facebook rss twitter

Microsoft Surface RT prices slashed for schools and colleges

by Mark Tyson on 18 June 2013, 09:30

Tags: Surface

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qabxrv

Add to My Vault: x

Microsoft is about to launch a worldwide promotion, cutting the price of its Surface RT tablets by more than half. This ARM-based tablet PC will be available for as little as US$199, a massive reduction on the MSRP of US$499. The special discount, aimed at educational establishments, will kick-off on 24th June and while it is scheduled to finish on 31st August, it is also flagged as ‘while stocks last’.

The offer was published by a Microsoft employee a few hours ago and subsequently taken down. It is understood this is due to a mix-up in the dates pertaining to the launch of the offer. Since the original post has been taken down ZDNet’s Mary J Foley has received confirmation of the offer and a date of 24th June from a Microsoft spokesperson. The official statement says “Yes, it’s true. Its important Microsoft does its part to help get devices into the hands of educators that help prepare today’s students with skills modern businesses demand. We will be discussing this more in greater detail on June 24, both from the ISTE showroom floor and on our Education Newsroom. Please join us then!”

So now we know that this is going to happen and when, what are the other details of the offer? Well, the original Microsoft blog post went down, but not before it was squirreled away by ZDNet. The offer will be available to schools and higher education establishments only. There is no minimum order, but a form has to be filled in. The offer is targeted at the “traditional back-to-school time frame” in the northern hemisphere.

The upcoming cut price offer isn’t USA only, it includes the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China (via Digital China), Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and last but not least, the United Kingdom.

Microsoft is thought to have been overly optimistic in its manufacturing orders for the Surface RT and would probably like to clear stock before any Surface II devices come along. Recently, at a major educational conference in the US, Microsoft gave away 10,000 of these tablets to teachers.

While we wait for this special educational deal to be launched, Microsoft is offering a comparatively stingy free touch cover with Surface RTs sold right now, the base model costs £399 in the UK. Converting the $199 US dollar educational offer price today results in a price of about £125 GBP.

HEXUS Forums :: 13 Comments

Login with Forum Account

Don't have an account? Register today!
Is this them trying to clear stocks before a new model comes out? :)

That said, if they could do it (sans keyboard) for Joe Public at £199 then I'd be very interested. Was looking at one yesterday with my youngest, (she being a big fan of windows - both desktop and phone) and she was impressed with it, but really didn't like the keyboard/cover. Said it felt “creepy” :D
After reading up on this a bit more, I've very tempted.

It'll be around £160 for the 32GB RT w/o cover after you add on VAT and Shipping, £200 for one with the touch cover and £230 for one with the type cover.

Unfortunately that's the 32GB models, but as you can't install x86 apps surely you can't use up that much space.

One of my friends won a RT (Lucky…), so I'll ask him what he thinks of it now that he's had it for a few months. Only downsides I can see, which are personally just for me, are the lack of x86 apps, but then WUI apps are getting there or are already available for what I want/need, and the lack of stylus input.

I'd love a Surface Pro though, so hopefully they will include them at some point. Why do all companies add on £300 just so add a stylus?!

Just have to wait and see how I can order one of these through work.
I'd love a Surface Pro though, so hopefully they will include them at some point. Why do all companies add on £300 just so add a stylus?!
I thought I was going to end up buying a Surface Pro. I found the Surface RT really useful as an Office / Note taking tablet. Something my iPad and Nexus7 could never come close too.

I found the touch keyboard also useful for short stints, being able to bluetooth or USB plug in any keyboard I have is really handy too.

Then I had a play with the Pro….

The Pro is a miss for me, its just too big, to heavy, with too short of a batterylife. I appreciate some of it will be due to the accurate wacom digitaliser (these things take power!) but on the whole its just too much compromise, 5/6 hours doesn't cut it. Then the weight. I could pack TWO of the new vaio pro 11s in that weight. Two! Not too mention they have much better battery life, going up to 25hours if I add more weight.

I think that if you draw penny arcade, it might be the best thing for you, but if you were thinking something that made 1 note better, whilst allowing me to do some viso, over just doing the regular code stuff, it is too much of a premium.

Hopefully they will have a haswell one round the corner, which could help fix the batterylife and weight issues a bit.
I'd only use the stylus for note taking, so I wouldn't have to carry an A4 notepad around.

We bought an Acer W510 Win 8 tablet at work, it works fine with a standard capacitive stylus, but I have a habit of resting my wrist on whatever I'm writing on, which just ends up making a mess in OneNote or making the tablet go crazy.

Battery life and weight aren't a huge concern, as I don't do long periods of travelling, so as long as I could hit the 6 hours between charge that would be fine, obviously prefer more but it's not a deal breaker. Same with the weight, won't be carrying it 24/7, and it'll be replacing my work laptop (Asus X401 I think) which is double the weight of the Surface RT/Pros!

I'd really use it to browse the Internet, send/receive emails, usual tablet content consumption, but then with the added benefit of Office.

@TheAnimus - Do you use yours with a stylus very often or is it just the odd bit of note taking? I'm very tempted to buy it with the touch cover, or even the type depending on final figures, which really will reduce the need of a stylus if I'm sat at a desk.

From what I've been reading, the Targus 2-in-1 Pen/Stylus works well with the RT, but then I'm sure it will work the same as all other capacitive styli. Think I may have to just learn to stop leaning my wrist on everything lol!
Well I had a proper tablet PC when I was in uni. I could never use one note without resting my arm on the screen, so I simply don't do anything on one note that would need a digitiser.

The other issue is, I buy A3 ringbound paper that is ment for ‘artists’ or some such, from my local shop, its about 20p a sheet and I buy it in packs of 50. Using a bunch of these:

It is just a much better colabarative experiance than trying to huddle over 10 inches!

Given that for most of these things, a quick photo from my phone is more than enough (lumia 920 does great low light images thanks to its image stablisation).

Which ultimately is why I don't think I would benefit from it.

I will say, I think the touch cover is ace. I can happily type a 600+ word response without wanting to through the thing out the window (hi iPad).