There's been some noise over Surface 2 availability recently. Surface 2 was definitely an improvement over Microsoft's original tablet release, but was also a sort of stop-gap measure before delivering a true solid performer in the Surface Pro 3.
Still, the Surface 2 is used by many. I spent some time in Redmond last year, in attendance with a bunch of MVPs, and they gobbled up the discounted Surface 2's like they were candy. Surface 2 has a lot of value as a second screen, particularly for surfing the web and watching video.
Some have raised concerns over the Surface 2 availability, so I spoke with Microsoft today.
"We are no longer manufacturing Surface 2; however, those still eager to buy Surface should visit Microsoft Retail Stores, MicrosoftStore.com, third-party retailers and resellers for the latest availability." –Microsoft spokesperson
So, it seems if you still want one of these, your best bet is to do some local hunting, as I'm sure the ones from the online store will be snatched up first. $449 is a smart purchase.
Some have asked if this includes the Surface Pro 2 since, on the surface (pun intended), this seems like a simple hardware manufacturing story. The communication only addresses the Surface 2 – on purpose, I believe. Thinking about it, it makes perfect sense considering the Surface Pro 2 runs Windows 8.1 Pro but the Surface 2 is still being powered by Windows RT 8.1. And, I think this gives us deeper insight to what Microsoft might be planning for Windows 10 support for the Windows RT operating system.
During the Q&A portion of Microsoft's last Windows 10 event, Terry Myerson suggested that Microsoft "is working on it" in relation to supporting a Windows 10 upgrade for Windows RT. Later it was further suggested that some, but not all, Windows 10 features might come to Windows RT. Then, yesterday I cobbled together some notes I took during a conversation with a Microsoft person to talk about how upgrades might work for Windows 7 and Windows 8 users. Notably absent from that conversation was any reference to Windows RT.
And, I believe that says something without really saying something. Don't you?
So, logically the next question that continues to burn the cockles of everyone's mind is: if Microsoft is beginning to stop manufacturing newer devices, does that mean that the Surface Pro 4 is just around the corner?
I believe it is, and will be released as part of the Windows 10 launch wave later this summer. I believe Surface Pro 4 will be the first device out the door that comes with Windows 10 preinstalled. I'm already dusting off my comfortable shoes and polishing my wallet to stand in line.
However, it's just my opinion how the whole Surface Pro 4 thing will go down. If you ask Microsoft (and, I did), this is what they say…
"As we've said before, there is a roadmap of products, but we have nothing further to share." –Microsoft spokesperson
"As we've said before…" Sounds like something I'd say to my kids after they've asked me the same question 10 times and I responded with the exact same answer each and every go round. It amounts to a verbal slap in the face, but that's OK, at least they're listening to me.