Microsoft revealed its second-generation Surface tablets a couple of weeks ago, and you might have to act soon if you want to get your hands on one. According to the official Microsoft Developer Twitter account, the new slates are almost sold out:
Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 are close to selling out. All those buyers are gonna need apps. Your move: http://developer.microsoft.com/
The Surface Blog provides a little more detail, claiming that "pre-order stock of the Surface 2 (64GB) and Surface Pro 2 (256 GB and 512GB) are close to selling out." Given the largely tepid reaction to the new devices, I didn't expect strong pre-order sales. But notice that Microsoft isn't saying how many Surface tablets have been sold—just that the initial allocation has almost run dry.
This isn't the first time Surface pre-orders have sold out, either. Pre-orders for the origial Surface RT were snapped up in one day. That early enthusiasm didn't translate to strong sales once the device was on store shelves, though. In July, Microsoft wrote off $900 million in unsold Surface RT inventory. The tablet's price was slashed to $350, and it remains available to this day, albeit without the RT suffix. Ugh.
Microsoft's sell-out claims are clearly designed to generate hype ahead of the October 22 street date for the next-gen Surface tablets. This sort of stunt is to be expected, but I can't help feeling like it comes across as a little bit sad and desperate. If only Microsoft had introduced a budget-priced Bay Trail tablet with full x86 application support, the firm might be facing real availability concerns. I kind of doubt the Surface 2 and its Pro counterpart will be in short supply once the tablets come out. Thanks to TechEye for the tip.