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Analyst says the Surface tablet will be the next Zune

Posted: , by Michael H.

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Analyst says the Surface tablet will be the next Zune
We've thought that the Microsoft Surface tablet looks pretty nice, and certainly could make a mark in enterprise if not the consumer tablet market, but not everyone agrees with us. In fact, one analyst went so far as to call the tablet the next Zune. Maybe the Surface won't be that popular, but it seems pretty harsh to drop the Z-bomb on it. 

Canalys researcher Tim Coulling is saying that it's all about the price, which for both the RT and Pro versions of the Surface "will be too high to capture significant market share". The official recommendation from the firm is that OEMs hold off on making any Windows 8 tablets until "Microsoft rethinks the high license fee". Then he dropped the Z-bomb in saying, "We expect the Surface pads to have a similar impact on the PC industry as Zune did in portable music players." Ouch.

Of course, the analogy, as harsh as it sounds, may be pretty accurate. The Zune wasn't really a bad media player and Coulling doesn't seem to see the Surface as a bad tablet. It's more a matter of launching in a very tough market at a price that isn't competitive enough. Like it or not, the iPad is still dominating the 10" tablet market (although Samsung and Asus are growing fast), and has proven itself as the only $500 tablet that people are willing to buy. The only reason the Kindle Fire or Nexus 7 have been successful is because of the price point, which Microsoft just can't match. 

It does really seem like Microsoft is aiming for the enterprise market with the Surface though, so success will be measured on quite a different scale than for consumer products like the Nexus 7, Kindle Fire, or iPad. As always, time will tell. 

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posted on 02 Aug 2012, 21:05 5

1. jroc74 (Posts: 5192; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


Yea...price is gonna be key with the iPad dominating and Android tablets getting more popular.

That and marketing.

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 07:12

33. anywherehome (Posts: 971; Member since: 13 Dec 2011)


but to succeed he has to put it for free but Microsoft has no future with his OS for free because he has no any another product.....in every way he tries to be a leader he fails and loses money except for OEM (=corruption of manufacturers and governments:
here: goo gl/FNz9f
and here: goo gl/EYqOl

Google has advertisement so he can destroy patent trolls and companies who blocks progress like Microsoft or Apple

posted on 04 Aug 2012, 07:14 1

40. Henrik (Posts: 141; Member since: 18 Feb 2012)


Don't quit school for another 10 years, son. Stay there and learn something.

posted on 05 Aug 2012, 23:20

44. anywherehome (Posts: 971; Member since: 13 Dec 2011)


can you read (the facts above in the links)? ;)

posted on 04 Aug 2012, 16:21

42. pikapowerize (banned) (Posts: 1869; Member since: 03 May 2012)


oh puhlease.... microsoft fails with its vista and no one is denying that.. but why people still use microsoft instead of open source ubuntu and linux mint? because people wants life fast and easy...eventhough ubuntu and linux mint give it also... and there is a vast of application on windows...

i am planning to change my computer to ubuntu but due to the most needed apps of today like skype etc etc... it dont support the platform.. especially the new release 12.04!

on open source, where will this people get their salary?

windows 8 might fail but, on the destop version only!! because the worst decison of microsoft on windows 8 is making the look on a destop verson similar to the tablet/touchscreen device!! but surface will get some love by that very same thing!!!

posted on 05 Aug 2012, 23:18

43. anywherehome (Posts: 971; Member since: 13 Dec 2011)


fail with Vista? do you mean great profit from Vista OEM is a fail? ;)
it doesnt matter how Windows good or bad is....the great profit is everytime because of OEM ;)

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 21:07 2

2. Jay_F (Posts: 236; Member since: 29 Nov 2011)


Sad, but in all likelihood, the truth.

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 22:36 7

14. jove39 (Posts: 1330; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)


No...certainly not truth! Analysts are like movie critiques...who speak crap about movie...and movie later on turnout to be big hit...remember batman?

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 13:29

34. crankyd00d (Posts: 191; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)


Not the truth but highly likely. Zune = good product and it bombed. Windows Phone = good product and still is grouped with the "others" option in market share statistics. Surface looks good but again the price is against them, I always thought that Windows Phone 7 handsets were way overpriced for having basically 2 year old tech, so I don't see their luck changing any time soon

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 19:13

37. JunitoNH (Posts: 984; Member since: 15 Feb 2012)


Yeah.........remember the iPad? Wasn't MS and the other laptop companies laughing before its release? Fast forward, everyone and their Mom and trying to get into the fray.

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 21:13 11

3. Pdubb (Posts: 239; Member since: 08 Aug 2011)


Hmmmm... What is the price??? I did not think that MS announced a price yet. Kinda like people going crazy over the next iPhone being $800. Rumors are rumors maybe the Surface will bomb but you cannot use price as a factor when no official price is given. MS may be willing to take a loss just to gain mind-share. Kinda how Sony did with the PS3.

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 21:39 1

7. Jay_F (Posts: 236; Member since: 29 Nov 2011)


I thought the price was rumored to be in the vicinity of the $400+ range. This was supposed to be the competition for the iPad/Asus Transformer series.

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 21:59 1

10. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2693; Member since: 26 May 2011)


RT is rumored to be starting at $500, and Pro at around $1000.

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 03:30

31. CharlieAtInfinity (Posts: 253; Member since: 10 Apr 2012)


$1000 ow thats a lot of money for x86 version.. probably I wont be buying the surface because of hefty price tag. For same money can get a i7 powered laptop with 1 or 2 GB Nvidia graphics!!

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 01:40

22. jos_031 (Posts: 37; Member since: 12 Jun 2012)


It is 1100 usd for rt and more for Intel one

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 21:27 2

4. jroc74 (Posts: 5192; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


Thats why I dont understand MS Office supposedly coming to iOS and Android in Nov. That coulda been used as a selling point for Surface tablets. IMO.

I think MS's biggest problem is the perception from before and after the iPhone came out. Some, many ppl have jumped ship from MS mobile products and dont really trust them anymore for a good product.

Whats gonna get ppl that never used a mobile MS product before to try one, and whats gonna get former users to come back? All I know is my first tablet will either be MS or Android. I ....might....be willing to invest in another eco system with MS.

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 21:35 2

6. MeoCao (unregistered)


MS office cannot be the selling point. There are many productivity suits that are better adapted to mobile OS and much cheaper too. Google Doc is growing fast, with strong support for the cloud it seriously threatens Office and MS has to save the Office first, their biggest source of income.

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 21:42 1

8. snowgator (Posts: 3290; Member since: 19 Jan 2011)


Agree. No company that makes it's cash by volume instead of profit per unit (think Ford Focus VS Lincoln Mark 8) can afford to keep it's product "protected". The best way to support Microsoft and it's company vision is to get Office on as many products as they can. The Surface Tablets need to stand on their own, or they need to depend on other manufacturers to push Windows RT and Pro.

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 00:41 1

21. luxzy801 (Posts: 136; Member since: 16 Jun 2010)


I would have to disagree with you on some of the statements;
I used WinMo for as long as smartphones have been on the market and I will say this, a lot of people stuck with WinMo to the end (That is why even when WP came out and even up until 2011, WinMo still made up at least half, if not more of Microsoft's marketshare)
WinMo was, to some extent, flawed. But it was the manufacturers that doomed it to hell and gave that perception, not really MS. To give you an example, all smartphones since androids conception had a capacitive screen (iPhone, G1, Behold and so on) however, there were only 2 WinMo devices that had Capacitive and that was only a year after Android. Samsung, Palm, Acer, iMate and many others would always underpower thier devices and put crappy screens with a 100-150 ppi on a 3.5" TFT LCD (NOT EVEN LED OR AMOLED) and HTC made it completely unstable with its TouchFlo interface (I always took out the touchflo completely by altering the registry or just disabling it from the Today settings menu) and alot of the perception came from HTC because they were the market leader in WinMo, that is why so many people that started going for WinMo phones after the iPhone came out said it was slugish and always froze. After 9 years of using WinMo, I never blamed WinMo for the issues, the manufacturers on the other hand wanted WinMo DEAD and that was the end of that chapter.
I am going to agree with you on the rest of your statement... I will not going back to any MS mobile product because to me, WP was a complete and utter dissapointment going from an OS that was android before android to going to an OS that is iOS after iOS. And MS office going to iOS and Android is just a way of saying WE WANT MORE MONEY, but will probably doom them in the end because, as you said, it would have been a perfect selling point for MS.

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 18:05

36. jroc74 (Posts: 5192; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


Yea....they waited too late to go capacitive screens. I never thought to look at it as the manufactures. I just read where there were some old Win Mo phones with capacitive screens, so it was possible on Win Mo.

But....wouldnt that be kinda bad? I thought the old Win Mo was best as a stylus system? Especially with alot of things being so small. The iPhone, Android, WP is more of a finger OS vs the older OS's.

posted on 04 Aug 2012, 00:19 1

39. luxzy801 (Posts: 136; Member since: 16 Jun 2010)


It was built on the stylus system as its initial release back in CE 1.0 through WinMo 2005, however, if you compare WinMo 5 to 6.1 or greater, you would see that the text was bigger on 6.1+ which allowed for an easier interaction with the device, and to tell you the truth, even with my Treo Pro, I have only used the stylus a total of about 5 times in the 3 years that I have had it. There were also today home screen ad-ons such as the SPB pocket plus 4 which gave WinMo much greater functionality in a sense where everything could be done from the today screen without even having to press the start button or using the stylus (Works like a charm on my Treo and my HD2).
Capacitive touch screens could have been on WinMo phones since 2008 with WinMo 6.1, that is the main reason why barely anyone heard of WinMo 6 is because after they released 6, they immediately added capacitive capability and screen sensitivity control functions to the registry allowing the units to run on capacitive with different sensetivity controls, and named it 6.1. If you took a WinMo 5 or 6 device and a 6.1 or a 6.5 device, both with resistive touch screens, you would actually even notice on the resistive screens that 6.1 and 6.5 had become more sensitive to touch that the previous versions of WinMo. Take a look on google pix and compare some of the pix between 5 and 6.5 or 5 and 6.1 and you will see it off the bat, also take a look at spb pocket plus to get an idea of what could have been possible if the manufacturers started pushing better tech with WinMo.
It kinda pisses me off because I am still a huge WinMo fanboy but I think it might be time to switch to something else since there is no waiting for MS to come out with something similar (DAMN YOU MS, DDDDAAAAMMMNNNN YYYYYOOOOOUUUUUUU)
LOL

posted on 04 Aug 2012, 11:56

41. jroc74 (Posts: 5192; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


Yea....SPB made life with my Omnia 1 bearable....lol. Thats one reason I paid the $15 for the Android launcher.

I also never really used the stylus, I think I lost it to be honest. I left Win Mo after the Omnia 1, I didnt even bother trying to update it. Win Mo will always hold a place in my heart for being my first smart phone. And really began my learning lessons on mobile technology.

And one reason.....even if I post negative things here n there about WP....it would be my next choice for a smartphone. I agree with alot of what you said in your posts.

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 01:56

26. tuneslover (Posts: 11; Member since: 15 Jun 2012)


MS Office will never come to Android.

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 02:14 2

28. kunyuk (Posts: 56; Member since: 29 Jun 2012)


It will come in November for ios and Android, if I'm not wrong

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 21:28

5. MeoCao (unregistered)


The best way for MS is to license the technology like the razor thin KB or magnesium case to the manufacturers.

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 21:45 1

9. snowgator (Posts: 3290; Member since: 19 Jan 2011)


Hey, another analysis. Good, it's been hours since we had a random prediction from some "expert" without all the facts.

As for the Tablet in question, if MS cannot take a look at the market and figure out that the largest problem of the first wave of Android tablets were they were to expensive, then they deserve to fail, period end of story.

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 22:28 2

11. 305Bucko (Posts: 506; Member since: 07 Aug 2011)


I disagree with Analysts. MP3 players were a dime a dozen. Sandisk, logitech, creative labs just to name a few, when the Zune came out it was just too bulky and not cheap. NOT TO MENTION not a real necesity

A tablet on the other hand started out as a cool luxury and has now started to become a necesity as its starting to become more practical than Desktop PCs and even laptops.

Ive owned the Asus Transformer and was not impressed. I chose to keep my iPad because I can remote desktop to my Windows PC like a charm and with the Ultrathin Logitech keyboard it has rendered my laptop useless since I take it everywhere.

HOWEVER, just like Steve Wozniak, I cant wait to try the Surface! FINALLY a device I will be able to do EVERYTHING on! No jailbreak, rooting, customROM required.

But well see if its the real deal. I think it will set the standard. ADD XBOX LIVE GAMING AND ITS ON LIKE DONKEY KONG...literally

Windowsphone on the other hand.. mehh

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 00:15

18. joey_sfb (Posts: 3228; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)


I have splashtop app for both my iPad and Xoom running ics. Both can do remote desktop well. My xoom just receive jellybean upgrade alert.

Personally i like my xoom better. Can't wait to try out google now.

BTW, Surface does have potential.

posted on 04 Aug 2012, 00:08 1

38. 305Bucko (Posts: 506; Member since: 07 Aug 2011)


Splashtop works great. Flash runs very smooth remotely. its even better than logmein. With Spashtop, who needs a laptop.

Question Joey: I have owned an android Tablet and I find that the iPad runs smoother and most apps are better designed and less glitchy. Please give me your honest opinion, because I have not tried it again since honeycomb, why do you prefer your xoom? Did ICS or JB address these issues? do you honestly prefer it over your iPad? explain

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 22:31 2

12. jove39 (Posts: 1330; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)


Analysts need to understand entire Surface lineup isn't competing with tablets/iPad category...only RT version...which I hope will be competitively priced...whereas PRO version will compete in ultrabook category...which justifies ~$1000 price tag!

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 22:35 2

13. omz9tampa (Posts: 1; Member since: 02 Aug 2012)


Unfair to compare. Zune with surface. The iPod got updated with new software, then a hardware update with front facing camera. The Zune was the foundation for many products we see coming from MS, as far as UI. Just like windows phone 7, zune has the ce kernel and was not meant to be a long term project. Now with a new kernel, combining of the the three screens the possibilities are endless. The future is bright. The surface is a great showcase product. Coming from a software company it's a great achievement. Great showpiece to show off in all those spanking new MS stores where a MS presence really is needed.

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 23:09 1

15. -box- (Posts: 3878; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)


I don't think the Surface is supposed to be a volume seller, it's supposed to be the equivalent of a Google Nexus device. Baseline and flagship of the OS.

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 23:25 3

16. pikapowerize (banned) (Posts: 1869; Member since: 03 May 2012)


i think its an unfair comparison... yeh zune flop because its price isnt as fancy as it look and the iPod rule on that segment (i dont know if people buy walkman, but if sony will release the new walkman powered by android ICS and the price is same with a midrange phone, better buy a phone with same specs)!! but surface RT and pro are different!

but i wish surface will be price same as the iPad and the 10 inch android though... especially the RT one!!!!

and the pro is price a less cheaper than the ultrabook!

microsoft will surely rule the world! :P

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 01:58

27. tuneslover (Posts: 11; Member since: 15 Jun 2012)


Pro will not be cheaper than any other ultrabook I guess. I mean it is not possible.

posted on 02 Aug 2012, 23:43

17. Bluesky02 (Posts: 1439; Member since: 05 Dec 2011)


The prices are a big factor indeed, instead of shelling $500 for incomplete Windows Experience, Save some money 2 or 3 months, wait for some promotion then buy $1000 Surface Pro. In doing so you're sure to have something powerful at your hand.

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 00:32

19. cncrim (Posts: 546; Member since: 15 Aug 2011)


I have to AGREE $1000 for tablet is not a magic number to me. Surface is a great device but it need to be more affordable or at least match ipad $ not more.

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 01:53

24. tuneslover (Posts: 11; Member since: 15 Jun 2012)


Surface RT will be $500 and Surface Pro will be $1000-$1200.

Surface Pro is not just a toy-tablet. It is also an ultrabook. It will have Core i7 processor, 4GB ram, 64bit Windows 8 etc.

If you need a full computer and a tablet Surface Pro is perfect for you. It will run desktop version of Photoshop, AfterEffect, AutoCad, 3Ds Max etc.

But if you need something to use as an ebook reader and browser, Surface RT is your device.

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 00:39

20. IamYourFather6657 (Posts: 321; Member since: 01 Jul 2012)


I think I will get the transformer prime 3G over the surface

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 01:54 1

25. tuneslover (Posts: 11; Member since: 15 Jun 2012)


If you would say iPad then I would say nothing. But Android tablet? Seriously? you are so...funny

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 03:16

30. IamYourFather6657 (Posts: 321; Member since: 01 Jul 2012)


Kinda bored of my iPads . I like the ui on android tablets

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 01:45 2

23. tuneslover (Posts: 11; Member since: 15 Jun 2012)


Zune was a pretty dumb device compared to iPod touch but Windows 8/RT is not.

Windows RT is gonna be very touch friendly, faster & smoother (than iOS). On the other hand Android on tablet is a total crap, even on phone (If you compare it with Windows Phone & iOS. It is laggy and hangs a lot due to low memory).
Some people say Android has many "advance features" but why do I need so many "advanced features" on the phone? I'm not gonna launch a spaceship with my phone and I don't want task manager and RAM optimizer.

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 02:25 1

29. JC557 (Posts: 1163; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)


The Zune HD was well received and quite a few were sold. Unfortunately the marketing wasn't there so people bought what the TV told them to buy (ipod).

I have a Zune HD and an iPod Touch and I feel the Zune has better sound quality and user interface.

Surface sounds like it could make tablets actually useful for productivity compared to what's offered now.

posted on 03 Aug 2012, 16:11 1

35. 7thspaceman (Posts: 1145; Member since: 14 Feb 2011)


Microsoft has to stay in the Tablet market and sell their Tablets to the Enterprise or else the Ipad will be the defacto tablet for the Enterprise Microsoft will not punk out and allow that. Microsoft will keep working on the "Surface Tablet Computers until they get it right. folks remember the xbox was not popular when it first came out but Microsoft hung in there and got it right. they will do the same with their tablet computers and will get it right Microsoft has the time, money and the talent to get it done .

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