Of course, where that expectation was set is the missing bit of information from the survey. We could "exceed expectations" every day for page views at PhoneArena if our expectation is that only 3 people will visit the site. Given the pessimistic expectations that were bounced around before the Windows 8 launch, we'd assume that expectations were fairly low, and not too difficult to meet or exceed.
That said, the Microsoft Surface seems to be doing better than expected as Pacific Crest Securities analyst Brendan Barnicle raised his estimates for Microsoft because of the sales of the Surface tablet. Still, we'd be interested to see more real numbers on the subject.