

    • SteveyAyo

      Actual two things at once multitasking, full office suite for free, a full web browser that plays Hulu natively and now shared games and apps with Xbox One… The Surface RT is vastly superior to the iPad and any android tablet… Its just not as trendy, they need to market it better.

      oh and converge RT and WP

      • Duel

        But surface one already does all of those? Clearly not much big of deal.

        Also the problem isnt marketing. The problem is same which kept android tablets getting sells for two years, lack of tablet optimized ecosystem, few games few apps.

        What you just said doesnt make much difference or are things which people really want or make people buy surface over iPad.

        • SteveyAyo

          No, the things I listed are things people generally don’t even know about the SurfaceRT. The marketing has been garbage, fix the message and the sales will follow. There is absolutely no reason to buy and iPad or Android tablet over a SurfaceRT… you literally lose functionality by doing so.
          As soon as the Xbox One games begin showing up on RT the last thing the iPad has going for it is gone

          • Duel

            Im sure all the people who are interested about surface knows that it has office. There was research about surface usage and even people who own surface hasnt used office or tried it only once etc. What about people who doesnt own xbox? Hulu works fine with iPad.

            So multitasking was one thing which might give little advantage. I dont think it makes much difference. Do people really want to use to apps in same window with already small screen? Also if you want that you get it for jailbroken iPad.

            You know people try surface at store and they generally just doesnt like it.

          • SteveyAyo

            Are you like a really shitty iPad salesman or something? Quoting imaginary studies, Hulu+ works as an APP, im talking about the actual website…

          • Duel

            Why use website which is made for keyboard and mouse while u can use perfectly optimized version for touchscreen and that screen size? Hulu updated their app month ago and redesigned it from the ground up.

            You know the app is for providing best touchscreen tablet experience. Or doesnt you use for example facebook app for surface (well i dont know is there one)? You use full website? Hope not.

          • nohone

            Whenever a new big name app is announced for Win8/RT, the Apple fanboy argument is to mock it because why do you need an app, when you have the web site? The response to that is because then you get deep OS integration. On iOS, the Facebook app works with the notification center, adds the badge to the icon to show the number of responses, etc. Of course, when Facebook was announced for the iPad, it was hailed as the greatest app ever, the one everyone would want and need. When Facebook was announced last month, it was useless, nobody needs a live tile (which could also be a security issue), and so on and so on.
            It appears that you are arguing the wrong side of the Apple fanboy argument. Did you miss a daily talking points meeting?

          • SteveyAyo

            … Simple, is FREE… Hulu+ is NOT free, and yes I use full websites as much as humanly possible on my surface, without a problem in the world.

          • nohone

            Mind sharing this research that shows people do not use Office? And no, you supposedly stalking people in a store like Best Buy watching their buying habits is not “research.” Office sales makes Apple sales of their iWork software look like a rounding error. And with 100s of millions of Office users, being able to use Office on their tablet is a huge advantage. As for Xbox, there are 78 million Xbox 360 users. That is not a number that you can just dismiss because it does not fit into your narrative.
            Right, because the normal person, my parents for example who I gave my old iPad to, know how to jailbreak a device. Jailbreaking is something a very, very, very small number of people knows exists, let alone how to do.

            As for people trying a Win8/RT tablet and not liking it, again I post this link: Informed consumers are starting to buy Win8/RT when they see what Win8/RT tablets can do. Granted, uninformed consumers are in the majority, hence the high iPad market share. And once they do become informed, we see the numbers of iPads sold decline.

          • freshfelicio

            And that’s why Surface RT sells so bad, because it tries to compete with the iPad, and the target group of iPads are dumb people, and dumb people can’t figure out how to use Windows 8. Surface Pro however is for poeple who want to get work done efficiently, and it does that well.

        • kalval

          Correction: Surface RT 1 already does those things with occasional performance issues, a low res screen and generally inferior hardware. There are plenty of improvements to be made, and once RT 8.1 is out (I’m currently running the preview on my surface RT) none of those improvements are related to the OS. What surface RT needs is a lower price point and reviews stating categorically that it is better than ipad/android. For this it needs better hardware, as that is what half the criticism was levelled at for the original surface.

          I have a family member looking for a tablet at the moment. I showed them multitasking, printing/scanning via usb, the fact you can just plug in any usb device, office, IE11. This person seemed quite happy with these features, then I told them what would be missing from an ipad or android tablet and the response was an immediate ‘I want a surface’. Microsoft needs to sell this message better, which I believe they are now starting to do with some of their ads.

          Their other problem is that they need to stop competing with their own ‘Pro’ tablets. RT was way overpriced at launch – it should be <$500, high res screens, thin and light devices, 10hr battery life and <10.6" screens. With RT you can accomplish a premium feeling small device to directly compete with ipad and android at a low cost. To do this with pro at the same price point you have to cut corners (eg acer W3). One day hardware will be good enough that x86 can fit into any form factor with no compromises. Until then we need RT.

    • nohone

      And what does Apple offer in the upgraded iPads? A faster processor, one time it is thinner then the next it is thicker? The only upgrade that made any impact was the upgrade in screen resolution, I even upgraded because of it. We have seen that Apple’s strategy is failing with the massive drop in sales of the iPad (14%), and an even bigger drop in profits because when people are buying they are buying the cheaper mini vs. the full sized version. iOS 7 OS has a color palette that looks like a smurf puked on a computer screen and is already turning away customers. The only good parts of iOS 7 is copied from what is already available in Android and Win8/WP8, so why wait for an upgrade when you can get all that today in competing products?
      All Apple could do is “invent” new connectivity features, such as adding USB, HDMI/DisplayPort, or memory card connections. If people see that then they may upgrade to get the benefits of those features, but then, Android and Surface have already had them, which is why we are seeing people migrate to those platforms and away from Apple.

      • Duel

        “And what does Apple offer in the upgraded iPads?”

        Apple doesnt have the problem what microsoft has. Apple already have two best selling tablets by far.

        About massive drops in sales is explained what you actually said, first retina iPad came year ago. This year there hasnt been that new model which make that extra bumb for sells. Its coming in few months.

        • nohone

          Apple does have a problem. We saw a 14% drop in iPad sales, but we have seen Win8/RT quickly take 8% of the market. That sounds highly coincidental that as Microsoft OS tablets is growing, while iPad sales is dropping.

          The “no new model” argument is a red herring demonstrated by Apple’s own most recent filing. The iPad 4 and Mini was released in November 2012. The iPhone 5 was released in September 2012. Therefore, the iPad 4/Mini is newer than the iPhone. But iPhone sales have gone up, while iPad sales have gone down. If the “it is not new” argument were true, then we would see iPhone sales go down also. Instead, they went it opposite directions.

          Besides, if that argument were true, then we could say the same about the Surface RT. Surface RT was released in October (before the iPad 4/Mini) and a refresh is around the corner. So using that argument, we would expect sales of the Surface RT to start to go down.

          And we are seeing all that connectivity options being a deciding factor in people using Surface RT vs. the iPad:

          • SagetB

            nohone please your making all of us Microsoft fans look like an idiot. Please do not spout numbers that you do not have any real knowledge about.

            If you had any brains capiable of looking beyond headlines and actually able to do some research you would know that 80% of reduced iPad shipments attributable to channel inventory decline that brings your 14% to about 3% and that can be attributed to upgrade being released last year during the same quarter that did not happen this year.

            And do not try to argue that iPhone success is example of iPad failings. Specially in context that our beloved MSFT had to take near billion dollar write off. That failure!

            It fine to support the company you like but stop being stupid, your making all of us look bad.

          • nohone

            1) looking over your post history shows you not to be the “Microsoft fan” you claim to be. So you can stop that charade.

            2) as for sales of iPad, yes there is inventory decline, but that is because Apple is seeing a slowdown in sales, they knew it was going to happen and even warned against it in the previous quarter. If it were because of restrictions in inventory, you would have problems walking into a Best Buy, Target, Apple store, or shopping online and finding one. Those devices are readily available, but they just are not being bought in quantities they ere in the past. What I wrote was to disprove this claim that it is because of a newer version is due shortly. If that were true, we would see declines in iPhone sales since the iPhone has been on the market for longer. Why buy a phone that you will need to keep on a 2 year contract when you could wait a month or two and get a hint new iPhone 5gsgto (or whatever letters they want to attach this time around?). But the iPad is facing reduced demand, be it because of increased competition, people are not seeing a reason to upgrade (which means it is time for Apple to arbitrarily start disabling features on older devices, again), and yes, some are waiting for the upgrade.

          • SagetB

            Again please do not make me argue for the fruiTronic but 80% inventory decline is in preparation for a new product roll out.

            Again do some research and be a bit more thoughtful, if you did you would understand these numbers are primarily affect by Apple changed the iPad product cycle in 2012, from launching in the Spring to launching in the December quarter. So now this quarter and next is reduce shipment and inventory sell down for the huge holiday season bump.

            You would do better focusing your wrath at what would make the one great MSFT better like I do because that would help send the message to Balmer and his stooges that we want the company to be the leader it once was.

            For just because I am smart enough to call out MSFT mistakes and expect them to execute better does not mean I am not a fan. It simple makes me an intelligent one, something MSFT executive team, you and your less then thoughtful post could learn.

          • nohone

            With your holier-than-thou attitude, as well as constant personal attacks, I think it is safe to assume you are, indeed, an Apple fan.

            But none of what you wrote makes sense. First, the last quarter began in April for Apple. It is rumored that they will introduce the iPad 5 in October. Why start constraining your distribution in April, 6 months after the iPad 4 and 6 months before the iPad 5? If Apple is doing that, then Tim Cook is worst business man around. Second, if they cut their supply by 80%, then the iPad is doing far worse than we thought. If they cut production by 80%, and there was a drop of 14% of sales, that means they over produced and have many, many iPads sitting on shelves waiting to be purchased and supply far outstripped demand. It also means they expected to sell many more than they did. Third, cutting back on production has nothing to do with a future release. If I make and sell widgets, if those widgets are selling well, I produce as many as wanted by the market until the next version is ready, I do not dramatically drop my production 6 months early if there is a demand. But if there is a smaller demand for my product, there is an ample supply of my widget to stretch those 6 months, then I cut production. There is a plentiful supply of iPads, and yet sales dropped 14%. Moreover, more people are buying the smaller Mini. Lastly, Apple sells older versions of a product at a lower price, they do it with the iPad and iPhone. So they would keep manufacturing iPads 4 because they will continue to sell them for another year, not just drop production suddenly because of a newer version around the corner.

            All you are doing is making excuses for the company that is making many misteps. They had a few good years, but they are starting to falter. They will not disappear, but they are quickly returning to where they were a decade ago.

          • SagetB

            Arguable you lack the fundamental understanding logistics and inventory management and it is reflected by your repetition of sales drop when even earlier you agree it was inventory decline.

            The bigger issue is you are the exact reason why the Company you came to love is in such a mess. You rather focus on the fictional failings of a competitor, much like our worthless CEO, then to stop making excuse and start demanding better execution. Your constant argumentum ad hominem is quite reflective of a child like mind and a refusal to recognize reality.

        • Iain Simpson

          if you look at apples latest financials the ipad is not seeling very well at the moment, they are for the better part a nice toy when sitting taking a crap.

    • Zicoz

      RT should be the one that competes with Android on price, simple as that.

    • vpuik

      1080p screen, better battery life and standard HDMI come to mind.

      • freshfelicio

        the Surface Pro already has a 1080p screen, the best i’ve ever seen.

    • freshfelicio

      They could replace the nVidia Tegra 3 with an Intel Atom so it runs legacy Windows programs.

      • Iain Simpson

        the new surface rt will most likely run the snapdragon 800.

  • The1nChicago

    MS needs to price the Suface at the right price and show real value. Furthermore, they should market the Surface RT as strictly a tablet and lose some of the functionality so to speak. No one cares about all the printer drivers etc.

    • koenshaku

      I do, without some of that functionality it is just another content consumption device but without the apps.

  • vpuik

    All RT needs is 1080p screen and Marvel Unlimited App. Sold!

  • freshfelicio

    Dammit i planed to go back to school with a Surface Pro. Now I’m not sure if I should wait for Surface Pro 2…
    My suggestions: thinner, more battery life, more power with Hasswell processor. Everything else can stay the same in my opinion.

    Oh and just a tip Microsoft: Rename Windows RT into Windows Light and Surface RT into Surface Light. So you have the professional version “Surface Pro” and the light version “Surface Light” that runs a light version of Windows, “Windows Light”. That would be much clearer because nobody knows what RT stands for (I know it stands for “runtime” but that doesn’t make it clearer).

    • Iain Simpson

      there should be a whole set of new devices from oems being announced around the same time as 8.1 is rtm. so maybe late august.

  • g

    I actually think if they followed through on the RT and Modern UI, it would be a better success. Loose the desktop on RT, give us a Modern version of Office, make sure the Windows Phone 8 apps work on RT, overhaul the browser. it could be a better experience than the ipad. Multitasking is great, the Skydrive Modern app on 8.1 gives real file system access, it’s got a lot of things going for it.

    • Iain Simpson

      as soon as a full office modern is available the desktop will be set to not display on rt.

  • Peter Crook

    PLEASE release it world wide

  • Marcluan

    Windows should change the name of their tablet to be more clear and for the surface rt tablets they should use Intel chips, expand battery life to 11 or 12 hours to beat the iPad, lower the prices, they should improve the lag on the tablets and the apps should take long to open