Even though Microsoft’s Surface tablet won’t be officially available until Friday, Microsoft’s online store has already run out.Microsoft’s online store says the Surface model running the special, tablet-optimised Windows RT operating system, which sells for $499 to $699, is on backorder, reports Gregg Keizer at Computerworld.
Depending on the model, customers will have to wait two to three weeks after the official release date before Microsoft can deliver the tablet.
That doesn’t mean you won’t be able to get a Surface tablet on Friday. But you’ll have to buy it from a physical store.
Microsoft has beefed up its store-location list with a number of temporary “pop-up” stores, but stores are still only available to half the country—27 states—plus a few cities in Canada.
It’s unclear exactly how many tablets Microsoft built for launch day, so we don’t know whether this news indicates exceptionally strong consumer demand, or just conservative production planning by Microsoft, which is new to the PC hardware business.
Reports say that Microsoft has ordered 3 million to 5 million tablets to be produced for the whole fourth quarter, reports the Wall Street Journal. That’s about the same number as Asian suppliers are building of the Kindle Fire and the Google Nexus.
But, in comparison, those same suppliers say that they’re getting ready to crank out 10 million iPad Mini tablets.
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