Microsoft’s latest product, the Surface Book, could see sales of between 50,000 and 100,000 units in the fourth quarter of 2015, research firm Gartner told Business Insider.
The laptop, which was unveiled at an event on October 6, can be used with a keyboard dock or in a “clipboard” mode that is similar to a tablet computer. While the Surface Pro competes with the MacBook Air, the Book is designed to go head-to-head with the MacBook Pro.
Annette Jump, a research director for Gartner, told Business Insider that Microsoft “probably won’t sell millions and millions of Surface Books but it could cause PC vendors to re-look at their current offerings and future offerings.”
One of the reasons that Surface Book sales are relatively small is down to Microsoft’s distribution channels. The company recently signed a deal with Dell and HP to increase sales among enterprise customers but the infrastructure just isn’t there to sell tens of millions of units at present.
The overall sales trend for Surface devices is positive, according to the firm’s data. During 2014, Microsoft sold around 1.8 million Surface Pro tablets, over 500,000 of which came between January and June. In the first six months of 2015 the company has already sold around 1.5 million units, a three-fold increase.
However, there is still a way to go. Apple’s two main PC lines, the Air and Pro, sold 5.4 million and 2 million units respectively between January and June of 2015. The latter of the two figures is where Microsoft is likely aiming with the Surface Book.
Achieving a large volume of sales for the Surface Book likely isn’t Microsoft’s main aim, at least initially. “I think that Surface Book is trying to shake [up] the notebook segment,” Jump told Business Insider. By inspiring third-party manufactures into making better products, Windows becomes a more attractive proposition as a whole, something Microsoft greatly benefits from.
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