Feeds

Surface RT now on sale in 13 more European markets

On sale, yes – but is it selling?

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Continental Europeans who can't think of anything to get that special someone for Valentine's Day might condsider a Surface RT fondleslab, which Microsoft made available in 13 additional markets on Thursday.

Until now, the ARM-based tablets running Windows RT have only been available in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, the United Kingdom and the United States, via Microsoft's online store and a smattering of retailers.

  Online ad for Surface RT in Italy

Beginning on Thursday, however, they are also on sale in Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland. The new additions more than double the number of global markets for Surface RT, bringing the total to 21.

In most of those new markets, an entry-level Surface RT with 32GB of storage and no keyboard/cover costs €479 ($639/£412) when purchased through the Microsoft Store, just as it does in Germany. That means most European customers will pay a 28 per cent premium over what the same devices cost in the US.

The price does vary in some countries, however. Inexplicably, the same configuration is priced at €486 ($648/£418) in the Netherlands and €489 ($652/£421) in France. It's a little cheaper in Switzerland, at 559 francs ($606/£391), but it will set you back 4,495 kronor ($710/£458) in Sweden and a wallet-draining 3,999 kroner ($715/£461) in Denmark.

  Online ad for Surface RT in Denmark

High prices are certainly nothing new to Scandinavians, but Surface RT could be a tough sell at those rates, given that one analyst firm has already recommended that Microsoft cut its US prices on Surface by 33 per cent.

Still, it could be worse. In July 2012, a number of media outlets reported that the Swedish launch price for the 32GB Surface could be as high as 6,990 kronor, which has now turned out to be a 56 per cent overestimate.

 Online ad for Surface RT in Finland

At the time, the same sources also quoted a Swedish price for the Intel-powered Surface with Windows Pro. That probably should have been a giveaway that the reports weren't genuine, since Microsoft still has made no announcement as to when (or indeed if) the Surface Pro will be available to customers in international markets.

Meanwhile, reports continue to roll in citing lackluster sales for Surface RT at home – and for Windows 8 and Windows RT fondleslabs in general – casting the device's future in Europe in doubt, also.

  Online ad for Surface RT in Portugal

There is at least one man outside Microsoft who is still bullish on Microsoft's ARM-based OS, however, and that's Jen-Hsun Huang, CEO of Nvidia, maker of the Tegra 3 system-on-chip units that power the Surface RT. Speaking during Nvidia's earnings call on Thursday, Huang said it was "hard to imagine" how Windows RT devices won't eventually be seen as "wonderful PCs."

"I believe it is essential, strategically essential for Microsoft to be on all of the major processors in the world – surely the highest volume processor in the world," Huang said. "As a software company and an operating system company, it's a market they can't afford to ignore. And so, Win RT I think will be successful as well. Microsoft will have no choice but to continue to invest in it. And it's a great company, they'll do something great with it." ®

Website security in corporate America

More from The Register

next story
Man buys iPHONE 6 and DROPS IT to SMASH on PURPOSE
Yarrrgh! 'Tis Antipodean insanity, ye crazy swab
Oi, Tim Cook. Apple Watch. I DARE you to tell me, IN PERSON, that it's secure
State attorney demands Apple CEO bows the knee to him
4K-ing excellent TV is on its way ... in its own sweet time, natch
For decades Hollywood actually binned its 4K files. Doh!
Your chance to WIN the WORLD'S ONLY HANDHELD ZX SPECTRUM
Reg staff not allowed to enter, god dammit
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Monitors monitor's monitoring finds touch screens have 0.4% market share
Not four. Point four. Count yer booty again, Microsoft
DARPA-backed jetpack prototype built to make soldiers run faster
4 Minute Mile project hatched to speed up tired troops
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.